Old Second: Connect with a Child in Need at our Angel Tree

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AngelTree

Get connected with a child in need by visiting our Angel Tree!

Please help put a smile on a child’s face this holiday season by taking an Angel Tag from the tree, purchasing the gift listed on the tag, and returning it (unwrapped) with the tag attached. You can return the gift to the Personal Banking department. Items requested range from newborn to clothes to toys to books. You can also donate wrapping paper and/or gift bags.

The tree is located on the counter behind the reception desk in the main lobby at the Main Old Second Bank, 37 S. River Street- Aurora.

Tags are also available at our Redwood branch, 555 Redwood Drive- Aurora.

All gifts are to be returned to the bank by December 10th, 2014.

#O2CONNECTION

Wealth Management Weekly Update November 25, 2013

U.S. and World News

  • Minutes from the October Fed meeting were released this week and were largely in line with market expectations. Members generally believed that tapering of asset purchases was not warranted in the immediate-term but pointed out that if economic conditions warranted, the Fed could decide to reduce asset purchases at one of its next few meetings. The minutes left a December taper on the table, although it seems more likely that any action will be pushed off likely until March of next year after the next round of debt ceiling negotiations take place in Washington D.C.
  • China has announced a sweeping economic reform plan that is being characterized by some analysts as “the biggest freeing up of China’s economic policy since the 1990’s.” The proposals include financial reforms, allowing the market to set prices and an easing of the country’s one child policy. If implemented successfully, these reforms would substantially reduce the downside risks associated with China’s economy.
  • IT experts provided a warning to a Congressional hearing this week saying that the Healthcare.gov website should be shut down as it is full of security flaws that could expose the extremely sensitive user data of millions of people. These experts recommended a complete rebuild of the troubled website so that it would run better and make it more secure.
    • Medical conceptLast week President Obama announced people would indeed be allowed to renew their current health insurance plan for 2014 if they wished, following many Americans finding that their plan would not be renewed by their insurer despite Obama’s proclamation that “if you like your plan, you can keep it.” The President may have spoken too soon yet again as there are at least five states that won’t be letting those plans be reinstated, as they believe it would harm their state health care exchanges. Many individual carriers are also not allowing their customers to extend their old policies, due to time constraints and other obstacles and if they are allowing them to be renewed, many will be increasing premiums substantially.

Markets

  • Stock markets set new record highs again this week as the S&P 500 Index increased by 0.40%, closing at 1,805. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.68% to close at 16,065. The S&P and the Dow respectively are up 26.54% and 22.59% year to date.
  • Treasury yields rose some this week on some comments within the Fed minutes indicating that tapering could be coming in the next few months. The 5 year and 10 year treasury are now yielding 1.36% and 2.75% respectively.
  • The spot price of WTI Crude Oil went up this week, rising by 1.20% and closing at $94.83per barrel. Year to date, oil is now up 1.76%.
  • The spot price of Gold dropped this week, falling by 3.62% and closing at $1,243.47 per ounce. Gold is now down 25.78% this year.

 

Economic Data

  • Initial jobless claims fell from last week to 323,000 vs. consensus estimates of 335,000. The four week moving average for claims fell to 338,000. The Labor Department noted that while no states estimated claims, seasonal adjustment around the Veterans’ Day holiday may be affecting claims numbers.
  • The level of existing home sales declined more than expected in October, falling by 3.2% vs. expectations of a 2.9% drop. The decline in existing home sales, which measures closings rather than contract signings, follows several months of weaker pending home sales numbers, potentially reflecting the impact of higher mortgage rates. Despite the weaker October numbers, existing home sales have risen 6.0% in the last 12 months.
  • Inflation data continues to come in lower than expected with the headline Consumer Price Index falling 0.1% vs. expectations of being flat. Energy price decline of 1.7% in the month was the largest contributor. This report points to a continued subdued inflationary trend and may result in any tapering by the Fed being pushed back even further than expected.

Fact of the Week

  • According to a study by the Department of Labor, private sector employers of union workers pay almost four times as much money for retirement benefits (per hour worked by an employee) as compared to private sector employers of non-union workers.

 

 Please contact a member of the Wealth Management Department if you have any questions about this information.

Rich Gartelmann CFP® – (630) 844-5730 rgartelmann@oldsecond.com
Jean Van Keppel CFA® – (630) 906-5489 jvankeppel@oldsecond.com
Brad Johnson – (630) 906-5545 bjohnson@oldsecond.com
Joel Binder – (630) 844-6767 jbinder@oldsecond.com
Jacqueline Runnberg – (630) 966-2462 jrunnberg@oldsecond.com

Visit Old Second Wealth Management

*Official portrait of Janet L. Yellen, Vice Chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. Source: Obtained via email from Federal Reserve OPA. Date: October 5, 2010. Author: United States Federal Reserve. Permission by Public Domain, per correspondence with the Federal Reserve (See, http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Janet_Yellen_official_portrait.jpg).

Wealth Management Weekly Update November 18, 2013

Janet Yellen


         Janet Yellen*

U.S. and World News

•       Incoming Fed Chairperson Janet Yellen had her Senate confirmation hearing this week where she reiterated her dovish (accommodative) stance on monetary policy. She stated that, “We have made good progress, but we have farther to go to regain the ground lost in the crisis and the recession.” Other statements made by Yellen further indicated her support of the continuation of accommodative policies.

•       President Obama announced nearly apologetically this week that he will allow insurance companies to continue to offer existing policies in 2014 even if they fail to meet the standards set by the Affordable Care Act. Obama’s flip on this position follows pressure from the public after it emerged that his repeated pledge that, “If you like your plan, you can keep it,” completely contradicted the terms of his own law as many Americans had received notice that their current plan would not be renewed. The patchwork extension of these provisions may prove to be anything but easy as some experts are warning that it could destabilize the market and result in higher premiums for consumers.

•   Meanwhile, fewer than 50,000 people have managed to enroll in private insurance plans via the government’s bug-addled Healthcare.gov website as of last week. This number is less than 10% of the total that had been projected to be enrolled by this time. It seems as though the Congressional Budget Office’s prediction of 7 million enrollments by March is a pipedream at this point.

Markets

  • Stock markets set new record highs again this week as the S&P 500 Index increased by 1.61%, closing at 1,798. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1.37% to close at 15,962. The S&P and the Dow respectively are up 26.08% and 21.81% year to date.
  • Treasury yields fell a bit this week with the 5 year and 10 year treasury now yielding 1.35% and 2.70% respectively.
  • The spot price of WTI Crude Oil continued to tumble this week, dropping by 0.95%, closing at $93.70 per barrel. Year to date, oil is now only up 0.35%.
  • The spot price of Gold held steady this week, falling by 0.12% and closing at $1290.05/ounce. Gold is now down 23.00% this year.

 

Economic Data

  • Initial jobless claims rose from last week to 339,000 vs. consensus estimates of 330,000. The Labor Department did note that claims were estimated for five states due to the Veteran’s Day Holiday.
  • Eurozone GDP growth came in lower than expected for the 3rd quarter at just 0.1% growth, worse than the 0.3% registered in the 2nd quarter. Investors viewed the weaker than expected data as further evidence that the European Central Bank will need to maintain an ultra-accommodative policy stance for the time being.
    • Contributing to the Eurozone’s disappointing growth was Italy’s 0.1% contraction in GDP. The Eurozone’s third largest economy has seen nine straight quarters of GDP decline.

Fact of the Week

  • Total health care spending in the U.S. (includes both government/public and private spending) is expected to be $2.9 trillion in 2013. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services estimate that the total will climb over 72% by 2022 to $5.0 trillion.

 

 Please contact a member of the Wealth Management Department if you have any questions about this information.

Rich Gartelmann CFP® – (630) 844-5730 rgartelmann@oldsecond.com
Jean Van Keppel CFA® – (630) 906-5489 jvankeppel@oldsecond.com
Brad Johnson – (630) 906-5545 bjohnson@oldsecond.com
Joel Binder – (630) 844-6767 jbinder@oldsecond.com
Jacqueline Runnberg – (630) 966-2462 jrunnberg@oldsecond.com

Visit Old Second Wealth Management

*Official portrait of Janet L. Yellen, Vice Chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. Source: Obtained via email from Federal Reserve OPA. Date: October 5, 2010. Author: United States Federal Reserve. Permission by Public Domain, per correspondence with the Federal Reserve (See, http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Janet_Yellen_official_portrait.jpg).