Tag Archives: economy

Politics are Affecting the Market Again

Posted January 22, 2010 by admin. tags:Tags: , , , , , ,
American Presidents

photo by Beverly & Pack

Written by Dave Young, President

During the second half of 2008 and the first three months of 2009, politics had more of a negative impact on investors than I have seen in 23 years of wealth management. Over the last nine months that negative impact seemed to diminish, and we saw a serious rally in the market.

As we move into earnings announcements, the market looks pretty good.

So far, about 65% of companies are beating their estimate, which is exceptional. Normally, you would expect the market to continue gaining ground. That is usually how it works, solid earnings translate into a happy stock market.

Instead, this week politics trumped earnings.

Tuesday, we saw the Dow Industrials rally 115 points in anticipation of Scott Brown, a republican, winning a Massachusetts senate seat. That was perceived as positive by investors because it broke the democratic majority in the Senate and indicated a more bipartisan approach to government going forward.

Wednesday, politicians in China decided that their economy was growing too fast. (In the big picture, that seems like a good problem.) They announced some steps they were going to take to slow down their economy. That caused world markets to sell off, with the Dow losing 122 points.

Thursday, the Dow dropped 213 points after Obama announced they were going to regulate the size of banks and impose a 100 billion dollar tax on them.

This was viewed as a populist response by the administration. The market did not like the tax because it was largely viewed as unfair. Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the automakers who were  all large contributors to the economic mess of the last two years, were exempt from the tax. Meanwhile, many of the banks that did not want government money and/or have since paid it back are going to be taxed punitively. Markets did not see that as a good idea and sold off significantly.

Today, Friday, word leaked out that both Republicans and Democrats are potentially blocking Fed chief, Ben Bernanke’s confirmation to a second term. Most investors believe that Bernanke, not perfect, is the best choice to lead the Fed in this environment. Politicians need someone to throw under the bus and blame for their economic mess so Bernanke seems to be the likely candidate. Investors, once again, see this as another bad decision and sell their stocks with the Dow losing another 216 points.

All in all it was a rough week for the market. Will politicians ever get it right?

Regardless, we’ll continue to follow our models and adjust our investment portfolios accordingly.

What do you think? Feel free to leave comments.


Paragon Wealth Management
is a provider of managed portfolios for individuals and institutions.
Although the information included in this report has been obtained from
sources Paragon believes to be reliable, we do not guarantee its
accuracy.  All opinions and estimates included in this report
constitute the judgment as of the dates indicated and are subject to
change without notice.  This report is for informational purposes only
and is not intended as an offer or solicitation with respect to the
purchase or sale of any security.  Past performance is not a guarantee
of future results.

Reporting from Russia

Posted September 18, 2009 by admin. tags:Tags: ,
Moscow Russia Government Buildings

photo by akk_russ

Two of our clients recently moved to Russia. They will be there for the next year and a half. They sent us this email to let us know how they are doing, and gave us permission to share it with you. We thought you might like to read it. After we read it, we realized we don’t have it so bad here in the United States.

Written September 1, 2009

Russia is so different from the United States It is very dangerous to cross a street here. It is also dangerous to walk down the sidewalk because the cars drive there also.

On our way to work we pass a car that has a flat tire. The other day we passed the car and saw they had re-asphalted the road around it. They also asphalted the car in place! Several days later they used heavy duty equipment to dig the car out.

It rains and rains in Moscow. There are puddles everywhere. We walked to work one day, and the road we needed to cross had become a river. It was six inches deep and moving swiftly. The rain was coming down in buckets. We had boots, raincoats and umbrellas, and we were still wet for several hours. It is the first of September, and it feels like November. I can’t believe how cold and damp it is. It makes me nervous to think about what November will really be like.

We got back from 25 days of travel only to find out that our hot water had been turned off. This is not because we haven’t paid our bill, it is because they have a rotating system here during the summer months where they turn the hot water off for two weeks while they clean the pipes. We were fortunate that we were traveling for one of the weeks.My husband thought he would brave the cold water for a shower. After all, he is a camper. Well, that only lasted for one shower. From then on we heated water on the stove for baths. The washing machine only worked on hand wash because that is the only cycle that will work with no hot water. It is not like the states where you have two water hoses coming in. There is only one here.

I thought I would also tell you a little about our travels to Georgia, Armenia, Kazakhstan, three places in the Ukraine (Donetsk, Kiev and D’nepropetrovs’k) and Saint Petersburg.

Each place has it’s own charm, fascination and sadness. There is such poverty here. We went to a gypsy village in Turkey where we donated some computers to a handicapped group. The children had a great time using them. The mayor of the town came to meet us and said they had not realized that these children could learn and now they were going to start a workshop to teach them crafts and a special school to help them.

In Georgia, they are still suffering the effects of last year’s war with Russia. There are many displaced people. One man talked to us and said he built his own home, farmed, had fruit trees and worked with his hands all his life. He said the Russians came and destroyed everything with their tanks. Now he has nothing.

In Kiev, we visited a home for women (210 live there) who have neurological problems. They will never leave the home. One woman there was found on the ground in Chernobyl. They didn’t know who she was. She experienced a stroke and could not even sit up. She can now sit and get around with help, but she can’t speak so they have no way to identify her. She kept holding up one finger and indicating that she is all alone. Then, she held up three fingers and wept. They think it means that somewhere she has three children. It broke my heart to see her. I sat with her and hugged her. I wept when I left her.

In Donetsk, we stayed at the Central Hotel. When I turned on the water to take a shower, it was brown. We left and went to a better hotel. We visited a place where they were giving out hygiene kits, school kits, quilts and clothes from containers that we have shipped over. One woman was expecting her fourth child. Her husband died suddenly last February. She found out she was pregnant after his death. She cried when her children got school kits and clothes.

In D’nepropetrovs’k, we visited an orphanage. There were 74 children there. About half of them were retarded or handicapped in some way. Their parents couldn’t or wouldn’t take care of them. The other half, were okay, but had been abandoned or taken away from their parents. This was an orphanage for children up to five years old. They had 203 workers to help with the children. We saw children outside playing in groups of 8-10. They were playing games, singing and having fun. We could tell that the workers and children were bonded. The children were beautiful. It was a sad situation, but the workers love the children, and they are doing their best.

Now we are back in Moscow, and I have to say that I am exhausted!

Historical Data Shows Best Performing Investments After a Recession

Posted September 10, 2009 by admin. tags:Tags: , , , , ,

The latest news from Paragon…

Wealth Management Firm Offers to Help Investors Position Their Portfolios for Recovery

PROVO, UT — 09/10/09 — Paragon
Wealth Management
advises investors to position their portfolio in the
areas of the market that have historically performed well after a recession
and has offered to help by providing complimentary portfolio reviews.

"We pay close attention to the economy," said Paragon's President and
founder, Dave Young. "In July our economic models indicated it was highly
likely the recession ended in June."

Paragon's wealth
have encouraged investors to become fully invested in the
stock market since March of this year. They recommended moving to a fully
invested position when most investors were selling.

"The first and sharpest stage of the market recovery usually occurs right
after the initial market plunge and takes about three to four months," said
Young. "We believe stage one occurred between March 9 and June 30. The
second stage of recovery occurs after the recession ends, which we believe
was around the end of June."

"This difficult market highlights why active wealth management is so important," said Young. "Because market
dynamics are constantly changing and evolving, we believe the best
investment approach is one that actively adjusts, moves and changes based
on market conditions."

Following these strategies from January 1998 through August 2009, Paragon's
growth portfolio has generated a total return of 312.43 percent, net of all
fees. During that same time the S&P 500 posted a total return of 28.51

Investors can visit www.paragonwealth.com to schedule a portfolio review.

About Paragon Wealth Management

Paragon Wealth Management is a wealth management firm that was established
in 1986. They actively manage all types of traditional and retirement
accounts such as IRA and 401(k) rollovers, and pensions and trusts. Paragon
has fiduciary responsibility. Call 800-748-4451 for more information.

Although the information included in this report has been obtained from
sources Paragon believes to be reliable, we do not guarantee its accuracy.
All opinions and estimates included in this report constitute the judgment
as of the dates indicated and are subject to change without notice. This
report is for informational purposes only and is not intended as an offer
or solicitation with respect to the purchase or sale of any security. Past
performance is not a guarantee of future results.

Investment performance
reflects time-weighted, size-weighted geometric composite returns of actual
client accounts and not back tested hypothetical returns or performance.
Investment returns are net of all management fees and transaction costs,
and reflect the reinvestment of all dividends and distributions. The S&P
Index is a market-value weighted index comprised of 500 stocks selected for
market size, liquidity, and industry group representation.

What Happened to the ‘Depression’?

Posted September 3, 2009 by admin. tags:Tags: , , ,
Statue of a soup line

photo by cliff1066

Written by Nathan White, Chief Investment Officer

Below is an article taken from the Wall Street Journal Online. This article does a great job of summarizing a lot of the misconception regarding the magnitude of the economic downturn and the subsequent fiscal and monetary reactions. It focuses on how politicians exacerbate situations for political purposes – surprise!

I hold the same view as Professor Melzer that the economy would turn on its own and the main threat now are government actions that will slow the recovery. Policy makers often overreact to economic downturns and enact policies (e.g., higher taxes, more regulation) that make it harder to let the economy grow.

What Happened to the Depression?
Despite the rhetoric from Washington, we were never close to 25% unemployment.

By Allan H. Meltzer

Day after day, economists, politicians and journalists repeat the trope that the current recession is the worst since the Great Depression. Repetition may reinforce belief, but the comparison is greatly overstated and highly misleading. Anyone who knows even a bit about the Great Depression knows that this is false.

The facts we face today are very different than the grim reality Americans confronted between 1929 and 1932. True, this recession is not over. But it would have to get improbably worse before it came close to the 42-month duration of the Great Depression, or the 25% unemployment rate in 1932. Then, the only safety net was the soup line.

The current recession is also much less severe than the 1937-38 Depression. A more accurate comparison is to the 1973-75 recession. Today’s recession is as deep and most likely won’t be much longer than the one we experienced some three decades ago. By pointing this out, I do not intend to minimize the damage that the economic crisis has had on individuals and businesses. But as policy makers make decisions in order to alleviate the recession, they are not helped when economists overstate its severity.

The table nearby compares the current recession, the 1937-38 depression and some past severe postwar recessions. If the recession ends this summer—as many experts predict—the record will show that it was not very different from other postwar recessions, but very different from the 1937-38 and 1929-32 Depressions.

So why do many opinion makers insist on inaccurate and frightening analogies that overstate the severity of present conditions? I believe there are several reasons.

First, there is a strong political motivation to make this recession out to be worse than it actually is. The Obama administration wanted to
make it appear as though it saved us from an incipient disaster, so it
overstated its achievements. The White House also wanted to foist its huge “stimulus” program on the country in order to redistribute income. That pleased many Democrats, but did very little to restore growth.

Many others repeated the administration’s hyperbolic claims. One reason is because there is genuine uncertainty about what has happened and what is likely to come. Short-term forecasts have major errors, and extrapolation of current data adds to misinformation. Then there are economists who would like
to see government take a larger role in the economy. They’ve chosen to use the recession as a pretext for arguing for this change.

New York Times columnist Paul Krugman and the International Monetary Fund repeatedly proclaimed that more government spending was a necessity. Most economists now believe that
the recession is expected to end before much of the government spending takes hold. And while the improvement in recent GDP data reflects a big increase in government spending, consumer spending declined again in the second quarter. The $787 billion of fiscal stimulus has done little for consumers. Keynesian economists always fail to recognize the powerful regenerative forces of the market economy. The financial press—many of whom share their same political assumptions—endlessly reproduces their beliefs.

The Federal Reserve also shared this Keynesian viewpoint. It provided unprecedented monetary stimulus, increasing the monetary base by more than $1 trillion. Much of this increase corrected for its major mistake: allowing Lehman Brothers to fail. After 30 years of bailing out almost all large financial firms, the Fed made the horrendous mistake of changing its policy in the midst of a recession. That set off a scramble for liquidity and heightened the public’s distrust in the market.

This had world-wide repercussions. For four months, many financial markets remained frozen and real activity collapsed. Allowing Lehman to fail without warning is one of the worst blunders in Federal Reserve history. Extrapolation caused many market participants to conjecture that we were in a depression. The New York Times and others piled on, speculating foolishly about the end of capitalism.

Now, with recovery in sight, we need to ask what kind of a recovery to expect and what kind of policies are appropriate. My best guess is that the recovery will be a bumpy ride along a low-growth path. Recovery will be helped by lots of monetary stimulus and low inventories. Some calendar quarters will see healthy growth, but trend growth will be low because housing will remain weak, the cash for clunkers program borrowed sales from the future, and the
Obama administration’s economic program raises business costs and reduces profits.

Many pundits argue that we need another stimulus package. I disagree. The proper response now is to repeal what remains of the misguided stimulus and avoid the cap-and-trade program.

In their response to the recession, Congress and the administration were more interested in redistributing income than encouraging growth. They also ignored the lessons of the successful Kennedy and Reagan reductions in marginal tax rates. They added to their mistakes by enacting a temporary tax reduction as a main element of the $787 billion stimulus. Don’t they know that Presidents Ford, Carter and Bush failed to stimulate spending with temporary tax reductions?

A sensible administration would revise its policy. It should start by scrapping what remains of the stimulus. As the world economy recovers, the United States should choose to expand its exports so that it can service its large and growing foreign debts. That means reducing corporate tax rates to increase investment. Instead of implementing policies that increase regulation and raise business costs, we need to increase productivity. And the Fed should soon begin to reduce the massive volume of outstanding bank reserves, which is the raw material for future money growth.

Mr. Meltzer is a professor of economics at Carnegie Mellon University and the author of “A History of the Federal Reserve” (University of Chicago Press, 2004).

No More Doom and Gloom?

Posted August 20, 2009 by admin. tags:Tags: , , ,
United States Capitol Building

Written by Nathan White, Chief Investment Officer at Paragon Wealth Management

photo by cliff 1066

Lately I’ve spoken to many investors who said they cannot see the markets moving any higher from the current level. They are so shell-shocked by the bear market that they are downright gloomy about our economic situation and don’t think it could actually improve.

Add to that a government that is putting on programs and regulations so fast that our collective heads are spinning, and it’s enough to give even the most ardent optimist some legitimate pause. The future ramifications of all these actions are creating a lot of justifiable concern for the future.

At Paragon Wealth Management, we are monitoring the potential risks and analyzing what the impact on the markets could be in order to give us a game plan if certain situations, such as inflation, should unfold.

In the past I’ve spoken about the recency effect, which is the tendency for people to extrapolate current conditions into the future. It is admittedly hard to have foresight when current conditions are bleak. I believe this behavioral phenomenon is a main reason why many are skeptical of a market advance.

How can we have a clear head and look through the current situation to see what is ahead? How can we prevent current events from unduly clouding our judgment about what the future holds? When it comes to discerning the effects of current government actions I think it is helpful to separate what the impacts are in terms of time.


Stimulus Package:
Short-term Effect- Expenditures boost GDP in the near-term and possibly aid/magnify economic rebound.
Cost/future Effect- Drag on future growth as borrowing must be paid off. Lower future GDP growth.

Fed Quantitative Easing
Short-Term Effect- Floods market with liquidity and low interest rates, which help to spur economic activity.
Cost/future Effect- Inflation. Higher interest rates.

Health Care Reform
Short-Term Effect- Cheaper health care provides more discretionary income possibly boosting GDP.
Cost/future Effect- Higher taxes to pay for growing entitlement results in lower GDP growth. Quality issues.

Short-Term Effect- No immediate negative effect as initials credits given away for “free”.
Cost/future Effect- Higher taxes. If new energy sources unreliable/inefficient and more expensive then GDP growth could suffer. Serious fraud abuse.

Regardless of whether you agree with the government or not, these actions will provide benefits in the short run that must be paid back in the long run.

I don’t think it is a stretch to say that most politicians don’t care about the long run. They almost always focus on providing the goods right now, and that is how they get elected. Government can only spend money by borrowing, taxing, or printing money. Too much of any one of these impedes economic activity. The first two are not inflationary while the latter is the essence of what inflation is.


There is nothing wrong with borrowing money — as long as you can afford the payments. The mistake that is usually made is that many assume they can make the payments and fail to account for future possible hardships. The other common mistake is that we often keep piling on the debt until we can’t service it anymore.

Government actions are no different. The more it “spends” now the more it has to pay back in the future. Where the breaking points is a matter of great debate. One thing for sure is that future GDP growth will be lower because of the obligations we are taking on now. There is no way around it. Notice that I said GDP growth will be slower, but not that GDP won’t grow. This is where many pessimists miss the boat. They naturally assume the worst from all of the government actions and take the worst case scenario.

For example, all of the monetary easing actions by the Fed have been unprecedented. These actions have the potential to create serious inflation down the road with some suggesting that we could be in for hyperinflation akin to what Germany experienced in the 1920’s (we all know what that led to).

The pessimists assume that this situation is inevitable and there is nothing the Fed can do to stop it. But what if the Fed’s actions can stop inflation or at least mitigate the negative effects from it. Shouldn’t this be considered? When and how any versions of this scenario unfold are too hard to predict. My point is that it doesn’t have to end in disaster!


Now back to the immediate effect of the government actions. However inefficient, the net effect of these actions will be to boost economic activity in the short run.

So how long is the short run? No one knows, but I would say at least one to two years. We have also said that despite all of the confusing government actions, the economy will turn on its own accord because America is a dynamic place, and the natural state of the economy is to grow. People want to improve their economic situations. We might have 10% unemployment, but we still have 90% employment! Imagine what could happen if the economy is turning around right now and then that is coupled with the fiscal stimulus from the government. You could have GDP growth sooner than most expect! That means the stock market could be poised to continue the significant rally off of the March 9th lows.

The scenario that seems the most likely to me is that the economy will snap-back over the next year or so and then plateau with slower growth after hitting the headwinds previously discussed. Right now our economic models are confirming this scenario.


This doesn’t mean I think the market will go straight up or that I am a “perma-bull” and oblivious to the risk that exist. Market and economic factors are constantly changing. At Paragon Wealth Management, we believe in taking a flexible approach to the market. Right now all of our economic, valuation, momentum and sentiment models are telling us to stay in the market. Until they change we will stay allocated to those areas we feel have the best potential.

Paragon Wealth Management
is a provider of managed portfolios for individuals and institutions.
Although the information included in this report has been obtained from
sources Paragon believes to be reliable, we do not guarantee its
accuracy.  All opinions and estimates included in this report
constitute the judgment as of the dates indicated and are subject to
change without notice.  This report is for informational purposes only
and is not intended as an offer or solicitation with respect to the
purchase or sale of any security.  Past performance is not a guarantee
of future results.   

Seminar/Webinar this Thursday, April 23

Posted April 20, 2009 by admin. tags:Tags: , ,

If you haven't had a chance to listen to Paragon's webinar called, "What is Happening with the Stock Market and Economy," we'd like to invite you to sign up to listen online or watch it live at our office in Provo. The details are below.

When:  Thursday, April 23

Time:  12:30-1:30 p.m. MST

Cost:  There is no cost. It is complimentary

Where:  Online (at your home or office) or live at Paragon Wealth Management in Provo, Utah

Topic:  What is Happening with the Stock Market and Economy? What Should you be doing with your Investments right now?

R.S.V.P.:  Click on this link Paragon Wealth Management to register

Contact:  Shannon Golladay 800-748-4451 if you have questions or need more information


Letter from Congress in reply to a blog post

Posted March 11, 2009 by admin. tags:Tags: , , ,
Letter from Representative Jason Chaffetz

A couple weeks ago we gave Congressman Jason Chaffetz a copy of a blog post that Dave Young wrote for Utah Business Magazine’s blog titled, “Stimulus for Utah?” This was his reply. We thought you might find it interesting. It is also written below to make it easier to read.

Dear Dave,

I agree with the points made in your blog post entitled “Stimulus for Utah? Thank you for giving a copy of the article to my staff during our recent ribbon-cutting ceremony at our Provo office. It is heartening to see citizens with an acute awareness of our current economic problems and dedication to solving those problems.

I assure you that no one is more dedicated than I to getting America back on the right track, economically and otherwise. In order to do that something needed to be done, but I have maintained since its inception that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 was not what we needed. This pork-laden bill may end up only putting us in the worse situation.

Your point about the return on investment for Utahans is particularly adept, as is your observation that this bill is hardly a bipartisan one. Our hope now lies in the American people; we have risen from difficulty in the past despite the oft-obstructing attempts of our too-big government to solve our problems from us. Now that the bill is passed it is my hope that Americans like you and me, can collectively solve our current difficulties and usher America into a more stable, prosperous, and responsible economic future.

Jason Chaffetz
Member of Congress

Paragon Wealth Management Webinar/Seminar Schedule
Are you worried about the stock market and economy? Listen to our free webinars online or at our office.

Thursday, March 19 (12:30-1:30 p.m. MST)
Wednesday, April 8 (6:00-7:00 p.m. MST)
Thursday, April 23 (12:30-1:30 p.m. MST)
Tuesday, May 5 (5:00-6:00 p.m. MST)

Shannon Golladay
shannon at paragonwealth.com

What Stimulus?

Posted February 19, 2009 by admin. tags:Tags: , , ,
Word Collage

Written by Dave Young
President of Paragon Wealth Management

photo by abraaten  

Investment markets represent psychology in motion.

In an effort to stay on the right side of that motion we are constantly evaluating all of the factors that affect investors. Those factors are many and varied but in include good and bad “news”, media spin, company announcements, economic data and most recently the “political” impact.

For the past six months we have had more political impact on the markets than any time I can remember.

I try to look at all political news objectively and evaluate it only on its market impact. Unfortunately, I think that both political parties often act in their own best interest rather than the people they represent.

The stock market sold off initially, through September, as a result of the credit, banking and real estate crisis. It was a fairly normal bear market at that point. Then, as the negative political rhetoric intensified and the media amplified it we saw extreme fears enter into the financial markets. As it became clear that Barack Obama was going to win the election, the markets sold off further in anticipation of the uncertainty created by a change of leadership. That market sell-off followed the pattern of previous election years when the incumbent party loses.

After the election, the market stabilized and there was an expectation that Obama would move from the left to the center. Also, there was an expectation that the media would begin to spin more positive news once their candidate of choice was in. Those would be positives for the market.

Unfortunately, the “stimulus” package that was recently passed changed those expectations. Prior to its passage Obama and company pledged CHANGE.

They promised transparency and bipartisanship. They promised a stimulus package to “jump start” the economy. This was advertised as “change we could believe in.”

With no time allowed to read or review the bill, it was jammed through congress for approval.

It’s hard for anyone to take a promise of transparency seriously when the bill is pushed through so quickly that it is not even allowed to be read.

Its passage re-defined the word “bi-partisan” when only three of the republicans (out of a total 219) voted in favor of the bill. The bi-partisanship promised was ignored and taken even more extreme and negative levels than the previous administration.

Based on its contents, the “stimulus” appears to be no more than an excuse to pass an extreme government entitlement spending package.

Unfortunately, only about 20% of this bill can be characterized as stimulative. Most taxpayers wouldn’t spend a dollar to get 20 cents of value. The market voiced its opinion with a drop in the Dow industrials of over 400 points since the stimulus bill passed.

The good news is that the market will recover eventually. In the past 100 years we’ve been through 34 bear markets, which were followed by bull markets.

The stock market and economy have always recovered in spite of… not because of the actions of politicians.

China is Rising

Posted January 14, 2009 by admin. tags:Tags: , ,
China Rising

Written by Nathan White, chief investment officer

  photo by Luo Shaoyang 

New for this year, I thought it would be insightful to discuss the rationale for some of our holdings in order to give our clients a better view of where we stand. Our trend model has recently turned bullish on China and since its bottom on October 27, 2008. The MSCI China Index has shown good relative strength versus most markets.

The markets could be signaling an economic recovery in China and so we took a position in anticipation of this scenario. China has not been as damaged from the direct effects of the credit crisis and stands to benefit from fiscal and monetary stimulus. The Chinese central bank has been lowering rate and allowing the yuan to weaken.

China’s $586 billion stimulus package includes infrastructure projects, which could have a more beneficial effect in China due to its relatively under developed status than the effect comparative projects would have in developed countries such as the U.S. term, China’s foreign currency reserves and net creditor status give it an advantage over net debtor nations such as the U.S. Debtor nations are being forced into saving while creditor nations have the ability to increase consumption. If the markets enter a recovery phase, we look to China to be one of the leaders to the upside.

What Obama Means for the Stock Market

Posted December 18, 2008 by admin. tags:Tags: , , ,
President Obama

Written by Dave Young, president
photo by Bohphoto
When Barack Obama began his race for the White House his rally cry was to get us out of Iraq as soon as possible. That morphed into a call for change from the Bush policies of the previous eight years. Finally, right before the election it moved towards fixing our economy.
If the President Elect does what he originally campaigned on, then some of his pro-regulation, pro-tax policies could damage our economy over the long-term. 
During his campaign he spoke about how important it was to tax those deemed rich, while slightly lowering taxes for everyone else.
Editorials in the Wall Street Journal claim his plan would have a marginal tax bracket of 62%, with all taxes taken into account, on income over $250,000.
Increased taxes translate into government removing money from the marketplace and then deciding where to reallocate it. This diminishes savings, investments and job creation.
Historically, government reallocation of those funds benefit certain interest groups, but doesn’t benefit the broad economy. This negative wealth transfer effectively mutes economic growth.
Historically, when democrats take the white house, the market usually does better than under republicans. 
Usually going into an election, if a democrat is winning, Wall Street expects the worst, and the market sells off in advance. After the democrat gets into office, then Wall Street realizes they aren’t going to do what they promised, breathes a sigh of relief, and then the market rallies. The wild card is whether or not Obama will implement what he campaigned.
His most recent statements about the economy give the impression he will promote clean energy, infrastructure and education. If so, stocks in those sectors should benefit.
We know health care is going to be impacted. It’s too early to tell if it will be a positive or negative impact. Previous attempts to socialize medicine were met with health care stocks declining.
So far, the markets have followed their historical election pattern. 
The difference this time was the magnitude of the decline. This year’s decline was the worst ever to precede an election. If the market continues to follow historical patterns, then 2009 should be a strong year for the market.
After a decline this severe, I believe it is most important to select those sectors that usually generate the highest returns during a recovery. It is easier and more predictable to pick those sectors than to guess what Obama is actually going to do.
The average recession lasts 11 months with the shortest being 6 months and the longest being 16. 
This current recession is now 12 months long. The stock market tends to recover three to four months before the recession ends.
Following previous recessions, the strongest sectors (in order of strength) were Consumer Discretionary, Information Technology, Financials, Industrials, Materials and Consumer Staples. The weakest sectors (in order of weakness) were Utilities, Telecomm, Energy and Health Care. For many, the critical decision is between being conservative or growth oriented over the next eight years.
Looking forward investors can:
–Invest in money market funds; bank CD’s, fixed annuities or treasury bonds. These will guarantee returns in the 2-4% range. Depending on the product, your money is locked up at historically low rates for three to seven years.
–Invest in a well diversified, strategic portfolio made up of beaten down bonds, stocks and real estate. This portfolio should be positioned in the sectors mentioned above to capitalize on areas of the market that historically recover the fastest. This panic has pushed stocks down to the same levels they were 11 years ago.
We do know that returns after previous bear markets have been exceptional.
Most importantly, investors should reallocate their portfolios based on opportunities going forward. Looking backwards or following a “rear view mirror” investing strategy usually causes an investor to invest at the wrong place at the wrong time.
Feel free to leave comments or contact us if you have questions or concerns. We can be reached at 801-375-2500.

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