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The Dowden Report – May 2024

Hello and welcome to the May 2024 edition of The Dowden Report!

Spring Is Here: Enjoy the Weather!

Spring is in the air. 80-degree days, 60-degree nights…. Who doesn’t love this weather? Spending more time outdoors, taking the pups to the outdoor patio seats at our favorite restaurants. Enjoy this while you can.

Upcoming Event: Murder at the Masquerade Ball

Planning is now underway for this year’s Murder Mystery Party: Murder at the Masquerade Ball. If you are interested in attending, call or email me for the details.

Basketball Post-Season Highlights

If you’re a basketball fan; this is your time of year. The NBA playoffs are in full swing and just a few weeks ago, we saw the most viewed Women’s College Final Four ever; punctuated by a very controversial call. If you missed it; UCONN was called for an “illegal screen” in the waning moments of the 4th quarter. The subsequent call helped Iowa take control and win the game. The call sparked a debate on social media that continued for days. For better or for worse, however, the call was made, the game ended, the finals were played a few days later, and world moved on.

Economic Insights: Interest Rates and Market Forecasts

On the economic front a different debate persists. To raise interest rates, or not to raise interest rates, that is the question. With the 1st quarter in the books, earnings season is now upon us. What will that mean for the markets, interest rates, and 2nd quarter performance? Stay tuned.

At the beginning of the year the bond market was pricing in 3-6 interest rate cuts, as many expected inflation to temper and the economy to need a boost. At present, GDP growth rate is near historical norms and unemployment is under 4%. That means the resilient economy is suggesting no slump, and therefore no rate cut and a continued tighter monetary policy, for now.

Inflation and Investment Trends

Not so fast: on the flip side of things, oil is at a 6-month high, and gold is near all-time highs as markets are pricing in stickier than expected inflation as it believes inflation may not be on the decline anytime soon. The average weekly hours worked metric is declining, and the yield curve has remained inverted for more than 22 consecutive months; the longest such streak is U.S. history.

The federal funds rate sits near 5.5%, which is not historically tight; maybe some historical metrics are not as reliable as others. Does this mean it could take longer to bring inflation down to the fed’s 2% target than expected. “Higher for longer” may not be going anywhere, anytime soon.

The Importance of Your Financial Strategy: The Bucket Strategy®

Some calls are hard to make, no matter how much time is left in the game. That’s why your bucket strategy is so important. When your assets are matched to your liabilities, as we preach with The Bucket Strategy®, market volatility is less consequential.

Stay Connected and Informed

If it’s time for your review, or you just want to talk, give me a call, I’m always here for you. For the Dowden report, I am Joshua Dowden.

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Important Information:

The information provided should not be considered specific tax, legal, or investment advice and is not specific to any individual’s personal circumstances.

Different types of investments and/or investment strategies involve varying levels of risk, and there can be no assurance that any specific investment or investment strategy will be profitable for a client's or prospective client's portfolio, thus, investments may result in a loss of principal.

You should always seek counsel of the appropriate advisor prior to making any investment decision. All investments are subject to risk including the loss of principal. This material was gathered from sources believed to be reliable, however, its accuracy cannot be guaranteed.

This material should not be considered a solicitation of an offer to sell/buy any specific security or offering.

It is important to keep in mind that investments in fixed income products are subject to liquidity, interest rate, financial, inflation risks and special tax liabilities. Interest may be subject to the alternative minimum tax.

Joshua Dowden is a registered representative with, and securities and advisory services offered through LPL Financial, a registered investment advisor and member FINRA/SIPC. The investment professionals are affiliated with LPL Financial and are conducting business using the name Lucia Capital Group, a separate entity from LPL Financial.

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