May Ends with a Retreat
In This Issue
The Week on Wall Street
Stocks struggled during a 4-day market week as the U.S.-China trade standoff continued to weigh on the minds of market participants. Trade is dominating the conversation in the financial markets, with developments steadily unfolding. Wednesday, China's state media suggested that the country could soon cut off exports of rare earths to the U.S. Late Thursday, the Trump administration announced 5% tariffs on all imports from Mexico, effective June 10; these taxes could rise in the coming months.[3][4]

Meanwhile, on Main Street...
The Conference Board's consumer confidence index soared to 134.1 in May, its highest reading since November; the consumer view of present economic conditions was the best since the end of 2000. Additionally, the University of Michigan's consumer sentiment index ended May at 100.00, near the 15-year peak of 102.4 seen earlier in the month.[5][6]

Spring also brought a solid advance in consumer spending. April's gain was 0.3%, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis.[7]

Final Thought
While Wall Street remains cautious and concerned about trade, consumers appear to be upbeat, sensing widespread economic prosperity. This underscores the fact that the state of the economy does not necessarily correspond to the state of the stock market (and vice versa).

Blattel News

Road Signage
Please note that one of our favorite landmarks - the alligator - is no longer there. The dentist who had the alligator sign has sold his practice. The sign is now solid blue and says "Majestic Dental." If you are someone who looks for the alligator to know where to turn into our office park, we suggest you look for the new blue sign or the Show Me Granite sign near the other entrance.

Blues Open House
Thank you to everyone who dropped by our Blues open house. It was a fun afternoon of celebrating our St. Louis Blues and talking hockey. Congratulations to Dan A., who won the Blues Western Conference Champions hat door prize. Let's Go Blues!!!


July 4 & 5: Office Closed
Our office will be closed for Independence Day weekend. The stock market will close at noon on July 3, and be closed July 4.
July 16 from 5-6 pm: Workshop
Join us for the Retire on Purpose workshop. You will receive actionable tips on what you can start doing today to enrich your life in retirement. A great experience for those about to retire or who have recently retired! Register today.
September 2: Office Closed
Our office, and the stock market, will be closed on Labor Day.
October: Client Event
Our semi-annual client breakfast seminar is currently being planned. Look for more details later this summer!
Summer is often the time to take to the roads and skies, whether it's visiting family or exploring new places.
Here at Blattel & Associates, Gary kicked off his summer travel with a May trip to London. Kate has plans to pile the kids into a camper and go out west for the quintessential road trip. And Scott chose his summer destinations with colleges in mind.
But enough about us. Where are you going? We would love to know where you are travelling to this summer. A list of your destinations will be included in a future newsletter edition, so that others may be inspired.
Also, please know that our entire team is ready to help you, even if your primary contact is out of the office. You can reach us all on the office main phone line, 636-397-8303.
You can also reach us individually by email:
Scott Blattel:
Bob Blattel:
Gary Scott:
       Adam Hofer:
Kate Christopher:
Scott Kincaid:
       Erin Peterson:
Have a wonderful summer!

"If you're not stubborn, you'll give up on experiments too soon. And if you're not flexible, you'll pound your head against the wall and you won't see a different solution to a problem you're trying to solve."

-Jeff Bezos
Hot Ramen Bowls

Serves 2

  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 2 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 to 4 tsp. ginger, freshly grated
  • ½ cup carrots, shredded
  • ½ cup shiitake mushrooms, sliced (you can use other available mushrooms)
  • 4 cups vegetable broth (you can use chicken, pork, or beef stock as well)
  • 1 Tbsp. rice vinegar (optional)
  • 3 to 4 Tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce, to taste
  • 1 to 3 Tbsp. Sriracha sauce, to taste
  • Two 3-oz. portions of ramen (you won't need the packets)

  • Sliced chicken, beef, or pork
  • Seaweed or nori
  • Sliced scallions
  • Asian pickles
  • Corn
  • Bean sprouts
  • Sesame seeds
  • Shredded carrots
  • Soft-boiled egg

  1. Place a pan on medium heat and add the sesame oil and olive oil. Add garlic and ginger, and simmer until fragrant, being careful not to brown the garlic.
  2. Add the carrots and mushrooms, and simmer until they soften, about a minute, stirring frequently.
  3. Add the broth, Sriracha sauce, rice vinegar (if using), and soy sauce. Stir, and bring to a simmer; let it go for about five minutes. Taste, then adjust heat and flavor to your liking, adding more Sriracha and soy sauce, if needed.
  4. Carefully place the ramen noodles into the pot of simmering broth and cook approximately 2 to 3 minutes, until tender.
  5. Carefully transfer the soup and noodles to bowls and allow to cool. At this time, make your soft-boiled egg.

Soft-Boiled Egg
  1. Boil water in a small saucepan. Add the egg(s) and let them boil for five minutes.
  2. Have an ice bath ready, and when the time is up, transfer the eggs into the ice bath for about a minute to stop the cooking process.
  3. Gently crack the egg and roll on a flat surface, then peel, slice in half, and place on top of your soup.

To Serve
  1. Garnish with your toppings of choice and enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Killing Thyme [8]

Hobby or Business?

You may make jewelry, sell baked goods, or do some carpentry. When you start selling these goods, the IRS may need for you to report this income. So, how do you know when it remains a hobby or becomes a business? When your hobby becomes profitable, it may be a business. The IRS offers some factors for you to consider, including:
  • Do you carry on the activity in a businesslike manner and maintain books and records?
  • Does the time and effort you put into the activity indicate you intend to make it profitable?
  • Do you depend on income from the activity for your livelihood?
  • Are your losses due to circumstances beyond your control (or are normal in the startup phase)?
  • Have you changed your methods of operation in an attempt to improve profitability?
  • Do you or your advisors have the knowledge needed to carry on the activity as a successful business?
  • Were you successful in making a profit in similar activities in the past?
*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[9]
Share the Wealth of Knowledge!
Please share this market update with family, friends, or colleagues. If you would like us to add them to our list, simply click on the "Forward email" link below. We love being introduced!



Investing involves risk including the potential loss of principal. No investment strategy can guarantee a profit or protect against loss in periods of declining values.

Diversification does not guarantee profit nor is it guaranteed to protect assets.

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Opinions expressed are subject to change without notice and are not intended as investment advice or to predict future performance.

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Consult your financial professional before making any investment decision.

Fixed income investments are subject to various risks including changes in interest rates, credit quality, inflation risk, market valuations, prepayments, corporate events, tax ramifications and other factors.

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