Quote of the Week
“Far better is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure… than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.” Theodore Roosevelt
It was quiet last week in the markets. The Dow was up 1.79%, the S&P 500 was up 0.65%, and the Nasdaq was up 2.77%. Year to date the Dow is down 1.45%, the S&P 500 is down 0.65%, and the Nasdaq is up 2.94%. When we exited the markets on March 26th, we were beating all the Indexes Year to Date. The markets have been rallying Monday and Tuesday of this week.
The question I am always asking is, “Did we get out too early?” If history is any guide the last time we got a sell signal when the market was so historically overvalued in January of 2008, the market actually rallied and set a new high in March of 2008 before declining 57% over the remainder of 2008 and the first third of 2009. From the standpoint of the uncertainty in Washington, I am comfortable being on the sidelines.
We are currently deploying the cash in the portfolios. As stated last week, we have taken a 10% position in Gold. We are positioning the rest of the cash in very short duration bond funds to get some yield. We are investing in very short duration funds to avoid market fluctuations if interest rates rise.
I promised my analysis of the effects of the tariffs proposed by Mr. Trump. He threw me a curve ball by coming out saying he wants to re-join the Trans-Pacific Partnership amid all the trade disputes with China. I am encouraged by his change of mind. Let’s see if this sticks, and he doesn’t change his mind again. I will address these issues next week.
Voluntary Travel ID
Recently, I received a letter from the MVD asking me to update the photo on my driver’s license. I suppose they thought that I may have changed in appearance from the picture snapped in the year 2000. Realizing that a visit to the MVD for a new picture was inevitable, I thought that this would be a good time to update my license to the meet the requirements of the federal Real ID standards.
After doing some online research, I assembled everything I needed and went to one of Tucson’s Motor Vehicle branches. I was impressed that there wasn’t a long line and that things were moving along great. Then for some reason, the clerk working with me was unable to log into the passport system to verify my passport. She asked if I had my marriage license and my birth certificate with me and of course I did not. She suggested I return another day.
I was determined to complete the task that day, mainly because I was having a good hair day, so I drove another mile or so to a third-party motor vehicle office. I was successful and only had to pay double to cost of what the license would have cost at the MVD, but I didn’t mind. I walked away knowing that my picture looked better than the older one it replaced. That was worth the cost!
All joking aside, the following article from ADOT explains what documents you need to obtain this new license. If you are a veteran and would like that noted on your driver’s license, you will need another document, such as an original DD Form 214, an original certificate of Honorable Discharge, or one of several other documents listed on ADOT’s website.
Unless you apply for the travel ID on your birthday, it may surprise you to learn that the license expires eight years from the date of issue. Keep that in mind when it’s time to renew because you don’t want to end up with an expired ID card and miss an important flight!
MVD urges Arizonans to consider getting Voluntary Travel I.D.
As 2020 deadline approaches, airports and TSA help spread the word
PHOENIX — Arizonans who plan to use their driver license or ID card to get through security checkpoints at U.S. airports and other restricted, federally-controlled facilities should take action to get an Arizona Voluntary Travel ID through the Arizona Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Division.
The Transportation Security Administration will provide MVD informational flyers at its airport checkpoints in Flagstaff, Phoenix Mesa-Gateway, Phoenix Sky Harbor, Tucson International and Yuma International. The flyers advise passengers that starting Oct. 1, 2020, standard credentials won’t be accepted by the TSA.
“Now is a great time to get a Voluntary Travel ID, because the federal deadline gets closer every day,” said MVD Director Eric Jorgensen. “MVD is making this process simple. Customers can go to ServiceArizona.com and make an office appointment. The website provides information about what documents that customers should bring with them to meet the REAL ID requirements for the Voluntary Travel ID. Appointments also help MVD offices run more efficiently, helping to get customers out of line and safely on the road.”
The Voluntary Travel ID is an Arizona driver license or ID card that meets the additional identification requirements of the federal REAL ID Act of 2005. Standard Arizona licenses or ID cards do not conform to the federal REAL ID requirements because of a state law that says those steps must be taken voluntarily by the license or card holder.
The cost is $25 for renewals and first-time issues. Per federal law, the credential is valid for eight years, in most cases. Customers whose photos need to be updated in the near future may wish to get the Voluntary Travel ID.
Forms of identification required for a Voluntary Travel ID include one document such as a birth certificate or a passport that proves identity; one document that proves a Social Security number such as a Social Security card or W-2 form, and two documents such as utility bills or bank statements that prove Arizona residency.
For a list of examples of identification documents and for additional information, please visit the Voluntary Travel ID section of the ADOT website at azdot.qovTTravellD.
By the Numbers
DOWN EARLY – The S&P 500 lost 0.8% in the first quarter 2018, the 9th time since 1990 that the stock market was negative during the first 3 months of the year. The S&P 500 went on to record a positive return for the entire year in 5 of the previous 8 years that started with a loss (1992, 1994, 2003, 2005 and 2009) and suffered full-year losses in the other 3 years (1990, 2001 and 2008) (source: BTN Research). – Michael A. Higley, BTN 04-09-2018
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These are the opinions of Larry Lof and Stephanie Mayoral and not necessarily those of Cambridge, are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed or acted upon as individualized investment advice. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Due to our compliance review process, delayed dissemination of this commentary occurs. The S&P 500 is an index of stocks compiled by Standard & Poor’s, a division of The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. The index includes a representative sample of 500 leading companies in leading industries of the U.S. economy. Indices mentioned are unmanaged and cannot be invested into directly. Technical analysis represents an observation of past performance and trend, and past performance and trend are no guarantee of future performance, price, or trend. The price movements within capital markets cannot be guaranteed and always remain uncertain. The allocation discussed herein is not designed based on the individual needs of any one specific client or investor. In other words, it is not a customized strategy designed on the specific financial circumstances of the client. Please consult an advisor to discuss your individual situation before making any investments decision. Investing in securities involves risk of loss. Further, depending on the different types of investments, there may be varying degrees of risk including loss of original principal.