Saturday, November 28, 2020

The Present is the Present

Ask the CFP Practitioner


The precious present is just that, the present.

~ Excerpt from “The Precious Present,” by Spenser Johnson.


Years ago, a wise woman shared her belief that gratitude is a verb or an action word. This time of year is known as the opportunity to share our thanks and express appreciation for all the presents we have in our lives each day. The present is the present.

Focusing on what’s most important brings us to a place of appreciation for relationships with family and friends. As a CFP Practitioner, it’s not unusual at social gatherings for people to ask me about financial markets. My philosophy or view about money is that it is love in motion providing us with choices and options. 

Since last year at this time, we’ve enjoyed economic growth that’s been relatively strong and consistent since the financial crisis of 2007-2008.

This week the “new NAFTA” (North American Free Trade Agreement) passed and is called USMCA which stands for US-Mexico-Canada Trade Deal, which we’ll evaluate in another column. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Mexico and Canada are our largest trading partners. Our third-largest trading partner is China, and we’re working on a deal with them while there is already an agreement with our fourth-largest trading partner—Japan—which is beneficial.

Interest rates remain at low levels; gasoline prices comparatively reasonable. Fundamental data obtained from leading economic indicators (BLS and Bloomberg) such as consumer confidence, and small business optimism are not sounding any alarm bells. Depending on news sources, it would appear that reality is much different and disturbing. This makes it challenging for some investors to focus and stay in the moment or remain calm in the midst of customary volatility. 

Looking in the rearview mirror to 2018 provides numerous parallels to this past year. As indicated by the St. Louis Federal Reserve, earnings growth continued, pre-tax corporate profits are down year-over-year but still significantly higher than pre-2008. This is not consistent with the doom and gloom as we’re in our tenth year of global expansion.

On this Christmas Day, we’d like to express our gratitude for each of you who enhance our journey. Enjoy your present, which is the present. Stay focused and plan accordingly. 

Past performance may not be indicative of future results. Future investment performance cannot be guaranteed. There is no assurance that any investment strategy will be successful. All investments are subject to risk. The opinions expressed are those of the writer as of December 20, 2019, but not necessarily those of Raymond James and Associates, and subject to change at any time. Information obtained from outside sources is believed to be reliable but cannot be guaranteed. 

“Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, CFP® (with plaque design) and CFP® (with flame design) in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board’s initial and ongoing certification requirements.” 

This article provided by Darcie Guerin, CFP®, Vice President, Investments & Branch Manager of Raymond James & Associates, Inc. Member New York Stock Exchange/SIPC, 606 Bald Eagle Dr. Suite 401, Marco Island, FL 34145. She may be reached at 239-389-1041, email darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com. Website: www.raymondjames.com/Darcie.

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