A New Concept in Co-Working
by Lucy Knapp


Co-working is big. The co-working industry has gone from a niche, vaguely hipster-ish phenomenon to become part of the mainstream, accepted by and serving entrepreneurs, business owners and professionals.   The industry has grown 200% over the past 5 years and the number of co-working members is anticipated to surge to 3.8 million by 2020 and 5.1 million by 2022.   Obviously there is a need to be filled.

 ThriveCo, St. Louis’ newest co-working space, opened in  January of this year. While the City of St. Louis is filled – some might say over-saturated – with co-working spaces, ThriveCo is only one of a handful of such spaces located in St. Louis County and is the first “boutique” co-working space in Clayton; its premise is one of flexibility, personalization, inclusivity, and access.   It was founded by Katie and Alex Silversmith, two entrepreneurs with experience in the co-working sector, to bring a unique, comprehensive co-working experience to the St. Louis market.  They offer the usual co-working space(s) and services--office rental, access to a printer/copier/scanner, wi-fi, meeting room rental, etc. However, they go above and beyond in offering services not usually part of the co-working space model.

Co-founder and CEO Katie Silversmith emphasized that these are the differentiators  between them and other co-working spaces. She said, “We wanted to create a space where business owners and entrepreneurs and start-ups really felt heard and had access to exactly what they needed to be successful. It's similar to a wrap-around services model in social work and is about supporting the entirety of the business, the business owner, and the employees to make the business more successful.” She feels that this customization and personalization model is the huge difference that has attracted members from a variety of businesses across the St. Louis economy, including attorneys, PR firms, business coaches and people in creative fields. In fact, about eight weeks after opening, there was such interest in ThriveCo that they had to acquire more office space.

Their second big differentiator, especially in the St. Louis market, is their commitment to cultivating a diverse, inclusive, and welcoming co-working space. Silversmith commented, “There are a lot more barriers for aspiring minority business owners in starting and sustaining  a business, so we wanted to have a space that  was inclusive to all, where diversity is encouraged, and where we can do our part to address some of those barriers.  So we value diverse backgrounds, perspectives,  and experiences as elements that make businesses and workplaces stronger and more successful.”

Katie credits her background (social work) and that of her husband and co-founder Alex Silversmith (community development) for the third factor that sets them apart: listening. “The fact that we are listeners, trained to  deeply and authentically listen to and understand the needs of members then validate those needs and partner with the member to move forward.  We  value feedback from our members and adapt and adjust our model to meet their changing needs.”

More than community, entrepreneurs and established business owners need access. The top three reasons business fail include lack of capital, inadequate management, and business plan and infrastructure issues. ThriveCo provides space and community, but more importantly, provides access to  services like business coaching, brand development, human resources assistance, and sources of capital—both big and small. ThriveCo has partnered with and vetted a number of companies and service providers they can refer to their membership. “Vetted” being the key concept here: ThriveCo doesn't partner with other organizations until they are satisfied they are competent and reliable.

An unusual offering to members is access to capital. Capital, is of course essential to starting, sustaining, and growing a  business, but some groups have historically been economically marginalized, so they don't have the connections or generational wealth to fuel their business aspirations. ThriveCo offers members access to capital as part of their “concierge services.”  There are two types: one is small business loans and the other is venture capital funding and are made available by organizations in the community that have partnered with ThriveCo. (The small business loan program is not related to the federal SBA agency.) The money is not automatically given to members; there is an application and selection process, but simply having the opportunity to get funding  could be life-changing for a small business owner, since funding is one of the major barriers to people being able to sustain and start a business.

In addition  to providing key resources,   ThriveCo offers holistic perks to help the whole person, not just the business person. Members  have  access to a “Work Perks Program,” which offers  discounts on yoga classes, childcare, massage therapy, and bike rentals, among others.

About ThriveCo: It  is located at 222 South Meramec in Clayton. The 5,004 sq. foot-space features 11 full-time individual and team private office memberships, several part-time private office memberships, dedicated desk memberships, general co-working memberships, meeting room and event space rentals, and mail services (for those who need a physical address). Per month pricing ranges from $30 for mail services and starts at $650 for full-time private office memberships—and includes parking. Offices range in size from 42 square feet to 232 square feet. Visit   www.thrive-coworking.com for more information or to schedule a tour.








Networking Notes
by Stephanie Hopkins

An interview with TEAM Referral Network franchise owner Derlene Hirtz.

Derlene Hirtz is a speaker and author, and is the owner of the St. Louis franchise of TEAM Referral Network, and You Empowered Services, a success-focused training and coaching service.

Her goals include meeting and learning the stories of 1200 world changers, providing the plan for businesses to grow their businesses beyond their dreams, being known as the NLP guru in St. Louis, and sharing her message:  to see change, you must be the change.

I had the great pleasure of interviewing her about her small businesses, networking, and how she helps professionals pursue their Success Portfolio.

Q. TEAM Referral network is based out of California, how did it come about that you brought it to the midwest?

A. My coach, friend, and business partner owns five TEAM Referral Network franchises. I also appreciate a woman-owned company that has had a successful record for over 15 years.  I saw this as an opportunity to serve many businesses in St. Louis at one time. It is an opportunity to live my vision, “Transform the World, One Conversation at a Time.”

Q. There definitely isn't a shortage of networking groups out there.  Why do you think small business owners are choosing TEAM Referral Network?

A. St. Louis definitely has its fair share of networking organizations.  Each offers their own unique opportunities to create success.  The benefit of TEAM is we are focused on building strong relationships of know, like, and trust.  I like to say, “on steroids.” Our members have a website within the national website that increases the SEO for each individual member. And our members appreciate that we offer a gifted seat to a non-profit. It is a blessing to offer our gifts to support the success of the non-profit as well as the opportunity for each chapter to collaboratively support a program.

Q. You often mention your first networking experience and how spectacularly bad it was. Do you have a time you were out networking that is your personal favorite, that was the best?

A. Each networking opportunity offers so much possibility. There is not one that particularly stands out as a favorite; I enjoy many networking events in which true networking takes place:  meeting like-minded people and taking a step forward in creating an opportunity to help them find more success, and having an opportunity to build a strong relationship as referral partners, power partners, or know them well enough that you would recommend them to your family. The goal is to recognize potential when networking and follow up to either confirm or recognize perhaps you may know someone who could use their product or service.  That is the greatest feeling! Connecting two people together because there is a need, want, or desire, and I have the business that can satisfy it. I love that! I call it my “high.”

Q. What is the number one thing you wish you knew when you started to network for your business?

A. I would say that I was naïve in the world of networking, that is certainly fair.  The number-one thing I wish I would have known when I started networking is that some people are only takers.  They “net-sell,” not network. I have found these are not my people and that is a good thing to learn! In transparency, I have found that through some experiences I’ve had, I learned the hard way.  Having said that, each of these offered opportunities for me to learn and move on.

Q. I have a firm belief that networking needs to be a part of a small business owners marketing plan, what networking strategy do you have for yourself?

A. My businesses are all about networking, sometimes nine different events a week. Our personal spheres soon run their course, especially, if like me, I began “professionally” networking after I turned fifty. My strategy is to attend one new event a week.  My growth opportunity is to set aside time as soon as I get finished networking and send follow up emails or call.  I believe that is the least of what happens after we have gone through the huge time offering of going to network events. From my experience, I would estimate 1 out of 75 people I meet networking actually follow up.  My goal is 100% follow up after an event. Even if we are not a good fit for each other, “nice to meet you” speaks volumes as far as professionalism.

Q. You run three businesses; I'm sure that keeps you busy.  Do you find the entrepreneurial experience is a challenge when you have multiple businesses?

I sometimes get really tired! Running multiple businesses can be very exhausting. However, I gain much energy from success and my ability to help so many businesses, all of which are a result of networking.  My target audiences are very similar, so that is very helpful. The secret is to surround myself with a team of support staff. I remember thinking I was going to build these businesses alone.  I got over that as soon as I realized you cannot build a business without clients and believing I could do it all by myself in only 24 hours in a day!

Q. Speaking of your other businesses, I hear amazing things about your NLP trainings. I personally can say the Success Bootcamp made a positive difference for me. Can you share how those trainings are good specifically for business professionals who network? 

A. NLP – Neuro Linguistic Programming – is the scientific study of human excellence.  I tried the perfection thing, that ended up nearly destroying me. Our Success Bootcamp is designed to teach how to create excellence in life and business.  This includes teaching how our mindset has everything to do with success. Once we have this awareness, we are motivated to turn our dreams into reality.   We are able to take full responsibility for the success or failure (which, by the way, is only feedback) and regroup, set new goals and move into ACTION!

Q. There is currently a trend for networking events to end on a quote.  Can you share your favorite quote with the readers?

Values aren't buses... They're not supposed to get you anywhere. They're supposed to define who you are.” ― Jennifer Crusie

 



 



 



 



 

 

 

Making Financial Sense

 

James C. Knapp, AIF®

A common goal we all likely share is the desire to experience a long and fruitful life. There can be many reasons for this and you likely have your own.

To work towards this goal, you must have a strong foundation in every aspect of your life (e.g., health, emotional, social, financial, etc.).

I cannot assist in developing your workout routines; though I can provide an educational foundation that can be backbone of your financial independence. This knowledge works to empower you to feel confident in developing your personal financial wealth.

Wealth is the ability to fully experience life.---Henry David Thoreau

For an investor’s long-term wealth survival, I believe a top priority should be protecting those investable assets from large, unrecoverable losses. Negative returns & high volatility are typically destructive to wealth building. I suggest seeking strategies focused on ways that aim to preserve your hard-earned assets.

I believe protecting your investable assets from large, unrecoverable losses is vital as studies have shown employed people expect to work longer in life. Unfortunately, many do not continue to work as planned. The 2018 Retirement Confidence Survey by the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI)/Greenwald found that 48% of retirements occur earlier than planned with most reasons given for early retirement were involuntary (e.g., health problems, disability, changes at the company or could afford to retire early)! i This survey also found that 79% of workers expect to work for pay after they retire; though only 34% of retirees have worked since they retired.ii

According to the 2018 IRI Fact Book’s “A Guide to Information, Trends, and Data in the Retirement Income Industry,” there is over 75% of retirement savings in Individual Retirement Savings accounts compared to under 25% in Private Pension Plans.iii

This retirement dynamic of fading income-based plans (e.g., defined benefit plans) and increased reliance on personal accounts (e.g., IRAs) adds substantial risk to one’s income strategy given the investor is responsible for making the investment allocation decisions and producing their own returns.

From my experience, guiding clients transitioning from an investment strategy (aka working years and wanting to grow your assets) to a withdrawal strategy (aka retirement years and wanting an income stream similar to a monthly paycheck), you will feel losses more than you will feel gains. Painful feelings may impair you from making rational decisions during times of market volatility.

Developing and refining your own discipline to manage risk is important. Please be aware that no measure of risk management is perfect every time. Though having a process to manage risk is better than not having one at all.

I have found that by working to reduce the level of volatility within an investment account(s), investors emotionally “stick” to their discipline they’ve developed over time. By sticking with your strategy allows for the benefits of compounding interest to take effect.

Compound interest is the 8th Wonder of the World---Albert Einstein

 Large amounts of data points and market signals are constantly being released from various global sources. Investors will have different interpretations of these data and market signals. I believe investors should consider reallocating to various asset classes that they believe may have a higher probability of going up given their expected future market conditions.

It’s not what you look at that matters. It’s what you see.---Henry David Thoreau

 

Rather than trying to predict future market movements, focus on risk. For investors, understanding investment risk is a vital concept as it is a function of loss. For example, the more portfolio risk that is taken, the greater the loss may be when markets move negatively. We tackle this phenomenon by applying educated assumptions in an attempt to avoid catastrophic damage over time. This is in the same vein of virtually every professional field; e.g., a surgeon speaking to probabilities, not certainties. These potential outcomes are based on historical data and events, statistics, trends, sentiment, etc. in an effort to control portfolio risk and avoid permanent loss of capital.

The chart below may serve as an example of using historical data aiding an investor’s broader context investment strategy. It is important to avoid relying solely on one data point, chart, statistic, etc. I would suggest using multiple trusted sources as you work to develop your investment strategy.

 

Big Starts to a Year Can Produce Weak Results Going Forward

An investor’s thought-process interpreting and applying information can be extremely fruitful in managing investment risk. An investor’s risk management strategy plays a large part in determining how to proceed.

Below are a few data points to consider; how do you interpret them and how do you integrate them to your investment risk management process?

 

  • There have been 4 rate-hike cycles initiated by the Federal Reserve (Fed) over the last 25 years, including the most recent cycle that has included 9 rate-hikes from 12/15/15 to 12/19/18, i.e., the “last rate hike” took place 6 months ago. The 3 previous Fed rate-hike cycle flipped from its “last rate hike” to its “first rate cut” after 5 months (July 1995), 7 ½ months (January 2001) and 15 months (September 2007).iv

  • Net farm income in the United States (total gross income in excess of total expenses) is projected to be $69.4 billion in 2019, down 44% from its peak level of $123.4 in 2013v

  • The USA has reported an unemployment rate lower than the April 2019 jobless rate of 3.6% only 17 times since January 1954, equal to just 2% of the preceding 783 monthsvi

  • Between 1950 and 2018, the U.S. population doubled from 159.1 million to 332.8 million while the number of Americans at least age 65 quadrupled from 12.8 million to 52.4 millionvii

  • From 1950 to 2018, the life expectancy of a 65-year-old American male has increased from 12.8 years to 18.1 years, i.e., an increase of 64 months. From 1950 to 2018, the life expectancy of a 65-year-old American female has increased from 15.1 years to 20.6 years, i.e., an increase of 66 monthviii

  • A 65-year old American couple has a 48% chance that at least one of them will live to age 90, i.e., at least a 25-year life expectancyix

  • An estimated 10,400 Americans will turn 65 years old each day this year (2019). This group represents the 9th year of 19 years of “Baby Boomers” turning age 65. An estimated 11,500 Americans will turn 65 years old every day in the year 2029.x

If you need help, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or learn more at www.KNAPPADVISORY.com.

Securities and advisory services offered through LPL Financial, a Registered Investment Advisor, Member FINRA/SIPC

The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. To determine which investment(s) may be appropriate for you, consult your financial advisor prior to investing. All performance referenced is historical and is no guarantee of future results. All indices are unmanaged and may not be invested into directly.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index is a capitalization-weighted index of 500 stocks designed to measure performance of the broad domestic economy through changes in the aggregate market value of 500 stocks representing all major industries..

Big Starts to a Year Can Produce Weak Results Going Forward” disclosures:

Date 1950 – 05/03/2019

Performance shown is price returns ex dividends.

Past performance is no guarantee of future results. 

The modern design of the S&P 500 stock index was first launched in 1957. Performance back to 1950 incorporates the performance of predecessor index, the S&P 90.

The economic forecasts may not develop as predicted.

Investing involves risk including loss of principal.

All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however, LPL Financial makes no representation as to its completeness or accuracy.

iEmployee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI)/Greenwald, The 2018 Retirement Confidence Survey, Fact Sheet #2, 2018

iiEmployee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI)/Greenwald, The 2018 Retirement Confidence Survey, Fact Sheet #2, 2018

iii“A Guide to Information, Trends, and Data in the Retirement Income Industry,” IRI Fact Book, 2018

ivU.S. Federal Reserve

vUnited States Department of Agriculture

viUnites States Department of Labor

viiSocial Security 2019 Trustees Report

viiiSocial Security

ixSocial Security Administration

xUnites States Government Accountability Office

 

 

Making Financial Sense: Cultural Change

James C. Knapp, AIF®

The weather is changing and becoming warmer as the days progress. Appreciating this, we also approach two other dates where we can show our appreciation. It’s Mother’s Day on Sunday, May 12 and Father’s Day on Sunday, June 16.

I couldn’t begin this article without acknowledging my parents, James & Linda. I don’t say it nearly enough; THANK YOU for all you’ve done for me at every phase of my life. Your guidance, encouragement and love has never steered me wrong. To my wife Katie, you have given me three beautiful children and priceless memories along the way. You make me smile every day and every night.

As a parent, I work diligently to protect my children from catastrophic harm; to help educate them so they can adapt to change. The same principles can also be applied to women and investing.

Several relatively recent cultural changes that have made it essential for women to adapt the way they deal with financial matters are:

  • 1974 Equal Credit Opportunity Act

  • 1981 Kirchberg vs. Feenstra Supreme Court Case

Prior to the passing of the 1974 Equal Credit Opportunity Act, discrimination against women applying for credit (such as a home mortgage) was common. Typically single, widowed or divorced women were required to have a male co-signor on credit applications regardless of income. Banks also typically required a male co-signor for banking accounts (eg. checking or savings accounts). The 1974 Equal Credit Opportunity Act eliminated this inequality and allowed women to take control of their own financial affairs.

Prior to the 1981 Kirchberg vs. Feenstra Supreme Court Case, a husband had the legal right to unilaterally take out a second mortgage, home equity loan, etc on a property held jointly with his wife without her consent. Following this 1981 Supreme Court ruling, a husband could no longer take out a loan without his wife’s knowledge and consent; therefore providing women an increased role in financial decisions.

Imagine the learning curve that women of this generation encountered! These cultural changes made it essential that all women take a greater role and more control of their financial affairs. This transition made it vital to gain applicable knowledge in short fashion to navigate within this new environment.

Adam Smith (Scottish philosopher and economist renowned as the father of modern economics, and a major proponent of laissez-faire economic policies) said “If you don’t know who you are, the stock market is an expensive place to find out.”

Relatively recent cultural changes have provided women the chance to participate in financial decisions. As women embrace these cultural changes, they begin to prepare and plan for future life events. As such, education is critical to developing your financial philosophy and protecting your investable assets. This educational foundation should be the backbone of your financial independence.

I believe gaining financial independence starts with determining your investment objectives in order to build an investment process which will help you achieve your investment goals. Your investment process defines your portfolio, not your emotions, which can steer you off course. I have seen it all too often that when markets experience downturns, an investor’s emotional reaction can lead to poor decision making. While this may make you feel comfortable in the short run, it rarely is the most effective way to drive financial independence. A diligently followed investment process can help streamline your focus and investment objectives. A great relationship with your wealth advisor is crucial so he or she can openly and without recourse discuss the ramifications of decisions made that may deter you from attaining your financial independence.

I believe protecting your investable assets for large, unrecoverable losses should be a top priority. Negative returns & high volatility are typically destructive to wealth building. I suggest beginning your investment journey by establishing strategies focused on ways that aim to preserve your hard earned assets. From my experience advising clients toward their financial independence, you will feel losses more than you will feel gains. Painful feelings may impair you from making rational decisions during times of market volatility. Think about purchasing a new vehicle. You would consider taking steps (e.g. purchasing a warranty or appropriate insurance coverage) in an effort to help mitigate a large loss from an unforeseeable event. Most investors aren’t aware that a similar approach can be applied when managing their wealth.

Rather than trying to predict future market movements, focus on risk. For investors, understanding investment risk is a vital concept as it is a function of loss. For example, the more portfolio risk that is taken, the greater the loss may be when markets move negatively. We tackle this phenomena by applying educated assumptions in an attempt to avoid catastrophic damage over time. This is in the same vein of virtually every professional field; eg. a surgeon speaking to probabilities, not certainties. These potential outcomes are based on historical data and events, statistics, trends, sentiment, etc. in an effort to control portfolio risk and avoid permanent loss of capital.

If you seek clarity in developing your investment process, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or view more educational resources at www.KNAPPADVISORY.com.

Thank you for reading. Now go call your mother and father!

Securities and advisory services offered through LPL Financial, a Registered Investment Advisor, Member FINRA/SIPC

The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. All performance referenced is historical and is no guarantee of future results. All indices are unmanaged and may not be invested into directly.

 

 

 

 

Making Financial Sense

 

James C. Knapp, AIF®

 

Settling into 2019, you will soon be celebrating Women’s History Month (March) and Earth Day (April 22). According to www.WomensHistoryMonth.gov, we celebrate and recognize “the great contributions that women have made to our nation. According to www.History.com, Earth Day is an annual event where various events worldwide are held to demonstrate support for environmental protection.

 

Society, as a whole, commemorates these as we find the value in them. The value coming from the fruits of women’s labor and the essential protection of Earth’s life-sustaining qualities.

 

Appreciating historical context leads to better understandings. You may seek tangible ways to protect and preserve the Earth’s environment or learn more about women’s historical contributions. As noble as your intentions are, you may become absorbed by life before making your planned impact on the environment.

 

I would suggest learning how to protect your hard-earned, investable assets is just as important. We can all agree that the lack of knowledge may lead to making poor investment decisions.

 

This knowledge will help guide you to develop your own practical investment process. This process is one where you understand and appreciate the varying dynamics and possible outcomes. This can also help you derive your own opinion on the economy, investment opportunities, and what you think is an appropriate manner to proceed.

 

I believe having applicable insight will better enable you to make smart decisions with your money, thus creating a lifetime of financial confidence. I believe this is vital as you will find cogent arguments for strategies recommended to you. It is your responsibility to fully appreciate the pros and cons of each and work through them to decide which is best suited for you.

 

Many news outlets, as well as market strategists, discuss the yield curve. They also reference the inverted yield curve. The yield curve is the difference between the interest rates on the short term United States government bonds and longer term United States government bonds.

 

Typically in a healthy economy, the rates of long term bonds will be higher than the short term bonds. The extra yield (aka interest) is to compensate for the risk that economic growth will likely cause an increase in prices (aka inflation).

 

New York Federal Reserve President John Williams said the yield curve inversion is “a powerful sign of recessions.” According to research from the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, every recession of the past 60 years has been preceded by an inverted yield curve.

 

A resource I have used for yield curve data is from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis (https://fred.stlouisfed.org/graph/fredgraph.png?g=mMGv). This resource will chart the 10 year Treasury Constant Maturity minus the 2 year Treasury Constant Maturity as of February 7, 2019.  (Shaded areas represent U.S. recessions; Source Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis)

You also may read or listen to various news outlets debating whether the United States economy is currently in, or will be entering, a recession. I believe this may be missing the most important point. Going back to World War II, LPL Financial Research found there have been 14 bear markets, with seven taking place during a recession and seven without an accompanying recession.

Current events can also impact your investment portfolio. I believe your investment strategy may need to account for them due to their market and political implications. These range from increased trade risks, potential future government shutdowns, troubling headlines on geopolitical issues, global growth slowdowns, etc. Some examples to keep in mind may be:

  • The recent, record-setting 35 day government shutdown, which was temporarily funding governmental operations through February 15, 2019;

  • Thursday February 7, 2019, President Trump indicated he does not plan to meet Chinese president Xi Jinping ahead of the March 1 trade deadline;

  • The United Kingdom’s scheduled exit from the European Union on Friday March 29, 2019 after 46 years of membership;

  • The European Commission cut its GDP growth forecast for 2019 from 1.9% to 1.3%, warning that Brexit and China may worsen the outlook. Italy's revision was the most negative, from 1.2% to 0.2%. The latest data told the same story, as industrial production in Germany contracted in December by 0.4%, versus expectations for 0.8% growth, suggesting the country may have entered a technical recession in the fourth quarter. In addition, the Bank of England cut its U.K. economic growth forecast for 2019 from 1.7% to 1.2%-and noted that Brexit risk had risen. Finally, Europe's economic surprise indexes have lagged far behind those in the U.S., Japan, and China in recent months and

  • St. Louis Federal Reserve President James Bullard, a Fed voting member, said in a speech on February 7th, 2019 that the Fed must “tread carefully” in future policy changes, and noted that he views inflation-adjusted rates as “a little bit restrictive” at this point.

I hope this article gives you a good start building your knowledge base focusing on preserving your hard earned resources. I believe that when women have a voice, options, information and a community in which to learn, they are able to make smart decisions with their money, thus creating a lifetime of financial confidence.

If you seek clarity in developing your investment process, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or view more educational resources at www.KNAPPADVISORY.com.

Securities and advisory services offered through LPL Financial, a Registered Investment Advisor, Member FINRA/SIPC.

The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. All performance referenced is historical and is no guarantee of future results. All indices are unmanaged and may not be invested into directly.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) is an index of 500 stocks seen as a leading indicator of U.S. equities and a reflection of the performance of the large cap universe, made up of companies selected by economists.

The Bloomberg Barclays U.S. Aggregate Bond Index is a broad-based flagship benchmark that measures the investment grade, US dollar-denominated, fixed rate taxable fixed income.