December 5th, 2018
Captain's Log


We're nearing the end of the year, so we all know that means we'll be scrambling around trying to wrap up everything we've been working on and trying to spend time with family & friends all at the same time. We hope that everyone is able to take at least a little slice of the holiday season to relax and reflect on the past year. 

In addition to the two "The Wealth Report" articles we're providing this month, we'd also like to take this opportunity to go over some end-of-year housekeeping notes. 

The JDS Wealth Management office will be closed Saturday December 22nd through Tuesday January 1st. We will  still be available intermittently via email during this time. We will be returning to normal business hours on Wednesday January 2nd. 

Due to year-end volume at our carriers and custodians, we request that any requests for distributions or contract/account service that need to be taken care of before the end of the year be submitted to us no later than 12:00pm on Friday December 14th. This should allow for adequate processing time to ensure meeting the year-end deadline. This is especially important for Required Minimum Distribution requests, as those are coded for the tax year in which they are actually processed and IRS penalties may apply if they are not processed on time. Our carriers do their best to process all requests in a timely manner, but heavily increased volume in December does slow them down. Please take this into consideration and get in touch with us as soon as possible to handle any necessary year-end account maintenance. 

If there is anything we can assist you with, then just let us know.  And, as always, remember -  The purpose of the money dictates where you put it.  

Until Next Month,
Jim's signature
  James D. Stillman
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The Wealth Report:

Has The Housing Market Reached Its Peak?

The economic expansion over the past nine years is the second longest the U.S. has ever experienced. If it continues past July 2019, it will officially become the longest in U.S. history. However, many experts are starting to see warning signs of a slowdown. 

Specifically, the real estate housing market appears to be at or near its peak. According to the National Association of Realtors, prices have increased exponentially in recent years due to low supply. It appears that lessons from the last recession have stuck with many homeowners, who appreciate the fact that they simply have a home they can afford and are less interested in trading up. 

There are other factors to consider. A recent survey of real estate experts revealed that if the economy does experience a setback, it will likely be due to an increase in interest rates set by the Federal Reserve. 

Over the last 10 years, interest rates have hovered at or just slightly above historic lows. The Fed typically increases interest rates when growth and employment levels trigger higher inflation. By raising rates, money becomes more expensive to borrow and consumption is reduced, tamping down rising prices. This year, in response the country's continued economic growth, the Fed has raised interest rates three times and is expected to make one more hike by the end of the year.

The Wealth Report:

Women and Money

Although women have made great strides in the workplace and politically, they still face economic challenges. While women-owned businesses account for nearly 40 percent of all privately held firms in the U.S., women hold only 10 percent of top executive positions (CEO, CFO and so on) in companies that compose the S&P 1500 stock index.

Starting in 2019, at least 128 women - a record number - will serve in Congress, including 23 senators and more than 100 in the House of Representatives. Their ranks represent only 23 percent of Congress' members, despite the fact that women account for more than half (51 percent) of the U.S. population. 

These statistics represent some of the accomplishments women have fought hard to earn as well as the challenges they still face as a demographic. However, it's really at the individual level where the rubber meets the road, especially when it comes to managing money.

All content is intended for informational purposes only. Any guarantees are for insured products only and are dependent on the claims paying abilities of the insurer.  All investments carry some risk and you should be advised by your personal financial advisor before implementing any strategies discussed, as they are not suitable for everyone. James D. Stillman is an Investment Advisor Representative of JDS Wealth Management Corporation and AE Wealth Management. 

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