Here comes 2020Submitted by Holzer & Company, Inc on January 21st, 2020
As I sit here in Vermont, watching Storm Gage bring us sleet and thunder snow, I am also enjoying staying warm and dry indoors.
It is a good time to send you my year end message. Y2K was twenty years ago and a lot has happened in the investment world since then. The stock market this year just keeps going up and erasing the fears many felt after the collapse of 2007/2008. In the US, the economy seems to be OK, not roaring, as technology continues to contribute to shifts in how we shop, work and even take vacations. Many retail jobs were lost this year and it is not clear how they will be replaced. Since a lot them are part time, they may not fit into the employment figures we are getting from Washington. Income inequality is growing, despite higher minium wages in many states. No one has mentioned the loss of consumers in the immigrant communities. Their disappearance has opened up many low paying jobs and left factories and food processing plants struggling to find workers. Towns that were reviving are struggling again to survive.Will your favorite salesperson at a local Dress Barn store go for a warehouse packing job an hour from home or a landscaping job?
The impact of these store closings has not yet been calculated, but the jobs lost are in the thousands.
Was it a great Christmas for the retail sector? or did demand just move to Amazon and online sales?
Will companies offer more apprenticeships and training programs, especially for the youngest workers coming our of high school? Who will fill the jobs of plumbers, carpenters and electricians? Many of these jobs were taken by new immigrants who knew they could make a good living without going to college. And many of them have left or been forced to leave due to our current immigration policies.
So, I have a wait and see attitude about 2020, both about economics and politics. A strong stock market is great for some, but can reverse quickly and does not benefit many who are still struggling to pay for basics and healthcare.
As for Holzer & Company, Inc, we are undergoing a major change in 2020. We will no longer be registered as an Investment Advisor. and will have to give up our US clients and some of our non US clients..
I will contact all current clients to discuss how and if we go forward in 2020. More to come about our new direction.