As trade war with China continues, there are things you can do to protect your finances

President Donald J. Trump participates in a bilateral meeting with President Xi Jinping at the Great Hall of the People, Thursday, Nov. 9, 2017, in Beijing, People’s Republic of China. | Photo by Shealah Craighead, St. George News

SOUTHERN UTAH — With the recent fluctuations of financial markets, and given that current trade disputes with China could have an impact on Southern Utah, it may be a good time to review your family’s budget, savings and retirement goals.

President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump, joined by President Xi Jinping and First Lady Peng Liyuan, applaud and thank the performers at a cultural performance at the Great Hall of the People, Thursday, Nov. 9, 2017, following a State Dinner in their honor, in Beijing, People’s Republic of China | Photo by Andrea Hanks, St. George News

There have been ongoing negotiations between President Trump’s team and Chinese officials since the 2016 election with little official progress announced.

On May 10, the United States officially increased tariffs from 10% to 25% on $200 billion worth of imported goods from China. Consequently, China imposed a 25% tariff on $60 billion of U.S. goods and there has been “ample posturing on both sides since” said local investment professional, Ben Chappell of Foresight Wealth Management.

While speaking with media on June 6, President Trump said he is “probably planning to impose more tariffs on the $300 billion of untaxed imports sometime after his meeting with Chinese leader Xi Jinping at the G20 summit in June.

“United States is the piggy bank. It has all the money that others want to take from us but they’re not taking it so easy anymore,” President Trump said.

Chappell said when the world’s two largest economies have a trade dispute, there could be financial, economic and political ramifications.

Stock image, St. George News

“Although all of this is happening thousands of miles away from our little community, the effects are strong here,” he said, adding trade negotiations could send many companies’ stocks and mutual funds “into a bit of a tizzy, in ways that aren’t usually anticipated.”

It was the worst May for financial markets in seven years Chappell said, and for people living primarily on their investments, ongoing trade negotiations could affect the amount of money they earn from their investments. He said investors and also retirees might want to think about checking with a professional if they have concerns.

“They need a little bit of extra attention – a bit of allocation to offset the volatility that is going to be happening too,” he said. “In light of these world events which are out of our control, it may be a good time to review what we can control. This may be a good time to review your family’s budget and savings goals.

Chappell said many of the companies that have traditionally been strong, good-standing investments heavily source their products in China. Instability in the marketplace could dramatically decrease their stock value both short and long term, he said, adding that a lot of them have already seen a devaluation in their stock price due to recent volatility.

“Just because a certain company’s stock or a certain fund has been a safe reliable performer in the past does not mean that it’s positioned well to ride out this storm which may be approaching.”  

China recently announced plans to be the No. 1 economy in the world by 2025 and to have the No. 1 currency as well. Chappell said this has the potential to cause trouble for U.S. banks – a place where many retirees have their money heavily invested.

“That’s one example, but there are a lot of mutual funds and ways that people invest – even conservative investors – that are going to be hit abnormally hard because of the trade war,” he said.

Chappell recommended anyone with financial concerns, especially retirees that are living only from their investments should meet with a reputable financial adviser that can go in depth about their mutual funds. The team at Foresight Wealth Management has two CFAs (Chartered Financial Analysts) on staff to help them review portfolios to be forward looking.

He said experienced financial consultants know how to analyze the performance of both funds and individual stocks.

Most financial advisers out there do the best they can to pick good investments for their clients, Chappell said. Foresight Wealth Management is small enough to take care of their clients’ needs, but their innovation also allows certified financial and investment advisers to develop attractive options for your investment portfolios.

While some people may feel helpless to impact what is happening thousands of miles away from home, Chappell said checking your retirement assets is something that can and should be done and now is a crucial time to review your investments with a licensed investment professional.

“Let’s look at your investments.”

Chappell said he is offering a free consultation and “stress test” to help see how your portfolio could weather the volatile events which are affecting the markets.  

To find out what Chappell can do to help, contact him directly anytime at 435-216-3835 and ben@foresightwealth.com or click here for the St. George News “Ask a Local Expert” page.

“How are you doing? And how can I help?”

For more information, contact Foresight Wealth Management on their website.

Written by ANDREW PINCKNEY, St. George News.

Advisory services are offered through Foresight Wealth Management, LLC, a Registered Investment Advisor with the SEC. Foresight Wealth Management, LLC only transacts business in states where it is properly registered or is excluded or exempted from registration requirements. SEC registration does not constitute an endorsement of the firm by the Commission and does not imply that the advisor has achieved a particular level of skill or ability. All investment strategies have the potential for profit or loss.

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