Can you believe we’re already more than one-quarter of the way through 2019? Time flies!
I shared my disbelief recently with Bryan Wing, Chief Investment Officer here at PAX Financial Group, and he reminded me of all that’s happened so far this year. I wanted to pass this information on to you, so here’s a brief review of the first quarter of 2019 and my thoughts on what we can expect going forward.
We saw strong performance from U.S. Equities during the first quarter of the year. The S&P 500 gained 13.65 percent. International stocks fared well too, having returned more than 10 percent. Volatilities remained relatively tame as well for the beginning of the year, so the question is: Can the market sustain its recent momentum?
While it’s certainly possible to see the market continue with ascent, it’s also prudent to be cautious of potential threats.
Let’s think of Sir Isaac Newton’s first law of motion, which states: An object in motion tends to stay in motion unless acted upon by an unbalanced force. So, what are some potential unbalanced forces in the market that can change the trajectory of it?
First: Global growth. To sustain this level of growth, the global economy will need to remain strong enough to quench recession fears but also weak enough to keep policy makers at bay. That’s certainly a tight rope to walk.
Second: Federal reserve action. It was only a short while ago late in 2018 that the Fed was signaling several rate hikes for this year. Now they have pivoted away from that rhetoric, saying there will be no more rate hikes for 2019.
Lastly, there’s still international uncertainty. There are two major results that have yet to be resolved: First, trade negotiations with China, and second, the resolution of Britain’s exit from the European Union. Chinese growth may reaccelerate during the second quarter of the year, and an improving Chinese economy would certainly help ease global growth concerns. However, we have yet to see a resolution with Britain.
There’s an old saying that goes: “Successful people do what unsuccessful people are not willing to do.” So, being a successful investor is not easy. There are always seasons and events that try to distract you from the end goal, but do not give in to that temptation. Successful investors stick to their long-term objectives and do not let the winds of change derail them from their course.
Should You Worry About a Market Crash?
There is another old saying in the investment world: “There’s always something to worry about.”
Unfortunately, there’s also an old saying in the media world: “If it bleeds, it leads.”
The marriage of these two cultural truisms birth consistent worrisome investors. So, if you find yourself worrying about investments, you are not alone. In fact, one of the most frequent questions I am asked when the market has a little dip is: “Is this the big one all over again?”
I understand that many of us have scars from the 2008 market crash, but remember, market dips are normal and expected. They do feel a little different today, but they have always happened and will continue to. It’s important to not give into the panic and understand that your worry may just be manufactured by “news” reports, email forwards and gossip.
If you’re already working with a financial advisor at PAX Financial Group, call him or her. If not, contact us to discuss your situation and your concerns. Part of the benefit of working with a trusted advisor is passing on the worry to someone else. Our advisors are well-versed in the financial services industry and follow a fiduciary standard, meaning we put our clients’ best interest first.
Remember, in 20 or 30 years, you might experience one or two material market downturns. However, most of the downturns, based on history, will be fear-driven head-fakes, causing many investors (possibly your friends) to make emotional decisions. Don’t let that be you! When fear creeps into your brain, be consciously prepared. Stay focused on your long-term goals and the path you’re on to get there. If you have questions, lean on your financial advisor.
Where to Find Your Information
We have an easy place for you to get all of your information on our website. PAX Connect is our online portal where you can view your account balances and get all your statements.
The link can be found on our home page. Once you log in, you can click on “documents.” Then, on the left-hand side, you will find “statements.” You can find your 1099s and any other information you may want to access.
We created PAX Connect for you. One of the biggest pain points we used to hear from our clients was they received too much mail. Now, you can take advantage of these online documents, or you can call or email our office and get you what you need electronically.
This material is provided by PAX Financial Group, LLC. The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. The information herein has been derived from sources believed to be accurate. Please note: Investing involves risk, and past performance is no guarantee of future results. Investments will fluctuate and when redeemed may be worth more or less than when originally invested. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. This is neither a solicitation nor recommendation to purchase or sell any investment or insurance product or service, and should not be relied upon as such. All market indices discussed are unmanaged and are not illustrative of any particular investment. Indices do not incur management fees, costs and expenses, and cannot be invested into directly. All economic and performance data is historical and not indicative of future results.