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Obsidian Planning

Obsidian Market Update 04/14/2023

A First Quarter 2023 Review


As we revel in the joy of Spring, let’s look back for a moment at the joy of January. During the first month of 2023, the S&P 500 enjoyed a respite from the bear market of 2022, gaining just over 6%. History indicates that, in general, January rallies signal a good year to come. According to Ned Davis Research, when the S&P 500 index rises in January, it rises an average of another 8.6% over the rest of the year.


With numbers in from the first quarter of 2023, the implications of a January rally may hold. Over the first three months of 2023, the S&P 500 rose 7%, the Nasdaq Composite rose 17% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 0.4%.


Given the turbulence of the first quarter—interest rate hikes, the collapse of three banks (Silicon Valley Bank, Signature Bank and Credit Suisse), and general economic uncertainty—these gains are impressive. Still, it’s premature to celebrate as the Fed has yet to win its battle against inflation, the war in Ukraine continues and OPEC+ has announced a pullback in oil production beginning in May. As always, we’ll be watching developments closely and encourage you to contact with any questions or concerns.



Planner Profile

Jay Wilen


In February, Obsidian warmly welcomed into our family the professionals from Integrated Financial Strategies, LLC. We spent many, many months searching for planners whose values, goals and practice matched ours. Today we introduce you to one of them:  Jay Wilen, Lead Planner.


Jay is the consummate financial professional. After earning a degree in business and finance, he helped triple the sales of a national distributing business. When that business was sold, Jay worked for several insurance companies and Registered Investment Advisors before starting his own financial planning firm.


For over 30 years, Jay’s planning practice has grown through word-of-mouth referrals. “I’ve always been interested in finance and in serving others,” Jay explains. “Financial planning gave me the opportunity to combine the two.” Jay works with a wide variety of individuals, including medical and business professionals, business owners, and retirees.


Jay isn’t one to toot is own horn, so we will: Several of Jay’s clients from his first year in business are still working with him today. When Jay reflects on his career, he notes, “When a client’s children and grandchildren thank you for the difference you’ve made in their parent or grandparent’s life, you know what you do matters.”


We couldn’t have said it any better.





The future’s so bright, we gotta wear shades.


The year 2023 promises to be a bright one for stargazers. The spectacle in the sky started in March when the sun emitted several flares, one of them an X2.1. NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory captured the event.


On April 20, the totality of the year’s first solar eclipse (the Ningaloo Eclipse) will be visible from the Ningaloo coast of Western Australia. The second solar eclipse will occur on October 14 and be visible from Oregon to Texas.


There will be two lunar eclipses in 2023 as well, one on May 5 and the second on October 28. Again, Australia will offer prime viewing and neither will be visible from the U.S. On April 8, 2024, however, patient stargazers in Mexico, the Midwest and Northeast U.S. and southeastern Canada will be rewarded with a view of a total solar eclipse.



How we Help


Carl Sagan was right.


If you had to pick one word to describe the economy in the past few months, what would it be? We’re hearing “crazy,” and “scary” from some of our clients, but we’re also hearing huge sighs of relief when clients give us the opportunity to describe how we’re on top the reasons behind shifts in the market.


We do more than look outward, however, when managing investments. We’re just as focused on you: your goals, needs, risk tolerance, and stage in life. Just as every individual is unique, so too is every portfolio. Markets, people and assets are constantly changing, so we never reach a point when we are satisfied. We can (and do!) constantly monitor the performance of the markets and your portfolio, but only you can keep us up to date with changes in your life, goals and needs.


As our planning partners, we want you to always feel comfortable contacting us, whether that’s to update us, ask questions, or express concerns. Professional astronomer / stargazer Carl Sagan wrote, in The Demon-Haunted World, “There is no such thing as a dumb question.” The amateur stargazers here at Obsidian wholeheartedly agree.


Advisory Services offered through Obsidian Personal Planning Solutions, LLC. Securities are offered through Triad Advisors, member ​FINRA/SIPC.​ Obsidian Personal Planning Solutions, LLC, and Obsidian Personal Planning Solutions, Inc, are not affiliated with Triad Advisors.

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