Stocks End the Week Lower
In This Issue
The Week on Wall Street
Stock prices fell last week as investors considered the potential health and economic risks of the flu-like coronavirus.
Futures Markets Eye Coronavirus Outbreak
By Friday's closing bell, two cases of coronavirus had been confirmed in the U.S. by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Sixty-three other potential cases were being monitored. Twenty-six people had died from the virus in China, where more than 30 million people faced travel restrictions.
This news exerted a drag on stocks in multiple industries. Oil prices also slipped: West Texas Intermediate crude lost 7.4% for the week to settle at $54.19 Friday. Stock and commodity traders wondered if the virus would mimic the SARS scare of 2002-03, which kept Chinese workers and shoppers at home and hurt corporate earnings worldwide.[3][4]
Fewest Homes for Sale in 20 Years
Existing home sales improved 3.6% in December, according to the National Association of Realtors. This happened even as the number of listed properties hit a 20-year low. The NAR says that the rate of total U.S. home sales (existing and new) increased 10.8% in 2019.[5]
What's Ahead
Traders will watch not only earnings and economic indicators this week, but also the Federal Reserve, which meets Tuesday and Wednesday. Will the central bank's latest monetary policy statement reveal any subtle change of outlook?
Monday: The Census Bureau's report on December new home sales.
Tuesday: The latest consumer confidence index from the Conference Board.
Wednesday: A monetary policy announcement from the Federal Reserve, followed by a press conference with Fed chair Jerome Powell.
Thursday: The first estimate of fourth-quarter gross domestic product from the Bureau of Economic Analysis.
Friday: December consumer spending figures from the Department of Commerce, plus the final January University of Michigan consumer sentiment index (a gauge of consumer confidence levels).
Source: MarketWatch, January 24, 2020
The MarketWatch economic calendar lists upcoming U.S. economic data releases (including key economic indicators), Federal Reserve policy meetings, and speaking engagements of Federal Reserve officials. The content is developed from sources believed to be providing accurate information. The forecasts or forward-looking statements are based on assumptions and may not materialize. The forecasts also are subject to revision.
Monday: D.R. Horton (DHI), Sprint (S)
Tuesday: Apple (AAPL), Pfizer (PFE), SAP (SAP), United Technologies (UTX)
Wednesday: AT&T (T), Facebook (FB), Mastercard (MA), Microsoft (MSFT)
Thursday: Amazon (AMZN), Coca-Cola (KO), Verizon (VZ), Visa (V)
Friday: Chevron (CVX), ExxonMobil (XOM), Honeywell International (HON)
Source: Zacks, January 24, 2020
Companies mentioned are for informational purposes only. It should not be considered a solicitation for the purchase or sale of the securities. Any investment should be consistent with your objectives, time frame and risk tolerance. The return and principal value of investments will fluctuate as market conditions change. When sold, investments may be worth more or less than their original cost. Companies may reschedule when they report earnings without notice.
Blattel News

The SECURE Act & Your IRA Beneficiaries

We have started to reach out to our clients who have a traditional IRA with their trust account set up as a beneficiary. The newly enacted SECURE Act affects some of the old rules for inherited IRAs with a non-spousal beneficiary. There is provision which can be detrimental for a beneficiary inheriting an IRA through a trust.
If we email you regarding this, or if you know you have a trust set up as your IRA beneficiary, we recommend that you contact your estate attorney to determine if you should make changes to your account beneficiaries and/or amend your trust.
We have also invited Dean Mioli, SEI Director of Planning, to speak on this topic with our clients who are directly affected by the new law. Please look for invitations to our March 4th luncheon to be mailed early next month. We will also be making his presentation available to all of clients afterwards.
We will continue to communicate with you regarding this important matter to make sure any issues this new law causes for your estate strategy have been addressed. Please contact us if you have any questions.

Tax Document Dates

For the 2019 tax year, the dates for printing and mailing recipient copies are as follows:
  • 1099-Rs (IRAs) available on:
    • SEI mail date: January 31
    • FCC mail date: January 31
    • 1099-Bs (non-Qualified) available on:
      • SEI mail date: February 14 &/or February 28
        • Will be produced & mailed in 2 batches; your mail date will depend on when SEI receives the information on the holdings within your account.
  • FCC mail date: February 18
Helpful phone numbers:
  • SEI - Call Us - 636-397-8303
  • First Clearing 1-800-727-0304
  • IRS help line 1-800-829-1040
If you or your tax preparer need us to help gather any information, please give us sufficient notice to fulfill your request. Do not hesitate to call our office at 636-397-8303 with any questions.

Blattel & Associates does not provide tax advice.  Please consult with your tax advisor with regard to your personal situation.

Qualified Charitable Distribution Reminder

Some of our clients took a Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD) in 2019. For those of you that did, make sure to give your tax preparer your 2019 QCD amount, whether or not they specifically ask for it. Please contact our office if you have any questions, or if you need us to provide you with your QCD total.

Recent Model Change

We recently identified and contacted a list of SEI accountholders regarding a model change. For those of you who received this notification, please note that the model change successfully completed last week. Please contact our office if you have any questions regarding this change.


February 17: Office Closed
Our office will be closed for President's Day. Markets are also closed.

March 4: Client Event
Save the date for our special client lunch seminar on how the SECURE Act impacts you. This event is designed specifically for clients most affected by the new law, and event invitations will be limited to those people (first come, first served).
March 28: Client Event
Save the date for our semi-annual client breakfast seminar. More information to follow.

April 10: Office Closed
Our office will be closed for Good Friday. Markets are also closed.

"If you don't like the road you're walking, start paving another one."

- Dolly Parton
Oven-Cooked Corn on the Cob

Serves 4
  • 8 unhusked ears of corn

  • 8 Tbsp. unsalted butter, softened at room temperature

  • 2 pressed cloves garlic
  • ½ tsp. dried thyme
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Place unhusked corn directly on oven rack.

  3. Roast until tender, 40-45 minutes.

  4. Combine butter, garlic, thyme, salt, and pepper in bowl. Mix until spreadable.
  5. Remove and husk corn.

  6. Spread 1 Tbsp. of butter mixture on each ear and serve.
  7. Suggestions: sprinkle with favorite spices, parsley, or Parmesan cheese.
Recipe adapted from[6]

Owe the IRS Money? Here's How to Pay.

If you owe federal taxes, you should pay by the April deadline even if you get an extension. Here are some options for making your payment easy:

  • Use Direct Pay. IRS Direct Pay is a free and secure way to pay directly from your checking or savings account.
  • Pay by Debit or Credit Card. If you don't want to link a bank account, you can use your credit or debit card. Keep in mind that you'll have to pay a processing fee and may incur interest charges.
  • Pay When You E-File. If you file your federal tax return electronically, you can pay directly from your bank account using Electronic Funds Withdrawal.
If you can't pay the full amount that you owe now, you can set up a payment agreement to pay your taxes over time using direct debit.
For more information about filing your taxes, consult a qualified tax expert.
* This information is not intended to be a substitute for specific individualized tax advice. We suggest that you discuss your specific tax issues with a qualified tax professional.

Tip adapted from[7]

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