Happy New Year! For Christmas my wife gave me a “whole body cryotherapy” treatment at a local spa. It freezes your body to near frostbite for 3 minutes. It is supposed to have wonderful health and fitness benefits. A picture is included at the bottom (it’s funny). I don’t think I would do it again…
2016 Annual Investment Summary
Ok. Now that 2016 is out of the way, let’s take a look at how various investments did in the past year.
Stocks returned 12.5% 1
Bonds returned 2.3% 2
The stock market started the year rocky. It went down nearly 10% in January and then reversed course and climbed over 15% from February to May. It then stayed relatively flat until after the election when it jumped again.
Bonds climbed for the first half of the year about 5% and then fell dramatically after the election by about 5%. The 2.3% bond return is almost entirely made up of yield (interest payments on the bonds).
Really this was a very “normal” year. Stocks, bonds, and real estate all returned around their long-term historical averages.
Frequently Asked Questions:
- Why didn’t we know to get out of the market in January and then jump back in at the bottom before it started going back up in February? Because that is impossible.
- Considering stocks were up last year, isn’t this a good time to get out? No. Nobody knows if the stock market is going to go up or down this year. But the stock market has returned nearly 10%, on average, for over 100 years.
- The stock market went straight up after the election. Why didn’t I see a major change in my account? Because bonds were going down at the same time as stocks were going up. A well-diversified and balanced portfolio will always include both stocks and bonds.
I hope everyone has a blessed and prosperous New Year. If you need anything at all, you know how the reach me.
1- as measured by the S & P 500
2- as measured by the Barclay’s Aggregate Bond Index
The return of principal for bond funds and for funds with significant underlying bond holdings is not guaranteed. Fund shares are subject to the same interest rate, inflation and credit risks associated with the underlying bond holdings.
The value of fixed-income securities may be affected by changing interest rates and changes in credit ratings of the securities.
Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Inherent in any investment is the potential for loss. Indexes are unmanaged portfolios and individuals cannot invest directly in an index. Actual results will vary.
This communication is for informational purposes only and nothing herein should be construed as a solicitation, recommendation or an offer to buy or sell any securities or product, and does not constitute legal or tax advice. The information contained herein has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable but we do not guarantee accuracy or completeness. Do not act or rely upon the information and advice given in this publication without seeking the services of competent and professional legal, tax, or accounting counsel.