Elevated Investment Risks (Jul 9, 2012)

The opening quarter of 2012 was the finest quarter for U.S. stocks since the late 1990s; the second quarter was a markedly different story. After an all-but-flat April and an abysmal May, stocks finally managed to advance in June, much of which happened on the last trading day of the quarter when renewed hope emerged from Europe. The second quarter wasn’t as bad as it could have been, but institutional and individual investors contended with plenty of bumps in the road. These bumps reflect a continuing struggle to achieve recovery and growth against numerous headwinds.

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Approval of the Affordable Care Act (Jun 25, 2012)

By a 5-4 vote, the Supreme Court upheld the 2010 Affordable Care Act (ACA). The law’s most controversial provision will stand – a mandate requiring every American citizen to buy individual health insurance coverage. The court made a key distinction, interpreting that mandate not as a directive but as a tax.  “The federal government does not have the power to order people to buy health insurance,” Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr. wrote in the majority opinion. “The federal government does have the power to impose a tax on those without health insurance.” The ruling carries profound implications for individuals, businesses and households.

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