"Stock index improves to its best in 7 years" by: John Sample

   Well things certainly look better in my brokerage account after last week. 
   The Dow climbed over 1200 points and moved close to 26,000. 
   For the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index, the week was the best in seven years with stock indexes being up four out five days. 
   All of this was attributed to the G-20 meeting and hopes that the U.S. and China would move toward a trade agreement that avoids even higher tariffs. What happened was an announcement that there would be a 90-day hiatus starring Jan. 1 to work on a new trade deal. 
   That sent the equities markets off to a strong start this week until more rational eyes speculated that nothing has or will be accomplished. At least the 25 percent of tariffs were postponed. 
   If that wasn’t enough, the yield curve inverted, which means that long rates and short rates are the same or reversed. Logically, long-term rates should be higher given the uncertainty of time over short-term rates. This is important because inverted rate curves are indicators of recessions. 
   This will give the Federal Reserve something to think about with a probable interest rate increase this month and further increases expected next year. Good luck to the Fed’s chairman.
   On the positive side of the ledger, the NASDAQ index climbed out of correction territory. 
   The FANG stocks recovered significantly last week, though they are far from the darlings of earlier this year. Facebook continues to be subject to scrutiny over its board of directors having any control over Mark Zuckerberg. 
   Apple has yet another analyst doubting its ability to sell enough new iPhones with all the troubles in China. 
   Netflix adds subscribers at an astonishing rate, but its production costs for its own content are staggering. Google faces more calls for regulation of its data on each and every individual. Amazon, however, keeps cash flying in the door with each and every package out the door.
    It makes you wonder if the long awaited Santa Rally is coming or there will be coal in your stocking this year. For me, it will be a melancholy week as the country takes a step back Wednesday to honor our 41st President George H.W. Bush. 
   I was lucky enough to meet him one day years ago at River Oaks Country Club. He could not have been nicer or more genuine. He took the time to talk to me and ask about my life. 
   There was no real reason for such kindness except for the fact that he was such a good man. 
   While we face a divided nation at this time I hope we can harken back to a time where we can agree to disagree and work out differences for the betterment of all involved. 
   He will leave quite the legacy and he did it as a humble gentleman. Though he is not an original Texan, we are sincerely grateful he came and made the Lone Star State his home.    

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