Rubber Meet Road

It begins on Thursday. The rubber hits the road for my family’s 2024 camping trip after eighteen months of gathering ideas, evaluating options, and creating travel plans. Since this likely will be my last multi-week camping trip with my daughter, I asked her in January of 2023 what parts of our country she would like…

Next Steps

Today, my youngest child will graduate from eighth grade. On Sunday, my middlest child will graduate from high school. In February, my oldest child moved out into his own apartment with a roommate. My children’s life milestones are impactful to me because I have the long-term perspective of their helpless infant selves locked in my…

Margin for Error

This morning I was reminiscing about the good old days of January of 2022 when the rumors first started. The “R” word seeped into traders’ minds as the Federal Reserve prepared to start battling inflation with interest rate hikes. The thought was that recession was imminent within the next six to twelve months. Those recessionary…

Who Will Win?

This year is shaping up to be a very close contest. Most of the people I talk with are already wishing it was over, and we still have months and months to go. It is entirely possible this one could even stretch into next year. On one side of the contest, you have the long-term…

May Day

Happy May Day! May 1 is a forgotten holiday that has been celebrated for centuries. According to history.com, the Celts believed May 1 to be the single most important day of the year. The unique American tradition of May Basket Day quietly faded from popularity in the mid-1900s. May 1 was considered Labor Day in…

Waived Again

Yes, they have done it again. Last week the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2024-35 which waives Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) for specific retirement account beneficiaries in 2024. If you are or will be at least age 73 by the end of 2024, you still must take your RMD this year. If you own…

Inflated Expectations

Last week’s Consumer Price Index report for March made it very clear that money still drives markets. Much of the financial market enthusiasm that erupted just prior to Halloween hinges on the theory that the Federal Reserve will bring the cost of money down in 2024. Initially, traders thought it would be a mere six…

Path of Totality

I must admit I was not all-in on Monday’s solar eclipse. I did not purchase eclipse eyewear. I did not create my own eclipse observation tool. In fact, I was in a client meeting during the eclipse instead of outside. One of the more ear-catching eclipse phrases that stuck in my brain during the eclipse…

Confluence

The Baltimore bridge tragedy is a solemn reminder of how a confluence of unexpected events have unintended and almost unimaginable consequences. Humans have been using large ships for decades. Yes, their size has grown significantly over the last 20 years, but all of the operating principles for safely steering a vessel have been in place…

Zeroes

Zeroes frequently mark either the beginning or the end. Every interstate freeway starts at mile marker 0. Every golf scorecard begins with 0. The day you are born is your 0th birthday (at least in American culture). Every college basketball game ends with 0:00 on the clock. Most Major League Baseball teams’ first official game…