Thanksgiving is the time of year to reflect on the many blessings in our lives. We will use this week’s message to show our appreciation to what we are thankful for.
1) Jobs, Jobs, Jobs: According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the average number of new jobs created per month over the last 12 months has been 222,000. Essentially, that means that 2.6 million more people are working now than a year ago. This is positive on so many levels. It means more people are getting regular pay and can contribute to the economy, and it means that many families are enjoying the benefits and satisfaction that comes from steady work.
2) Economic Growth: With more people working, it makes sense that the economy should be growing. While we got a surprise earlier this year from the Polar Vortex-induced downturn, the economy has recovered since then plus some. The U.S. is now among the fastest growing developed nations even as we grow only at a moderate pace. Like the jobs listed above, we are thankful that we are collectively progressing as a nation.
3) Real Estate Recovery: The home we live in is often one of our core, sometimes sizable, assets. Given that, it always is nice to have equity in it. Yet, the housing bubble deflated many of our core assets. While housing didn’t rebound quickly like stocks did following the Great Recession, home prices have improved more recently as economic growth improved and the unemployment rate dropped. According to the National Association of Realtors, the average sales price for single family homes is up 5% from a year ago and is up 31% from the end of 2011.
4) Rising Confidence: We are thankful that we are all feeling better. In fact, according to the Conference Board, we haven’t felt this good since 2007. More recently, consumer confidence is up over 30% from a year ago and continues to climb as more people are employed, as stocks and real estate prices increase and as the economy grows. Many analysts are calling for this to be the biggest holiday shopping season ever as consumers feel good about gas prices and the stability of the U.S. economy.
5) Friends & Family: Last, and definitely not least, we are thankful for you. As part of our family (by blood or business), we are grateful for the trust you have in us. We are believers in the view that success should be measured by the number of lives that we touch and have a meaningful impact on. It is a privilege to work with and be associated with you. We hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family and friends!
We hope you enjoy a great holiday weekend!
Please feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns.
Security First Advisors is a locally owned, independent, fee-based investment advisory firm located in Portland, Oregon offering comprehensive financial planning and money in transition services.