Vorisek Financial Weekly Market Update for November 15, 2017

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Good morning!

Tax Reform 2017 continues to inch its way to a self-imposed Christmas deadline as established by the Republicans, the majority party in both the House and the Senate.  The Senate Finance Committee released its version of tax reform last Thursday (11/09/17), just one week after the House Ways and Means Committee released its own tax reform bill.  The Senate, designed by the Constitution to be a deliberative institution that would be less impacted by the changing winds of politics, will mark-up its tax reform bill in committee this week.  The House, having already passed its tax reform bill by the Ways and Means Committee, may vote on the entire legislation before the full House this upcoming week.  The final version of tax reform, if it ever reaches President Trump’s desk, will be a merger of the desires of both chambers (source: BTN Research).         

Last Wednesday 11/08/17 was the 1-year anniversary of Donald Trump’s stunning election victory.  The S&P 500 gained +23.7% (total return) over the last 12 months, more than double the stock market’s trailing 50-year average annual return of +10.2% that was achieved from 1967-2016 (source: BTN Research).      

As of the end of October 2016, the USA was domestically producing 8.5 million barrels of crude oil per day while we were importing 9.0 million barrels.  As of the end of October 2017, the USA was domestically producing 9.6 million barrels of crude oil per day while we were importing 7.6 million barrels.  Thus in the last year, our nation’s production of crude oil has increased +1.1 million barrels a day while our importing of crude oil has declined by 1.4 million barrels a day (source: Department of Energy). 

Notable Numbers for the Week:

1.    INCREASE EVERYONE - Individual income taxes paid by American taxpayers would have to increase by +42% in order to eliminate our $666 billion deficit from fiscal year 2017 (source: Treasury Department). 

2.    A LOT TO MEXICO - American exports of natural gas will exceed its imports of natural gas in 2017, the first year in which that has happened since 1958 or 59 years ago (source: Energy Information Administration).  

3.    HIGH-TAX STATES – The House’s “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” retains the deductibility of property taxes up to a maximum of $10,000 per year.  Of the 10 states with the highest average property taxes, President Trump carried none of the 10 states in the 2016 presidential election (source: Internal Revenue Service).   

4.    STANDARD OF LIVING - China’s economy is the 2nd largest in the world behind the United States, but China’s “GDP per person” is only $9,377 while the USA’s “GDP per person” is $61,687 (source: IMF). 

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