‘Twas the Night Before New Years’

Colorful fireworks on the black sky background 23041953_s‘Twas the Night Before New Years’

By:  Brian Hague, CFA

‘Twas the night before New Years’, two-thousand-fourteen,
And everyone throughout the world was quite keen
To see what the New Year’d be bringing their way;
Were gridlock and stagnation with us to stay?
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Or would two-thousand-fourteen bring growth once again,
As the global economy set a new trend?
And could Washington actually compromise?
Or would partisan bickering be our demise?

The recent accord on the budget brought hope,
But to fully trust Congress would make one a dope.
The President says we the people lack clout;
Winning elections is what it’s about.

And that money has yet to be spent, but they’re talking
Of ways they can spend it, without too much balking.
But the details are scant, and we must realize
That the outcome is likely an ugly surprise.

Obamacare turned out to be quite the bust;
In Kathleen Sebelius, we cannot trust.
She spins and defends, and she hems and she haws,
Saying anything that will support her lost cause.

As for the economy, things were now perking
Up some.  Was the Fed’s easy money game working?
They’d pulled back the reins, but only by a bit,
For fear that the money-fueled growth spurt would quit.

The markets, they rallied!  Investors, they cheered!
Would the bull run sustain through the coming new year?
Or would we soon witness a major correction,
Giving us pause for some fiscal reflection?

The EU appeared to have skirted disaster,
And Draghi was hailed as a central bank master.
But it, too, remained in a dovish position
Leaving doubt as to Europe’s ultimate condition.

With so much cheap money now flooding the globe,
There’s risk that we could be lamenting like Job,
Losing all that we have in a wave of inflation
That rolls like a tsunami, flooding all nations.

But the policy makers still crow that it’s working.
Meanwhile, in Tinseltown, Miley was twerking.
It seems that these days, for one to entertain,
One must abandon the use of one’s brain.

But the year past has brought much to be thankful for,
Whether you’re wealthy, or whether you’re poor.
We still have our health, and our families, too,
And freedom to choose to do what we want to

So let’s not take all of our blessings too lightly,
Let’s be good stewards, and spend ourselves rightly.
Let’s make a pledge to do all that we can
To make the world better for our fellow man.

To all our dear readers, we wish you the best,
And hope that in twenty-fourteen you are blessed.
Remember, we’re taught to trust, and not to fear,
So seek joy as you enter this Happy New Year!

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bioBrian Hague has more than 26 years’ experience in financial institutions and the capital markets.  His career has included work as an S&L examiner during the thrift crisis; trading futures for and valuing the mortgage derivatives portfolio of a $16 billion financial institution with offices on Wall Street; advising financial institutions regarding portfolio and risk management; serving as Chief Economist for a $50 billion financial institution; and serving as President/CEO of a national institutional brokerage and investment advisory firm for more than 15 years.  He is currently working as a financial institution consultant, and as an adjunct lecturer for the University of St. Mary MBA program.

Brian has been a featured columnist and contributor for several trade publications, and has authored daily and weekly economic commentary, as well as two books for institutional investment managers.  He has also been a frequent speaker and trainer at regional and national conferences.  He holds a BA in Psychology and an MBA from Pittsburg (KS) State University, as well as the CFA charter and numerous FINRA securities licenses.

Copyright Graphic Songphon Kotesopha/123RF 2013

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