3 Years @ Meridian
It’s hard to believe, but we celebrated our 3rd anniversary at Meridian Financial Partners on September 25th. As we mentioned at our annual client appreciation event at Airlie, we are now helping over 265 families. Three years isn’t a long time in the investment world, and in fact, we would recommend that most of our clients remain very conservative if they were planning on using any amount of money within a 3-year timeframe. Nonetheless, we are proud to have hit the three-year mark and proud of our continued growth. We’ve added a new employee, added office space, hosted a summer intern, and added new children to the families (one more is on its way any minute!).
Our anniversary also got me thinking about what has changed in the markets over the past three years. The short version is that thankfully the markets have been up! But, the market increase has not been without its challenges. While many of the headline numbers (S&P, Dow Jones) are up well into the double digits, some other areas have trailed significantly in their performance. We still believe that this is temporary, but is had made it hard for a prudent, diversified investor to stick to his or her strategy.
A few interesting statistics from 2015:
- Fed Funds Rate: 0.5% — It’s now 2.25% after a 7th rate increase since December 2015
- GDP Growth: 2.6% — In 2017, we saw the exact same growth rate. Projections for 2018 are around 3%
- Unemployment: 6% — The rate is currently at 3.9%
- Inflation: 0.7% — In 2017, inflation rate was 2.1% and currently sits at about 1.9%
- Dow Jones Industrial Average Index: 17,500 — as of this writing, it sits at 26,700 or a total change of over 56%
- MSCI World Index ex USA: 1,645 — as of this writing, this index sits at 1,985 or an average annual return of about 6.15%
Predictions were made:
Courtesy: Alpha Capital Management
As we have said before, there are always (and will always be) things to worry about. The above chart is a great example of why we as investors should ignore the noise.
And, my children grew (fast!)
Above left: 2015 from L to R: Lyla, Molly, & Coleman
Above right: 2018 from L to R: Molly, Lyla, & Coleman
Here’s to another successful 3 years and beyond!