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Don’t Wait Outside of the Storm

Don’t Wait Outside of the Storm

The year 2022 was a bloodbath for both equity and bond markets–the S&P 500 was down 18% and the Bloomberg US Aggregate Bond Index had its worst year ever, down 13%. This year, 2023, began with the US debt ceiling standoff, followed by a banking crisis, and continued rate hikes by the major central banks. The economy seemed like it would get worse before it got better, and the consensus was calling for a near-term recession. However, the stock market quickly shrugged off many of these concerns. Year-to-date as of August 31, the S&P 500 is up approximately 17% and NASDAQ is up approximately 34%. The S&P 500 is officially in a bull market (i.e., up at least 20% from its recent lows in October 2022). With the Federal Reserve and some economists no longer forecasting a recession[1], it makes one wonder what has changed in the last few months....

Education Funding as a Wealth Transfer Strategy: A Valuable, Narrow Opportunity

Education Funding as a Wealth Transfer Strategy: A Valuable, Narrow Opportunity

The cost of a college education is typically the first great expense a young person encounters.  According to the Massachusetts Educational Financing Authority (www.mefa.org), an average in-state public college will run roughly $24,000 for the 2023-2024 year and a little more than $100,000 for a four-year degree.  Meanwhile, the average private college will cost about $55,000 for a starting freshman and could total more than $230,000 over the course of four years.  Herbert Stein, an American economist, famously said, “If something cannot go on forever it will stop.”  The growth of college costs will peak at some point and then recede; when that will occur is much more difficult to predict. Until that time, we will address circumstances as they currently are—how to finance this significant expenditure and how to view saving for college as a wealth transfer strategy. For the purposes of this piece, we will assume that our future...