September Surprise?

August now in the rear view, attention will turn to what has historically been the worst month of the year for stocks. 

On the surface, September could very well surprise to the upside.  No guarantee of course!

Last week’s data is suggesting the Fed could pause and not raise rates at the next Fed meeting September 20th

Job openings, suggested by the JOLTS report, stated 8.8 million jobs are available in the United States, down from over 10 million.  The quit rate is also coming down. August witnessed 187K jobs created with the prior 2 months revised downward over 100K.  The average monthly job gain over the last 3 months is now approximately 150K per month, showing a slower pace of hiring.

The unemployment rate ticked higher to 3.8% as more people entered the workforce.

Inflation moderating and job creation slowing, the Fed should be optimistic, rate hikes are starting to work.  Sitting back for the time being makes sense.  We’ll see!

The next set of inflation numbers, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) and the Producer Price Index (PPI) will report on September 13th and 14th

Will September be an up or down month?  We’ll know on October 1st!

Debt facts from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO)

What happens with our debt will soon become of significant importance and will need to be dealt with by our leaders in Washington, even if they do not want to do so.

For 2023 tax-payers will shell out $663 million from tax dollars to pay the interest on our debt.  In 2024, the projection is $745 million.  In 2033, $1.4 trillion.

The total between now and 2033 is approximately over $10 trillion in interest payments alone. 

Why does our government ignore the debt situation?  To reduce the debt, tax dollars may need to be diverted from other spending programs.  These programs typically are the platform most politicians run on.  It will take either the debt issue to cause a significant economic issue or if we are fortunate, a group of bi-partisan politicians will roll up their sleeves and focus on what is truly best for our short, intermediate and longer-term economic futures.

Charitable Giving

With the fall quickly approaching, it’s time to start thinking about Charitable Giving.  It’s wonderful to give to the charities that touch your hearts and to enjoy a few income tax benefits.

Later this week you’ll receive a blog on Qualified Charitable Contributions that I recently wrote as a member of the planned giving committee for a local charitable organization. 

Qualified Charitable Contributions are one of several techniques to give to charity and receive an income tax benefit.

To discuss what technique makes the most sense in your situation, please feel free to give us a call.

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