Category Archives: Performance Report Cover Letter

Q 1 2021 Review – Three V’s: Vaccine, Volume of Money, Valuation

Vaccines, Volume of Money, Valuations 

With the continued increase of the number of people getting the vaccine a much-welcomed sigh of relief is being felt across the country and most of the globe. Thankfully thus far the variance seems not to pose a terrible threat and most continue even post vaccine to take the appropriate precautions. This is leading to a slow Opening of the country and a light at the end of the tunnel heading back to some type of normalcy. 

Volume of Money 

The Federal Reserve (FOMC) led by Chairman Jerome Powell continue to buy assets at the rate of $120 billion a month. With a main goal of lowering the Unemployment rate, these funds of course are giving a boost to Capital Markets and providing massive volume liquidity. 

Additionally, the Fed has short term rates at zero and has stated they intend to keep them there for some time. This is also a stimulus for certain parts of the economy, but also a boosting effect on Asset Prices. 

With Fed controlled short interest rates being held low, longer term rates, notably on the 10-year US Treasury have been moving up in minor protest by bond vigilantes that economic stimulus may be too much, fortunately at this time there seems to be no effect. 

With the FED on record saying that short term rates are deemed to stay low, their first move back to normalcy maybe to pair back the purchases.  Our interest will be, when, and if this occurs, and more importantly, capital market participants reactions.  

Valuations 

As mentioned, multiple times in our blog at www.street-cents.com and again our Q2 2021 Newsletter, valuations by almost any metric are stretched. 

While valuations may be a more somber note, the re-opening and vaccine completion rates should dribble into corporate earnings, the ultimate driver of capital markets and possibly provide a wonderful “Grow into our Valuation” affect. 

If you asked us for our candid opinion, we would like capital markets to trend sideways while we grow into our valuations. Continued rise in capital markets could lead to a bumpier ride once the Fed adjust their policy. 

We of course will be watching carefully!  �

Sincerely,

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Q 4 2020 Review and Annual Private Policy

It’s hard to believe the final quarter of the year included an Election, multiple vaccines, the commencement of vaccine shots and near the end of the quarter, a second stimulus package for the year 2020. Wow!

Three Major Acts in a Little Over Twelve Months

If we look back just a little over twelve months, three major bills, The Secure Act, passed in late 2019, but left in the shadows by lasty years events. Then the Cares Act late first quarter 2020, followed by the Appropriations Act of 2021, which was an extension of the Cares Act. If you are not confused yet (or do not even remember some of these), congratulate yourself, most are! Not to worry, we will be reviewing all of these over the year as the much forgotten, Secure Act will have multiple planning techniques and mandates that once again may have been forgotten.

Who let the dogs out? Or Maybe Better Said, The Dogs Continued to Cheer!

Capital markets bullied by federal reserve purchases and anticipations of good news coming from a vaccine, in true Capital Market form did cheer much of the news, but not as much as many had thought, mostly because it had already been anticipated.

As we had mentioned multiple times, Capital Markets are likely well ahead of themselves currently which may make for tougher rowing in the near term, but just as clothes purchased a little too large for that growing teenager, Capital Markets with an expected economic recovery, should be able to grow into their overzealous clothes. However, with current stretched valuations, negative surprises may be met with more volatility due to the priced-to-perfection levels currently, once again making us happy we are conservative and diversified investors.

Interest Rate Watch

One thing we will be watching closely are interest rates, and their levels, as the economy begins to come back on line. The Federal Reserve is squarely focused on keeping interest rates down through their purchases. Should interest rates begin to rise or should the FED ease off (or even give speak of ease) of the pedal and interest rates rise on their own, especially quickly, this could be a headwind to Capital Markets and other assets. Not to worry, we will be watching and letting you know what we see and taking appropriate actions as needed.

In Closing

Your Fourth Quarter summary is enclosed on the front page of this report we have included our most recent investment allocation from your Investment Policy Statement. This is also the time we attach our Private Policy Statement for the year, along with our opportunity to offer our latest ADV filings and Client Relationship Summary (Form CRS); Requests for review will be accepted via phone, mail or email, and mailed immediately upon request.

Sincerely,

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

J.K. Financial, Inc.

PRIVACY POLICY NOTICE

Our Promise to You

As a client of J.K. Financial, Inc., you share both personal and financial information with us.  Your privacy is important to us, and we are dedicated to safeguarding your personal and financial information.

Information Provided by Clients 

In the normal course of doing business, we typically obtain the following non-public personal information about our clients:

  • Personal information regarding our clients’ identity such as name, address and social security number;
  • Information regarding securities transactions effected by us; and
  • Client financial information such as net-worth, assets, income, bank account information and account balances.

How We Manage and Protect Your Personal Information

We do not sell information about current or former clients to third parties, nor is it our practice to disclose such information to third parties unless requested to do so by a client or client representative or, if necessary, in order to process a transaction, service an account or as permitted by law

In order to protect your personal information, we maintain physical, electronic and procedural safeguards to protect your personal information.  Our Privacy Policy restricts the use of client information and requires that it be held in strict confidence.

Client Notifications

We are required by law to annually provide a notice describing our privacy policy.  In addition, we will inform you promptly if there are changes to our policy.

Please do not hesitate to contact us with questions about this notice.

Q 3 2020 Cover Letter

As a kid, a frequent saying of my parents were,

“Son even too much of a GOOD thing is still too much!”

While it may sound like we were talking out of the exact opposite side of our mouth, investors looking through the valley to the other side which we had argued for the last two quarters seem to be having too much of a good thing

As discussed in great in our Newsletter for the first time in almost five decades of professional investing, two quarters ago we had to argue positively when everyone was extremely negative and dark clouds appeared to be in the sky, forming our thoughts of looking through the self-imposed valley to the other side where brighter skies may lie.

Fast forward to the present, fear by many has been replaced with greed and a short-term memory of the perils once worried about.  As mentioned once again in our quarterly Newsletter there are similarities to 1999- due to heightened valuations and slight reckless behavior. While prices likely overshot to the downside earlier on in this year it is likely they have overshot to the upside now.

Where do we go from here?

We are not saying things must fall dramatically or an imminent decline is coming, only the opportunity short to mid time frame returns are diminished due to the higher valuations.

Inflation expectations, as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) or the Dallas Federal Reserve’s own adjusted inflation measure, the Trimmed Mean Inflation measure are worthy of our attention as very few expect any inflation at this time.  An increase in either of these measures would be more startling to the Federal Reserve (FOMC) and Capital Market Investors and would certainly present a headwind.

Lastly, as we head into historically the best quarter of the year (led by historically the roughest month), we would argue this is not a normal year and our guards should be up, with slightly thicker investors skin as we head into the end of this year.

Stay safe be well will talk to you at the end of the year!

Sincerely,

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Enclosure (2020 Report)

Q 2 2020 Quarterly Review Cover Letter –

The Look Through Continues

As mentioned in the last quarterly summary, Investors and Capital Market Participants are indeed looking through this self-made slow down and into the eventual continuation of the economy.

The FOMC (Federal Open Market Committee) led by Jerome Powell continue to provide support via lower interest rates (likely for a shorter period than during the post 08-09 period)  and asset purchases to help shore up possible needed cash from institutions and participants.

Speaking of FOMC stimulus, should a vaccine or multiple vaccines, (the possibilities detailed greatly in our Q3 Newsletter), occur sooner, rather than later, a faster economic rebound may be in the cards. On the other side, should increase in contagion lead to further Economic slowdown, capital market participants would likely lose some of their enthusiasm.

The Sequel Is Usually not as Scary

One thing about the sequel, should it occur, it is usually not near as scary as the original. No doubt as mentioned again in our Q3 newsletter, many of the worlds brightest are working together and have learned much just over the last 90 days.

With the worlds brightest pushing massive energy to a common goal, the future, especially when dealing with healthcare, is likely much brighter and coming faster than we all think!

Given so many unknowns, we are likely to be captive to positive and negative headlines until the eventual vaccine is discovered.

With the possibility that Investors may have gotten a little bit ahead of themselves, expectation for bumps along the way over the next few quarters have heightened.

Again, why we like having a conservative posture.

Stay safe be well will talk to you in the fall!

Sincerely,

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Enclosure (2020 Report)

Q 1 2020 Quarterly Review Cover Letter –

First and foremost I want to wish everyone safety and healthiness as we go through these times. We will get through this and will all be stronger and more knowledgeable for the experience.  

As mentioned in our Q 2 2020 Newsletter, the speed of the lower Equity markets left many investors struggling for cash to recklessly sell their safest assets, bonds. This put unique pressure on Bonds and Bond Funds, temporarily lowering their value in stead of increasing their value, which is what should happen as interest rates lower. The good news with this situation, with history as our guide, this situation corrects over shorter time frames and also allows for our re-investment at artificially lower rates, a win, win in our opinion!  

An Unknown becomes a Known?  

As of this writing the contagion continues, uniquely, do to the self-imposed economic slowdown from the Virus, at a given point in time, hopefully much sooner than many may think, a great unknown will become a known.  

Unlike the last two major economic slowdowns there was uncertainty in far reaching aspects of other assets and other parts of the world and economies.  

At some point in time we will conquer the Virus and the unknown will become the known!  

Capital Market Participants will anticipate this and begin pricing in the not only conclusion of this economic slow down but the positive affects of the very large stimulus package that has been put into place.   

As mentioned in again and more prominently, in our Q 2 2020 Newsletter which you hopefully have already received, there have been an abundance of stimulus programs that at this point have likely not even begun to filter into our economy in any meaningful way.   

Once the full effects of the stimulus seep through our country and the unknown becomes the known we truly believe that our economy and therefore capital markets will be in a much better place in a much shorter time than in prior slowdowns.  

Stay safe, thanks for all of the positive comments – we will get through this together. 

Sincerely,

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

 

Q 4 Quarterly Review Cover Letter – Private Policy

There is a very old, well known, Wall Street saying that goes something like this.

“The stock market will always climb a Wall of Worry!”

Oddly there are two themes that are conveyed in this saying.

  1. The obvious, a wall of worry creates enough doubt for capital markets to operate efficiently and rise
  2. The less obvious, when everything is clear and the sun is shining, sometimes it’s near the end of the expansionary times and happy capital markets.

As fast as this year went, our memories are still very clear on what capital markets look like just twelve months ago.

In chicken little like fashion the sky was falling, Capital Markets, and participants were throwing a giant hissy fit, and the federal reserve was cranking up interest rates to participants dismay.

With 2020 hindsight, a nice wall of worry was created.

With earnings being the ultimate driver of capital markets, a drop in earnings, a recession, or global slow down, would lead to the decline in capital markets but for now we certainly don’t have to worry about item two above in that old wall street saying.

Speaking of recessions, be sure to review the capital market article in our Q1 2020 Newsletter, concerning the lowering of rates while the inverted yield curve – a much talked about by us event, and somewhat disdained. As mentioned in the newsletter we ran across this information mid quarter, and certainly must acknowledge the history brought up by the speaker and his chart, which may avert a recession, at least for now

Also in the newsletter two, two -part personal financial planning articles, one dealing with inheritance and another dealing with automobiles that you may find interesting as these topics were repeated in our office throughout the final quarter of the year and made for a great subject.

Thank you for your time, thanks for reading our blog posts, newsletter and YouTube videos, we enjoyed bringing you all original, somewhat rough at times information as we see it through our eyes!

In Closing

Your Fourth Quarter summary is enclosed on the front page of this report we have included our most recent investment allocation from your Investment Policy Statement. This is also the time we attach our Private Policy Statement for the year along with our opportunity to offer our latest ADV filings; Requests for review will be accepted via phone, mail or email, and mailed immediately upon request.

Sincerely,

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Enclosure (2019 Report, Private Policy)

 

J.K. Financial, Inc.

PRIVACY POLICY NOTICE

Our Promise to You

As a client of J.K. Financial, Inc., you share both personal and financial information with us.  Your privacy is important to us, and we are dedicated to safeguarding your personal and financial information.

Information Provided by Clients 

In the normal course of doing business, we typically obtain the following non-public personal information about our clients:

  • Personal information regarding our clients’ identity such as name, address and social security number;
  • Information regarding securities transactions effected by us; and
  • Client financial information such as net-worth, assets, income, bank account information and account balances.

How We Manage and Protect Your Personal Information

We do not sell information about current or former clients to third parties, nor is it our practice to disclose such information to third parties unless requested to do so by a client or client representative or, if necessary, in order to process a transaction, service an account or as permitted by law

In order to protect your personal information, we maintain physical, electronic and procedural safeguards to protect your personal information.  Our Privacy Policy restricts the use of client information and requires that it be held in strict confidence.

Client Notifications

We are required by law to annually provide a notice describing our privacy policy.  In addition, we will inform you promptly if there are changes to our policy.

Please do not hesitate to contact us with questions about this notice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A True Yogi Berra saying may be fitting now – It’s like déjà vu all over again!”

Tariffs and Trade War Talks Continue

While the tariff banter seems relentless and every day changing, leading to Capital Market bipolar movements, one day irrational exuberance, and the next day irrationally depressed, as mentioned in our Q4 Newsletter, tariff talk has been going on for decades. With today’s constant bombardment of immediate news stories and short clips it seems, present party included, to be constant and all encompassing. The reality is this likely will work itself out, just as seen in the graph in the newsletter. Our bet is once the tariff talk turns into tariff agreements, we will see market relief and higher overall interest rates. For now, there’s no doubt that the tariff talk is slowing the global economy and there is no envy for public company managers trying to navigate the possible changes that occur on a day by day basis, making it very tough to stock inventory and make purchases.

Treasury Rates- Interest rate cycle

Given the afore mentioned Tariff Talk, FOMC (Federal Open Market Committee) led by chief Jerome Powell and a company have embarked on a lowering of rates, twice to be exact, but only two .25 basis points each, in an attempt to help ease interest rate burdens and spur the economy. While not huge fans of the lowering of rates at this time due to gun powder needs at a future, when the inevitable recession occurs, at this time it appears we are on an interest rate decrease path, a complete 180° turn from just one year ago, when reserve officials were raising. If there is an agreement in Tariff talk, lowering of rates would likely stop, and we might even hear talks of raising, making for an interesting rate cycle. Time will tell.

Taxes or the savings of taxes paid

As we head into the final quarter of the year it’s time to make sure we’ve done all we can do for this years’ , especially items that have no look back features. As also mentioned in our Q4 newsletter, be sure to max those 401(k)s, contribute or distribute from 529‘s, complete Required Minimum Distributions (RMD’s) and make sure those charitable giving are complete this year, as all of these items have a hard stop year-end deadline.

Have a great day and start to fall!

Sincerely,

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Enclosure 2019 Report

Q 3 Quarterly Review Cover Letter

A True Yogi Berra saying may be fitting now – It’s like déjà vu all over again!”

Tariffs and Trade War Talks Continue

While the tariff banter seems relentless and every day changing, leading to Capital Market bipolar movements, one day irrational exuberance, and the next day irrationally depressed, as mentioned in our Q4 Newsletter, tariff talk has been going on for decades. With today’s constant bombardment of immediate news stories and short clips it seems, present party included, to be constant and all encompassing. The reality is this likely will work itself out, just as seen in the graph in the newsletter. Our bet is once the tariff talk turns into tariff agreements, we will see market relief and higher overall interest rates. For now, there’s no doubt that the tariff talk is slowing the global economy and there is no envy for public company managers trying to navigate the possible changes that occur on a day by day basis, making it very tough to stock inventory and make purchases.

Treasury Rates- Interest rate cycle

Given the afore mentioned Tariff Talk, FOMC (Federal Open Market Committee) led by chief Jerome Powell and a company have embarked on a lowering of rates, twice to be exact, but only two .25 basis points each, in an attempt to help ease interest rate burdens and spur the economy. While not huge fans of the lowering of rates at this time due to gun powder needs at a future, when the inevitable recession occurs, at this time it appears we are on an interest rate decrease path, a complete 180° turn from just one year ago, when reserve officials were raising. If there is an agreement in Tariff talk, lowering of rates would likely stop, and we might even hear talks of raising, making for an interesting rate cycle. Time will tell.

Taxes or the savings of taxes paid

As we head into the final quarter of the year it’s time to make sure we’ve done all we can do for this years’ , especially items that have no look back features. As also mentioned in our Q4 newsletter, be sure to max those 401(k)s, contribute or distribute from 529‘s, complete Required Minimum Distributions (RMD’s) and make sure those charitable giving are complete this year, as all of these items have a hard stop year-end deadline.

Have a great day and start to fall!

Sincerely,

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Enclosure 2019 Report

Q 2 Quarterly Review Cover Letter

The big news this quarter happened near the end of the quarter in mid June.

Near the end of 2018 the FOMC, led by chairman Jerome Powell, were on record to increase rates three additional times after their late in the year .25% increase. Capital markets threw a gigantic hissy fit. Fast forward a mere six months later, Powell lead FOMC are no longer interested in raising rates and maybe even considering lowering rates, a possibility virtually no one thought probable late last year.

Capital market participants have a way of making their feelings known – it does appear that the hissy fit late 2018 was in response to too fast of a rate increase. While we may never know for sure, post Powell chairman negation of further rate increases, and possible future lowering of rates were met with capital market participant applause.

We still feel there is a lot of ground to cover before an actual rate lowering may occur, and with market participants pricing in an expectation of late July lowering of rates, certainly there’s a possibility of disappointment.

For the moment it appears that interest rates will not go higher, and will at the least stay where they are for the foreseeable future and maybe even go lower from the current 2.25% to 2.5% threshold.

Tariffs and the Slowing Global Economies

The lack of a tariff agreement has put, for obvious reasons, many company managers in a holding position. Combine this with some global waning of growth, and we have a slight macro slowdown.

Global slowdowns are normal, and should not be feared. Major downturn‘s are the crux of problems and are what the FOMC seem to be most fearful of above.

With earnings being the ultimate driver of capital markets, a slowdown would take the wind out of the sails of levitating markets

Inverted Yield Curve Update

The recent deeper and more prolonged inverted yield curve, not hugely inverted but definitely inverted may be signaling a recession to come. In our Q3 2019 newsletter we dig very deep into multiple charts and update our thoughts once again on the inverted yield curve. The bottom line with an inverted yield curve is no one knows when the eventual recession may occur.

While the investment skies are rarely sunny and blue, there are some overcast unknowns at this time. Sunny skies can happen very quickly with agreements and progress from different parts of the world.

We are conservatively positive, and look forward to how all of the cross currents play out in the next few quarters. Needless to say this is not a time to swing for the fences in investment portfolios, we would argue it’s never the time to swing for the investment fences.

Have a great summer will talk to you in early fall!

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

Q 1 2019 Report Cover

 

No one really knows for sure!

Just like we weren’t certain what caused a hissy fit the last quarter of 2018, no one really knows for sure why everyone became so happy this quarter. Needless to say, we think this is a more normal reaction and possibly a reversion to the mean from the hissy fit.

As mentioned in our Q2 2019 Newsletter, capital markets could have been protesting higher interest rates – or as mentioned in one of our most read posts at Street-cents.com, it could have just been that it was amateur hour and movement during a Gentleman’s agreement no movement time was exaggerated. No matter the reason, capital markets have a happier face.

Inverted yield curve

Just as we pushed the Q2 Newsletter off to the presses, the yield curve did officially invert – as a reminder, yield curve inversion is when short term interest rates are higher than long term rates, which occurred in the last five days of the quarter. The reason we, as well as many other in the industry crow about this unique situation, is it has been a precursor to recessions with great accuracy.  Before taking shelter and hiding under the covers, this precursor has no accuracy on the depth, and very little accuracy on the timing of a recession.  In some instances a recession occurred two years after the inversion.

Recession Definition

As mentioned again in our Q2 Newsletter, the definition of a recession is two consecutive negative gross domestic production – GDP prints – yes that could be – .01% and -.01% making for a mini-mi recession, but still a recession. No matter, just as you can’t be partially sick or partially have an accident the inverted yield curve did occur. As such we will be monitoring the situation very carefully and remembering that now, is not the time to be taking extra risk.

Interest Rates

Given the yield curve inverted, no steep inflation signals are occurring, and the economy is growing, but not red hot, it is likely we have seen the highest short term rates for a while. Fed officials seem very comfortable at the current level. As more data is recorded, things can change.

We will talk to you again in the summer, have a great day!

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

 

Fourth Quarter 2018 Cover Letter

Thank you for your wonderful digestion of the recent market volatility. 

We have seen so many reports, articles, studies that show this is more of the normal and what we had lived through for the past multiple years was less normal. However, what we have experienced most recently is what we become accustomed to. We’re not going to quote you some article or historical fact that says this is the norm-even we have been uncomfortable with the sudden movements. 

Just like we all became more accustomed to low volatility and capital markets that seem to increase day by month by quarter almost without ever dropping, we will again get used to this type of movement. 

We don’t like it, and would rather not have it, and yes history says it’s more the norm but we’d rather have the abnormal – this is where we are now. We thank you for all of your confidence and once again given the recent volatility we are happy we are a more conservative firm. 

It is a true statement that Markets have predicted 10 of the last 4 recessions. Meaning they often fret over things that do not occur, but that extra fretting tends to be correct is some cases. We acknowledge that the global economies are not growing “Red Hot” fast like they were last year, however we refute a global meltdown or imminent recession at this time.  

After promising (Federal Open Market Committee – FOMC) multiple rate increases as recent as October (four to be exact) at this time that is not going to happen. With rates being somewhat a reflection of inflation, and inflation being wrung out of the system via technology and outsourcing, rates are likely near their “New Normal” range.  

Earnings are the ultimate driver of capital market returns and interestingly they continue to be churning out very nice, taking into account the market recent volatility, valuations have become much less stressed and even cheap in many cases. 

In Closing 

Your Fourth Quarter summary is enclosed on the front page of this report we have included our most recent investment allocation from your Investment Policy Statement. This is also the time we attach our Private Policy Statement for the year along with our opportunity to offer our latest ADV filings; Requests for review will be accepted via phone, mail or email, and mailed immediately upon request. 

Sincerely, 

John A. Kvale CFA, CFP

J.K. Financial, Inc.
PRIVACY POLICY NOTICE
Our Promise to You
As a client of J.K. Financial, Inc., you share both personal and financial information
with us. Your privacy is important to us, and we are dedicated to safeguarding
your personal and financial information.
Information Provided by Clients
In the normal course of doing business, we typically obtain the following nonpublic
personal information about our clients:
 Personal information regarding our clients’ identity such as name, address
and social security number;
 Information regarding securities transactions effected by us; and
 Client financial information such as net-worth, assets, income, bank account
information and account balances.
How We Manage and Protect Your Personal Information
We do not sell information about current or former clients to third parties, nor is it
our practice to disclose such information to third parties unless requested to do so
by a client or client representative or, if necessary, in order to process a transaction,
service an account or as permitted by law. Additionally, we may share information
with outside companies that perform administrative services for us. However, our
contractual arrangements with these service providers require them to treat your
information as confidential.
In order to protect your personal information, we maintain physical, electronic and
procedural safeguards to protect your personal information. Our Privacy Policy
restricts the use of client information and requires that it be held in strict
confidence.
Client Notifications
We are required by law to annually provide a notice describing our privacy policy.
In addition, we will inform you promptly if there are changes to our policy.
Please do not hesitate to contact us with questions about this notice.