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U.S. equities started the week on a sour note once again, though they managed to recover slightly on Tuesday and Wednesday following upbeat economic and earnings data. Retail sales for December rose 0.2%, versus the expected 0.1%; excluding auto sales, retail sales rose 0.7%. On the corporate front, JP Morgan, Citigroup, and Wells Fargo reported mixed quarterly results, while Bank of America beat the Street’s estimates. In economic news, initial jobless claims dropped 2,000 to 326,000; analysts were expecting new claims to come in at 331,000 [see The Fed Effect: How Monetary Policy Impacts Your ETFs].

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The New Fixed Income World

by on March 25, 2013 | Updated March 26, 2013

In previous blog posts, I wrote about how the economic and investment world has evolved over the past five years. Now, as the latest Federal Reserve meeting finishes up, I wanted to delve a little more into how the fixed income landscape in particular has changed, thanks in a big part to the actions of the Fed.

Here are 3 reasons why it’s not your father’s (or mother’s) fixed income landscape anymore. [click to continue…]

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Nothing rings more true than Ben Franklin’s famous quote, “In this world nothing is certain but death and taxes.” Looking past the morbid side of that statement, higher taxes are almost certainly coming in the next few years, regardless of who is in office, as local counties, states and the federal government all look to […]

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For investors, the last few months have been dominated by two words: fiscal cliff. The combination of automatic expiring tax breaks and across-the-board government spending cuts scheduled to become effective on January 1, 2013, has sent a shiver down the spine of market participants. 

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This year has, so far, been a pretty strange period for municipal bond investors. It started off with a dire prediction from Meredith Whitney on the market as she stated her belief that we will see a large amount of defaults in the space in the very near future. “You could see 50 sizable defaults, 50 […]

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According to the ancient Mayan calendar, the world will end in December 2012. If banking analyst Meredith Whitney is right, the beginning of the end might be around the corner. Whitney, who rose to prominence after a pessimistic report on Citigroup issued in late 2007 later proved to be painfully accurate, has been zeroed in […]

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Stock markets in the U.S. finished the day mixed as a strong performance from the oil sector helped to buoy the broader indexes ahead of the more concentrated DJIA. Still, both the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 finished the day up by less than 10 points each while the Dow slid by just five, in […]

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Wall Street started off the holiday-shortened week on a mixed note as a stronger U.S. dollar weighed on a variety of asset classes. Despite a stronger greenback, both the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq managed to post gains of 0.3% while the Dow slid marginally, posting a 0.1% loss. Commodities, an asset class usually crushed […]

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When the Federal Reserve slashed the federal funds target rate to a range of 0.0% to 0.25% in late 2008, most expected that the drastic measure would be temporary, and that interest rates would gradually climb higher. But nearly two years later, the U.S. economy continues to languish as job creation has failed to materialize […]

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After witnessing an impressive run-up through the first three quarters of the year, more and more investors are now expressing concern over a bubble in bond markets. Reaction to the recent announcement of another round of QE has skewed towards the negative, as economists both in the U.S. and around the globe have predicted that […]

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Free ETF Trading: Comparing All The Options

by on October 22, 2010 | Updated July 9, 2014

As the ETF world continues to grow, the competitive landscape continues to evolve. A growing number of firms have attempted to differentiate themselves by offering unique exposure to asset classes and strategies not previously available–such as funds tracking the Philippine stock market or ETNs linked to the price of industrial metals such as zinc or […]

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As investors have become more comfortable with the idea of achieving fixed income exposure through the exchange-traded structure, bond ETF assets have skyrocketed and the number of funds has increased rapidly. For those in higher tax brackets, municipal bonds have always been a popular option, as the tax-exempt feature of the interest payment boosts the […]

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