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J. Michael Stolp

J. Michael Stolp is Managing Member of CFO Solutions LLC, founded by Michael in 1991. CFO is a registered investment advisory and boutique financial planning firm with corporate offices in Scottsdale, Arizona. He is based and resides in Scottsdale. CFO specializes in the unique planning needs of doctors, other professionals, and small business owners, and the economic issues facing them.

Keep Your Money Safe for Retirement! You’ve worked hard. You’ve earned your savings. Don’t lose it all now on risky investments. We can help you keep your money safe and create the retirement you want, when you want it. We charge no commissions, and no client of ours has ever lost a dime who followed our risk averse philosophy. Contact one of our CFO Financial Advisors today and find out how.

At CFO Solutions, we hear the following comments all the time, “I wish I would have started this process earlier in my life”, and “I wish I would have heard about you sooner”. It’s never too late, but when it comes to preparing for the future, the sooner you start the better. An earlier start will allow your investments more time to earn and mature.

Healthy retirement planning depends on asset allocation rather than on the performance of one single investment. For this reason, we recommend that you spread your investment capital around. However, don’t just spread your savings for the sake of diversification. Be sure your investments are safe and thoroughly discussed with a professional.

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Small-business confidence is surging in 2018 as optimism rises among small-business owners about the newly enacted tax-reform package, according to the latest CNBC/SurveyMonkey Small Business Survey, released Tuesday.The CNBC/SurveyMonkey Q1 Small Business Confidence Index saw an increase of five points, from 57 to 62, a record high and the largest quarter-to-quarter move the index has seen since CNBC and SurveyMonkey began measuring last year. This is the first survey since President Donald Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act into law on December 22, 2017.In the Q4 survey, small-business owners were split evenly on the core question about the effect that tax policy would have on their business. Opinions have shifted significantly: Twice as many now expect changes in tax policy to have a positive rather than negative effect on their businesses. Forty-six percent of those surveyed say tax policy changes will have a positive effect, up from 38 percent in the fourth quarter. The number of those saying tax policy changes will have a negative impact fell sharply, from 36 percent in the fourth quarter to 23 percent in the most recent survey.Half of small-business owners are now expecting to see tax cuts in 2018.

Source: Small business confidence hits record in 2018 after tax reform win

One of the most popular measures of volatility is being manipulated, charges one individual who submitted a letter anonymously to the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.The letter makes the claim to regulators that fake quotes for the S&P 500 index SPX, +0.26% are skewing levels of the Cboe Volatility Index VIX, -2.50% which reflects bearish and bullish options bets 30-days in the future on the S&P 500 to gauge implied stock-market volatility (see excerpt from the letter below).

Source: How Wall Street’s ‘fear gauge’ is being rigged, according to one whistleblower – MarketWatch

U.S. stocks plunged the most in 6 1/2 years, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average sinking more than 1,100 points, as the equity selloff reached a fever pitch amid rising concern that inflation will force interest rates higher. Treasuries rallied and gold rose on haven demand.

Source: U.S. Stocks Sink Most Since 2011 as Rout Deepens: Markets Wrap – Bloomberg

China added to bond investors’ jitters on Wednesday as traders braced for what they feared could be the end of a three-decade bull market.Senior government officials in Beijing reviewing the nation’s foreign-exchange holdings have recommended slowing or halting purchases of U.S. Treasuries, according to people familiar with the matter. The news comes as global debt markets were already selling off amid signs that central banks are starting to step back after years of bond-buying stimulus. Yields on 10-year Treasuries rose for a fifth day, touching the highest since March.

Source: China Weighs Slowing or Halting Purchases of U.S. Treasuries – Bloomberg

he Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped past 25000 for the first time Thursday, possibly notching the fastest 1,000-point gain in its history, should it close above that mark.The blue-chip index, which heavily weights industrial giants like Boeing Co. and Caterpillar Inc., was recently up 97 points, or 0.4%, at 25019.Thursday’s moves marked the latest feat for a rally that has repeatedly wrong-footed skeptics and sent stock indexes around the world to multiyear highs. The Dow industrials hit five thousand-point milestones last year, its most such records in its 120-year history.Faster economic growth around the globe and improving sentiment from both consumers and businesses—both of which were elusive for many years since the financial crisis a decade ago—have helped power this rally in recent weeks.

Source: Dow Industrials Cross 25000 for First Time – WSJ

President Trump lauded the opening of the nation’s first new coal mine in recent memory.Corsa Coal Company will operate the mine in Somerset County, Pa. – outside of Pittsburgh.Corsa CEO George Dethlefsen said the mine will be a boon to the struggling local economy.He praised Trump’s easing of regulations and encouragement for fossil fuel exploration.Dethlefsen told Leland Vittert that for the 70 positions available in the mine, 400 people applied.”It’s a hard day’s work every day, but it’s worth it,” one miner said.

Source: First New Coal Mine of Trump Era Opens in Pennsylvania | Fox News Insider

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Source: Chinese firm halves worker costs by hiring army of robots to sort out 200,000 packages a day | South China Morning Post

U.S. stocks began the week on the wrong foot, trading sharply lower on Monday as enthusiasm about President Donald Trump’s agenda dwindled.The Dow Jones industrial average fell about 130 points, with Goldman Sachs contributing the most losses. The 30-stock index was also on track to post an eight-session losing streak.The S&P 500 pulled back 0.6 percent, with financials falling 1.4 percent to lead decliners. Financials were dragged by bank stocks, as the SPDR S&P Bank ETF (KBE) and the Regional Banking ETF (KRE) both fell more than 2 percent.The Nasdaq composite dropped 0.6 percent after briefly falling 1 percent.”I don’t think this is the beginning of a full-blown correction, but it’s definitely a reversal in market sentiment,” said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at First Standard Financial.

Source: Dow falls triple digits as optimism on Trump agenda diminishes; financials lag

U.S. companies added a whopping 298,000 new jobs in February, beating economists’ expectations by more than 100,000.The report from ADP, a global human resources and payroll firm, provides the first hard economic numbers from Donald Trump’s first full month as president.Trump wrote Wednesday on Twitter about another similar measure, citing numbers from a new LinkedIn workforce report that showed strong job-adding numbers from January and February.Those months ‘were the strongest consecutive months for hiring since August and September 2015,’ the president tweeted, mirroring the report’s language.

Source: Trump’s first full month brings massive employment boom | Daily Mail Online

Two weeks after David Stockman warned that “the market is apparently pricing in a huge Trump stimulus. But if you just look at the real world out there, the only thing that’s going to happen is a fiscal bloodbath and a White House train wreck like never before in U.S. history” and exclaimed that, when looking at markets, “what’s going on today is complete insanity” he is back with another interview, this time with Greg Hunter of USAWatchdog in which he, once again warns, that a giant fiscal bloodbatch is coming soon, and urges listeners to pay especially close attention to the March 15, 2017 debt ceiling deadling, at which point everything could “grind to a halt.”

Source: Stockman: “After March 15 Everything Will Grind To A Halt” | Zero Hedge

A strong majority of Americans say the U.S. economy is running strong, and most believe the upward trend will continue under President Trump, according to a Harvard-Harris poll provided exclusively to The Hill.The survey found that 61 percent view the economy as strong, against 39 percent who say it is weak.A plurality, 42 percent, said they believe the economy is on the right track, versus 39 percent who said it is on the wrong track.

Source: Americans brimming with optimism on the economy | TheHill

‘We’re going to be announcing something I would say over the next two or three weeks that will be phenomenal’

Source: Trump: ‘Phenomenal’ Tax Cut Package Coming in 2-3 Weeks :: Grabien News

Club For Growth founder Stephen Moore reacted to reporting that since President Trump was elected, the stock market gained $2 trillion in wealth.

Source: Economist: Stock Market Gained $2T in Wealth Since Trump Elected | Fox News Insider

President Donald Trump is expected to sign an executive order as early as Monday stating his intention to renegotiate the free trade agreement between the United States, Canada and Mexico, a White House official told NBC News. Eliminating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which was crafted by former President Bill Clinton and enacted in 1994, was a frequent Trump campaign promise. The deal was intended to eliminate most trade tariffs between the three nations, increase investment and tighten protection and enforcement of intellectual property.

Source: Trump to sign executive order to renegotiate NAFTA and intent to leave TPP

U.S. supermarket operator Kroger Co said on Monday it would fill 10,000 permanent positions in its supermarket divisions. Kroger, which had about 431,000 full- and part-time employees as of Jan. 30, 2016, also said its total active workforce grew by more than 12,000 in 2016. The world’s No. 1 retailer Wal-Mart Stores Inc said last week it would create about 10,000 jobs in the United States this year, as President Donald Trump puts pressure on companies to hire more U.S. workers. Companies such as General Motors Co and Amazon.com Inc have also announced plans to add jobs in the United States. German drug and chemical maker Bayer AG, which is awaiting approval to buy U.S. seeds company Monsanto Co for $66 billion, said last week it would maintain more than 9,000 jobs in the United States and add 3,000 new U.S.-based high-tech positions.

Source: Supermarket operator Kroger to fill 10,000 permanent posts | Reuters