Without question, the last several weeks have been difficult for everyone. I’ve spoken to so many of you as we all look to better understand the new world that’s unfolding in front of us.
Our commitment to keeping you well informed has never been stronger. We’ve held countless meetings and calls with every major investment firm to assess the unfolding data points.
I’d like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you for your continued confidence in our strategies as we work through this historic time. I would also like to take this opportunity and give a “virtual toast “ to the men and women that are our medical professionals and first responders. In the middle of such tough times, I’m always amazed at how people come together and it gives me such great hope for the days ahead.
Please know LEXCO remains fully functional while working remotely. We have the full support of over 4,000 Home Office employees at LPL Financial, our broken dealer/ back office. We are engaged all day, everyday, speaking to investment firms, economists, portfolio managers, and medical experts to gain deep insight as to how COVID-19 impacts our lives going forward.
After a strong start to 2020, the first quarter took an unexpected turn as the spread of COVID-19 virus gripped markets and brought certain areas of the global economy to a halt . US equities entered bear market territory, government bond yields dropped to their lowest levels ever and oil prices collapsed. The Federal Reserve responded swiftly by cutting rates to near 0 and providing fresh quantitative easing and liquidity injections. The US government provided fiscal stimulus to support workers and businesses (CARES act). Monetary easing and physical measures were implemented globally. For our clients, the impact of COVID 19 on our society, our economy and on the financial markets poses unique challenges to every investment strategy.
In the second quarter , impacts from COVID-19 will be felt acutely, likely ending the 11 year economic expansion as it has already done to the bull market in stocks. In particular, service industries will face damage from social distancing and unemployment will likely, rise even higher . However, efforts to contain the virus and develop a vaccine, as well as the ability of companies and consumers to adapt to the circumstances should result in stabilization and eventual rebound. The reality is with so many moving parts, it is impossible to tell just how this all unfolds. I think of Winston Churchill’s famous quote ”Keep calm and carry on “ and remain focused on the inevitable recovery and better days ahead.
I know most of you reading this have attended our recent educational series featuring Black Rock, Goldman Sachs, Horizon Investments with many more to come. You’ve been reading our emails in between various conversations. One of the reasons I wanted to reach out was to let you know that if you haven’t been following your investments online you’ll be getting a pretty dismal statement in the mail soon.
By that I mean your first quarter statements, which reflect the worst quarter ever. It will surely show disappointing balances.
Please know that the true measure of most smart investors is how they react in the worst of times. Behavioral finance has taught us time and time again that emotions get the better of people. Specifically, they tend to make poor long-term decisions in favor of short-term relief. While each of your circumstances is truly different, the universal concept widely accepted by institutional investors is too ride through this difficult time. With so many price dislocations and the wild swings that are the day-to-day norm , it’s nearly impossible to make solid decisions. To share another Winston Churchill quote he said “if you’re going through hell ….keep going”. For most, this is investing hell and it takes incredible strength to remain confident in our way of life, our markets and our future.
In closing, I remain keenly aware of what your investment dollars and your strategy represent to you and your loved ones. In the end, it’s not what we invest in, it’s why we invest: to, improve your way of life, to retire someday, to send kids to college, to leave a legacy to our loved ones, and to enjoy a better future. It’s not to make short-term moves trying to beat the markets.
Securities and advisory services are offered through LPL Financial (LPL), a registered investment advisor and broker-dealer (member FINRA/SIPC). Insurance products are offered through LPL or its licensed affiliates. Financial planning offered through LEXCO Wealth Management, Inc., a registered investment advisor and separate entity from LPL Financial. TEG Federal Credit Union and TEG Retirement & Advisory Services are not registered as a broker-dealer or investment advisor. Registered representatives of LPL offer products and services using TEG Retirement & Advisory Services, and may also be employees of TEG Federal Credit Union. These products and services are being offered through LPL or its affiliates, which are separate entities from, and not affiliates of, TEG Federal Credit Union or TEG Retirement & Advisory Services. Securities and insurance offered through LPL or its affiliates.
Our Retirement and Advisory Services Advisors are available to meet at our Commerce Street (Poughkeepsie) or Route 9 (Wappingers Falls) locations