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April Bears Chase Off March Bulls; Interest Rate Cuts Still Paused | Opinion

Published May 10, 2024

William RutherfordThe U.S. stock market took a breather in April from its seemingly relentless upward momentum. A technical indicator that signals conditions in the stock market are “overbought” — a term traders use to describe when stocks are trading above fair value — had been flashing for four months. This price momentum indicator moved to overbought in November 2023 and stayed that way through March. The previous record of 60 straight overbought closes was reached in April 1998.

The combination of higher-than-expected inflation rates, below-expectation GDP numbers and the highest levels of interest rates in 23 years raised fears of a slowing U.S. economy — even the possibility of stagflation in coming months — and spooked the market. The S&P 500 was down 4.16 percent in April, bringing its year-to-date return to 5.57 percent, after having posted its best first-quarter performance since 2019. The Nasdaq and Dow dropped 4.4 percent and 5 percent, respectively, for the month.

In April, the U.S. Commerce Department reported that economic growth was much weaker than expected in the first quarter, and prices rose at a faster pace. Gross domestic product (GDP) increased at a […]

By |May 13th, 2024|Categories: Rutherford Investment Management|Comments Off on April Bears Chase Off March Bulls; Interest Rate Cuts Still Paused | Opinion

Reducing The Risk Of Outliving Your Money

What steps might help you sustain and grow your retirement savings?

“What is your greatest retirement fear?” If you ask any group of retirees and pre-retirees this question, “outliving my money” will likely be one of the top answers. In fact, 51% of investors surveyed for a 2019 AIG retirement study ranked outliving their money as their top anxiety. 1

Retirees face greater “longevity risk” today. The Census Bureau says that Americans typically retire around age 63. Social Security projects that today’s 63-year-olds will live into their mid- eighties, on average. This is a mean life expectancy, so while some of these seniors may pass away earlier, others may live past 90 or 100.2,3

If your retirement lasts 20, 30, or even 40 years, how well do you think your retirement savings will hold up? What financial steps could you take in your retirement to try and prevent those savings from eroding? As you think ahead, consider the following possibilities and realities. Realize that Social Security benefits might shrink in the future. For decades, Social Security typically took in more dollars per year than it paid out. That ongoing surplus – also known as the Social Security Trust Fund – is now projected […]

By |November 13th, 2019|Categories: Other Writings|Comments Off on Reducing The Risk Of Outliving Your Money

Oregon Business Magazine Spotlights Rutherford Investments

Oregon Business Magazine Spotlights Rutherford Investments

See Our Story in OBMHere is an excerpt of the story written by Oregon Business Magazine.

Embracing client education & operational discipline for long-term growth.

Near the end of 2018, the financial markets fell hard, dropping nearly 20% in a month. Investment managers across the country scrambled to calm clients ready to run for the hills. But at Rutherford Investment Management, it was relatively quiet.

Why did such market turmoil result in just one client phone call and one email instead of mass hysteria? The answer lies in the proven wealth management approach the firm has employed for 25 years, starting with client education.

“If there’s an event that occurs, and I’ve done my job, clients don’t panic,” explains William Rutherford, founder and President of Rutherford Investment Management. “I’ve never thought of myself as a teacher, but I guess that I am.”

Though time consuming, client education is central to a firm that revolves around the long term – a theme visible in its stock selection process, client relationships, established team, not-for-profit work and, perhaps most clearly, in its mission: “Investment management for the long-term investor.”

As with most accomplished […]

By |June 4th, 2019|Categories: Rutherford Investment Management|Comments Off on Oregon Business Magazine Spotlights Rutherford Investments

4th Quarter 2018

At the end of last year, the market took a sharp drop.  On Christmas Eve, the market was down about 19.9% from its recent high in September, barely escaping bear market territory, which is generally regarded as a decline of 20%. The drop was characterized as a “glitch” by President Trump, which prompted me to write my column, “How the Glitch Stole Christmas” for the Daily Journal of Commerce.

The drop was triggered by two events, the first being the trade war with China.  Characterized as “easy to win” by President Trump, the war showed signs of extending and having a negative effect on the global economy. Both Europe and China were showing the effects of slowing, as noted by Christine Lagarde, Chairwoman of the International Monetary Fund.  China particularly showed the impact, with its GDP slowing to 6.3% from 6.6%, although still far higher than the EU, the US, and Japan. Still, the longer the trade conflict goes on, the greater the danger of additional global economic contraction. While the U.S. continued to have a generally robust economy, that too showed signs of slowing.

Secondly, the Federal Reserve seemed to be abandoning its support for the U.S economy.  With Chairman Powell […]

By |March 12th, 2019|Categories: Quarterly Client Newsletters|Comments Off on 4th Quarter 2018

3rd Quarter 2018

Market suffers steep drop and then bounces

What was that all about?

We all know about volatility.  The market is volatile; it has been especially volatile in recent years. Yet, we also know that over time the market gains more than it loses, so we expect volatility, we should stay invested.  To do otherwise is to bet against the market, which, again, over time, is not wise.

So let’s look at what happened and why. On Wednesday of last week, the market declined 832 points (as measured by the Dow) or about 3%, the Nasdaq dropped 4%. This was followed by a drop of 546 points before finally recovering part of the loss.

Why did the market drop? In a word (actually two words) interest rates. They went up. It was not just the trajectory. We have been expecting interest rates to rise for some time.  It was the speed by which the rates increased. In four days long term rates went up 17 basis points (a basis point is one hundredth of 1 percent). Investors and the markets get excited about sudden moves like that. Also, recently, the Federal Reserve changed the language in their after meeting message to remove the word “accommodative”.  […]

By |March 12th, 2019|Categories: Quarterly Client Newsletters|Comments Off on 3rd Quarter 2018

2nd Quarter 2018

Tariffs Take Center Stage, U.S. data signals solid growth


At the end of 2018, economists and journalists may look back on the second quarter and see the moment when a global trade war began. Whether one is truly underway or not, the fact is that Q2 was a good quarter for equities. The S&P 500 gained 2.93% in three months, and while the blue chips had their struggles, tech shares ascended once again. Many foreign benchmarks also had a good quarter, even as the Trump administration’s planned import taxes on U.S. trading partners drew tariffs in kind and bred pessimism overseas. Our labor market and manufacturing and service industries continued to look healthy, and consumer confidence and spending reports were largely encouraging. Existing home sales tailed off. Oil made quite a comeback, aided by supply concerns. It was a quarter in which relatively strong economic data was overshadowed by a shift in the playing field for global trade.

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By |March 12th, 2019|Categories: Quarterly Client Newsletters|Comments Off on 2nd Quarter 2018
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