Friday, July 17, 2009



As we close the books on the first half of 2009, there appears to be a cup half empty, cup half full scenario going on, depending on your point of view. The markets closed mixed with the S&P 500 winding up at 919.32, a 1.8% gain for the year and up 35.9% from the low of 676.53 in March. The DJIA finished at 8,447.00, which is still -3.8% below the beginning of the year, but still 29% above the low of 6,547.05 set in March. The Nasdaq posted the best year to date gain of the major indices when it closed at 1,835.04, which is a 16.4% increase for the first half of 2009.

While these gains from the lows in March indicate a fantastic recovery for the markets, they represent only a portion of the returns necessary to restore the indices to their former highs. For example, the DJIA would have to gain 67.7% to get to it’s former all time high of 14,164.53 and the S&P 500 would have to add 70.3% to reach it’s former high of 1,565.15. Of course the NASDAQ, which went to the moon in 2000, would have to increase a whopping 175.1% in order to reach the heights it attained before the dotcom bubble burst. While these numbers are troubling, they speak volumes about percentages and compounding. The sad fact is that it takes a 100% gain to recover a 50% loss, or put another way: if you start with 100 dollars, and lose 50%, you have 50 dollars. It will take a 100% gain to return the 50 dollars to the original 100 dollars. Isn’t math just so unfair!

The point here is not to make you feel despondent, but rather to help keep things in perspective. Yes, this was a great quarter and perhaps this recession could be over or at least in its final stages, but there are a great deal of challenges ahead of us. After having witnessed the near implosion of the world’s financial system, the creative destruction of the auto industry in the US, and a tanking of the stock market to levels not seen since the mid 1990’s, looking for positive signs makes sense. If you’ve been investing through all of this turmoil, it is like you had the opportunity to go back to 1997 and put in new money. These gains are real and will continue to positively impact your portfolio going forward.


Has the advisor of any of your friends or relatives left the business, or have any of your other investment representatives been absent during the recent market turmoil?

Do you feel as if your representative only wants to talk to you when all is well with the world? I am here to talk to you about the state of the market, the performance of your investment portfolio, and your retirement plans, regardless of what the market is doing.

With the merger of Transamerica and Intersecurities, I look forward to continuing to provide you with quality investment products and individualized service.

Please feel free to refer any of your friends or relatives who may looking for a new advisor to me. Thank you!


As I mentioned on the preceding page, there is some evidence, as well as historical precedent to indicate the recession may be over or in the fourth quarter, to use a sports analogy. As I noted in previous newsletters, the two longest recessions, since the Great Depression, were the recessions of 1973-75 & 1981-82. Each of those recessions lasted 16 months. March of 2009 was the 16th month of the current recession. As I’ve mentioned before, there are always numerous opinions on these matters, but it is more than likely no coincidence the markets, which are leading indicators, began recovering in March.

While I’d like to believe this is not a head fake, but rather a real recovery, I’ve read enough opinions by numerous bears to remain reticent. This doesn’t mean not being invested, but rather it means cautious, disciplined investing. With the government running GM, TARP funds in the financial sector, Korea and Iran defiantly rebuking Obama’s olive branch, Congress salivating over health care and over a trillion dollars of stimulus in the system, a lot could go wrong. Inflation is one evil that comes to mind.

Obama says he doesn’t want to run GM or the health care system. The specter of public housing conjures up horrendous images of what public health care would look like.



At Jersey Benefits Advisors and Jersey Benefits Group, Inc. protecting your privacy is very important to us. We want you to understand what information we collect and how we use it. We collect and use information from you on applications and other forms as well as information about financial transactions with us and from non-affiliated third parties. This “nonpublic personal information” is obtained in connection with providing a financial product or service to you.

We do not disclose any nonpublic personal information about you without your express consent, except as permitted by law. We may disclose the nonpublic personal information we collect to persons or companies that perform services on our behalf.
We restrict access to your nonpublic personal information and only allow disclosures to persons and companies as permitted by law to assist in providing products or services to you.

We maintain physical, electronic and procedural safeguards to protect your nonpublic personal information at all times.


Transamerica Financial Advisors, Inc. is excited to share some important news with you. Pending final regulatory approval, Transamerica Financial Advisors will merge its operations with St. Petersburg, Florida based InterSecurities, Inc., an affiliated firm that has been offering financial services for almost 25 years. We anticipate the merger will take effect in September 2009. As part of the merger, the resulting entity will retain the Transamerica Financial Advisors, Inc name and continue to be a full service, independent broker-dealer and registered investment advisor. Most importantly, the relationship you have with your registered representative or investment advisory representative WILL NOT change.


Have you reviewed your insurance policies lately. Whether it comes to insurance on your life, health or investments, the need for insurance is something that should not be overlooked. Changes in status, such as a marriage or the birth of a child are times when insurance levels may need to be adjusted. Also, during times of peak earnings and peak responsibilities, a look at the protection you are providing to your family, in the event of an untimely death, is an unpleasant, but necessary task. Just as the insurance on retirement income, provided by annuities as part of an investment strategy paid off during this downturn, planning with life insurance helps your family when an unanticipated death occurs.

John H. Kaighn

Jersey Benefits Group, Inc.