The Insurance & Annuities Channel

There They Go Again...Again

I’m in the process of writing another book, going into great depth regarding one of the most important things discussed in my book The Most Important Thing: cycles, their causes, and what to do about them. It will be out next year, but this memo will give you a preview regarding one of the most important cyclical phenomena.

Some Speed Bumps Slowing the Bull

I continue to believe that the two most important issues receiving inadequate investor attention are productivity and the role of central bank liquidity in the performance of financial markets. Productivity is critical to both earnings improvement and a rising standard of living.

How Would Health-Care Reform Affect Patient Health?

The US Congressional Budget Office has estimated that some 32 million people would lose their formal insurance coverage in the next decade under the various proposals to replace "Obamacare." But it is important to understand just what that would mean in practice, and how much it would actually affect health outcomes.

Bronfman Rothschild 2017 Q2 Review

Supply and demand seems to have been placed on the backburner in today’s world of prognosticating inflation, employment, and GDP. The first point is the supply of publicly traded stock in the US. The second point is the supply of money.

Death of the Internal Combustion Engine

The stock market is discounting an accelerating rate of technological change in our society. A mad dash by investors is anticipating a world organized like “The Jetsons” cartoon from my childhood. We thought it would be useful to look back at other points in time where great technological change was anticipated and see how that worked out for S&P 500 Index investors.

An Emotionally Intelligent CEO

My recent trip to an online job search site,, validated my conviction about how critically important a strong, “emotionally intelligent” leader is to a healthy organization.

Factoring a Gap Year into College Savings

Can 529 funds be used for gap-year expenses? I recently had a parent ask me if their child’s 529 college savings account money could be used to help pay for gap-year expenses. Here’s the short answer: Maybe.

Don’t Believe Everything You Hear about Social Security!

If you’re like many working Americans, you may be concerned about the state of Social Security and whether it will be there for you when you retire. Gail Buckner, CFP, our personal retirement and financial planning strategist, explores some myths about Social Security and eases some concerns about its future.

Conference Board Leading Economic Index: Continued Growth in June, All-Time High

The Latest Conference Board Leading Economic Index (LEI) for June increased to 127.8 from 127.0 in May and is currently at an all-time high. The 0.6 percent month-over-month gain was better than the 0.4% increase forecast by

Weekly Unemployment Claims: Down Another 15K

Today's seasonally adjusted 233K new claims, down 15K from last week's revised number, was better than the forecast of 245K.

Despite Scary Headlines, No Big Changes to Social Security’s Outlook

Every year the Trustees of the US Social Security and Medicare trust funds provide their report on the current and projected financial status of these programs.

Tocqueville's Hathaway on Gold: The Fed is ‘Caught in a lie’

We suspect that the Fed has already lost substantial credibility, but that investors prefer to look the other way as long as financial-asset values remain intact. It is, in our opinion, an “everybody knows the dice are loaded” situation that could portend an even sharper, impossible-to-escape downdraft once confidence is dislodged.

Finding Faith in Value after All These Years

What should one conclude about the persistent sense of despair in the investment business over the flow of funds to passive and quantitative strategies? It may well be that, as Jeremy Grantham wrote, the comfortable margins of safety experienced in the “Ben Graham training period of 1935–1965″ could never return.

The Big Four Economic Indicators: Industrial Production Rose 0.4% in June

Today's report on Industrial Production for June shows a 0.4% increase month-over-month, which was above the consensus of 0.3%. Industrial Production peaked in November 2014, only one point higher than its pre-recession peak in November 2007. The year-over-year change is 1.97 percent, up from last month's YoY increase.

When a 12 Year Old Asks if You Watch Cramer

With Market Indices at or Close to All-Time Highs, Investors Puzzle Over the Course Ahead. Meanwhile, The Slow-Growth Economy Is Perceived as the New "Goldilocks Scenario."