Three Things to Know & Watch

Apr 15, 2024

By Bill Hornbarger, Chief Investment Officer
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Three Things to Watch

    • Geopolitics will be top of mind for everyone, including the markets, after Iran’s attack on Israel. In early trading, oil is basically unchanged while gold touched record highs last week. Japan’s Nikkei 225 dropped as much as 1.8% in early trading as traders await Israel’s response. We expect trading to remain volatile, with this as one of the reasons.
    • After the recent hot inflation and employment data, the markets remain on alert for any data that could push rate cuts further into the future. This week will feature reports on retail sales, U.S. industrial production, housing starts and existing home sales. Retail sales and industrial production are both expected on the strong side, at 0.4% month-over-month.
    • The first-quarter earnings season will accelerate with more financial institutions reporting (Goldman Sachs, Bank of America and Morgan Stanley) as well as Netflix, Johnson & Johnson, and American Express, among others. Several large banks that reported last week posted disappointing news.

Three Things to Know

    • In the 1940s, the government needed a steady flow of cash to fund the war effort. It passed the Current Tax Payment Act of 1943, which required that companies withhold income taxes from employees’ paychecks and make ongoing payments on employees’ behalf. Before this (from 1916 to 1943), Americans paid income taxes quarterly or annually. (Source:
      According to the Tax Policy Center think tank, 41.6% of tax filers will owe no individual income tax or have negative taxable income in 2024. (Source:
      In 2023, Americans collectively had to work until April 18—108 days—to pay the country’s tax burden, according to information from the Tax Foundation, which declared that date Tax Freedom Day. On a state-by-state basis, New York residents had to work the longest, until May 3 in 2023. Residents of Alaska and Oklahoma had the earliest Tax Freedom Days, March 25 and March 30, respectively. (Source:


The above information reflects the current opinion of the author. It is based upon sources and data believed to be accurate and reliable. Opinions and forward-looking statements expressed are subject to change without notice. This information does not constitute a solicitation or an offer to buy or sell any security mentioned.