Run Kade, Run!!- Kade Lovell hadn’t planned on running a 10-kilometer race, but the Minnesota fourth-grader won anyway. Kade had registered for the St. Francis Franny Flyer 5K. When the path took a turn, a volunteer assumed he was running the similar 10K path and told him to go straight. “I’m just going to keep running,” the 9-year-old decided when he saw the 10K signs. Kade finished the 6.2-mile race in 48 minutes 17 seconds, 1 minute ahead of the 40-year-old runner-up. His only concern? “I thought my mom was going to be worried, and when she gets worried, she starts to get a little angry.”
Love Notes- For Oklahoman Josh Wilson, 41, a failed ad turned into a successful declaration of love. Wilson bought billboard ads for his business, Living Water Irrigation, in January. They weren’t attracting new customers, but Wilson couldn’t cancel the one-year, $1,200-a-month campaign. His business coach proposed an idea: Why not use them to show his appreciation for his wife? So, Wilson printed “Amy, I love you more!” on eight billboards across Tulsa. “A lot of people wondered if I was in trouble with Amy,” Wilson said, “but I just adore her.”
The Kids Are Alright- When the Roseville, Calif., police department called for help to find a 97-year-old woman with dementia, a squad of four embarked on a mission to find her. Logan Hultman, Makenna Rogers, and Kashton Claiborne, all 10, and Hope Claiborne, 11, took to the streets on their bikes, riding across town, over hills, and through parks. Logan fell off his bike and hurt himself, but they regrouped after patching up his wound and eating dinner. They finally spotted the missing woman near the senior center and alerted the police, who took over and, as Logan said modestly, “took care of everything else.” The kids celebrated with a party in Makenna’s treehouse.
Weekly Focus – Think About It
“Attitude is a choice. Happiness is a choice. Optimism is a choice. Kindness is a choice. Giving is a choice. Respect is a choice. Whatever choice you make makes you. Choose wisely.” –Roy T. Bennett, Author
The world breathed a sigh of relief last week when the United States and China took a step toward a trade-war truce.
Financial Times reported the United States agreed to not increase tariffs from 25 percent to 30 percent on $250 billion of Chinese imports next week. (Current tariffs remain in place, and it is possible new tariffs will be imposed on additional Chinese goods – electronics, apparel, and other consumer items – in mid-December.)
In return, China agreed to purchase $40 to $50 billion of agricultural goods, including soybeans and pork, although no time frame was established for the purchases. It remained unclear what progress was made on intellectual-property protection and rules to prevent currency manipulation, reported The Wall Street Journal (WSJ).
U.S. stock markets responded enthusiastically to news about one of the great uncertainties hanging over economic growth, namely the trade war between the United States and China, might be resolved. However, after the details of the deal were announced, markets gave back some gains.
“The tentative truce underwhelmed some international businesses that had been hoping the United States and China would finish up a deal that cemented more sweeping structural changes in China’s economy, eliminated additional tariffs scheduled to go into place in December, and even rolled back existing tariffs both sides have added to imports from each country,” reported WSJ.
Derek Scissors, an American Enterprise Institute trade expert and White House advisor told WSJ, “If this turns out to be all there is, we could have achieved these results a year ago or more.”
Yields on U.S. Treasury bonds moved higher during the week, and the yield curve righted itself, reported MarketWatch. The change reflected optimism about trade negotiations. Bond markets also embraced a Federal Reserve announcement it will resume buying Treasuries each month to ensure the banking system has sufficient reserves.
The United States and China hope to have a written draft of the phase-one agreement finalized during the next few weeks.
The Nicest Place in America. There are some people who scorn being nice (a.k.a. amiable, agreeable, pleasant). They equate it with being uninteresting or boring. What they fail to understand is being nice is often more challenging than the alternative.
Years ago, Marilyn Zeilinski penned a Chicago Tribune article entitled, “Being Nice Is Hugely Underrated.” In it, she explained:
“Eventually I discovered that being nice is hard work. It is strong enough to shovel the elderly neighbor’s driveway and as brave as a child inviting, ‘Come play with me!’ to another child exiled by unpopularity…Niceness is not weakness, as I once thought. Niceness stands up for itself, though politely, if someone cuts in line. Most of all, niceness is not safe. Safety is keeping your head down, minding your own business. Niceness reaches out, and that is riskier than a cocoon of self-interest. But it is worth it.”
Residents of Columbiana, Ohio, have chosen to embrace ‘nice.’ That’s why Reader’s Digest (RD) recently named the town 2019 Nicest Place In America.
How nice is Columbiana?
Good News Network reported the town has, “A baker who donates freely to support causes of every kind, the real-estate developer who offers a year rent-free to promising entrepreneurs who may not have the resources to get started on their own, the local philanthropist who returned to his hometown to donate $500,000 to rebuild the town’s beloved Firestone Park.”
Columbiana isn’t the only nice place in America. There are a lot of places where people work hard and help make each other’s lives better. In 2019, RD recognized a place or town in every state.
Nice can be inspiring.
John Klevens, CFP
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This material is intended to provide general financial education and is not written or intended as tax or legal advice and may not be relied upon for purposes of avoiding any Federal tax penalties. Individuals are encouraged to seek advice from their own tax or legal counsel. Individuals involved in the estate planning process should work with an estate planning team, including their own personal legal or tax counsel. This material is for informational purposes only and is not an offer to sell or a solicitation to buy any securities.
Securities and Advisory Services offered by John Klevens through KMS Financial Services, Inc. Member FINRA/SIPC and an SEC Registered Investment Adviser. Klevens Capital Management and KMS are separate and unaffiliated.
Sources: The Week Magazine
Portions of this newsletter have been prepared by Peak Advisor
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https://www.ft.com/content/28cc18f0-ec61-11e9-a240-3b065ef5fc55 (or go to https://peakcontent.s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/+Peak+Commentary/10-14-19_FinancialTimes-US_Agrees_Limited_Trade_Deal_with_China-Footnote_1.pdf)
https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-strikes-upbeat-notes-on-trade-talks-11570804097 (or go to https://peakcontent.s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/+Peak+Commentary/10-14-19_WSJ-US_and_China_Move_Forward_on_Trade-Footnote_2.pdf)