We're already a month into 2021, I know. Honestly, it's hard to wrap up a review of 2020. A year chalked full of words and phrases we would all rather not hear for a long, long time: Unprecedented, Challenging, The New Normal.
Do not expect the type of quarterly movement of the 2020 US Stock Market1 to become 'The New Normal'. The average quarterly return for the past 20 years has been 2.3%... here's the end result of 2020's four quarters:
The markets plowed right on through the election that would never end, driven largely by Small Cap2 and Value3 stocks exploding back onto the scene. Many will look to 2021 for that momentum to continue, especially as questions loom about just how far the tech giants can go.
Just when we believe we've got a handle on things, the GameStop saga arrives and the markets become something of a revolutionary battleground with casino-like ups and downs. It truly is fascinating to watch, but one cannot help but think: The house always wins.
The markets are not always a rational place, which is why it's so important for us as investors to keep ourselves in a rational place. Taking a risk or a gamble here and there may be okay to you, just always know what you're willing to lose.
Here's to hoping 2021 is the year we can all burn those masks!
1US Stock Market represented by Russell 3000 index. 2Small Cap represented by Russell 2000 Index. 3Value stocks represented by Russell 2000 Value Index. Complete data contained within the full Q4 Market Review report.
RMD Changes Coming!
On November 12, 2020, the Federal Register released a Final Regulation providing guidance on the life expectancy and Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) factors needed to calculate RMDs from qualified retirement accounts.
The updated factors will apply to distribution calendar years beginning on January 1, 2022, and NOT on January 1, 2021 (as originally proposed).