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Rossi, Stephen

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Jun 17, 2022
Don’t Forget the Golden Rule in Times Like These
Well, it’s official – we’re now in a bear market! Stocks, as measured by the S&P 500 Index (a proxy for large U.S. companies), have fallen by more than 20% from their all-time highs, while the Nasdaq Composite Index (almost half represented by technology companies) and the Russell 2000 Index (a proxy for small, U.S. companies) have both fallen by more than 30% from their respective highs. Even bonds, as measured by the iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF and generally considered a safer type of investment, are down by more than 13% from their recent peaks. Right or wrong, markets have priced in a recession, very few things are working for investors, and it’s easy to understand why many people are feeling a sense of despair. It’s also the exact time when investors need to be reminded of the Golden Rule – sell high and buy low.
Jun 17, 2022
May 09, 2022
Inflation: How Did We Get Here and What Can Be Done About It
If you’re in your 50s, o.k. early 50s, you probably remember a time when a gallon of gas cost less than a dollar, when a gum ball cost a penny and when a giant shopping cart of groceries cost less than $100 – ah, the good old days. Today, gas is over $4 a gallon, a gum ball costs a quarter and your hundred dollars probably buys you half a cart of groceries, if you’re lucky. That’s inflation folks and it can become more pervasive when governments implement poor policies, when input costs rise, and when demand exceeds supply.
May 09, 2022
Apr 06, 2022
The Beauty of a Bridge Loan
A bridge loan can be thought of as a short-term funding mechanism to “bridge” the gap between a project’s inception and its eventual completion, at which point more permanent financing is generally, but not always, put in place. It’s effectively a short-term loan, collateralized with assets that may or may not be related to the final project itself. The terms and types of bridge loans can vary, but their use can offer a variety of benefits to those that take advantage of them, turning otherwise undoable projects into viable long-term endeavors.
Apr 06, 2022
Mar 11, 2022
Understanding the Basics of an Annuity
Annuities have been around for many, many years and can be considered an investment product with an insurance-like attribute. They can be in accumulation mode or annuitization mode, they can be immediate or deferred, and they can be fixed or variable. They can also be treated very differently for tax purposes, depending on whether the annuity is held in a non-qualified or qualified account. Here’s what you need to know about these products, and how they may or may not fit into your overall financial plan.
Mar 11, 2022
Feb 16, 2022
Don’t Overlook These Above-the-Line Adjustments at Tax Time
Many people may be finding it easier to prepare their year-end tax returns since the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act was passed in December of 2017. At that time, the below-the-line standard deduction nearly doubled from $6,500 to $12,000 for individuals, and from $13,000 to $24,000 for those who were married filing jointly. This led to far more people taking advantage of the standard deduction at year-end, as opposed to itemizing deductions for things like medical expenses, home mortgage interest, state and local income tax, sales tax, and property tax, since the new standard deduction became larger than all of one’s itemized deductions combined for most taxpayers.
Feb 16, 2022
Jan 19, 2022
Will It Be A Happy New Year for Investors?
The economy fired on almost all cylinders in 2021 and the S&P 500 Index is up approximately 26% through late December, versus 16% for all of 2020. While growth is expected to continue, it will likely slow, equity valuations are full, and anticipated headwinds should result in positive, but more moderate investment returns in 2022.
Jan 19, 2022
Dec 21, 2021
The Craze of Cryptocurrency
In 2009 and in the wake of the Great Recession of 2008, the first digital currency was created by an individual or group of individuals identifying themself as Satoshi Nakamoto – a new “cryptocurrency” known as Bitcoin. Bitcoin is now one of over 7,800 different digital currencies in existence according to CoinMarketCap and it represents approximately half of the total market value of all cryptocurrencies combined.
Dec 21, 2021
Nov 03, 2021
Details on the ABLE Act for Disabled Citizens
In 2014, the Stephen Beck, Jr. Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act created a mechanism whereby disabled Americans could establish a tax-advantaged savings account, appropriately referred to as an ABLE account, to supplement their lifestyle needs. As defined by the Social Security Administration (SSA), being disabled is described as the inability to do any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment, which can be expected to result in death or which has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months.
Nov 03, 2021
Sep 27, 2021
Disappointing Investment Results? Maybe It’s You
In the investment world, and perhaps in life, there has always been a battle between the actions we should be taking and the actions we actually do take. It’s a battle between the impulsive part of our brain and the rational part of our brain and, unfortunately, the impulsive part of our brain often prevails. Human nature and our own innate biases work to our detriment in this regard and usually to the detriment of our portfolio returns. To understand why, we need to explore the foundations of neo-classical economic theory versus the principals of modern behavioral economics.
Sep 27, 2021
Aug 23, 2021
Inflation: Transient or Here to Stay?
Inflation seems to be top of mind lately, garnering the attention of economists, political pundits, business owners and laymen alike – but what exactly is inflation, how is it measured, what’s considered to be normal, and how high is it now? Also, what’s been causing prices to rise, how does the Federal Reserve Bank feel about recent inflationary trends, and what’s the bond market suggesting about the short-term or long-term nature of these trends?
Aug 23, 2021
Jul 22, 2021
Special Delivery: Income Tax Payments to Uncle Sam
What can I say – your rich Uncle (Sam) wants a cut of your financial well-being each and every year, and he’s quite serious about collecting His share. When and how he goes about doing so can take many forms, including weekly/bi-weekly payroll withholding, withholding from traditional Individual Retirement Account (IRA) distributions, estimated quarterly income tax payments, and/or a lump sum payment at the end of each year. One way or another, he’ll get what’s coming to him, for how else could we afford to keep this great Country running?
Jul 22, 2021
Jun 24, 2021
The COVID-19 Rollercoaster and Our Current Bull Market
For the third time in the last 80 years, we’re in the midst of a secular (i.e. long-term) bull market. Upward-trending markets like this tend to last fifteen to twenty years and are generally characterized by significant declines in unemployment, along with noticeable increases in inflation and interest rates. The idea is that as an economy emerges from recession – like the Great Recession of 2008 – economic activity picks up, people return to work, demand begins to outstrip supply, and prices begin to rise. Eventually, the Federal Reserve Bank (the Fed) finds it necessary to raise interest rates, usually several times, to slow things down a bit and to prevent more rampant inflation. Monitoring these three metrics – unemployment, inflation, and interest rates – can tell us a lot about where we are in a longer, broader market cycle, and the COVID-19 pandemic has had a noticeable impact on all three.
Jun 24, 2021
Apr 16, 2021
The Growing Popularity of the Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC)
Former New York Stock Exchange President, Tom Farley, recently described 2020 as “The Year of the SPAC” during an interview on CNBC’s Squawk Box. Indeed, these Special Purpose Acquisition Companies attracted gross investment proceeds of approximately $80 billion last year, far surpassing the money raised through more traditional Initial Public Offerings (IPOs). But what exactly are SPACs, how are they similar to and different from an IPO, and what are some of the implications for investors who get involved with this type of financing?
Apr 16, 2021
Mar 17, 2021
Understanding a Short Squeeze
If someone were to ask you what a short squeeze was, you might be tempted to describe it as a hug or a brief embrace usually associated with a greeting or a goodbye. In the investment world, however, a short squeeze is anything but friendly and the adverse financial consequences associated with this type of event can be severe.
Mar 17, 2021
Jan 12, 2021
Bidding Adieu to 2020 and Projecting Hope for 2021

According to writingexplained.org, the phrase “bid adieu” is used formally to say goodbye or as a light-hearted and flippant way of describing cutting something out of one's life. Based on the disruption the COVID pandemic has caused for so many of us over the last year or so, it seems appropriate to bid adieu to 2020 and to look toward the prospect of a brighter 2021. As we project hope for the coming year, let’s take a moment to reflect on the economy, the market, the geopolitical landscape and our own personal health.

Jan 12, 2021
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