Improving Your LifestyleRetirement Planning • Investment Management • Marital Asset ResolutionsNovember 21, 2017LATE IN THE YEAR The S&P 500 index has closed at its calendar year high during the month of December in 18 of the last 32 years, i.e., 1985-2016. The index's high close (so far) during 2017 (a value of 2594) was achieved on Wednesday 11/08/17. The S&P 500 consists of 500 stocks chosen for market size, liquidity and industry group representation. It is a market value weighted index with each stock's weight in the index proportionate to its market value (source: BTN Research).FIRST YEAR OF FOUR YEARS2017 is the 1st year of Donald Trump's first 4-year presidential term. The S&P 500 has been positive on a total return basis during just 11 of the last 20 presidential 1st years. The S&P 500 is up +17.3% YTD (total return) through the close of trading on Friday 11/17/17 (source: BTN Research)..GOOD RESULT The trailing 1-year performance of the S&P 500 has been a gain of at least +16% (total return) at the end of every month this year through 10/31/17 (source: BTN Research).WE TEACH THE WORLD60% of the 1,078,822 foreign students studying at American colleges during last year's school year (2016-17) are natives of China, India, South Korea or Saudi Arabia. New York University (NYU) and the University of Southern California (USC) have the most foreign students in the United States (source: Institute of International Education).SOME PAID, SOME DID NOTAmericans filed 150.5 million tax returns in tax year 2015. 66% of the returns (99.0 million) paid federal income tax while 34% of the returns (51.5 million) did not pay any federal income tax (source: Internal Revenue Service).WHY NOT LONGER?As of the end of fiscal year 2017 (i.e., 9/30/17), only 14.2% of the outstanding debt of the US will be greater than 10 years in length based upon "original issuance type" (source: Treasury Department).NO FEDERAL TAXES 54% of the American taxpayers (49.8 million out of 92.4 million returns) that reported adjusted gross income less than $50,000 during tax year 2015 legally did not pay any federal income tax (source: Internal Revenue Service).MADE A LOT AND PAID A LOT The 6.75 million tax returns from tax year 2015 that reported at least $200,000 of adjusted gross income (AGI) represent 4% of all the tax returns filed, received 43% of all AGI nationwide and paid 59% of all the federal income tax that was paid nationally in 2015 (source: Internal Revenue Service).IMPACTS JUST A FEW The House version of the â€œTax Cuts and Jobs Act would limit the deduction of mortgage interest expense to that created by debt of $500,000 or less. Just 7% of the 7.7 million home mortgages originated in 2016 were for loans that exceeded $500,000 (source: Inside Mortgage Finance).JOBSIn July 2009 there were 14.6 million unemployed Americans and 2.2 million job openings. In April 2017 there were 7.1 million unemployed Americans and 6.0 million job openings (source: Department of Labor).NO CHANGE FOR MOSTThe House version of the â€œTax Cuts and Jobs Actâ€ eliminates the state and local tax deduction on Form 1040, Schedule A, except for a maximum $10,000 deduction for property taxes. Just 5% of homeowners nationwide (3.7 million out of 75.6 million homeowners) paid more than $10,000 of property taxes in 2016 (source: National Association of Home Builders).JOBS LOSTAn analysis of 97,500 mergers and acquisitions that occurred across 68 countries around the world between 2004-2016 estimates that with a maximum 20% top corporate tax rate in place (instead of the current 35% top rate) that the United States would have retained 4,700 domestic companies that instead became foreign-owned over the 13-year period (source: Ernst & Young).GROWING ECONOMYCommerce Secretary Wilbur Ross estimates that a +1% increase in our national's GDP would equate to $3 trillion of additional tax revenue to our government over the next 10 years. The United States collected $27 trillion of tax revenue over the last 10 fiscal years (source: Office of Management and Budget).LOTS OF BORROWING Student loan debt nationwide has increased +7.3% annually over the last 5 years, i.e., from 9/30/12 to 9/30/17, rising from $956 billion to $1.36 trillion. Outstanding auto loans ($1.213 trillion) are less than outstanding student loans (source: Federal Reserve Bank of New York).PERFECT Of the 130 Division 1 FBS football schools (using 85 scholarships per team), just 4 teams are undefeated as of 11/15/17 â€“ Alabama, Miami, Wisconsin and the University of Central Florida (source: ESPN)..By the Numbers is produced by Michael A. Higley. © 2017 Michael A. Higley. All rights reserved. This information has been provided courtesy of Wellworth Financial. Although this information is drawn from sources believed to be reliable, Wellworth Financial has not verified and makes no representations or warranties as to its accuracy. 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