(302) 703-0727

(302) 703-0727

Doug MacGray’s Weekly Financial Update – Week of February 11, 2008

John Thomas February 11, 2008
The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) non-manufacturing index dropped from 54.4 in December to 41.9 in January. Anything higher than 50 on that index shows expansion, and anything lower shows contraction. This is the lowest reading since October 2001. The markets were spooked by the ISM numbers and ended up giving back the gains of the past two weeks.
Reports on retail sales and industrial production in January, along with earnings releases from some 45 companies in the S&P 500 will give investors clues on how corporate earnings are holding up during this period of economic weakness.
In three states at least 7% of the citizens are millionaires, New Jersey, Maryland, and Connecticut. There are five additional states with greater than 6% (Hawaii, Massachusetts, Virginia, Delaware, and Alaska).
If all the financial information you receive makes your head spin, one of the reasons may be this:  There are approximately 30,000 firms in the U.S. that actively market financial services including 9,000 banks. I have a lot of competition. I bet a large percentage of those companies are located in the 8 states referenced above, as well as California, New York, and Florida.
According to the U.S. Commerce Department, the median price of a new home in December 2007 was $219,200, down from $244,700 in December 2006.
If you are not familiar with the differences between various mutual fund share classes, don’t buy them. I would always be happy to help walk you through this if you need assistance. Typically mutual funds are offered in ‘A’, ‘B’, and ‘C’ shares to consumers, and ‘I’ shares to institutions (there are other types not pertinent to this discussion). A prospectus will reveal the differences for the particular fund, but in general, an ‘A’ share charges a sales charge (load) up front based on a percentage of your purchase. ‘B’ shares charge no upfront load, but charge loads when you sell the shares, although such loads often go away if you own the fund for several years. A ‘C’ share generally has no upfront load, and if there is a back end load, it usually goes away after a year. Why, then, would you buy anything but a ‘C’ share? ‘C’ shares typically carry the largest annual fees and ‘A’ shares the lowest. An ‘I’ share usually carries the lowest annual costs and no sales charges, but they are only available with very high minimum investments.
Here’s my shameless plug….we use the funds that have the most reasonable annual expenses, and we get the loads waived. For many of the mutual funds we use, due to the volume we enjoy, we can often get ‘I’ shares, meaning the lowest annual fees and no sales charges. Thus, we often find that much of our fee to our clients is offset by savings in mutual fund expenses. The bottom line is that you should know going in what all the fees are…and if you have an advisor that does not give you a good explanation, ask again.
If you would like to speak with Doug or schedule an appointment to meet with him, please give me a call at 302-368-7132 Ext.12 and I can provide you with Doug’s information.

If you would like to apply for a Mortgage Loan, you can APPLY ONLINE HERE, you can call John Thomas at 302-703-0727.

John R. Thomas – NMLS 38783

Certified Mortgage Planner – Primary Residential Mortgage, Inc.

302-703-0727 DE Office / 610-906-3109 PA Office / 410-412-3319 MD Office

248 E Chestnut Hill Rd, Newark, DE 19713

About John Thomas

John Thomas and his team are long-time Delaware natives. They know the local real estate market as well as they know the loan products that help them serve it. Dedicated to helping first-time buyers; the John Thomas Team are experts on first-time buyer loan programs (FHA, VA, USDA) and conduct monthly first-time buyer seminars that have been attended by more than 3000 Delaware buyers.