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What Happened Last Week and What It Means to You: August 19th, 2022

Week Ending August 19th, 2022

Initial jobless claims improved…

Job market continues to be tight and still on the mend.
What does it mean – The key takeaway from the report is twofold: first, the initial claims level is still a long way from pre-recession levels; and secondly, this report covers the week in which the survey for the August employment report was conducted. The low level of initial jobless claims supports expectations for continued strength in nonfarm payrolls, which of course should support continued tightening moves by the Federal Reserve.

More people working two or more full-time jobs in recent history…

Yet, the US still has more people unemployed and a lower participation rate since the forced shutdown.
What does it mean – Per the graph below we saw real wages increase from 2017 to the beginning of the pandemic and fewer people working more than one job. Since the pandemic and the forced shutdown more and more people are forced to work more hours to keep up with inflation thanks to abysmal monetary policy via the increase of the money supply, combined with reckless fiscal policy through endless increases in government spending.

All about the jobs…

According to the latest PriceWaterhouseCooper (PWC) half of U.S. companies are planning to cut jobs, even as business leaders fret about difficulties hiring and retaining talent
What does it mean – From the song Pompeii by Bastille, “Grey clouds roll over the hills
Bringing darkness from above.” Businesses are now starting to feel the pinch of inflation, higher wages, a messed-up supply chain, the cost of government intervention, etc. I could go on and on, but you get the drift. The only sector that’s booming despite it all is government along with its 87,000 new IRS agents. What we need is a bill passed by both the House and the Senate that limits salaries for DC to the national or state average in average in which they are stationed.

Housing starts in July decreased 9.6% month-over-month…

Sales also decreased the most in 20 years.
What does it mean – Housing is slowing down. Cost of living, increasing interest rates, and now the Inflation Reduction Act will force you to pay more, your hope of moving up is now just hoping you can stay. Increasing corporate taxes and increasing the size of government will surely increase the cost of government to us all.

England and the Eurozone…

Inflation is a global issue.
What does it mean – Like the United States, energy is paramount to a strong economy and low inflation. Take it away and make it less dependable, and more expensive and the cost of everything goes up.

Oil prices fall…

We are all enjoying a few cents savings, but why? Demand destruction.
What does it mean – Economists and business leaders have been warning about Demand destruction for some time. Once prices get too high, people stop using or look for substitutes. Consumer demand for energy has shifted as prices have increased substantially and the government has reduced the ability to process and refine crude and natural gas to keep up with needed demand. Demand destruction is exactly what is happening to the oil price as consumers are starting to use a bit less. With no help from the government drilling or begging won’t change the availability if the government continues to shut down refineries due to the added increase of regulations under this administration. Enjoy the price reprieve in gas while we have it. If we do not change policy, prices are heading back up.

You can’t make this stuff up!!

Starbucks asks Labor Board to suspend mail-in ballot for union elections…

According to CNBC, Starbucks asks labor board to suspend mail-in ballot for union elections, alleging misconduct in voting process.
What does it mean – HMMM-The very company and CEO who promoted mail in balloting on our national election is finding out the truth about voter manipulation and how fraudulent mail-in balloting is the hard way. If passed and Starbucks becomes unionized, I wonder what that will do to the cost of a cup of coffee. Your venti vanilla latte won’t get any cheaper, that’s for sure. I am sure earnings will struggle and we will have to change the name from “three bucks” to “six bucks”. Not to mention due to their support for BLM and ANTIFA, they are now being forced to close many stores in cities ravaged by crime, homelessness, and bad city politics run by left wing DA’s, Mayors, and Governors who let criminals free and homeless destroy the culture and fabric of their once safe cities and states. Look no further than CA, IL, NY, NJ. All seeing Starbucks closing shops along with many other national chains like CVS, Walgreens, Walmart, etc. In Beverly Hills, the boutique chain Kitson just banned masks. Apparently, the robbers and thugs are using the mask mandates as ways to circumvent the rule of law and hide their faces from cameras. Wow…who would have thought? Every store owner in America complained about this and now business and the safety of staff, clients, and innocent bystanders suffers under the fear mongering of the federal, state and local governments.

Let’s roll America!!

Doug De Groote, CFP®, MBA, CTC
Managing Director

805.230.0111 Main
818.642.9789 Cell
805.230.0061 Fax
2660 Townsgate Rd Suite 450
Westlake Village, CA 91361
De Groote Financial Group, LLC is a federally registered investment adviser that maintains a principal office in the State of California. The information contained in this message is confidential, protected from disclosure and may be legally privileged. If the reader of this message is not the intended recipient or an employee or agent responsible for delivering this message to the intended recipient, you are hereby notified that any disclosure, distribution, copying, or any action taken or action omitted in reliance on it, is strictly prohibited and may be unlawful. If you have received this communication in error, please notify us immediately by replying to this message and destroy the material in its entirety, whether in electronic or hard copy format.

Jeannie Ewing-Nicholson

Operations Manager

Jeannie started her career in the Financial Services industry in 1994 with Oppenheimer & Company. As part of the De Groote Financial Group, Jeannie is responsible for the operational needs of the firm including cash management and account administration. With her upbeat attitude and attention to detail, Jeannie provides an efficient streamlines experience to ensure clients meet their goals. Jeannie enjoys travel, outdoor activities, Pilates, and is a football and basketball fan. She resides in Westlake Village with her husband, daughter and son.

Mary-Ellen Lykken

Executive Assistant

Mary-Ellen, Executive Assistant at DFG, keeps the office running smoothly by providing administrative support and assisting with scheduling and organization. With a background in human resource and office management, Mary-Ellen comes from the non-profit and services industries.

Outside of the office, Mary-Ellen is committed to the advancement of independence and productivity for those with disabilities. By telling her story of the challenges and joys of raising a child with complicated disabilities, she hopes to help others navigate similar circumstances.

She is happiest when visiting her two grown sons. Otherwise, you can find her competing on the pickleball courts.

Sara Mariniello

Operations Manager

Sara is new to the financial industry only starting in 2022 when she was hired at De Groote Financial. As Operations Manager, Sara is responsible for all the paperwork surrounding opening accounts and investment paperwork and is also responsible for much of the client communication. Sara has her bachelor’s in science and nursing from Concordia University, Texas and worked as nurse for over a year prior to moving back to California. She loves all things sports and church related and is likely spending every free moment with her Husband visiting family in Texas and New Jersey.

Fadi Ahmed

Chief Operations Officer and Chief Compliance Officer

Fadi works with clients to ensure an exceptional experience. He coordinates and assures the planning process and wealth management tools are at your fingertips to provide the clarity you deserve and the transparency and access to all your accounts. Fadi ensures the data and information is reflective in our planning software. All changes and updates flow through his desk and he coordinates those changes with the rest of our team.

Andrew Krout

Wealth Advisor, Co-Chief Investment Officer

Andrew Krout is a Wealth Advisor at De Groote Financial Group, LLC. He also serves as a Co-Chief Investment Officer for the firm, focused on wealth management.

Previously, Andrew served as CIO with Kelly Financial in Boston Massachusetts since 2013. He is a licensed investment advisor representative and insurance producer. He graduated from Saint Francis University with a bachelor’s degree in both finance and accounting. He is a candidate for CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ designation. Andrew holds life insurance licenses in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Connecticut.

Andrew is passionate about serving his clients and investment management and how to apply news and current events to investment decisions. He played Division 1 golf in college, and still enjoys playing and watching the sport in his free time.

David Darst

Co-Chief Information Officer

David Martin Darst, CFA is an Investment Advisor to DeGroote Financial Group, specializing in asset allocation and product selection. Previously, David served for 17 years as a Managing Director and Chief Investment Strategist at Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, with the responsibility for Asset Allocation and Investment Strategy. He joined Morgan Stanley in 1996 from Goldman Sachs, where he held Senior Management Posts within the Equities Division and earlier, for six years as Resident Manager of their Private Bank in Zurich.

David is the author of 13 books, including bestsellers The Art of Asset Allocation, 2nd Edition (McGraw-Hill), and The Little Book that Still Saves Your Assets (John Wiley & Sons). He also appears as a frequent guest on CNBC, Bloomberg, FOX, PBS, and others, and has contributed articles across a variety of publications.

David graduated with a BA in Economics from Yale University, and earned his MBA from Harvard Business School. He has lectured extensively at Wharton, Columbia, INSEAD, and New York University Business Schools, and for nine years, David served as a visiting member at Yale College, Yale School of Management, and Harvard Business School. He is a CFA Charterholder and a member of the New York Society of Security Analysts and the CFA Institute. 

Doug De Groote

Managing Director

Doug is a Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®) with an MBA in Financial Planning, and is an active member of the Financial Planning Association (FPA). Before establishing De Groote Financial Group, Doug founded the United Wealth Management division of United Capital. Prior to that, Doug was a partner at Crowell, Weedon and Co. He regularly contributes to a variety of financial and general media.

Doug’s passion, and what he believes, is that everyone deserves the opportunity; they deserve to have the freedom and responsibility to be pro-active in achieving independence and financial success.

Doug’s life is focused around his family, wife and three children, and making sure they get the foundation that is necessary for them to have the awareness of the opportunities that abound in our great country.

Doug helps increase his client’s awareness and success, to identify and take advantage of opportunities that present themselves and help protect them from some of the pitfalls or obstacles that are thrown in our paths. With regards to their financial circumstances, Doug helps his clients identify their goals, plan for various outcomes and manage their assets to help them make their vision a reality.