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Michael Traxler Wealth Management, LLC

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Is the Bull Market Showing Signs of Life?

Hello Again - Have the tides turned in the stock market?  It’s possible. You know as well as I do that we never know for sure, but we do watch the tea leaves for any hints.  We’ve been following the chart of the S&P 500 closely and I’m pleased to report that price has finally closed above the downtrend line the last 3 days in a row!  This is the first time since January 1st 2022 which is when the down trend started.  One other thing, our forward ind
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2023 Retirement Contribution Limits

Hello Everyone – Here’s a quick view of some of the changes to retirement account rules for 2023.  These limits are higher than 2022 limits.Remember that investors must qualify for these plans.  That’s where we can help.  Email me with any questions! Best regards, Mike 
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Let's Update our Plans in 2023!!

Hello Everyone and welcome to the New Year!  I am so excited to be moving forward. Let’s make this the year we update our plans and get reset for the future.  That’s our goal for our clients in 2023. As it relates to the markets, take a look at the S&P 500 chart below. It looks like the stock index wants to take another stab at the trendline.  Anything is possible here folks, but if it gets over that line and stays there, that would be a good sign for the mark
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The Fed Slows Rate Hikes - The Long View!

Hello Again – In March this year the Federal Reserve started hiking key interest rates to try and reduce inflation.  The last 4 hikes were each .75%.  But today they raised them by only .50%.  What does it mean?  I think it means they are getting closer to their target rate at which point they would stop raising rates.  I don’t know that for sure, but that’s my hunch.Here’s the game of chicken being played by the Fed.  When they raise rates t
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Let's Take Another Look at Inflation!

Hello Again, I have to circle back to a key indicator folks.  INFLATION!  We all know that too much inflation is bad.  It picks our pockets and destroys our wealth.  So what’s the latest? Are prices still rising?  In some markets, maybe, like rent and labor costs, but there are many other markets that have come down significantly. This data is taken from the website www.tradingeconomics.comFrom their highest levels, wheat is down 48%, steel is down 38%, p
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Keeping our Client's Costs Down while also Investing in the Business

Hello Everyone – As you all know by now, inflation has caused price increases on so many goods and services.  But the good news is this…….not so much here! Our fee rates have stayed the same for years, and the total cost to do business here can decline in two ways. First, we regularly seek new ways to reduce our client’s investment costs where possible.  For instance, we recently made a decision to start using more ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds) i
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Let's Look at the Charts!

Hello Again – This is a chart of the S&P 500 stock index ever since May 2020.  So it covers about 2 ½ years or so. You can see the big rally after the covid shutdowns when the Fed pumped all the money into the system. Then you can see the downtrend that started at the beginning of this year as the Fed started to pull back on the support it provided, and even drain money out of the system.  That’s still happening as of now.  Hence the down trend is still inta
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Does Wallstreet like Gridlock?

It’s time for a big sigh of relief right?  The election is over, and the nasty annoying political ads can finally stop. Amen to that!So what happened?  Not as much as the talking heads anticipated that’s for sure. It sounds like the house will go to the republicans in a simple majority, and the outcome in the senate is still not know.  Last time I looked it was 48 to 48 in the senate with 4 races still outstanding, and sounds like we won’t hear the final outcome
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Let's Talk about I-Bonds

Hello Again - Last week we talked about brokered CDs, today I will talk about I bonds. I get a lot of questions about these. I bonds stand for Inflation Bonds because that’s what they are designed to do…..protect an investor from inflation. But there are some unique features to be aware of.  It’s not a simple bond.  It has cert characteristics.So, how do they work? I bonds have 2 rates that make up the total return.  The first rate is the fixed rate.  It do
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Brokered CD Rates

Hello Again – Years ago I used to buy a lot of Brokered CDs and bonds for client accts, but when the Fed pushed rates down close to zero, that pretty much turned things off.  But, it appears this market is coming back again. I have noticed that Brokered CD rates are getting attractive again.  So what is a Brokered CD?Banks from around the country offer their CDs (Certificates of Deposit) through brokerage firms. They are much like bank CDs but they can be bought and sold at any t
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Interest Rates for Investors are Finally Rising!

Hello Again – Interest rates for investors and savers have been close to zero for years now, but that’s been changing…..and quickly.  This gives us more tools to utilize for our client’s accounts and their investment plans. This is great news, and it’s a return to normalcy in some odd sense.  It means the economy may actually be able to stand on its own two feet without requiring the steroids provided by the federal reserve. Long-term this is very promisi
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Stock down 25% in 2022! What's an investor to do?

Long-term investing means just that.  Holding long-term through ups and downs.  Yes it’s challenging at times, but that’s part of the journey. There are no shortcuts, there is no free lunch, and timing and trading doesn’t work. Many of the so called successful traders that piled onto the noisy trading platforms during the frenzy are gone now, or at a very minimum are dormant. The public loves stocks at the top, and they hate stocks at the bottom.It went down further t
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Why is the Fed Raising Rates?

Hello All - Fed Chairman Powell made his intentions clear today.  That is, to get inflation back down to 2%.  How they gonna do this?  Inflict some pain on the economy by raising borrowing costs.  Ok, why raise borrowing costs?  Because when borrowing costs go up, the number of borrowing transactions goes down.  Another word for a borrowing transaction is credit, and credit is money!!  That’s right.  When someone borrows from the bank, that creates m
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What is Inflation at NOW?

Hello Everyone –  Colleen suggested that I write about inflation today.  Is it really running at 8.3%?  My answer is no….not anymore, and not based on the most recent data.  She asked me to explain this, and she told me to call it Economics 101.  Ok I said, I’ll try.  Here it goes.Inflation measures the change in prices over time.  This means we need a beginning date and an ending date. The government tries to measure inflation using the CPI,
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Meet the Staff - Ernie Pepel

Hello Again - As many of you know, Laurie has retired, but she wanted us to tell everyone that she is feeling better than she was and she is grateful for all the prayers and well wishes.  We miss her and we pray she has a solid recovery.Today I’d like to re-introduce Ernie Pepel.  Ernie comes from the automotive business and he started here in October 2019.  He has been here nearly 3 years now.  He passed the exam quickly to become an investment advisor and was licensed
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Minnesota's Best?

Hello, it’s Wednesday again.  Lets talk about something different today.  I’ve been pondering an idea I wanted to run by you all to see what you think. Did you know that Minnesota is home to a substantial number of large businesses? It has about 18 companies in the fortune 500, but there are actually 50 some publicly traded companies that have annual revenue greater than $200M.  That’s a nice selection of businesses to invest in. We are toying with the
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Rollovers and Best Practices

Hello Everyone, its Wednesday again! I want to be clear with you on something here. Although my indicators are telling me the bottom in stocks could be behind us already, the actual trend change has still not happened.  The S&P 500 remains in a downtrend at this time.  It has some hurdles to clear yet and that could happen soon, but it has not quite happened yet. I will be the first to let you know when that changes. So today I’d like to talk about rollovers.  A rol
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Stocks Have Moved Up! Plus, It's Time to Consider Your RMD

Hello Again - The stock market has come a long way in a short period of time.  Since mid-June it has recovered approximately 60% of the decline that happened in the first part of the year.  So what’s the outlook now? There’s two general scenarios. Scenario 1, inflation starts to recede, the Fed starts to slow it’s interest rate hikes in the near future, the economy experiences a soft landing and stocks keep trending higher from here.  That’s the good s
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Small Caps Turn Up?

The Russell 2000 is a market index that tries to capture the movement of 2000 different small-cap companies.  It is a popular index and is watched closely.  Small-caps make up 10% of our all stock ETF model.The chart below shows that the small-cap index has clearly broken through the downtrend line that started last fall.  This is a positive sign in my humble opinion, and more reason to believe that the worst could be behind us. Now we are watching for the large cap index to signa
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Looking Back in History......Deja Vu All Over Again?

Hello Everyone and welcome to August.  My how time flies doesn’t it?  This is a huge reason why I like to just sit tight with my investments……because a year or two goes by so fast it doesn’t pay to be trading in and out.  The long-term really isn’t that long-term after all. Let’s go back in time to the last time the US was experiencing high inflation and the Fed was raising interest rates rapidly.  That was back in the early 1980&rsq
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Retirement Changes for 2020

Here are a few things to consider in regards to the 2020 retirement changes, remember to speak with a professional advisor for help with retirement options and financial goals.
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Market Updates with Mike - May 2020

A quick update regarding the stock market, as of May. We know it took a 35% sharp decline, it was fast and scary. BUT now it’s climbing! What does this mean? Read more here to find out…
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The Value of Your Money & Inflation

Don’t let your hard earned money be subject to losing its value. Talk to Michael Traxler Wealth Management, LLC financial planners to see what your options are and how you can invest your funds.
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The Financial Planner For You

Customized investment solutions through Michael Traxler Wealth Management, LLC can help you plan for retirement and reach your financial goals. Learn about what makes us unique.
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