How the stock market has reacted to pandemics

With the coronavirus spreading and equity investors panicking, you might be wondering where this all will lead.

Although the coronavirus may be new, it certainly isn’t the first pandemic to strike the world. AIDS first appeared in June 1981. Since then we’ve had SARS, avian flu, swine flu, MERS, Ebola and Zika, to name a few. 

Beware of the perils of overconfidence bias

In 2006, James Montier, a researcher at the investment banking arm of Dresdner Bank, tested the behavioral biases of approximately 300 investment fund managers. One of the questions he asked: “Are you above average at your job?” More than 70% of the respondents answered “yes.” A number even included comments along the lines of, “I know everyone else says they are, but I really am!” Most of the remaining respondents considered themselves average, with only a small fraction reporting themselves as being below average.

Worried about Social Security going broke?

Concerns about Social Security running out of money pop up from time to time in the financial media. Beyond the headlines are a number of misconceptions regarding what that really means. Below I’ll explain what could happen and what the consequences might be. The situation is a lot less dire than the media would have you believe.

There are two primary sources of funding for Social Security benefits: the Social Security trust fund and payroll taxes collected from current workers and their employers. The trust fund currently holds approximately $2.8 trillion but is projected to become depleted by 2034, based on the number of retirees drawing benefits over the next 15 years.

On the Market: The ABCs of schools and homebuying

Good schools are one of the many reasons people are so attracted to this area. But understanding school scores and school boundaries can be a bit confusing. Often homebuyers will tell me which school district they are looking in rather than which city. Remember that school district boundaries were developed long before city boundaries, so in most cases, they are not the same.

Business Matters: Anyone can soon invest in commercial properties to build wealth

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Courtesy of Rettex
Rettex is led by Chris Moris, left, and John Bradley.

Over the past few decades since the 1970s, it has been increasingly challenging in the Bay Area for average Americans to save enough money to buy a home. For most Americans, home purchase is one of the largest equity investments they can make, and barriers to ownership can hurt their ability to build long-term wealth.

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