The worst week in the markets in years
We had a pretty big week last week as it was one of the worst weeks we’ve had in US and international markets in several years. Historically, last week is normally a weak week. This is due to tax loss selling and oil prices coming down. The down market over shadowed some good things that did happen as US retail sales rose, and consumer confidence and small business confidence was higher than expected. This week there is a good amount of economic data coming in that will give us a good idea of how the economy is doing.
Federal Reserve last meeting of the year
There is a big discussion on whether or not the price of oil will cause the Federal Reserve to accelerate a change in interest rates. This Monday and Tuesday are the last policy meetings for the Fed this year. Wednesday Janet Yellen will be holding a conference to discuss what went on in those meetings.
Will interest rates rise?
There has been a lot of changes since the last Fed meeting in the 3rd quarter. Besides oil prices coming down, the dollar is up 5.3%. Also 800,000 new American jobs have been created. This is a lot of data for the Fed to consider. We still believe we might see the Fed raise interest rates mid year of 2015. That will put more of a muted variance on inflation. It can go one of two ways. With oil prices dropping it could keep inflation down and we may not see an interest rate hike at all. The prevailing wisdom is that dropping oil prices will continue to help employment, consumer confidence, and allow the Fed to raise interest rates.
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fi-Plan Partners is an independent investment firm in Birmingham, AL, serving clients across the nation through financial planning, wealth management and business consulting. fi-Plan Partners creates strategies in the best interest of their clients using both fee based investing and transactional investing.
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