March 2011 Financial Asset Roundup
|Asset||Feb 2011||Mar 2011||Change|
The S&P 500 has trended down 2.02% since the last update as worry from political unrest in the Middle East, rising oil prices, and now a 8.9-magnitude earthquake and tsunamis that hit Japan create fear and uncertainty:
(chart courtesy of msn.com)
The unemployment rate for February continued a slow decline as it fell to 8.9%. Oil prices have spiked during that time, gaining from about $87 per barrel to $101 per barrel and I've seen the cost for gasoline at one local station rise at a lesser rate from $3.15 to $3.43. I'm sure $4 per gallon gasoline isn't far away, but could we actually see it hit $5 during the summer driving season?
On the financial front, there's not too much to report. With rising food, oil, and other commodity prices, I'm looking toward a potential I Bond purchase again this spring, although that will likely happen in May 2011 at the earliest with the current 0% fixed and 0.74% composite rates available until then.
On the work front, I've been keeping busier than I have in quite some time. My contract with my largest client is up soon, and having a bunch of work to do is definitely a good sign. I've got my 2010 federal and state tax extensions filed for my S Corp, which should give me a bit more time to fully fund my 2010 SEP IRA contributions. My personal returns are in the works, and hopefully the tax bite won't be too bad considering the reduction in business revenue I've experienced over the past couple of years.