Record-Breaking Week for All Three Markets!
As of last week, the Dow, S&P, and Nasdaq all hit record highs this year! The DOW was the last index to make the mark on Wednesday, July 3rd. The markets rose after President Donald Trump and China’s Xi Jinping’s meeting at the G20 summit in Japan. There, both leaders agreed to a ceasefire on tariff and to resume trade talks. It appears the global shift towards looser monetary policy may be helping stocks as lower interest rates make it cheaper for companies to incur debt. Another financial bonus with the stock market surge: The 10-year US Treasury bond hit its lowest level since November 2016, according to Refinitiv, last yielding 1.9549%
Will the June Job Reports Affect the Fed Rate?
Job market numbers were expected to be an indicator of what the Fed may do with rates in July. Now that they have come in stronger than anticipated, is the case weaker for a rate cut? With a disappointing report in May, the June report brought hope for better future reports and a bright outlook for interest rates. But don’t get too excited about this yet – the Fed has to tread lightly so as not to appear to be swayed by both the market activity and the White House.
Is Super-Funding Your Child’s 529 an Option?
With higher education costs skyrocketing, you may be wondering how you’re going to fund your child’s future in school. The price-tag is daunting, but there might be a way to put away the funds needed with the benefits of a 529 plan. More parents are looking into this way because they can contribute money that grows tax-free until their children are ready to use the account funds for higher education. Did you know that “superfunding” a 529 college savings account allows you to make five years of contributions at one time while still qualifying for the annual gift tax exclusion? See the rules and considerations for when super-funding a 529 account makes sense.
Debt Forgiveness & Student Loans: Is the Data Fair…or Wrong?
Keeping to the theme of education funding, what’s going on with the hot topic of debt forgiveness? A lot. A new analysis points to misconstrued data from The Survey of Consumer Finances. This data set is cited often by think tanks and journalists to show income breakdowns of student-loan borrowers. The problem? Studies show it’s glossing over a key borrower demographic: The ones who move back in with their parents. The Survey of Consumer Finances method of assessment could “easily miss a 25-year-old struggling with their debt who moves back in with their parents to help mitigate that burden”.
Healthcare Costs: Revealed
In an Executive Order signed last Monday, President Trump put forth a new regulation regarding reporting healthcare costs to consumers. Typically trade secrets between hospitals and insurers, medical costs aren’t revealed until that big fat bill comes in the mail. President Trump’s executive order pushes forward the idea that patients should know how much they will be charged for tests, surgeries, and other common procedures. Health Insurers aren’t happy about it, citing the threat that revealing prices to competitors would only increase prices for consumers.