The Miller Financial Group
Markets Close Mixed  
Weekly Update - June 30, 2014
In This Issue
Markets lost some momentum on slow trading and ended the week mixed. Despite the sluggish behavior, equities are up strongly for the quarter and the S&P 500 is poised for its longest rally since 1998.[1] While the S&P lost 0.10% and the Dow fell 0.56%, the Nasdaq managed a gain of 0.68%.[2]
Economic data was largely unsurprising last week. A dismal first quarter GDP update didn't faze investors who regarded it as old news. While Q1 GDP growth fell to -2.9%, investors blamed the contraction on the unusually cold weather and cuts to healthcare spending.[3] On the other hand, lukewarm consumer spending in May caused economists to trim economic growth expectations for the second quarter. Despite the poor showing, analysts admitted that challenges in calculating healthcare spending might have artificially lowered spending numbers.[4] 

On the geopolitical front, the Ukrainian government in Kiev signed historic free trade agreements with the EU, Georgia, and Moldova, integrating the economies of the three former Soviet-Bloc countries more closely with Europe, and potentially paving the way for future entry into the EU. The move immediately drew threats from Russian leaders, who are worried about losing control over their neighbors.[5] Although the situation is far from resolved, we can hope that the threat of further economic sanctions will cause Russia to back down.

As the clock ticks down on the second quarter, investors are looking ahead for economic data to support hopes that economic activity picked up in the last three months. The short trading week is packed with economic releases, including the June Employment Situation report and a speech by Fed chair Janet Yellen.

On behalf of all of us here, may your extended holiday weekend be filled with friends, family, and fun!

Monday: Chicago PMI, Pending Home Sales Index, Dallas Fed Mfg. Survey
Tuesday: Motor Vehicle Sales, PMI Manufacturing Index, ISM Mfg. Index, Construction Spending
Wednesday: ADP Employment Report, Factory Orders, EIA Petroleum Status Report, Janet Yellen Speaks 11:00 AM ET
Thursday: Employment Situation, International Trade, Jobless Claims, ISM Non-Mfg. Index
Friday: U.S. Markets Closed for Independence Day Holiday

Notes: All index returns exclude reinvested dividends, and the 5-year and 10-year returns are annualized. Sources: Yahoo! Finance and International performance is represented by the MSCI EAFE Index. Corporate bond performance is represented by the DJCBP. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Indices are unmanaged and cannot be invested into directly.


Federal student loan rates rise on July 1. Legislation that ties student loan rates to prevailing market rates means that federal loan rates will reset on July 1. Visit for more information on loan rates.[6]

Consumer sentiment rises in June. 
A final reading of June sentiment shows that consumers felt more optimistic about the economy in June and are upbeat about their future prospects. Hopefully, these positive feelings will be seen in higher Q2 consumer spending.[7] 

Rising food and fuel prices drag on consumers. 
Rising demand, drought, and global oil uncertainties are causing prices on gasoline and food to rise around the country. Prices on meat, dairy, and even coffee are up, and producers are passing those costs on to consumers. If Americans continue to take a hit at the pump or grocery store, it could cause consumer spending to fall later this year.[8]

Sales of new and existing homes rise in May. 
Home resales rose more than expected in May and the inventory of properties was the highest it's been in 1-1/2 years. New home sales skyrocketed to a six-year high, though the smaller sample size makes this measure more volatile. While it's too soon to know for certain, these numbers suggest that the housing market may be recovering from its slump.[9] 

Quote Of The Week
Quote Of The Week
Fountain Pen


"The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now."
-Chinese Proverb 


Recipe Of The Week
Recipe Of The Week
Fork and Knife

Berry Yogurt Paletas

These healthful frozen treats are perfect for a summer gathering. Use blueberries, blackberries, or any other seasonal fruit.


Makes 8 paletas

1 3/4 cups plain full-fat Greek yogurt 
4 tablespoons sugar syrup or agave nectar 
3/4 pound blackberries or other seasonal fruit (about 3 cups) 
8 4-ounce ice pop molds or paper cups and wooden sticks

  1. Mix together yogurt and 2 tablespoons of the sugar or agave syrup.
  2. Combine the berries and remaining sugar in a different bowl and use a spoon or potato masher to crush coarsely and release the juices.
  3. Set up 8 paper cups (or small yogurt containers) or ice pop molds. Starting with the yogurt mixture, alternate layers of yogurt and fruit, dividing evenly among the molds. Drag a toothpick or bamboo skewer through the mixtures to create a pleasing swirl.
  4. Insert sticks and freeze at least 3 hours or up to several days. Remove them from the freezer a few minutes before serving.
Recipe adapted from Dawn Perry | 




Tax Tips
Tax Tips
Tax Tips for Farmers


Farmers are eligible for a number of tax benefits and deductions. Under IRS rules, farms can be plantations, ranches, ranges, and orchards and farmers can raise livestock, poultry, fish, or grow fruits, and vegetables. Here are a few things you should know:

  • Crop insurance proceeds count as income and must be reported on your tax return.
  • Farmers can deduct "ordinary and necessary" expenses, defined as costs that are appropriate for your business.
  • Wages for full- and part-time employees can be deducted as long as you withhold Social Security, Medicare, and income taxes.
  • Farmers may be able to delay reporting a gain from the weather-related sale of livestock.
  • You may be able to carry over or request a refund of income taxes if you report a net operating loss one year.
For more information about filing taxes as a farmer or farm owner, speak with a local tax advisor or see IRS Publication 225, Farmer's Tax Guide.

Tip courtesy of [10]
Golf Tip
Golf Tip
Start Chipping More Consistently
Many golfers make the mistake of thinking a chip should be more like a putt than a half-swing. Consequently, they may "drag" the club on the backswing to try and keep the club head close to the ground. On the swing, they end up collapsing their arms and "tugging" them upward in an attempt to give the ball some altitude. The result? Inconsistent chipping. 
If you're having trouble with your chips, focus on relaxing your wrists and rotating your body naturally through the swing. Remember - a chip is much more like a small swing than a big putt. 
Tip courtesy of Jeff Yurkiewicz, PGA | Golf Tips Mag [11] 

Healthy Lifestyle
Healthy Lifestyle
Medical Cross

Kick Your Brain into High Gear

Boost brainpower by adding these ordinary ingredients to healthful recipes:
  • Asparagus is rich in vitamin A, which can help your brain retain plasticity - the ability to keep learning new things and forming new neural pathways - as you age.
  • Oats are rich in selenium, an anti-oxidant shown to reduce the effects of some age-related cognitive issues.
  • Almonds are a great source of Vitamin E, which can delay the progress of Alzheimer's in concentrated doses.
  • Legumes have a lot of folic acid, which has been demonstrated to improve verbal and memory performance. 
Tip courtesy of AARP[12] 


Green Living
Green Living

Don't Use Harsh Cleaners for Clogged Pipes

Have a slow-draining sink or tub? Don't reach for harsh chemical cleaners that can damage pipes and leach into the water supply. Instead, call your local hardware or home improvement store to see if they stock a bacteria-based cleaning product. These drain cleaners use friendly bacterial colonies to eat hair and other common cloggers and keep your pipes clear.

Tip courtesy of Seattle PI [13]


Share the Wealth of Knowledge!

Please share this market update with family, friends, or colleagues. If you would like us to add them to our list, simply click on the "Forward email" link below. We love being introduced!

Investing involves risk including the potential loss of principal. No investment strategy can guarantee a profit or protect against loss in periods of declining values.

Diversification does not guarantee profit nor is it guaranteed to protect assets.

The Standard & Poor's 500 (S&P 500) is an unmanaged group of securities considered to be representative of the stock market in general.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is a price-weighted average of 30 significant stocks traded on the New York Stock Exchange and the NASDAQ. The DJIA was invented by Charles Dow back in 1896.

The Nasdaq Composite is an index of the common stocks and similar securities listed on the NASDAQ stock market and is considered a broad indicator of the performance of stocks of technology companies and growth companies.

The MSCI EAFE Index was created by Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) that serves as a benchmark of the performance in major international equity markets as represented by 21 major MSCI indexes from Europe, Australia and Southeast Asia.

The Dow Jones Corporate Bond Index is a 96-bond index designed to represent the market performance, on a total-return basis, of investment-grade bonds issued by leading U.S. companies. Bonds are equally weighted by maturity cell, industry sector, and the overall index.

The S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices are the leading measures of U.S. residential real estate prices, tracking changes in the value of residential real estate. The index is made up of measures of real estate prices in 20 cities and weighted to produce the index.

The 10-year Treasury Note represents debt owed by the United States Treasury to the public. Since the U.S. Government is seen as a risk-free borrower, investors use the 10-year Treasury Note as a benchmark for the long-term bond market.

Google Finance is the source for any reference to the performance of an index between two specific periods.

Opinions expressed are subject to change without notice and are not intended as investment advice or to predict future performance.

Past performance does not guarantee future results.

You cannot invest directly in an index.

Consult your financial professional before making any investment decision.

Fixed income investments are subject to various risks including changes in interest rates, credit quality, inflation risk, market valuations, prepayments, corporate events, tax ramifications and other factors.

These are the views of Platinum Advisor Marketing Strategies, LLC, and not necessarily those of the named representative, Broker dealer or Investment Advisor, and should not be construed as investment advice. Neither the named representative nor the named Broker dealer or Investment Advisor gives tax or legal advice. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however, we make no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. Please consult your financial advisor for further information.

By clicking on these links, you will leave our server, as they are located on another server. We have not independently verified the information available through this link. The link is provided to you as a matter of interest. Please click on the links below to leave and proceed to the selected site.




























Visit My Site
Email Me
Rob Miller, CFP
The Miller Financial Group
7700 West Camino Real
Suite 400
Boca Raton, FL 33433
[email protected]

Copyright © 2013. All Rights Reserved.