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Summer Waning

As autumn approaches, the days begin to grow shorter. Children are heading back to school and fall sports will be in full swing soon. There’s still plenty of opportunities to enjoy the summer season before temperatures dip. Make sure you set aside some time while you can!


  • AFP Open House – Our new office Open House will be held on Thursday, September 14th from 4:00 pm - 7:30 pm. There will be hors d'oeuvres, desserts, and 3 door prize drawings for attendees. We hope to see you!

  • Travel Photos We are making a slide show of travel photos to play during our Open House. If you have any photos you would like included, please submit them to Erik by 9/11/2023.

  • Schwab Migration The Charles Schwab migration will be taking place over Labor Day Weekend. You should not have to take any action during this process. You can access additional information about the migration at

  • RMDs In quarter 1, we mailed TD Ameritrade IRA Distribution forms to clients needing to complete their required minimum distribution (RMD) in 2023. RMDs must be completed by 12/31/2023. Please note that the TD Ameritrade forms previously provided will not be accepted after the TD Ameritrade accounts migrate to Charles Schwab & Co. Please call to request a Schwab Distribution form if completing your RMD after Labor Day. You may disregard if you have completed your 2023 RMD or have authorized fund transfer instructions to your bank account.

  • AFP August Financial Friday Webinar – 'Financial Planning at Every Life Stage; What it Looks Like & Why it's Important' with Teri Alexander CFP®, MSFP, CeFT®, AIF® and Nathan Swab CFP®, AWMA®. We will discuss why it’s important to pull it all together and the differences between Goal Driven vs. Cash Flow financial planning. Would you like to attend? Let Erik know at [email protected]Webinar links will only be sent next Friday morning to those who confirm their attendance ahead of time. If you know anyone who would like to attend or could benefit from this information, please pass along the webinar email to them.

  • Upcoming Webinar –  In September, AFP will be hosting "The New Retirement" with guest speaker, Virginia Macali, JD, MS, founder of High Point Transitions.

Click below to read our August 2023 Blog edition.

5 Ways That Buying a Car Has Drastically Changed

We would enjoy receiving your feedback on our Blog. Please share any comments or suggestions for future topics with us via email.

+ Teri's World

There’s a feel in the air that summer is winding down. I’ve spent time with all my grandsons this month having sleepovers or popping over to spend time with them. One is entering 1st grade and two are attending kindergarten this year! The garden has come into full production and it’s fun to experience the fruits of my labor. We’ve made pesto, tomato sauce, and we have consumed a variety of veggies. Training for the ½ Marathon in October is progressing and I have started taking flute lessons. Something I have been wanting to do for some time. I use to play in high school and over the last several years I have worked on relearning the notes.

+ Nathan's Notes

It’s hard to believe summer is winding down and school is starting back up. It always seems to go by a little faster than it should. We usually try to make the most of the weekends and spend some time outside. While they may not always be headliners, we’ve enjoyed things like finding all the gnomes in the kid’s area at Franklin Park Conservatory and riding the Ferris wheel at the zoo. And while I may miss another summer gone by, the thought of cooler evenings and less yard work does sound good. That’s one of the nice things about Ohio – the next season is always on its way.

+ Tracey's Time

We are in back-to-school mode as Cayleigh begins her senior year. She worked very hard to earn a place on the UAHS Varsity Golf Team. Her season is off to a great start. She has a full course load scheduled and will need to complete her college applications this fall. Post golf season, she plans to volunteer with Columbus Metro Parks for which she completed a volunteer orientation program. The final highlight of her summer was an opportunity to take an introductory flight in a small aircraft. She hopes to fly again soon. 

Andy has been working extra time at the new AFP office to install the kitchenette before the upcoming Open House. Cayleigh and I tag along to help. We have learned our way around the tool bag. Things here are beginning to fall into place and it will be nice to finish unpacking the kitchen boxes.

+ Erik's Exploits

After ten months of waiting, I finally have my truck. I had ordered a Ford Maverick Hybrid back in September. Even with almost a year passing between when I ordered it and when it arrived; I’m still one of the lucky ones as some people have been waiting 2+ years due to supply shortages on certain trim levels. I still have to get a bed liner installed and pick up a tonneau cover, but I’m just happy to have my own vehicle again. 

Current Economic and Investment Information

A ROUGH EARNINGS SEASON – Through August 2nd, the 946 stocks reporting results this earnings season averaged a one-day decline of 0.8%. The weakest earnings reactions have come from tech and communication services stocks, the two best performing sectors YTD. (source: Bespoke)

PRODUCTIVITY SURGE – US worker productivity surged 3.7% in Q2, the largest increase since Q2 2020. If sustainable, higher productivity should help curb the impact of higher wages. Unit Labor Costs also rose by just 1.6%, nearly a full percentage point below economist forecasts. (source: BLS)

SHELTER PRICES HEADED FOR BASEMENT – A primary factor keeping consumer price index (CPI) elevated recently has been the price of shelter, accounting for 30% of the overall index. Shelter inflation is set to slow, and maybe turn negative, by mid-2024; which would be the most severe contraction of shelter inflation since the Financial Crises of 2007 - 2009. (source: San Francisco Fed)

INTEREST IN HIGHER DEFICITS – Of the 14 countries rated AA or above by Fitch, the US has the highest estimated 2023 deficit as a percentage of GDP (6.5%) and the second highest interest expense as a percentage of revenues. Only the UK is higher (10%+) than the US (8%+) and the only other country over 4% is Canada. (source: Fitch)

BANKING HAS GONE DIGITAL – Digital banking has become the norm for middle-income Americans across all demographics. 91% of middle-income Americans have completed a digital transaction in the last month. Surprisingly Baby Boomers are just as likely as Millennials (91%) and more likely than Gen Z (88%) to complete a digital transaction. (source: Minneapolis Fed)

S&P 500 Top 10

As of last Friday’s market close, the top 10 stocks in the S&P 500 accounted for 90% of the index’s year-to-date gains. While market breath has been narrow and returns have been highly concentrated, the rally has broadened out relative to May, when the S&P 500’s 10 largest names accounted for all of the year-to-date gains. This decline in concentration can be attributed to surprisingly resilient economic data, which in turn has fueled better than expected profit growth and stock market performance. In fact, with the 2Q23 earnings season coming to a close, profits have surprised to the upside, with particular strength in the consumer sectors, construction, travel, and streaming/gaming. The top 10 stocks currently account for over 30% of the index, which is down from the peak levels we saw in April/May but still extremely high relative to the last 25 years. Importantly, the earnings contribution of these top 10 stocks is sitting near its pre-COVID level, but well below the pandemic era highs. Despite this misalignment in weights and earnings, the VIX has remained at historically low levels, which has been aided by the market becoming increasingly confident in a soft landing. Whether this performance is sustainable hinges on inflation. 

Click here to view the source.


COLA Adjustment

Next Social Security Raise Expected To Be 3%

The recent slowdown in inflation points to a 2024 Social Security

cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, of around 3%.

By Mark Miller

Source: The New York Times

More than 74 million Americans can expect a healthy inflation adjustment to their Social Security benefits next year — just not as large as this year’s historic 8.7% raise.

The recent slowdown in inflation points to a 2024 Social Security cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, of around 3%, according to a forecast by the Senior Citizens League. That would still be higher than the average 2.6% adjustment over the past two decades, said Mary Johnson, a policy analyst for the league, a nonpartisan seniors’ organization.

“People need to be real — we just went through rates of inflation we haven’t seen in four decades,” she said. “A 3% COLA would be nothing to sneeze at.” Other estimates point to a possible raise of just over 3%.

Click here to continue reading this article.

Payment Methods

Credit Card, PayPal or Cash App?

How You Pay Matters

A guide to weighing security, convenience and benefits of each payment option.

By Imani Moise

Source: The Wall Street Journal

Buyers have more ways to pay for things than ever before: Apple Pay, Venmo, credit cards and dozens of other options. What you choose might matter as much as the purchase itself.

Each of the different payment methods provides various conveniences, perks and protections from fraud. Credit cards have long been the default option of choice. But higher interest rates have now raised the cost of carrying a credit-card balance.

Money-transfer apps such as Venmo and Zelle processed nearly $900 billion last year, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau expects that number to reach $1.6 trillion by 2027.

These apps and services provide easy instant payments, usually for free. The downside is that these options offer fewer protections from scams and unfulfilled orders.

Click here to continue reading this article.


“August is the slow, gentle month that stretches out

the longest across the span of a year. It yawns and

lingers on with the light in its palms.”

- Victoria Erickson

Alexander Financial Planning

3600 Olentangy River Rd, Ste. C2

Columbus, OH 43214


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9:00 AM - 5:00 PM

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This material is distributed by Alexander Financial Planning, Inc., (AFPI) and is for information purposes only. Although information has been obtained from sources we believe to be reliable, we do not guarantee its accuracy. It is provided with the understanding that no fiduciary relationship exists because of this report. Opinions expressed in this report are not necessarily the opinions of AFPI and are subject to change without notice. AFPI assumes no liability for the interpretation or use of this report. Financial planning, investment conclusions, and strategies suggested in this report may not be suitable for all investors and consultation with a qualified advisor is recommended prior to executing any investment strategy. No portion of this writing should be construed as legal or accounting advice. All rights reserved.
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