HJ Sims 2019 Late Winter Conference Recap

Thank you!

On behalf of the entire HJ Sims Investment Banking team, we want to thank you for attending the 16th Annual HJ Sims Late Winter Conference at the Sheraton Sand Key Resort in Clearwater Beach, Florida. We at Sims are proud of our commitment to furthering conversation about financing methods & operating strategies in the Senior Living Industry. Bringing together a dynamic group of speakers from Non-Profit and Proprietary Senior Living Providers, as well as outside experts with thought-provoking views, it is our goal to have provided profound insight and an invaluable forum for exchanging ideas and information.

Post-Conference Follow-Up

Our Conference Recap provides comprehensive coverage of the many sessions and event highlights from the 2019 HJ Sims Late Winter Conference.

You can help us make the next Late Winter Conference even more successful by completing this survey. We very much appreciate your input. Thank you.

In case you missed it, below are the details from our 16th Annual HJ Sims Late Winter Conference.

Photos

We invite you to view the many beautiful photos from our conference. Peruse the galleries below and visit the HJ Sims FacebookInstagramLinkedIn or Twitter pages.

For attendees who updated their professional headshots at the “Headshot Hub,” our photographer, Thee Photo Ninja, has posted all headshots in this gallery. Login using the password, sandkey. To download your image, simply click on the photo, and click the download button at the top of the browser.

Activities Photos

We invite you to view photos from the 2019 Late Winter Conference. Then, either view the thumbnails or to view the images as larger icons, click on the image and scroll through.

Shown below are highlights from our recreational activities: Golf Tournament at Innisbrook, Chocolate Making & Tasting at William Dean Chocolates, Sailing on the Kai Lani catamaran and the Schooner Clearwater, Fishing at Hubbard’s Marina and Biking through Dunedin.

While the weather may not have cooperated, it looks like we all managed to have a fun time.

Education Photos

Networking Photos

Corporate Social Responsibility: Gift of Life

Gift of Life (GOL) representatives attended our conference as part of a special presentation at our Opening General Session, which included an introduction to HJ Sims’ Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) program by Tara Perkins, Assistant Vice President Marketing Communications, HJ Sims, and a screening of the Gift of Life/HJ Sims partnership video. Sharon Kitroser, Corporate and Community Relations Officer, GOL, delivered a short history and shared the donor story of Ryan Corning. Ryan then took the stage to discuss his heartwarming experience—there was not a dry eye in the house! Sharon, Ryan and other GOL staff remained on-site throughout the conference —swabbing, distributing information and answering questions. It was a wonderful experience to share with our attendees.

Kitroser says, “It was truly an honor to join HJ Sims at their Conference. GOL presented our mission to save lives through marrow and stem cell donation, and shared how our partnership has come to life in the past 10 months. We introduced one of our heroic donors…Ryan Corning of Land O’Lakes, Florida who saved 47 year-old New Yorker Julio Rivera, who has survived leukemia thanks to his transplant. Attendees were excited to hear more about how their teams can swab their cheeks to save a life. Plus, more than 30 individuals joined the registry right there at the conference!”

Save the Date

Please save the date for next year, the 17th Annual Sims Late Winter Conference at the InterContinental in San Diego, California.

Thanks again!

Market Commentary: A Matter of Degrees

The average lifespan back in 1868 was approximately 38.3 years. People were shorter and thinner and suffered all manner of chronic and infectious diseases. Dr. Carl Reinhold August Wunderlich, a German physician, psychiatrist, and medical professor was running the hospital at Leipzig University at that time. In the process of observation and diagnosis, he took the axillary temperatures of 25,000 patients using a foot long thermometer that required 20 minutes to register. Based on the curves he patiently plotted, he determined that fever was not a disease but a symptom, and that the normal human body temperature is 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit. His is the measurement that we have since used to determine the gravity of illness in everyone from newborns to centenarians. But the human body has changed over the years and researchers have been disputing the Wunderlich axiom since the early 1990’s. The latest of two dozen modern studies is from Stanford University, where researchers finds that the new normal is closer to 97.5 degrees. But, as one might imagine, revising the cherished dictums on clinical thermometry is a not a speedy process.

In Wuhan, China and in clinics, hospitals and doctor’s offices around the word, degrees matter. Temperatures of 99.1 or higher are raising alarms as possible symptoms of a coronavirus that causes a lethal form of pneumonia. Dry cough, muscle pain and fatigue may also present over the course of a week before an infected person feels ill enough to seek medical care. At this writing, there are 4,585 confirmed cases in 18 countries and the death toll has reached 106. The rapid spread of the disease has spurred herculean efforts on the part of health professionals and chilling fears among travelers and investors who recall the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in 2002 and the Ebola virus in 2014.

Global financial markets, which have already withstood the shocks of U.S.-Iran hostilities, the U.S-China trade conflict, the approach of Brexit, and the impeachment trial of a U.S. president in the first three weeks of the New Year, became roiled again on Monday. Even though health officials remind us that the influenza has resulted in 12,000 to 79,000 deaths annually since 2010, reports on the spread of a mysterious virus caused a one-day selloff in stocks on exchanges in Asia, the U.S. and Europe. Bloomberg reported that the slide wiped about $1.5 trillion off the value of world stocks in one week. The Dow erased the entire month’s gains and the Russell 2000 fell 1.5%. Oil prices fell 13% to $53.14 per barrel and gold gained $57.41 an ounce. Money quickly shifted to bonds and the dollar until Tuesday, when traders viewed the degree of global containment effort as likely to prevent a major economic loss. So far in 2020, the 2-year Treasury yield at 1.44% is up 12 basis points. The 10- and 30-year yields have plunged 31 basis points to 1.60% and 2.05%, respectively. Alongside governments, 10-year Baa-rated corporate bond yields have fallen 29 basis points and both the 10- and 30-year AAA municipal bond benchmark yields are down 26 basis points to 1.18% and 1.83%.

Markets focused on the possible implications of an epidemic in China leading to a global health emergency would otherwise be obsessed with Thursday’s Gross Domestic Product number, Friday’s British farewell to the European Union, wagers expected to total $6 billion on Sunday’s Super Bowl, and Wednesday’s meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee, the first such gathering of the year. Voters this year present as a few degrees more dovish, as the Fed Presidents from Kansas City and Boston relinquish their seats to the Fed Presidents from Cleveland, Philadelphia, Dallas and Minneapolis. There are still two vacancies for the Board of Governors and the nominees await Senate confirmation. Investors will watch the press conference and take the proverbial temperature of the Chair and Committee members on inflation, repurchase agreements, and the virus. Futures trading reflects only a 12% chance of a rate hike.

The municipal market is expected to see only $5.7 billion of new issues this week and the 30-day visible supply totals a mere $10.1 billion while redemptions and maturities are expected to add $25.8 billion of cash to the yearlong manhunt for tax-exempt and taxable municipal bonds. The largest financings happen to be for hospitals in Florida and New York, and there are several other health system issues in North Carolina, Indiana and Ohio on the slate. In the high yield space, the Port of Beaumont, Texas has a $265 million non-rated issue with tax-exempt and taxable series for the Jefferson Gulf Coast Project, Howard University is bringing a $145.4 million BBB-minus rated taxable refunding with a corporate CUSIP. And the California Enterprise Development Authority has a $9.2 million Ba2 rated financing for the Academy for Academic Excellence.

From the world of academia, Dr. Matthew Lieberman will be a keynote speaker at the 17th Annual HJ Sims Late Winter Conference next month in San Diego. Professor Lieberman holds degrees from Rutgers and Harvard and directs the Social Cognitive Neuroscience Lab at UCLA, one of the first labs to combine social psychology and neuroimaging. He measures and maps brain activity to demonstrate how we are wired to have a natural preference for switching from non-social to social tasks, how putting our feelings into words can have a soothing effect on those emotions, and how we might be able to help people who disagree come together without being disagreeable. He contends that our need to connect with others is just as important, if not more, than our basic need for shelter and food. So we invite you to hear his remarks, join us at the InterContinental Hotel, savor dinner at the San Diego Zoo, and enjoy a tremendous networking opportunity by registering at this LINK.

Market Commentary: A Matter of Degrees

The average lifespan back in 1868 was approximately 38.3 years. People were shorter and thinner and suffered all manner of chronic and infectious diseases. Dr. Carl Reinhold August Wunderlich, a German physician, psychiatrist, and medical professor was running the hospital at Leipzig University at that time. In the process of observation and diagnosis, he took the axillary temperatures of 25,000 patients using a foot long thermometer that required 20 minutes to register. Based on the curves he patiently plotted, he determined that fever was not a disease but a symptom, and that the normal human body temperature is 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit. His is the measurement that we have since used to determine the gravity of illness in everyone from newborns to centenarians. But the human body has changed over the years and researchers have been disputing the Wunderlich axiom since the early 1990’s. The latest of two dozen modern studies is from Stanford University, where researchers finds that the new normal is closer to 97.5 degrees. But, as one might imagine, revising the cherished dictums on clinical thermometry is a not a speedy process.

In Wuhan, China and in clinics, hospitals and doctor’s offices around the word, degrees matter. Temperatures of 99.1 or higher are raising alarms as possible symptoms of a coronavirus that causes a lethal form of pneumonia. Dry cough, muscle pain and fatigue may also present over the course of a week before an infected person feels ill enough to seek medical care. At this writing, there are 4,585 confirmed cases in 18 countries and the death toll has reached 106. The rapid spread of the disease has spurred herculean efforts on the part of health professionals and chilling fears among travelers and investors who recall the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in 2002 and the Ebola virus in 2014.

Global financial markets, which have already withstood the shocks of U.S.-Iran hostilities, the U.S-China trade conflict, the approach of Brexit, and the impeachment trial of a U.S. president in the first three weeks of the New Year, became roiled again on Monday. Even though health officials remind us that the influenza has resulted in 12,000 to 79,000 deaths annually since 2010, reports on the spread of a mysterious virus caused a one-day selloff in stocks on exchanges in Asia, the U.S. and Europe. Bloomberg reported that the slide wiped about $1.5 trillion off the value of world stocks in one week. The Dow erased the entire month’s gains and the Russell 2000 fell 1.5%. Oil prices fell 13% to $53.14 per barrel and gold gained $57.41 an ounce. Money quickly shifted to bonds and the dollar until Tuesday, when traders viewed the degree of global containment effort as likely to prevent a major economic loss. So far in 2020, the 2-year Treasury yield at 1.44% is up 12 basis points. The 10- and 30-year yields have plunged 31 basis points to 1.60% and 2.05%, respectively. Alongside governments, 10-year Baa-rated corporate bond yields have fallen 29 basis points and both the 10- and 30-year AAA municipal bond benchmark yields are down 26 basis points to 1.18% and 1.83%.

Markets focused on the possible implications of an epidemic in China leading to a global health emergency would otherwise be obsessed with Thursday’s Gross Domestic Product number, Friday’s British farewell to the European Union, wagers expected to total $6 billion on Sunday’s Super Bowl, and Wednesday’s meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee, the first such gathering of the year. Voters this year present as a few degrees more dovish, as the Fed Presidents from Kansas City and Boston relinquish their seats to the Fed Presidents from Cleveland, Philadelphia, Dallas and Minneapolis. There are still two vacancies for the Board of Governors and the nominees await Senate confirmation. Investors will watch the press conference and take the proverbial temperature of the Chair and Committee members on inflation, repurchase agreements, and the virus. Futures trading reflects only a 12% chance of a rate hike.

The municipal market is expected to see only $5.7 billion of new issues this week and the 30-day visible supply totals a mere $10.1 billion while redemptions and maturities are expected to add $25.8 billion of cash to the yearlong manhunt for tax-exempt and taxable municipal bonds. The largest financings happen to be for hospitals in Florida and New York, and there are several other health system issues in North Carolina, Indiana and Ohio on the slate. In the high yield space, the Port of Beaumont, Texas has a $265 million non-rated issue with tax-exempt and taxable series for the Jefferson Gulf Coast Project, Howard University is bringing a $145.4 million BBB-minus rated taxable refunding with a corporate CUSIP. And the California Enterprise Development Authority has a $9.2 million Ba2 rated financing for the Academy for Academic Excellence.

From the world of academia, Dr. Matthew Lieberman will be a keynote speaker at the 17th Annual HJ Sims Late Winter Conference next month in San Diego. Professor Lieberman holds degrees from Rutgers and Harvard and directs the Social Cognitive Neuroscience Lab at UCLA, one of the first labs to combine social psychology and neuroimaging. He measures and maps brain activity to demonstrate how we are wired to have a natural preference for switching from non-social to social tasks, how putting our feelings into words can have a soothing effect on those emotions, and how we might be able to help people who disagree come together without being disagreeable. He contends that our need to connect with others is just as important, if not more, than our basic need for shelter and food. So we invite you to hear his remarks, join us at the InterContinental Hotel, savor dinner at the San Diego Zoo, and enjoy a tremendous networking opportunity by registering at this LINK.

Special Credit Considerations for Seniors

There is a reason that seniors often have the best credit scores, according to Experian. By the time people retire or reach senior status, they have likely been focusing on credit scores and building or maintaining good credit for a significant span of time, with often-impressive results.

While some people believe that they can relax their credit concerns once they retire, that is not necessarily the case. You will still want – and need – good credit if you decide to move or make updates to your current home, enter an assisted-living facility, or apply for a new credit card that offers great rewards points and perks.

In addition, solid credit scores will enable you to qualify for the best rates when it comes to mortgages and insurance, and can help if you decide to return to the job market, since employers are increasingly checking on applicants’ credit histories before making an offer.

How to earn extra credit

First of all, make a note on your calendar to check your credit report annually to ensure that you are not a victim or fraud – credit reports can also contain costly errors. AnnualCreditReport.com offers a free report once a year. No matter your age or stage, everyone should remain vigilant, particularly in the wake of recent serious data breaches.

Even a stellar credit report can decline if payment history, the biggest portion of your credit score, suddenly dwindles. It is important to keep your credit record active by using your current credit card(s) to pay for groceries, gas, travel and entertainment. You can earn rewards points, organize your bill paying and continue to bolster your credit score by using your cards.

Finally, continue to pay your bills on time, keep credit card balances low and think twice before opening any new accounts. Good payment history, and the longevity of your accounts, should continue to keep your credit score high.

Even if you are relatively debt-free, your credit score still matters.

We want to hear from you

Do you have a topic suggestion for an article in a future issue of Sims Insights newsletter? We would love to hear from you. Share your ideas here.

The material presented here is for information purposes only and is not to be considered an offer to buy or sell any security. This report was prepared from sources believed to be reliable but it is not guaranteed as to accuracy and it is not a complete summary of statement of all available data. Information and opinions are current up to the date of publication and are subject to change without notice. The purchase and sale of securities should be conducted on an individual basis considering the risk tolerance and investment objective of each investor and with the advice and counsel of a professional advisor. The opinions expressed by Ms. Morrow are strictly her own and do not necessarily reflect those of Herbert J. Sims & Co., Inc. or their affiliates. This is not a solicitation to buy or an offer to sell any particular investment. All investment involves risk and may result in a loss of principal. Investors should carefully consider their own circumstances before making any investment decision.

Market Commentary: On Magic Mountain and Capitol Hill

Government, business, academic, humanitarian and other leaders and dealmakers from 117 countries gather this week at the ski resort in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland for the 50th annual invitation-only meeting of the World Economic Forum. This year’s theme is “Stakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World” and the thousand-odd journalists covering the events on the “Magic Mountain” will once again be taking the proverbial temperature of the global elite on topics such as cybersecurity, climate, e-commerce, inequality, reskilling, rural mobility, and the future of healthcare. The combined wealth of attendees, on a per-square-foot basis, will likely set a new record and the menu as well as the agenda will be a topic of lively debate. Half of the 70,000 meals for participants, staff and security will feature a plant-rich flexitarian plates such as broccoli mousse with toasted pignoli, and maple-smoked haloumi cheese with mint dust.

President Trump is delivering a keynote speech to the Forum at this writing. In his scheduled meetings with the Presidents of the European Commission, Iraq, Switzerland and Kurdistan, and the Prime Minister of Pakistan, he is accompanied by his Secretaries of Treasury, State and Commerce, his U.S. Trade Representative, and Deputy Chief of Staff for Policy Coordination. While they represent the nation overseas, the U.S. Senate has convened on Capitol Hill in Washington for only the third time in history to sit as a court of impeachment. The first day of the trial began on Tuesday afternoon with votes on rules to govern the proceedings. Senators will be living on snacks in the cloakroom for several weeks of marathon proceedings while reviewing the facts and reflecting the proverbial temperature of the nation on the charges against the President. At this point, no one expects conviction and removal, but the political process is back in progress and has been known to have some twists and turns.

The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court is a thousand feet away from colleagues concurrently considering a long calendar of unrelated cases while he is required by the Constitution to preside over an entirely separate branch of government, again for only the third time in history. The rest of the country nevertheless proceeds with more routine matters. At the Federal Reserve, the Open Market Committee prepares for its first monetary policy meeting of the year. The Treasury is auctioning $78 billion of 3- and 6-month bills and $80 billion of 4- and 8-week bills and planning to re-issue 20-year bonds. The Centers for Disease Control is immersed in identifying and preventing the spread of the deadly new Wuhan coronavirus. The Census Department has kicked off the decennial population count in rural Alaska. Democratic voters in Iowa are getting ready to caucus.

On Wall Street and at Davos, investors are sitting on a lot of cash but many are very confused about when and where to put it to work. Last year, it paid to buy almost anything. This year, there are new concerns about the sustainability of the 121-month U.S. economic expansion, the 30-year bond market rally, the 11-year bull market in stocks, and geopolitical tensions that spiked at the start of the new decade. It is unclear how much help central banks can be in a future economic downturn. Trade conflicts persist, even after the Phase 1 agreement was signed with China and the Congress approved the Administration’s new trade deal with Canada and Mexico. There is still plenty of uncertainty remaining with Brexit and not much apparent reward for taking risks in nearly any global sector. Rates remain at historic lows and asset prices are elevated across the board. Cash may be “trash” in the eyes of some fund managers, but 10-year sovereign bonds yields in Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Japan are still negative as are many returns after adjusting for inflation.

At the midway mark in this first month of the year, the 2-year Treasury yield stands at 1.55% and the AAA municipal general obligation bond yields 0.90%. The 10-year Treasury yield is down 9 basis points on the year to 1.82% while the comparable high grade muni yield is 15 basis points lower at 1.29%. The 30-year Treasury yields 2.28%, down 10 basis points from the start of the year, and the 30-year muni yields 1.94%, 15 basis points lower. Baa corporate bond benchmark yields are down 13 basis points to 3.57%. The Russell 2000 Index is up nearly 2% to 1,699, oil prices are down 4.1% to $58.54, and gold prices have risen 2.3% to $1,557 an ounce. The normal ratios of stocks and bonds, municipal bonds and Treasuries, are askew. There are also increasing pressures for more socially conscious or green investing and attention to environmental credit risks and concerns about where markets are heading in this era of central bank interventions, high budget deficits and extraordinary debt levels.

At the 17th Annual HJ Sims Late Winter Conference next month in San Diego, we are fortunate to have Robert Genetski, as one of our keynote speakers. “Dr. G” is one of the nation’s leading classical economists who takes the voodoo out of the science and provides valuable insights on the impact of policy on growth. He is a Blue Chip interest rate forecaster who will endeavor to help us anticipate where we are heading as borrowers, investors, employers and citizens. We invite you to join us and participate by registering at this LINK.

The municipal bond market is still riding high thanks to favorable technical factors of supply and demand. Fund flows have been positive for 54 weeks; $5.1 billion of new investments in muni bond funds were made in the last two weeks. Bloomberg just reported that the last time tax-exempt yields were this low, Dwight Eisenhower was president and Elvis Presley was releasing his second studio album. Munis are outperforming the Treasury market and Muni-Treasury ratios in the 1-15 year range are at record 35-year lows. This week, the primary market calendar totals $7.1 billion, up from $5.4 billion last week. The high yield calendar includes nearly a dozen deals, including our $41.5 million revenue and refunding issue for Henry Ford Village, a continuing care retirement community with 852 independent living units, 96 assisted living units, and 89 licensed nursing care beds. The non-rated bonds are being issued by the Economic Development Corporation of the City of Dearborn, Michigan.

Breaking Bad Online Habits

By Megan Morrow

January is the month of New Year’s resolutions – exercise more, stop smoking, eat more vegetables, try something new – yet “break bad online habits” is probably not a top 10 resolution, even though it likely should be. As we perform more life tasks online, such as paying bills, downloading new apps, keeping in touch with old friends and sharing funny videos, we do not always pause to think of the best ways to keep our personal data secure and private.

Following are three steps you can take to break your bad online habits and set the stage for a safe and secure 2020:

  1. Avoid using the same passwords over and over again. Granted, it is easier to remember your passwords when they are all a variation of your kids’ names, your address or your birthday, for example. However, when you recycle passwords, a hacker who uncovers one password will have much easier access into the rest of your accounts. You can save your most robust, complicated passwords for financial sites.
  2. Resist the temptation to say “yes” without more careful examination. Scam emails are getting more sophisticated, so it is always wise to verify online requests for money or account access, while many apps will ask for your location or the ability to access other account features. Offer the bare minimum of information when you launch a new app or website and say “no” to most location requests (other than maps, which need to know where you are so they can get you to your next destination).
  3. Lock your devices. Many people assume work laptops are safe and that their phones are usually nearby, thus choosing not to use “lock screen” protections. It only takes a few moments for someone to install spyware or malware on your device or to see confidential information that you have left up regarding clients or your own personal information. This is a simple step that can protect you at work and at home.

Other simple changes you can make to protect yourself include: never check your bank accounts over public wi-fi, pay attention to anti-virus updates, do not click on links or download files from suspicious or strange email addresses, and always take advantage of the free annual opportunity to check your credit report.

While online banking, shopping and communication can offer ease and convenience, they can also lead to identify theft and long-term issues: If you have not already, make online security one of your New Year’s resolutions.

We want to hear from you

Do you have a topic suggestion for an article in a future issue of Sims Insights newsletter? We would love to hear from you. Share your ideas here.

The material presented here is for information purposes only and is not to be considered an offer to buy or sell any security. This report was prepared from sources believed to be reliable but it is not guaranteed as to accuracy and it is not a complete summary of statement of all available data. Information and opinions are current up to the date of publication and are subject to change without notice. The purchase and sale of securities should be conducted on an individual basis considering the risk tolerance and investment objective of each investor and with the advice and counsel of a professional advisor. The opinions expressed by Ms. Morrow are strictly her own and do not necessarily reflect those of Herbert J. Sims & Co., Inc. or their affiliates. This is not a solicitation to buy or an offer to sell any particular investment. All investment involves risk and may result in a loss of principal. Investors should carefully consider their own circumstances before making any investment decision.