When something is very delicious, in Hawaiian slang they say it “broke da mouth”. As we lift off in 2018, let us briefly savor some of the tasty records from last year and try to put the low points behind us. Led by hurricanes Harvey and Irma, 2017 was horrific; a record breaking storm damage year. So many people suffered and so many heroes emerged. The Las Vegas tragedy was simply unimaginable. “La La Land” became the first movie to be announced an Academy award winner by mistake. The NBA had more three pointers than ever and Tom Brady became the oldest NFL quarterback at age 40 to lead the league in passing. “Hamilton” revolutionized Broadway with hip-hop history and broke all ticket sales records. Drake collected 13 Billboard Music awards, bypassing Adele’s record. A Leonardo Da Vinci painting sold for a record $450 million. The DOW Industrials, the S&P 500, and the NASDAQ stock indices all set new highs in 2017.
The markets have continued to party in 2018. The rise in prices can be attributed to the positive effects of tax reform, corporate earnings, and low interest rates. We don’t quite know the details of our individual tax returns just yet, but we know that most businesses are going to enjoy the new tax benefits. The most common question posed these days: “When will this bull market end?” The answer, of course, is that no one knows. We are currently in the 8th year of this run. The longest bull market was 13 years, from 1987 (the banking crisis) to 2000 (the IPO fever “tech wreck”). So…we would have nearly 5 more years to break this record.
Led by a 38% increase in the technology sector, the NASDAQ was the big 2017 winner with an overall gain of 29%. The DOW jumped 28% last year and the S&P 500 gained 21%. Many sectors rose more than 20% such as materials, consumer discretionary, financials, healthcare and industrials. Real estate gained 10% in 2017 while the energy and telecom sectors fell 1%. Gold and silver were both higher last year. A 30 year fixed mortgage averaged 4.16%, down from 4.5% a year ago.
The vast majority of our clients enjoyed a scrumptious year of asset growth. Pacific Sun surpassed our own records for total assets under management, new money transfers, and referrals. For those of you who introduced us to your friends and family…thank you very much. We have some fresh faces and fine people to offer advice and provide services. We have increased our firm’s efficiency, incorporated new technology such as electronic signatures, bolstered our cyber security, and we look forward to another great year ahead.
Best wishes to you for a happy, prosperous, healthy and peaceful year in 2018.