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Economic Commentary: Q4 2019

Autumn breezes: Change in seasons — and markets
The return of fall offers cooler temperatures—but a shifting market environment. Dovish central bank policies may extend the long economic expansion, but against a backdrop of rising geopolitical tensions and trade disputes contributing to slower growth. Investors are responding by seeking to boost portfolio resilience to withstand volatility. Our take on the major investor themes for the weeks ahead:

U.S. equities: Technology: The cyclical versus the secular
With the economy in the late stages of the business cycle, we continue to favor a moderately pro-risk posture in U.S. equities. Technology remains one of our preferred sectors, but it is important to recognize that some sectors are more tied to the business cycle (like semiconductors), while others may benefit from long-term tailwinds (like software).

Developed markets: Upgrading Europe
We are upgrading the region from underweight to neutral. The European Central Bank’s fresh monetary stimulus could provide a tailwind for equities. We believe the negative sentiment toward the region may be overdone (while recognizing obvious risks) when comparing Europe’s risk to emerging markets and its valuations to U.S. equities.

Emerging markets: Latin America in focus
We have downgraded emerging markets to neutral, but we see opportunities in Latin America. Valuations are attractive for many of the region’s economies compared to other emerging markets, particularly with respect to earnings expectations. We are not sanguine about the risk of trade tensions but note that easing financial conditions and progress on political reform have already helped drive asset prices this year.

Fixed income: Navigating the fall in rates
The Federal Reserve’s 180-degree pivot from rate hikes to rate cuts has had a significant impact on fixed income markets. Still, we believe this is an important time to strengthen the ballast in one’s portfolio through quality fixed income investments, namely investment grade bonds and agency mortgage-backed securities.

Factors: Min vol goes viral
After a challenging start to the year, both minimum volatility and momentum stocks outperformed the broader market in the second quarter. This reinforces how investors are looking to build resilience in their portfolios, while not missing out on market rallies. Min vol valuations appear stretched at this point, while momentum valuations are supportive.
 

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By Dennyela Reever
January 07, 2020 Category: General

Our reference to the classic Toots and the Maytals song comes as we see a de-escalation in trade tensions with China, diminishing risks of a no-deal Brexit and few signs that the record U.S. economic expansion is ending or reversing. Still, persistent trade uncertainty is denting business confidence and spending, particularly the longer-term risk of an unravelling of the global supply chain. Our take on the major investor themes for the weeks ahead: U.S. Equites: Sector Steering Defensive sectors have outperformed cyclicals this year against a backdrop of slowing growth and falling interest rates. However, we expect central bank easing could provide a floor for growth in the coming months. Among cyclicals, we remain constructive on technology, while we prefer less rate-sensitive sectors. Developed Markets: Winter of our discontent? Trade uncertainties and slowing growth have taken a toll on developed world stocks outside the United States. But not all DMs are created equal, and

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By Lineweaver Financial Group
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What a difference a year makes! A year ago, at this time the market was coming off a 20% correction in the fourth quarter reflecting prevailing headwinds of rising interest rate, escalating global trade tensions between the US and China, uncertainty on Brexit, and growing concerns of slowing global growth. Today conditions have calmed. Central banks around the world are dovish, including in the US, were the Fed moved to make mid-cycle adjustments in the midst of uncertainty and raised chances of extending the cycle. Likewise, around the world central banks seem accommodative with negative interest rates prevailing in several key countries around the globe. The US and China have apparently reached a Phase I trade deal and while the situation is tenuous and large structural hurdles remain in the areas of intellectual property, leaders of both countries seems to be more motivated to move toward more substantial agreements into 2020. With this backdrop, conditions appear favorable for economic

Looking Forward and Giving Back

By Lineweaver Financial Group
January 06, 2020 Category: General

As most of you know, we have partnered with Harvest for Hunger since 2012, collecting food for the Cleveland Foodbank. Since partnering with Harvest for Hunger and the Cleveland Food bank in 2012, the food collected at our WealthWATCHSM programs, client appreciation, and other events has provided more than 43,000 meals. Thanks to all of our clients and friends who have helped us reach this amazing milestone. This year, we also had the unique opportunity to partner with Ben Curtis, the 2003 British Open Champion, and the Ben Curtis Foundation. Bens Foundation provides similar services to the food bank, but works exclusively with children in need in Kent, Ravenna, and Barberton. One in five children struggle with hunger, and Ben and his foundation are able to help more than 2,440 children in our own backyard. We also had the opportunity to partner with former Browns Coach Sam Rutigliano, and his Inner Circle Foundation. Coach Sams Foundation, a member of the International Literacy Association,

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