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Bill’s By The Number$

Posted by: Vanessa Guadiana | Posted on: October 5th, 2015 | 0 Comments


  1. RECENT RESULTS – The S&P 500 index lost 2.5% (total return) in September 2015 and was down 8.4% (total return) over the last 2 months (August-September).  The S&P 500 lost 6.4% (total return) in the 3rd quarter 2015, its worst quarter since the 3rd quarter 2011.  The S&P 500 consists of 500 stocks chosen for market size, liquidity and industry group representation.  It is a market value weighted index with each stock’s weight in the index proportionate to its market value (source: BTN Research). 
  2. HOW OFTEN? – The S&P 500 is down 3.7% YTD through Friday 10/02/15 on a total return basis.  The index has had only 1 down year (2008) in the last 12 years, i.e., 2003-14 (source: BTN Research).    
  3. SOME UP, MOST DOWN – 80 individual stocks in the S&P 500 (i.e., 80 of 500 stocks or 16% of the stocks in the index) gained at least +10% during the first 9 months of 2015 (change of the stock price without factoring in the impact of dividends) including 20 stocks that are up at least +25% YTD through 9/30/15.  330 stocks (66% of the stocks in the index) have dropped in value since the end of 2014 (source: BTN Research).  
  4. LAST SEVEN WEEKS – The 5 worst performing trading days for the S&P 500 during calendar year 2015 YTD have occurred since 8/20/15 (source: BTN Research).  
  5. WHY NOT? – Only 26% of Americans under the age of 30 own stocks either within a pre-tax retirement account or as a personal investment (source: Bankrate.com).  
  6. TIME TO BE GREEDY – It was 7 years ago (10/16/08) that Warren Buffet wrote his “Buy America, I Am” op-ed article in the New York Times.  Buffett encouraged investors to “be fearful when others are greedy, and be greedy when others are fearful.”  Buffett’s letter was released less than 5 months before the stock market bottomed on 3/09/09, ending a 57% decline in the S&P 500 (source: New York Times).     
  7. SMALLER NUMBER – There are 7.915 million out-of-work Americans as of 9/30/15, the first time that the number of unemployed Americans has been less than 8 million since April 2008 (source: Department of Labor).  
  8. NO DOUBLE TAX – “Pass-through” businesses (e.g., S-Corps, sole proprietorships, partnerships, LLCs) generate 54% of overall US business income (source: National Bureau of Economic Research). 
  9. TAXES – Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump announced a tax plan on 9/28/15 that would eliminate federal income taxes (FIT) for single filers with adjusted gross income (AGI) less than $25,000 and for joint filers with AGI less than $50,000.  Of the 147.351 million tax returns filed in 2013, 94.532 million paid FIT and 52.819 million did not pay any FIT.  Of the 94.532 million that paid FIT, 22.737 million were single filers with AGI less than $25,000 or they were joint filers with AGI less than $50,000.  Under Trump’s proposal, 75.556 million filers (out of 147.351 million filed returns) would not have paid any FIT, i.e., 51% of all returns pay zero (source: IRS).     
  10. ONE TRILLION DOLLARS PER YEAR – The national debt as of 9/30/05 was $7.933 trillion.  The national debt as of 9/30/15 was $18.151 trillion.  Thus, the national debt has increased $10.218 trillion over the last 10 fiscal years, i.e., fiscal years 2006-2015 (source: Treasury Department).  
  11. NOT MUCH FUN – 70% of Millennials surveyed in August 2015 believe they will spend less than $3,000 a month ($36,000 a year in 2015 dollars) during their retirement years.  “Millennials” are defined as the 75 million Americans ages 18-34 in 2015, i.e., individuals born from 1981-1997 (source: Insured Retirement Institute).    
  12. CAP ON STUDENT DEBT – Legislation introduced in the Senate in early January 2015 would limit a college student from borrowing no more than $30,000 per year (with a lifetime maximum of $150,000) in federal government-backed loans to pay for tuition and living expenses (source: S.108 legislation).    
  13. IN THE HOLE – Students finishing medical school graduate with an average debt of $176,348.  84% of new doctors have accumulated some amount of education debt (source: Association of American Medical Colleges).  
  14. WHO WE ARE – Over the last 50 years, the population of the United States has increased 131 million from 193 million in 1965 to 324 million today.  72 million of the 131 million population increase is due to immigrants and their descendants, i.e., 55% of our population growth over the last half century is the result of our nation’s immigration policy (source: Pew Research Center).     
  15. HE’S REALLY GOOD – Jordan Spieth won 5 times during the 2015 PGA season, pocketing $12.0 million, plus an additional $10 million for winning the season-long FedEx Cup.  The 22-year old Spieth reclaimed the world # 1 ranking and is projected to earn more than $50 million in 2015 counting endorsements (source: Golf Digest).                               


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