Schedule Your Income Tax Appointment
Tax season is here once again; for most taxpayers, the deadline to file this year falls on April 18th. In order to secure the most convenient time for your appointment, make sure to schedule it soon! Call us at (203) 967-2231 to set up a time, even if you’re still waiting for those last few forms to arrive.
The IRS continues to recommend that taxpayers file their returns electronically and as early as possible to help guard against some forms of tax and phishing scams. Keep in mind that the IRS never initiates contact with taxpayers by email, text message, or social media. If you have concerns that you might have encountered a scam, contact us right away.
Key Dates for Tax Filing Season
There are several important dates taxpayers should keep in mind for this year’s filing season:
- January 18: Due date for tax year 2021 fourth quarter estimated tax payment.
- January 24: IRS begins 2022 tax season. Individual 2021 tax returns begin being accepted and processing begins.
- January 28: Earned Income Tax Credit Awareness Day to raise awareness of valuable tax credits available to many people – including the option to use prior-year income to qualify.
- April 18: Due date to file 2021 tax return or request extension and pay tax owed due to Emancipation Day holiday in Washington, D.C., even for those who live outside the area.
- April 19: Due date to file 2021 tax return or request extension and pay tax owed for those who live in MA or ME due to Patriots’ Day holiday.
- October 17: Due date to file for those requesting an extension on their 2021 tax returns.
Why did stock markets in the United States finish the week lower?
If this were Jeopardy, acceptable answers to that question might include:
- Rising inflation. Major U.S. stock indices were trending higher until the Consumer Price Index (CPI) Summary showed inflation at a 40-year high. Consumer prices overall were up 0.6 percent in January with seasonal adjustment, and 7.5 percent over the last 12 months without seasonal adjustment, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. U.S. stocks sold off sharply on the news before regaining lost ground.
- Changing Federal Reserve rate-hike expectations. After the inflation report was released, St. Louis Fed President James Bullard indicated that he would like to see the Fed funds rate rise rapidly to fight inflation, reported Lisa Beilfuss of Barron’s. Investors recalibrated their expectations and by the end of the week the probability of a 0.50 rate increase in March was at 94 percent, according to the CME FedWatch Tool.
- Flattening of the U.S. Treasury yield curve. Expectations for more aggressive Fed actions rolled through bond markets last week. The yield on benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasuries rose above 2.0 percent, before finishing the week at 2.0 percent. The yield curve flattened as 2-year Treasury yields rose more sharply, finishing the week at 1.5 percent.
- Escalating geopolitical tensions. Then again, the culprit behind U.S. stock market performance last week could be expectations that Russia will invade Ukraine and start a war.
“Investors can’t blame rising prices for Friday’s plunge. Markets were poised to end the week higher, despite a hotter-than-hoped-for inflation reading on Thursday… Escalating geopolitical tension was the first problem Friday. Both the United Kingdom and the U.S. suggested that Russia could soon invade Ukraine and advised their citizens to leave the country… the news injected a rush of uncertainty into the market. And investors really hate uncertainty,” reported Al Root of Barron’s.
- Declining consumer sentiment, especially among the wealthy. Consumer sentiment dropped 8.2 percent from January to February, reaching the lowest level in a decade. Notably, “The entire February decline was among households with incomes of $100,000 or more; their Sentiment Index fell by 16.1% from last month, and 27.5% from last year. The impact of higher inflation on personal finances was spontaneously cited by one-third of all consumers,” reported Surveys of Consumers Chief Economist Richard Curtain. It’s possible that consumer pessimism will slow demand for goods and that, in turn, could help lower inflation.
The reality is that there often is no single answer to explain why stock markets move up or down. Each of the above may have contributed to last week’s downturn. There is currently tremendous uncertainty about the potential impact of Fed policy changes, war in Europe, and other issues. As a result, it’s possible markets will remain volatile in the weeks ahead.
|Data as of 2/11/22||1-Week||Y-T-D||1-Year||3-Year||5-Year||10-Year|
|Standard & Poor's 500 Index||-1.8%||-7.3%||15.8%||17.7%||13.7%||12.6%|
|Dow Jones Global ex-U.S. Index||1.4||-1.9||-2.1||8.2||5.8||3.9|
|10-year Treasury Note (yield only)||2.0||N/A||1.2||2.7||2.4||2.0|
|Gold (per ounce)||1.5||0.6||-0.5||11.9||8.4||0.6|
|Bloomberg Commodity Index||0.3||10.8||31.7||11.3||4.4||-2.8|
S&P 500, Dow Jones Global ex-US, Gold, Bloomberg Commodity Index returns exclude reinvested dividends (gold does not pay a dividend) and the three-, five-, and 10-year returns are annualized; and the 10-year Treasury Note is simply the yield at the close of the day on each of the historical time periods.
Sources: Yahoo! Finance, MarketWatch, djindexes.com, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, London Bullion Market Association.
Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Indices are unmanaged and cannot be invested into directly. N/A means not applicable.
The Nature Cure
When you were a kid, your parents probably told you to go outside and play. Your mom and dad may have just wanted to get you out from underfoot but, as it turns out, going outside is good for your mental and physical health.
In 2019, Mathew White of the European Centre for Environment and Human Health and his colleagues published an article in Nature. Their research found that people who spend more than two hours a week in nature “had consistently higher levels of both health and well-being” than those who spent less time in nature. The benefits of nature appear to max out at four hours.
Jason Goldman of Scientific American reported, “The two-hour benchmark applied to men and women, to older and younger folks, to people from different ethnic backgrounds, occupational groups, socioeconomic levels and so on. Even people with long-term illnesses or disabilities benefited from time spent in nature—as long as it was at least 120 minutes per week.”
So now that you’re an adult, your doctor may tell you to go outside and play.
A non-profit organization, called Park Rx America – Nature Prescribed, encourages doctors “to decrease the burden of chronic disease, increase health and happiness, and foster environmental stewardship” by prescribing nature during healthcare exams. The organization helps doctors identify parks in their patients’ neighborhoods and provides educational materials.
Canada is taking things a step further. Physicians can prescribe an “Adult Parks Canada Discovery Pass,” which gives their patients free access to 80 national parks, historic sites, and marine conservation areas, reported Andy Corbley of the Good News Network.
Even if you don’t have a free pass, it’s a good idea to go outside and play!
Weekly Focus – Think About It
“Play is an activity enjoyed for its own sake. It is our brain's favorite way of learning and maneuvering.”
—Diane Ackerman, author and naturalist
Wishing you and your families well,
Sean M. Dowling, CFP, EA
President, The Dowling Group Wealth Management
Please feel free to forward this commentary to family, friends, or colleagues. If you would like us to add them to the list, please reply to this e-mail with their e-mail address and we will ask for their permission to be added.
- Government bonds and Treasury Bills are guaranteed by the U.S. government as to the timely payment of principal and interest and, if held to maturity, offer a fixed rate of return and fixed principal value. However, the value of fund shares is not guaranteed and will fluctuate.
- Corporate bonds are considered higher risk than government bonds but normally offer a higher yield and are subject to market, interest rate and credit risk as well as additional risks based on the quality of issuer coupon rate, price, yield, maturity, and redemption features.
- The Standard & Poor's 500 (S&P 500) is an unmanaged group of securities considered to be representative of the stock market in general. You cannot invest directly in this index.
- All indexes referenced are unmanaged. Unmanaged index returns do not reflect fees, expenses, or sales charges. Index performance is not indicative of the performance of any investment.
- The Dow Jones Global ex-U.S. Index covers approximately 95% of the market capitalization of the 45 developed and emerging countries included in the Index.
- The 10-year Treasury Note represents debt owed by the United States Treasury to the public. Since the U.S. Government is seen as a risk-free borrower, investors use the 10-year Treasury Note as a benchmark for the long-term bond market.
- Gold represents the afternoon gold price as reported by the London Bullion Market Association. The gold price is set twice daily by the London Gold Fixing Company at 10:30 and 15:00 and is expressed in U.S. dollars per fine troy ounce.
- The Bloomberg Commodity Index is designed to be a highly liquid and diversified benchmark for the commodity futures market. The Index is composed of futures contracts on 19 physical commodities and was launched on July 14, 1998.
- The DJ Equity All REIT Total Return Index measures the total return performance of the equity subcategory of the Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) industry as calculated by Dow Jones.
- International investing involves special risks such as currency fluctuation and political instability and may not be suitable for all investors. These risks are often heightened for investments in emerging markets.
- Yahoo! Finance is the source for any reference to the performance of an index between two specific periods.
- Opinions expressed are subject to change without notice and are not intended as investment advice or to predict future performance.
- Economic forecasts set forth may not develop as predicted and there can be no guarantee that strategies promoted will be successful.
- Past performance does not guarantee future results. Investing involves risk, including loss of principal.
- You cannot invest directly in an index.
- Stock investing involves risk including loss of principal.
- The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. All performance referenced is historical and is no guarantee of future results. All indices are unmanaged and may not be invested into directly. Economic forecasts set forth may not develop as predicted and are subject to change. Investing involves risk including loss of principal.
- The Price-to-Earning (P/E) ratio is a measure of the price paid for a share relative to the annual net income or profit earned by the firm per share. It is a financial ratio used for valuation: a higher P/E ratio means investors are paying more for each unit of net income, thus, the stock is more expensive compared to one with a lower P/E ratio.
- These views are those of Carson Group Coaching, and not the presenting Representative or the Representative’s Broker/Dealer, and should not be construed as investment advice.
- This newsletter was prepared by Carson Group Coaching. Carson Group Coaching is not affiliated with the named broker/dealer.
- The foregoing information has been obtained from sources considered to be reliable, but we do not guarantee it is accurate or complete.
- Consult your financial professional before making any investment decision.
https://www.barrons.com/articles/stock-market-dow-nasdaq-sp-500-russia-51644630835?mod=hp_LEAD_1 (or go to https://resources.carsongroup.com/hubfs/WMC-Source/2022/02-14-22_Barrons_The%20Stock%20Market%20Dropped%20Because%20Theres%20Something%20Scarier%20than%20Rate%20Hikes_7.pdf)
http://www.sca.isr.umich.edu (or go to https://resources.carsongroup.com/hubfs/WMC-Source/2022/02-14-22_Survey%20of%20Consumers_Preliminary%20Results%20for%20Feb%202022_8.pdf)
ADV & Investment Objectives: Please contact The Dowling Group if there are any changes in your financial situation or investment objectives, or if you wish to impose, add or modify any reasonable restrictions to the management of your account. Our current disclosure statement is set forth on Part II of Form ADV and is available for your review upon request.
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