Important Note About Gold Holding:
The gold holding held in some of our client portfolios announced a 10 for 1 share split. The share split will not change the economic value of the shares of the holding. You will simply own more shares, but each share will be worth less. If you hold the gold position the value of the investment will not change as a result of the share split. Some website account access interfaces do not yet reflect the adjustment in the shares but do show an adjustment in the share price resulting in an incorrect value.
Not all portfolios hold a gold investment and this is not a recommendation to purchase any gold investment and is applicable only to those clients who are already invested in the gold holding.
The European debt crisis is back in the headlines and caused a broad decline in worldwide stock markets yesterday.
The U.K. announced major spending cuts in the first of many such anticipated actions across Europe. Surely, there will be more cuts to come in the U.K. and virtually every EU member will very likely follow with similar approaches.
The proposed European spending cuts are so severe that they may cut off any economic growth. In fact, Lowe Wealth Advisors believes the cuts will send Europe into a recession in 2011. If Europe does move into a recession next year, the likely result will be suppressed growth in the U.S. and Emerging Markets in 2011.
Clearly the European situation has caused numerous downgrades in economic projections for 2010 and 2011. Economist Anirban Basu is now leaning toward a sentiment where a U.S. recession in 2011 is more likely than not. Morris Segall of SPG Trend Advisors says that, “whether we see a double dip recession in 2011 and ultimately a W shaped recovery depends for the most part on job creation and a meaningful reduction in the ranks of the unemployed by the end of 2010”.
Lowe Wealth Advisors wrote in this column last week that we believed the recent market gains were not sustainable and that they were not an indication of a fundamental shift in the market direction. The behavior of the stock markets yesterday is confirmation of this view.
The European situation will likely continue to be the near term driving force in the global stock markets. As we near the next round of corporate earnings reports in early July, it is very possible that domestic stock markets could receive a positive bounce and push higher as a result of favorable earnings.
However, it is equally likely following the earnings releases that investors will start to focus on the remainder of 2010 and recognize that the prospects for growth may be very limited. Lowe Wealth Advisors expects to see consumer spending remain stable over the summer largely due to planned travel and vacation. Following the summer, our expectation is to see spending decrease as consumers “hunker down” once again, followed by a potential spike for holiday shopping.
At this juncture, we anticipate remaining tilted toward potential preservation and defense in our actively managed discretionary accounts through the end of June. If it appears earnings will meet or exceed expectations we may reduce potential defensive positions in early July, followed by immediate consideration of moving back toward defensive after the earnings season.
The second half of 2010 will not simply be about potential preservation. Lowe Wealth Advisors is working at the present time to develop strategies that have the potential to grow assets should we enter into a period of greatly slowed economic recovery or even a double dip recession.
While some core elements of such a strategy are already in place in many of our portfolios, certain holdings would likely be repositioned. As we continue our research alongside Morris Segall and Anirban Basu, Lowe Wealth Advisors will keep you informed of our anticipated strategies. We will likely be holding a conference call and possibly a WebEx next month to introduce some of the potential strategies which we are considering.
When one is seeking strategies that are potentially not correlated to the stock and bond markets it is important to consider that some of these strategies may have a different tax structure than other assets we typically use. For example, one such holding produces a tax report called a K1 form. These forms are generally not available until late February or March. Prior to utilizing such a holding Lowe Wealth Advisors would communicate clearly with you about the potential merits, risks and tax implications.
In closing, we want to say that while the prospect of a double dip recession is disconcerting, Lowe Wealth Advisors will continue to guide you through these rough seas just as we did during 2008. The strategies we have implemented and plan to implement are designed to bring success over a market cycle, generally 3 to 5 year periods. Challenging and volatile markets such as we see now require both discipline and patience in order to have the best chance at possible success. We continue to balance the shorter term risks in the global markets with our longer term strategies.
Update from Harold Lowe:
From June 18:
Over the past 6 months we have been providing you with updated information regarding my health. Unless something else unexpectedly develops, this is intended to be the final update that we will be sending.
The reason it will hopefully be the final update reflects the results of the PET/CT scan that was performed on June 14th, 2010. In the words of the doctor: ” PET Scan shows resolution of all previous metabolic activity in the spine and elsewhere and all lymph nodes are smaller than before. Together results indicate complete response at this time.”
Obviously there is no better report that we could have hoped for. Considering the aggressive nature of the lymphoma this report is awesome! So, the plan at this point is to check my status every 3 months for the next 2 years with a PET/CT scan.
As I have indicated in previous communications, this journey over the past 6 months has been quite challenging in many respects. However, it was made so much easier because of the support from all of you. The caring concern of all that sent emails as well as cards, your prayers and all of your words of encouragement made things so much more tolerable. I cannot begin to adequately thank all of you for this support and encouragement.
In many ways it is unfortunate one has to go through an experience of this nature to truly appreciate how important the supportive relationship with others really is. Clearly this experience has had its impact on me as a person. It has caused me to look at life in a very different way and certainly to not take anything for granted. It has taught me the true meaning and value of friends and how important it is to support each other in every way possible.
I feel so blessed to have been given what I consider to be a second chance at life.
Material discussed is meant for general illustration and/or informational purposes only and it is not to be construed as tax, legal, or investment advice. Although the information has been gathered from sources believed to be reliable, please note that individual situations can vary therefore, the information should be relied upon when coordinated with individual professional advice. Not all portfolios are actively managed. If you have a question about how your account is being managed please contact us. Generally accounts less than $150,000 are not actively managed. An Index is a portfolio of specific securities (common examples are S&P, DJIA, NASDAQ), the performance of which is often used as a benchmark in judging the relative performance of certain asset classes. Indexes are unmanaged portfolios and investors cannot invest directly in an index. Past performance is not indicative of future results.
- Not all portfolios are actively managed. If you have a question about how your account is being managed please contact us.
- No diversification can completely protect against market risk or other risk factors with investing. A diversified portfolio could still lose money.
- An Index is a portfolio of specific securities (common examples are S&P, DJIA, NASDAQ), the performance of which is often used as a benchmark in judging the relative performance of certain asset classes. Indexes are unmanaged portfolios and investors cannot invest directly in an index. Past performance is not indicative of future results.
Foreign investing carries additional risk such as currency risk, political risk and different accounting standards.
*Lowe Wealth Advisors is a registered investment advisor.