GARDNER BROWN ASSOCIATES, INC.
Louis A. Gardner, President of Gardner Brown Associates Inc., has been in the Financial Services industry for over 30 years. Over the span of his career he has served as an Executive with three major insurance carriers.
Gardner Brown & Associates, Inc was started in 2008 with the objective to allow our firm to work directly with individual and corporate clients in the vast area of financial advisement.
Louis has been named one of the nation's Best Advisors by Medical Economics due to his vast knowledge and expertise in the area of financial advisement. Gardner Brown Associates is able to assist corporate clients in devising executive, core and voluntary benefits and individual clients in all areas of financial matters.
From tackling personal decisions to reaching important milestones, Gardner Brown Associates, Inc. guides you on the path to financial success. As a professional financial planning firm, Gardner Brown Associates, Inc. guarantees optimal results based on your specific needs. We are fueled by our commitment to excellence and go the extra mile to make sure our clients are fully satisfied with the services provided. Get in touch with us today for a free financial advisement consultation.
Securities offered through Lion Street Financial, LLC, member FINRA, SIPC. Investment advisory products and services offered through Lion Street Advisors, LLC, an investment advisor registered with the SEC. Lion Street Financial, LLC and Lion Street Advisors, LLC are affiliated companies but neither is affiliated with Gardner Brown and Associates. Neither of these companies provide tax or legal advice. Representatives may transact business, which includes offering products and services and/or responding to inquiries, only in state(s) in which they are properly registered and/or licensed.
Check the background of this investment professional on FINRA's BrokerCheck.
WHAT GARDNER BROWN ASSOCIATES, INC. OFFERS
FINANCIAL STATUS EVALUATION
Our clients are our number one priority, and we go the extra mile to make sure they’re completely satisfied with our service. Whether individual or corporate clients, we will review current insurance and investment holdings and provide explanations of current holdings in a manner which is understandable.
FINANCIAL ADVISEMENT RECOMMENDATIONS
Gardner Brown Associates, Inc. aims to collect, analyze, and solve your financial advisement needs. After we collect your current holdings data and analyze your information we are able to present customized solutions to assist you in reaching your financial goals.
ASSIST IN FINANCIAL GOAL SETTING
Many clients know what they want to achieve in 5, 10 or 20 years financially but they are not sure how to get there. At Gardner Brown Associates, Inc. we listen to your financial wants and needs and help develop a specific plan on how to achieve those goals.
Mon - Fri: 7am - 6pm (PST)
Saturday & Sunday: By appointment only
MONTHLY ECONOMIC UPDATE
THE MONTH IN BRIEF
September brought an economic event that was widely expected: a quarter-point cut in short-term interest rates by the Federal Reserve. It also brought an attack on two of the world’s largest oil fields that threatened to dent global crude output. A resumption of U.S.-China trade talks was scheduled for October, and White House officials decided to delay some planned tariff increases. Clear signals of an economic slowdown emerged from both the eurozone and China; some of the key U.S. economic indicators looked much better by comparison. While all these events transpired, the S&P 500 gained 1.72% for the month. 1
DOMESTIC ECONOMIC HEALTH
As futures traders widely anticipated, the Federal Reserve lowered the benchmark interest rate by 0.25% on September 18. The 7-3 vote of the Federal Open Market Committee left the federal funds rate in a range of 1.75%-2.00%. As the less-than-unanimous vote hinted, Fed policymakers shared little consensus about the outlook for rates for the balance of the year. The Fed also released its latest dot-plot chart (a Fed tool that projects the cost of borrowing money in the future). According to the new dot-plot forecast, ten Fed officials saw no more cuts for the rest of the year, but seven others felt at least one more cut would happen before 2020. 2
On September 14, two of the world’s largest oil producing facilities were hit by drone attacks. The damage to these Saudi Arabian plants reduced daily global crude output by about 5% and sent the price of oil soaring when commodities markets opened the following Monday. The price of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude, the U.S. benchmark, jumped more than $8 during the September 16 trading session to close at $62.90 on the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX). The price soon fell, however. On September 30, a barrel of WTI crude was $54.20. 3,4
Trade representatives from the U.S. and China were scheduled to restart negotiations on October 10. At mid-month, White House officials said that a planned 5% increase in tariffs on certain Chinese imports would be postponed from October 1 to October 15 to honor a request made by Chinese Vice Premier Liu He. Late in the month, stocks fell on a rumor that the White House was considering limits on U.S. investment in Chinese companies. 5,6
Employers added 130,000 net new workers in August, and only 96,000 were private-sector hires. The main jobless rate remained at 3.7%, but the U-6 rate, which also counts the underemployed, rose from 7.0% to 7.2%. Annualized wage growth stayed at 3.2%. 7
A much-watched gauge of U.S. manufacturing, the Institute for Supply Management’s monthly Purchasing Managers Index, fell below 50 in August. That news broke early in September, and the number (49.1) was important because any reading below 50 signals sector contraction. Meanwhile, ISM’s Non-Manufacturing PMI came in at 56.4 in August, showing expansion in the U.S. service sector for the 115th straight month. That 56.4 was its best mark since May. 8
Data concerning consumers was mixed. Retail sales rose another 0.4% in August, bringing the year-over-year advance to 4.1%. Personal spending increased 0.1% in the eighth month of the year, though personal incomes rose 0.4%. The Conference Board’s September Consumer Confidence Index fell to 125.1 in September (it was at 134.2 in August); the final September University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index rose, month-over-month, from 89.8 to 93.2. 9
Overall consumer prices ticked up 0.1% in August, leaving annualized inflation at just 1.7%. Core consumer prices (minus food and fuel costs) were up 2.4% across the 12 months ending in August, though. 9
GLOBAL ECONOMIC HEALTH
Last month, the European Central Bank (ECB) announced that it was starting another asset-purchase campaign to try and stimulate the eurozone economy, with no end date in mind. Outgoing ECB president Mario Draghi (soon to be succeeded by longtime International Monetary Fund chair Christine Lagarde) noted that the eurozone economy might be in for a “prolonged sag.” The Manufacturing PMI for the eurozone dropped to 50.4 in September, near the 50-mark, delineating sector contraction from sector expansion. Germany’s Factory PMI sank to 41.4 in September, a 10-year low. 10,11
The United Kingdom’s highest court ruled that Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s summer decision to suspend Parliament for five weeks was unlawful. Despite calls for him to resign, Johnson refused to step down after the September 24 ruling, while maintaining that Brexit would still happen by Halloween. 12
China’s year-over-year industrial output slowed to a 4.4% pace in August, down from what was already a 17-year low of 4.8% in July. Economists polled by Reuters thought the August number would be 5.2%. The nation’s annual pace of retail sales also declined in August to 7.5%. Oxford Economics forecasts a 2019 gross domestic product of just 6.1% for China, declining to 5.7% in 2020. 13
Along with the S&P 500, many foreign indices posted September gains – in fact, it is hard to find a September loss for any consequential benchmark. In the Americas, Brazil’s Bovespa rose 3.90%; Argentina’s Merval, 17.35%. Canada’s TSX Composite advanced 1.35%. Spain’s IBEX 35 improved 4.90%; France’s CAC 40, 3.60%. The regional FTSE Eurofirst 300 index gained 3.51%, and the FTSE 100 index, tracking stocks in the United Kingdom, rose 2.79%. 14
Turning to the Asia-Pacific region, the Nikkei 225 jumped 5.08% in September. South Korea’s Kospi and India’s Nifty 50 indices respectively added 4.84% and 4.09%. India’s other equity benchmark, the Sensex, rose 3.57%. Taiwan’s TSE 50 improved 2.71%, Australia’s All Ordinaries, 1.53%; Hong Kong’s Hang Seng, 1.43%; China’s Shanghai Composite, 0.66%. The MSCI EAFE index, a benchmark for developed stock markets outside the U.S., rose 2.54%. 14,15
One school of household money management says that you should strive to pay down your smallest-balance debt first . Doing that frees up money to pay off larger balances.