Market Commentary: Third Quarter October 14, 2021
For the first time in over a year, the stock market seemed to pause from negative pressure. Inflation and interest rates are rising, there are continuous supply chain issues, the Federal Reserve has indicated it will taper their asset purchasing program, the nation is reaching the debt ceiling (imagine that), there are debates about how many trillions to add to the next fiscal budget, and the ongoing worry about COVID-19 and its variants. With all of that, there are also indications that the economy is still emerging from the pandemic – gaining steam with room to run.
The S&P 500 Index held steady and gained 0.5% for the quarter increasing its YTD gain to 15.92%. Small companies represented by the Russell 2000 lost 4.36% for the quarter, for a YTD gain of 12.41%. International stocks represented by the iShares MSCI EAFE Index lost 0.45% for the quarter, up 8.35% YTD. Bond prices eased their anticipation of future increases in interest rates with a quarterly gain of 0.05% for the Barclays US Gov/Credit 1-5 Year Index but did not overcome first quarter losses to yield a YTD loss of 0.25%.
When the fall weather starts to hit, it seems to get really busy at Petersen Hastings. For us, this season means a lot of client account management. Our particular focus remains on tax planning for the remainder of the year, such as preparing to issue charitable contributions from IRA and taxable accounts, processing remaining required minimum distributions, and helping an amazing amount of people this year make retirement decisions.
This fall, we are also preparing to launch a completely digital retirement planning program for people just beginning their investment journey. We are calling it GrowWealth Digital Strategies™. This new service offering is a great way for the younger, tech-savvy investor to receive our portfolio advice and saving strategies with ease through their personal computer or mobile device.
As always, we appreciate the trust you place in Petersen Hastings to help you achieve your financial goals. We are continuing to meet people in our office, via Zoom, or whichever method you are most comfortable with. If you have any questions or are going through a life change, please reach out to your advisor. We also want to help your family and friends with their financial decisions, so if you know someone that is nearing retirement or has complex financial questions of their own, please contact us and we can arrange an introduction.