Statistic of the Week:
With New Year’s resolutions around the corner, the world is getting heavier. Obesity rates in the US are at new highs, as 40% of adults meet the threshold. Over the past 40 years, the number of obese children worldwide has increased 10x. By 2025, the healthcare cost of treating obesity is expected to reach $1.2 trillion annually.
After an attempted coup threatened to throw the Turkish economy off the tracks last year, it grew at a rate of 11.1% in the third quarter. The nation has the best GDP growth rate of any of the OECD countries – expected to finish the year with a rate of 7%. The strong expansion has been attributed to available credit for small firms coupled with government stimulus.
Market Moving Events:
Monday: Housing Market Index Tuesday: Housing Starts Wednesday: Existing Home Sales, Thursday: Jobless Claims, GDP, Philly Fed Business Outlook Friday: Durable Goods, Personal Income and Outlays, New Home Sales, Consumer Sentiment
After having mixed results the week before, equity markets recaptured their momentum last week and posted positive gains. The NASDAQ was the leader of the major domestic equity indices, up 1.43%.1 The DJIA logged a gain of 1.34% as the S&P 500 brought up the rear by rising 0.95%.2 The DJIA has had four consecutive weeks of positive gains, and closed at record highs 69 times over the course of the year (the most since 1995).3 We should note that 2017 has also demonstrated the least amount of volatility, as measured by a max drawdown, since 1995 as well.4 Despite the uptick in equity prices, movement in the fixed income markets remained relatively muted. The 10-year Treasury closed Friday with a yield of 2.38%.5 The House will vote on the tax reform bill this Tuesday.6 In its final form, it creates $1.5 trillion in tax savings over 10 years, doubles the standard deduction for both single and joint filers, lowers the top bracket from 39.6% to 37%, drops the corporate tax rate from 35% to 21%, caps the mortgage interest deduction on mortgages over $750,000, limits state and local tax deductions to $10,000, and doubles the child tax credit to $2,000 (for households with incomes under $500,000 - $1,400 can be refundable for households not paying any income tax).7 The bill is expected to add $1.6 trillion to the debt over the next ten years.8 For those looking to prepay state and local taxes by the end of the year to try to maximize those write offs while they exist, the Treasury Department has noted that prepaid taxes will not be eligible for deduction on your 2017 return.9 - Dan McElwee, CFP®
Chart of the Week: