Let me start by wishing all of the wonderful Mothers out there a very Happy Mother’s Day! I know in my house we will be celebrating the one who has held us all together and accountable over the last few months. This has been no simple task!!
Friday’s move higher in the markets capped off another strong week across the board. This is all in spite of a record, 14.7% of individuals now unemployed as of the end of April. This is the highest number ever recorded, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. An encouraging part of this number, is however, that 78% of those currently unemployed, were furloughed and could return to their respective jobs much quicker. This is something that will be closely watched in the coming months. The leisure and hospitality industries have been the hardest hit and will certainly take much longer to recover, while pockets of strength, primarily in the technology sector have shown a remarkable recovery. The market is clearly banking on a slower rate of infection and a gradual reopening of state’s economies. As Warren Buffett stated last weekend, “Nothing can basically stop America.” Wise words that echoed our own messages over the last few weeks of resiliency and adapting. At this point, we find ourselves in a watch and see pattern from an investing standpoint and I expect that may last a few weeks. We want to see a continued trend of “stabilization” occurring before we plan our next moves. As always, we stand ready to act however if the situation changes.
We are also beginning our own transition back to a more normal environment and starting on Monday will be fully returning to our offices. Of course, like you, we will be practicing our own “Social Distancing” standards! We have spoken with many of you over the last several weeks and provided updates and guidance as needed. If you would like to schedule a more formal performance update or if something has materially changed for you, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us and schedule some time. I expect that it will be several more weeks before we will all feel safe to meet in person, so we are happy to schedule a Zoom call, a regular old phone call or a combination of both. Our team has worked hard during these unprecedented times to keep you informed and secure in your investments and financial well-being. Like you we are ready to return to a more “normal” environment, whatever that may look like. On a personal note, now that I know my kids are going to be home indefinitely, with summer camps and lacrosse tournaments on hold, I need my office space back!
Stay safe and enjoy your weekend!