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November Economic Update

Last month, the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average posted their seventh straight monthly gain as stocks rallied out of October. The fall season welcomed more encouraging economic news including positive earnings reports, strong fundamental indicators, and consumer confidence rising - all of which helped send the S&P 500 index higher by 2.22% and the Dow Jones rising 4.3%. The Nasdaq index gained 3.6%, adding to its four month streak of positive returns and closed at a record high. (1)

Tech Earnings Reports

More than half of the S&P 500’s monthly gains in October were the result of five big name tech stocks. Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Google and Microsoft all helped to bolster the broad stock index to new highs with stellar earnings reports. Apple reported after the end of October, but shares rose in anticipation of their report. (2)

Equifax Data Breach

With the recent data breach at Equifax, many of our clients have asked us what steps they should take to protect their identity.

  • How long should you worry about identity theft in the wake of the Equifax hack?

  • If your personal data was released in this cybercrime, you should scrutinize your credit, bank, and investment account statements in the near term. You may have to keep up that vigilance for years to come and it is always good practice to keep a close eye on all of your accounts and credit score.

  • Should you accept Equifax’s offer to try and protect your credit?

  • Those who sign-up for Equifax's TrustedID Premier protection must agree to some troubling fine print. By enrolling in the program, you waive the right to join any class action lawsuits against Equifax.

  • Should you consider paying for credit monitoring?

  • It may be worth considering purchasing a third-party credit monitoring service such as IdentityForce or LifeLock. These services do not prevent the misuse of your personal information. However, they will alert you when a threat is detected and restore your credit score.