2017 Forecast

 Financial Forecast for 2017

2017 is shaping up to be an interesting year in many ways. The new administration has shaken up the market and left many wondering what will happen economically in the US. Here we’re going to take a look at our forecast of the financial future for the next year.

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Fed Rate Hike : What does this mean for me?

Fed Rate Hike : What does this mean for me?

The Federal Reserve (The Fed) has raised interest rates after much talk of doing so this year. This hike comes just in time for the new year and a new administration coming into office.

How will this rate hike affect you and what exactly does a “rate hike” mean?

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How Will Trump Affect The US

(Photo by Steve Sands/FilmMagic)
President Trump (Photo by Steve Sands/FilmMagic)

There are a lot of issues that Mr. Trump will need to address during his presidency.  The key is to understand how will Trump effect the US.

How will Trump and Congress get along?

Republicans have control of the White House, the Senate and the House, but that doesn’t mean he will have an easy time on Capitol Hill. The GOP was badly fractured throughout the primary and general election season, as Trump insulted his way through 17 Republican opponents.

Several big names in the party, including former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, Arizona Sen. John McCain and 2012 nominee Mitt Romney refused to support Trump, and House Speaker Paul Ryan would not campaign with him. Trump will have to build support with his former opponents to push his populist agenda into law.

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Trump’s vs Clinton’s Political Plans

Comparingrepubilican-and-democratic-icon The Political Plans

The 2016 Presidential candidates are Hillary Clinton (Democrat) and Donald Trump (Republican). Their party affiliation helps you understand their economic plans.  By understanding these political plans and affliations will make you an informed voter.

Keynesian Theory

Democrats promote the Keynesian theory. It says government spending and tax cuts boost economic growth by increasing demand. Most Democrats target these policies toward middle-income families. They offset deficit spending with higher taxes on investments, large businesses, and high-income families. They address income inequality by providing more benefits for low-income families. That’s because they will spend the extra money on food, medicine, and shelter. That drives demand more than saving and investing does.

Deficit spending is not an accident. The President and Congress intentionally create it in each fiscal year’s budget. That’s because government spending drives economic growth. For example, it buys defense equipment, medical supplies, and buildings. The businesses it contracts with hire people, and the government hires people directly.

Supply-Side Economics

Republicans promote supply-side economics. That theory says reducing business, trade, and investment costs are the best way to increase growth. Businesses use the extra money to hire more workers. Unfortunately, that hasn’t been the case in this recovery. Companies have plenty of cash, but aren’t spending it on capital improvements or new jobs. They are investing it in the stock market, U.S. Treasuries, and overseas investments.

An income tax cut increases the dollars per hour worked, increasing workers’ incentive to remain employed, and thereby increasing labor. This increase in supply boosts economic growth. That’s why supply-side is also known as trickle-down economics.

Businesses can raise prices, and workers can then bargain for higher wages, which will translate back into higher tax revenues. Some supply-side proponents even argue that, over time, any lost tax revenue will be recouped through greater tax receipts from a booming economy.

Taxes

Mr. Trump favors cutting taxes for everyone and reducing the number of tax brackets from seven to three. He would reduce the top rate of tax to 33% from 39.6%.

Mrs. Clinton would keep taxes the same for most Americans but add an additional bracket for the highest earners. The income from that would be used to pay for programs like free university education for students from low- and middle-income families.

Her campaign is calling the higher taxes on the wealthy – 4% on people who earn more than $5m – the “fair share surcharge”.

Clinton tax brackets Trump tax brackets
Earnings under $9,275 – pay 0% Earnings under $29,000 – pay 0%
$9,275 to $37,650 – pay 15% $29,000 to $54,000 – pay 12%
$37,650 to $91,150 – pay 25% $54,000 to $154,000 – pay 25%
$91,150 to $190,150 – pay 28% Over $154,000 – pay 33%
$190,150 to $413,350 – pay 33%  
$413,350 to $415,050 – pay 35%  
$415,050 to $5,000,000 – pay 39.6%  
Over $5,000,000 – pay 43.6% (new bracket)  

Both candidates have proposed closing tax loopholes that typically favor the rich.

Tax Deductions

Mr. Trump proposes a child care deduction that would cover the average cost of child care, while Mrs. Clinton favors limiting the number of deductions taxpayers can claim at 28%.

Tax deductions allow people to subtract some of the income they are taxed on – effectively lowering which bracket they fall into. They typically favor the rich who can take more, while the 43% of Americans who currently pay no income would be unaffected by the change.

Mr. Trump also proposed eliminating the estate tax or “death tax” completely. The tax only applies when a family member passes on more than $5.45m worth of assets to an individual or $10.9m to a married couple.

The Republican candidate said he would also reduce the US corporate tax rate to 15% from the current rate of 35%, one of the highest in the world.

Mr. Trump’s campaign said the plan would reduce the amount of income the government collected by $4.4tn over a decade. This is far below the $9.5tn calculated by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center in August. The Center said Mrs. Clinton’s plan would add $1.1tn in revenue over the next 10 years.

Healthcare Programs

Neither candidate has proposed significant reductions in spending on public pension and healthcare programs like social security, Medicaid and Medicare. The funding needed for those is expected to balloon over the next decade and its unclear where the money to pay for them will come from without tax increases.

An analysis performed by Tax Foundation last month found that while Mr Trump’s plan would lower taxes for all Americans it would lower them most for the highest earners.

New trade deals

Mr. Trump has done his best to capitalize on the discontent around trade deals.

His economic proposal suggests renegotiating trade deals using “negotiators whose goal will be to win for America”. He has not spelt out what that “win” looks like, but he has promised to step away from deals like the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) if a good deal cannot be reached.

Mr. Trump has also promised to get tough with countries that violate trade agreements, applying new tariffs and pursuing cases against them in the World Trade Organization. He has specifically said that he will label China a “currency manipulator”.

Tariffs

Mr. Trump has called for a 35% tariff on Mexican goods and a 45% tariff on Chinese goods.

That would mean a $100 television from Mexico would cost $135.

This could encourage US consumers to buy more products made in America, but it would also likely encourage Mexico to place an import tax on US goods, making it hard for US companies to sell their goods abroad. Mexico purchased $267.2bn in US goods in 2015, making it the second largest export partner for the US.

Mrs. Clinton has said these tariffs will lead to a trade war making it harder for the US to compete on a global stage.

Clinton has gone back and forth on trade. She previously supported the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) but has said in her campaign that she doesn’t think it’s the best deal for America.

Her plan focuses more on increasing production in the US by offering tax incentives to companies that build there rather than barring imports out. While she has criticized some trade deals, she hasn’t ruled out signing new ones if elected.
Trump on trade

  • Renegotiate trade deals to favor the US
  • Walk away from trade agreements if a good deal can’t be reached
  • Add tariffs on some of the America’s largest trading partners including Mexico and China

Clinton on trade

  • Changed her mind on TPP, which she helped negotiate
  • In 2007 criticized trade deal with South Korea, then supported it as Secretary of State
  • Supported NAFTA but has since been critical of it

Who’s hiring?

Both candidates have promised to put Americans back to work, though unemployment has hovered around a low 4.9% since the beginning of the year.

Mr. Trump’s employment plan focuses on encouraging more businesses to open in the US. He has suggested that investing in infrastructure, cutting the trade deficit, lowering taxes and removing regulations will make it easier for companies to hire.

Mr. Trump has focused mostly on increasing manufacturing jobs, which have declined by around 5 million since 2000. Much of that decline has been caused by improvements in technology, however, not outsourcing.

He has promised to create 25 million jobs over 10 years and achieve annual economic growth of 3.5%. US GDP growth reached 2.4% in 2015.

Mrs. Clinton’s policy for jobs growth is a little more specific. She has called for increasing jobs training – in part paid for by tax revenue from wealthier Americans. She has pushed for infrastructure spending and investment in new energy to lift the number of jobs in those sectors.

 Profit-Sharing

Mrs. Clinton advocated making “the economy fairer.” In promoting that stupid notion – stupid, because mutually consensual exchange is by nature “fair” from any objective point of view – she pushed raising the national minimum wage (potentially throwing thousands out of work) and “equal pay for women’s work” (read: unequal pay for the same work for men). But her truly insane line came next: “I also want to see more companies do profit-sharing. If you help create the profits, you should be able to share in them, not just the executives at the top.” Now, many companies already have so-called “profit sharing” – employees who own stock benefits. On a broad level, all companies have “profit sharing” – you have continued employment because your company earns a profit. You don’t have a share of every dollar of profit earned because you don’t get dinged for every loss. But Hillary seems to be advocating for a full-scale governmental intervention into every business in America – letting the feds decide how much employees should make in every industry. This is, as Dennis Prager pointed out today, economic fascism.

What They Kind Of Agree On

Despite their many areas of disagreement, there a few things both candidates are pushing for.

  • Ending corporate inversion – or transactions where US companies move their corporate headquarters abroad to avoid US taxes
  • Eliminating carried interest tax – a tax that mostly benefits hedge fund investors
  • Opposing the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)

Mr. Trump has not addressed how he will pay for these cuts, other than saying the changes will boost the economy and that will increase the tax base.

Mrs. Clinton has said most of her spending increasing will be covered by tax increases, but it is unclear if those numbers entirely match up.

Market Cycles with John Sprague

john sprague

“If you’re not concerned about the market, you’re not paying attention!” – Gary Keller

Join Doug Haldeman and John Sprague as they discuss the market cycles and how it may effect you.

Through a deep, rich understanding of the market cycles you will be able to best position yourself to take advantage of another great wealth transfer in the pending SHIFT.

– Highlight global & domestic market stresses that could factor into the next down turn.

Global Economy

– Touch on leading indicators to look for.

– Discuss what a downshift means for our clients & our business.

– Identify the specific opportunities of the SHIFT.

– Develop a strategic plan to prepare for the SHIFT to help us THRIVE!

Awareness itself is a competitive advantage you will be afforded from this conversation.

Market Cycles Audio File 1

Market Cycles Audio File 2

Peaking Into the Wallet Of Some Countries Spending Habits

countires spendingDoug and Tammie discuss how some countries are spending their money and where the US compares as a whole.

Though the chart, created by the Data Team with The Economist, may be lacking in how countries are taxed or not taxed it is an interesting glimpse into the wallet of a few of the countries spending habits.  Some of the differences are accounted for by pure economics of a country.  However, in the end US Healthcare costs are taking up the biggest portion of our American dollars.

Click on the chart link below or follow the link above to take a closer look:

Countries Spending Habits

 

The Importance of Dealing with a Mortgage Expert

HEATH-SHOWCARD

Heath Keller, senior loan officer at Cornerstone Mortgage joins Doug and Tammie in studio to discuss the importance of dealing with a mortgage expert. Tune in to 97.1 today @ 4pm or listen to the audio to learn more about CoSigners on loans (aka Non-Occupant CoBorrowers), Loan Quality Initiative, using gift funds, and more! Continue reading “The Importance of Dealing with a Mortgage Expert”

Market Update

housinginflation

The price to buy or rent a home continues to climb even as there’s little price pressure elsewhere. The latest report on consumer prices showed that the year-over-year change in rent stayed at 3.5% in the March CPI report, data from CoreLogic show house prices have grown nearly 6% year-over-year. While prices on the housing side are strong, there’s scant inflation elsewhere. The CPI ex-shelter gauge has dropped 1.5% over 12 months. The drivers for house prices have been low mortgage rates, job gains and low inventories, while rent has nearly kept up, as tougher credit conditions after the housing bust have pushed some by choice or necessity into rental properties. There are signs however that rental price growth may have reached a peak after strong growth in apartment construction. Rental price growth over 12 months has stayed between 3.4% and 3.5% for the past five months, after climbing from zero growth five years ago. Meanwhile, the drop in energy prices and a stronger dollar is holding CPI down, even as some other prices pick up, including clothing, medical care and used cars and trucks. Continue reading “Market Update”

Market Update/Fair Housing Lawsuits/Obama Diversifying Neighborhoods

Greece ATM Lines

Market Update

This has been a very volatile week in the market.  Here are the major headlines:

  • The International markets have been riding the rollercoaster in Greece as they vote on a referendum that affects the stability of the Eurozone.
  • Jobs Report (Non-Farms Payroll) was weaker than expected. There were 223,000 Jobs created in June, below the 233,000 expected.  Additionally, May’s blockbuster number of 280,000 was revised lower to 254,000 and April’s figure of 221,000 was revised lower to 187,000.  Meaning that there 60,000 in combined revisions lower for the past two months.
  • Unemployment rate declined from 5.5 to 5.3%, which appears to be strong.  However when we dig deeper, we see the main reason why is because the labor force decreased by 432,000 people.  The Household Survey, where the unemployment rate is derived from, actually showed a loss of 56,000 jobs.  We would have seen an increase in the unemployment rate if such a large number of workers did not leave the labor force.  The labor force participation rate declined 0.3% to 62.9%, which is the lowest level in 38 years.  Unemployment in Missouri was slightly above the national average at 5.7%, while St. Louis was 5.5%.

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How is Convexity Selling Increasing Interest Rates?

iStock_000006510404XSmallWhat is the cause of interest rates increasing over the last few weeks?  Convexity selling by bond traders is the cause.

Here is how it works:

When Fannie Mae sells bonds the prices of those bonds are what determine your interest rates. This creates convexity selling and buying the buyers of these bonds are typically bond funds. The portfolio managers in bond fund must state their objective of the bond so that investors know what to expect when they buy the bond. The longer term the investment the greater the return needs to be. The shorter term of a bond a smaller return is expected. Generally, these bonds are 30 years, does that mean the investors money is going to be out there for a full 30 years? No. People may refinance or sell their home.

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