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Bill’s By The Number$

Posted by: Kim Vo | Posted on: July 25th, 2016 | 0 Comments

THE MONTH OF AUGUST – The worst performing month for the S&P 500 since 1991 has been August.  The stock index has suffered an average loss of 0.6% (total return) during August over the last 25 years.  The best performing month since 1991 has been April, gaining an average of +1.9% (total return).  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.  HOT STREAK – The S&P 500 has set 7 record closes in the last 10 trading days through Friday 7/22/16, after having set 0 record closes in the previous 285 trading days (source: BTN Research).

3.  MISS A LITTLE, MAYBE MISS A LOT – Over the 6 years of trading through the end of last week (i.e., 7/23/10 through Friday 7/22/16), the S&P 500 was up +14.6% per year on a total return basis, i.e., counting the impact of reinvested dividends.  If you missed the 6 best performance days in those 6 years (i.e., 6 days in total, not 6 days each year), your average annual return was cut to just +10.1% per year.  If you missed the best 1% of all 1,511 trading days in those 6 years (i.e., 15 days in total), your annual return was +5.6% (source: BTN Research).

 4. SECOND LONGEST – The ongoing bull market for the S&P 500 (88 ½ months in duration), is the 2nd longest bull market since 1950, trailing only the 113 ½ month long bull that ended 3/24/00 (source: BTN Research).

5.  UNDER THE SAME ROOF – There are 118 million households in the United States.  The 118 million is split between 82 million “family” households and 36 million households that are occupied by 1 person living alone or by a group of unrelated people.  Of the 82 million “family” households, 5 million are multigenerational families, i.e., households consisting of 3 or more generations living together (source: Census Bureau).

 6. NOT TOGETHER – The total return of stocks and the total return of bonds have not been negative in the same year at any time over the last 40 years, i.e., 1976-2015.  The S&P 500 index was used as the stock measurement.  The Barclays Aggregate bond index, calculated using 6,000 publicly traded government and corporate bonds with an average maturity of 10 years, was used as the bond measurement (source: BTN Research).

7.  POTENTIAL VOTERS – The number of “Millennials” eligible to vote in the November 2016 election (69.2 million) is just under the number of “Baby Boomers” eligible to vote later this year (69.7 million).  “Millennials” are adults aged 19-35 in 2016, i.e., individuals born from 1981-1997.  “Baby Boomers” are defined as adults born from 1946-1964 (source: Pew Research).

 8. LESS THAN LAST YEAR – Lenders foreclosed on 197,425 homes in the first half of 2016, a total that is down 5.7% from the 209,281 foreclosures completed during the first half of 2015 (source: RealtyTrac).

9.  CHEAP GAS – The national average price of gasoline was $2.18 a gallon as of Friday 7/22/16, the lowest gasoline price during any July since 2004 (source: AAA).

10.  TAXES PAID – The top 5% of US taxpayers paid more in federal income taxes ($721 billion) than the bottom 95% of US taxpayers ($511 billion) for the 2013 tax year (source: Internal Revenue Service).

 11. MOST EVER – National health care expenditures in the United States during calendar year 2016 are projected to reach $3.351 trillion, or $10,346 per person (source: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services).

12.  NOT THE USA – There are 10 countries in the world that currently maintain the top credit rating from each of the 3 major credit rating agencies (S&P’s, Moody’s and Fitch Ratings), including Canada and Germany (source: FT).

 13. LOWER COST, HIGHER USAGE – A dual working couple in America making a combined $95,600 that turned 65 years old in 2015 is projected to receive $422,000 in Medicare benefits over their lifetime (a 2015 present value number), 3 times the $140,000 they paid in Medicare payroll taxes (also a 2015 present value number) during their working years (source: Urban Institute).

14.  NOT MUCH DIFFERENCE – A dual working couple in America making a combined $95,600 that turned 65 years old in 2015 is projected to receive $616,000 in Social Security benefits over their lifetime (a 2015 present value number), +13% more than the $543,000 they paid in Social Security payroll taxes (also a 2015 present value number) during their working years (source: Urban Institute).

 15. ALMOST – Pro golfer Phil Mickelson finished 2nd at the British Open on Sunday 7/17/16, losing to Swede Henrik Stenson.  The loss denied Mickelson his 6th major championship and was his 11th runner-up finish in golf’s 4 majors.  Only Jack Nicklaus, with 19 runner-up finishes in the majors, has more 2nd place trophies (source: PGA).

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