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3 Things to watch & know

This week’s market performance key indicators to watch from Moneta’s Investments Department.


Presidential Polls: With both conventions done and the nominees officially selected, we now head into the final two-month stretch of campaigning until the early November election. Odds are still currently favoring Biden to be elected, but Trump has seen a post-convention bump in the polls, which has modestly reduced Biden’s odds of victory. Eleven states are seen as “toss-ups” and will likely become a focus for both candidates. (Source: JPM/Goldman)

Second Coronavirus Relief Bill: Things continue to remain at an impasse as a sharp divide exists between the ultimate cost of such a bill. Negotiations are still occurring, but the odds of a relief bill any time soon appear limited.

Economic Releases This Week: Eyes will be on the Dallas Fed manufacturing, ISM manufacturing, employment and construction spending metrics for the status of the ongoing recovery in economic activity.


Dow Jones Changes: Exxon, Raytheon and Pfizer are all being removed from the Dow Jones Industrial Average with new additions – Salesforce, Amgen and Honeywell – joining the index on Monday, August 31, 2020. This was driven by Apple’s 4-for-1 stock split, which goes into effect on that same day; this will mean a reduction in the index’s weight in the Information Technology sector. The addition of Salesforce will specifically help partially offset that reduction. (Source: Standard & Poor)

Fed’s Inflation Framework: As noted by the fixed income team last Thursday, Fed Chairman Jerome Powell formally announced changes to the Fed’s approach to inflation. The Fed is now shooting for inflation that averages 2% over time, meaning inflation could moderately “overshoot” 2% at times – especially after periods where it was persistently below 2%. Decisions to raise interest rates in the future will be based on evidence that inflation had hit the target of 2% instead of reliance on forecasting rising inflation, which has been consistently wrong. Demographic changes, technology and globalization have all contributed to keeping inflation lower than one would have assumed. (Source: Fed)

S&P 500: The S&P 500 closed at an all-time high for a sixth consecutive trading session on Friday, while the Nasdaq Composite also reached a record. August has been a strong month with the S&P up a robust 7.2%, led by Apple’s 17.7% rise. The S&P 500 is now up nearly 10% year-to-date as of August 30, 2020, which seems light-years from the pain suffered in March. 


Year-end Tax Planning Considerations

Year-end Tax Planning Considerations

2020 has been an unusual year to say the least. As we have adapted to "new normals" throughout our lives, following are some important changes to consider as the year closes for your tax strategy....

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