This monthly communication, “Financial Bullet Points,” will quickly and easily cover the main financial issues we see affecting the markets without being bogged down with a lot of details.
Written by Bob Barber, Prepared on Dec 27th, 2023
The Bullet Points for January are:
- Year-End Rally as Expected: As anticipated, a year-end rally materialized in Q4. This time it extended beyond the top 7 “woke” Big Tech stocks to the broader market, including the other 493 companies of the S&P 500, benefiting our Biblically Responsible active portfolios to end the year nicely.
- Taking Profits, Rebalancing, and Lowering Equity: In December, we took profits on many individual stock holdings, rebalanced across portfolios, and lowered overall equity allocations by a third in anticipating potential profit-taking early this year. Most of our deep value biblically responsible stock picks were up in December, with 10 stocks up 30% or more. With little value left in some, we liquidated 9 positions and rebalanced the rest to capture gains before they could dissipate*. We are actively seeking new buying opportunities to replace the sold positions.
*As of 12/18/2023, 40 stocks were up, and 9 stocks were down since the 10/19/2023 purchase. Excess cash was placed in a Schwab Value Advantage Money Fund until we reinvest it into 9-10 replacement stocks.
- Declining Inflation. Inflation numbers continued improving in December, pleasing the Fed and markets. The Fed signaled possible rate cuts this year amid ongoing disinflation, driving 10-year Treasury yields back below 4% and benefiting mortgage rates.
- CD Rates Trending Down.. With the Fed’s potential pivot, the 5.5-5.7% 1-2 year CD rates of the past year are vanishing. Expect rates in the low 4% range by mid-summer.
- GDP Growth Encouraging US GDP grew 5.2% versus 2.7% a year prior, another positive economic indicator. This was also higher than the original reporting of 5.0%.
- 2024 Election Year Outlook. 2024 is a presidential election year. The incumbent party typically stimulates the economy pre-election, which often helps markets.
- Broader Returns Expected. Unlike last year’s concentration in a few stocks, returns should spread out more broadly in 2024, benefiting our active, Biblically Responsible portfolios.
- Continuing Education. This month’s programs for Christian Financial Perspectives are:
- Setting Goals for 2024 (Jan 2nd)
- Selling Financial Fear (Jan 9th)
- Our Biblically Responsible Stocks Portfolio (Jan 16th)
- Is a Rental Home a Good Investment (Jan 23rd)
- 14 Characteristics of Financially Successful Christians (Jan 30th)
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Visit our channel: www.cfa.lc/yt
Until next time, we hope you had a wonderful Christmas and New Year and look forward to 2024. That’s all for now.
Bob Barber, Founder & Owner
Christian Financial Advisors®
The views expressed represent the opinion of Christian Financial Advisors®. The views are subject to change and are not intended as a forecast or guarantee of future results. This material is for informational purposes only. It does not constitute investment advice and is not intended as an endorsement of any specific investment. Stated information is derived from proprietary and nonproprietary sources that have not been independently verified for accuracy or completeness. While Christian Financial Advisors® believes the information to be accurate and reliable, we do not claim or have responsibility for its completeness, accuracy, or reliability. Accordingly, such statements are inherently speculative as they are based on assumptions that may involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Actual results, performance or events may differ materially from those expressed or implied in such statements. Investing in equity securities involves risks, including the potential loss of principal. While equities may offer the potential for greater long-term growth than most debt securities, they generally have higher volatility. Past performance is not indicative of future results.