Prevention of Coronavirus

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With coronavirus or COVID-19 spreading to more cities, states and countries, awareness and concern also continue to grow. No matter where you live or what your age, it is important to take steps toward protection.

Following are several simple steps you can take to prevent illness and bolster your health:

  • Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds. Even regular hand washers often miss this mark – 20 seconds is about the time it takes to sing “happy birthday” twice. Determine a song of your choice or follow the second hand on your watch to ensure you are washing with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, you can use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol.
  • Avoid close contact with anyone who is sick, no matter what the illness. If you are caring for someone who is sick, try to wear a mask. The CDC only recommends masks for those who are ill or caring for someone who is sick. Stay home if you feel unwell.
  • Avoid touching your face, particularly your eyes, nose and mouth. Also, avoid shaking hands for the duration of the virus.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces regularly – this can include commonly touched areas such as doorknobs, light switches, computers, handles, phones, bathroom sinks, counters, toys and more.
  • Take care of your mental and physical health. Make sure you are eating well, drinking plenty of fluids, exercising and doing something to relieve any stress you may feel regarding the virus. Limit screen time, particularly if you find yourself getting overwhelmed by news or social media messages.

With symptoms including fever, cough, shortness of breath and body aches, coronavirus can be confused with influenza. Please contact your doctor’s office with any concerns.

To prepare your household, you can gather a two-week supply of non-perishable food staples and household supplies such as toilet paper, laundry supplies and diapers. It is also recommended to have at least a 30-day supply of prescription medications and other common health supplies (cold medicine, pain relievers) on hand. You may also want to create a plan in case of closure at work, daycare or school.

In addition, you can visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) site for ongoing updates and information.

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.

Gift of Life: Recap from 17th Annual Late Winter Conference

Gift of Life (GOL) joined our 17th Annual HJ Sims Late Winter Conference February 25-27 in San Diego. GOL was represented by Alicia Lorio, a leader of their Young Professionals Committee in Orange County; and GOL blood stem cell donor, Alec Nadelle.

Alicia shared GOL’s history and spoke about the importance of growing the GOL stem cell registry to give second chances to those afflicted by blood and bone cancer. Before introducing Alec, Alicia shared how individuals can get involved with GOL and increase the number of those within the registry by encouraging individuals to swab their community and swab at their workplace.

Next, Alec shared his experience with GOL. He donated blood stem cells in November 2012 to a (then 71-year-old) woman battling a fast-moving form of Leukemia. The presentation left attendees feeling truly moved.

The team was excited to share an update about the amazing CSR partnership that HJ Sims and GOL have shared during the last two years.

From running fundraising drives to sponsoring the Steps for Life events to helping underwrite equipment for a
new state-of-the-art Stem Cell Collection Center located in Boca Raton, HJ Sims continues to be honored to support GOL and their mission to cure blood cancer through marrow and stem cell donations. GOL has facilitated nearly 3,600 transplants since its inception.

For more information, visit www.giftoflife.org

How to Cultivate a Green Thumb This Spring

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Gardening and getting your hands a little dirty by digging in the soil can be an incredibly healthy hobby: Gardening can reduce depression and anxiety, help people lose weight, and increase quality of life and overall sense of community, according to Science Direct.

Not everyone, however, is a natural-born gardener – it takes time and trial and error. If your previous efforts at growing plants and flowers, or fruits and vegetables, have been less-than fruitful, there is hope.

Check out the following helpful hints for cultivating your very own green thumb:

  • Relax. Even the best gardeners in the world have made plenty of mistakes. Recognize that Mother Nature can be fickle, weather is not predictable and perfection is not really the goal. Rather, half the fun can be in the planting, watering and watching.
  • Plan. Depending on where you live, you will likely have more success with plants that grow well in that area. The National Gardening Association shares a zone map that can help you learn more about your location and what might grow well there. You can also talk to others about hardy plants that tend to thrive where you live.
  • Enlist help. Invite family or friends to contribute to your garden – kids are often more willing to eat vegetables they have grown themselves – or check out local community gardens. You can quickly double your expertise when you engage others in your planting and growing efforts.
  • Keep it simple. You can consult with a local nursery center to determine the best options for your garden. Peppers, tomatoes, basil, onions and chard as well as sunflowers and dahlias are often great starter choices. You can always expand in the future.
  • Gear up. A shovel and gardening gloves are good tools to have on hand. Garden scissors and a small trowel may also come in handy. Perhaps, some knee pads will offer comfort when you are digging in the dirt, planting seeds and tending to the garden.
  • Water and weed. You will not need to dig into the soil every day, but pay attention to how your garden is looking and growing. Ensure plants are watered regularly and that weeds are removed at least weekly. A little maintenance can go a long way towards creating an attractive and functional garden.

Finally, you can always consult with local experts at the growing number of farmer’s markets, nurseries or gardening groups. Many of these green thumbs would love the chance to share their passion with you and offer more tips on growing a gorgeous garden this year.

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.

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

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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

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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.

Breaking Bad Online Habits

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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.

Market Commentary: On Magic Mountain and Capitol Hill

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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.

HJ Sims Leads Largest Refinancing for a Single Site Life Plan Community

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

JANUARY 17, 2018

CONTACT: Tara Perkins, PR & Marketing Specialist | 203-418-9049 | tperkins@hjsims.com

HJ Sims Leads Largest Refinancing for a Single Site Life Plan Community

FAIRFIELD, CT– HJ Sims (Sims), a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm founded in 1935, announced the closing of a financing for NewBridge on the Charles (NewBridge), located in Dedham, MA. The $236,300,000 financing, which closed on December 19, 2017, marked the largest fixed rate public bond issue in 2017 for the refinancing of a single site Life Plan Community.

NewBridge is managed by Hebrew SeniorLife (HSL), one of Massachusetts’ largest not-for-profit healthcare organizations, with nine campuses in metro-Boston, conducting aging research and providing geriatric care education via its affiliation with Harvard Medical School. NewBridge consists of independent and assisted living, and a health care facility.

NewBridge was developed in 2007 with a $457 million tax exempt bond issue underwritten by Sims, the largest issue of its kind. Despite opening during the 2009 recession, NewBridge reached 96% independent living occupancy within 25 months. Sims is privileged to have partnered with HSL for 25 years, financing NewBridge and a sister community, Orchard Cove, in Canton, MA.

Long-term capital stability was a vital objective for NewBridge. With existing debt held by a consortium of commercial banks and a maturity in 2019 there was inherent refinancing risk and future interest rate uncertainty. Achieving the lowest possible debt service was critical to NewBridge.

Sims worked with HSL management to achieve an initial credit rating of BB+ (Stable) from Fitch. This rating, along with HSL’s commitment to NewBridge through the contribution of $6 million toward the debt service reserve fund plus the ability to issue bonds with a 40-year maturity, substantially lowered the annual debt service.

With considerable uncertainty in the tax exempt bond market regarding tax reform and a likely future prohibition on advance refundings, Sims included a five-year call provision in the bond structure, providing maximum flexibility to NewBridge.

Despite distribution restrictions ($100,000 minimum purchase) by the issuer for below-investment-grade rated bonds, $16+ million in bonds were sold to individual investors with  40 institutions purchasing the remaining bonds. Sims’ distribution strength provided lower than anticipated interest rates, from 1.85% (one-year maturity) to 4.125% (40-year maturity).

“The Sims team led a near seamless process for NewBridge’s $236.3 million public bond issuance. Sims’ deep knowledge of the tax exempt market and CCRC business model enabled HSL to obtain a favorable credit rating for NewBridge on a non-recourse basis. They did an excellent job as the book-runner, staging the co-manager to complement its own investor base to achieve a significant over-subscription and lower cost of capital for NewBridge. Sims’ quality of execution exceeded our expectations,” said James Hart, Chief Financial Officer, HSL.

For Financed Right® solutions please contact Andrew Nesi at 203-418-9057 | anesi@hjsims.comFor more information including risks, read the Preliminary Official Statement.

ABOUT HJ SIMS: Founded in 1935 on Wall Street, Sims is a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm with $2.2 billion of assets under management. Sims is one of the country’s oldest underwriters of tax-exempt and taxable bonds, having raised $22 billion for projects throughout the US. The firm is headquartered in Fairfield, CT, with investment banking, private client wealth management and trading offices nation-wide. Pershing LLC, a subsidiary of The Bank of New York Mellon Corporation, is custodian of all client assets. Sims is not affiliated with NewBridge on the Charles or Hebrew Senior Life. www.hjsims.com/ourstory. Investments involve risk, including the possible fluctuation of principal. Member FINRA, SIPC. Follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.

HUD Goes All-In on OZs

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By Anthony Luzzi

The 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act created a new tax incentive known as Qualified Opportunity Funds, to spur new investment in low-income communities located in certain Census Tracts that are designated by the Secretary of the Treasury as Opportunity Zones, or OZs. There are approximately 8,700 OZs nationwide and in the US Territories, including Puerto Rico, where approximately 94% of La Isla Encantada qualifies.

We’ll leave it up to the legions of lawyers and accumulation of accountants to describe the mechanics of investing in Opportunity Funds and how private investments in these OZs are eligible for potentially significant capital gains tax relief. But we can tell you about some of HUD’s recent initiatives to promote development and investment in OZs through its multifamily mortgage insurance programs.

HUD has designated specialized Senior Underwriters in each region of the country to process applications for mortgage insurance for properties in qualified OZs. This will ensure expert and expedient review of these applications by HUD underwriters.

Properties located in qualified OZs will be eligible for reduced mortgage insurance application fees. Market-rate and affordable deals will see their application fees reduced by 33%, from .3% to .2%. “Broadly affordable” deals will have a steeper 66% discount on its application fees, as they will be reduced from .30% to .10%. What’s a broadly affordable project? They have at least 90% of units covered by a Section 8 Project Based Rental Assistance (PBRA) contract; or at least 90% of its units covered by an affordability use restriction under the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit program.

Last summer, HUD Secretary Carson announced that the Section 220 mortgage insurance program, historically used to finance mixed-use rental projects in specially-designated “downtown” urban-renewal areas and other areas where local governments have undertaken designated revitalization activities, will now be available in all of the approximately 8,700 Opportunity Zones.

The introduction of Section 220 into all Opportunity Zones has the potential to be a game-changer, as HUD expects it will promote more economic activity, both commercial and residential, in low-income, economically distressed areas that have not experienced a great deal of growth in recent years.

Section 220 underwrites similarly to HUD’s “mainstream” Section 221(d)(4) program for multifamily new construction and substantial rehabilitation. Both have 40-year loan amortizations, loan-to-cost ratios ranging from 85% to 90%, and debt service coverage ratios from 1.11 to 1.17. Both programs limit the maximum amount of commercial space to 25% of the total project area, but under Section 220, the maximum amount of commercial income in a project can be 30% of the total income, double the Section 221(d)(4) limit. In addition, under Section 220, 20% of the cost of project’s non-residential components can be added to the calculation of the mortgage based on statutory unit limitations; the Section 221(d)(4) limit had been 15% until recently, when it was increased to 20%.

We applaud the intent of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act to spur economic development in disadvantaged communities, and HUD’s efforts to maximize the impact of the Act through its multifamily mortgage insurance programs. We are currently developing a mortgage insurance application for a Louisiana rental project in an urban area that also is designated an OZ. Keep tuned to this space for updates on this deal.

Market Commentary: On the Cusp of Another New Year

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In Chinese folklore, the Jade Emperor decided that there should be a way of measuring time and settled on a 12-year calendar. To designate the years, he decided to host a competition for naming rights. On his birthday, he called for a swimming race and invited all animals to participate. The first twelve to cross a wide river would win a spot on his new zodiac calendar. So the great race began and the quick-witted Rat convinced the kind and powerful Ox to give him a ride on his back. The Ox moved rapidly into the lead but, just as he reached the river bank, the Rat jumped off and finished ahead of him, earning his position as the first zodiac sign. The peeved Ox was followed by the Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Pig, the final order of the zodiac.

Rats have long symbolized wealth and surplus in Chinese culture. They are said to be savers, but lack courage and can be stingy. Their love for hoarding can sometimes cause them to waste money on unnecessary things. Those born in the Year of the Rat are considered clever and industrious. The most recent Years of the Rat were in 2008, 1996, 1984, 1972 and 1960, half of which were good for stocks, half for bonds, none good for both. The next one begins on January 25, the Lunar New Year, which always occurs on the second new moon after the winter solstice. Feng shui grand masters see this year as the start of a new age. Many expect slowing growth, radical positions, impassioned protests, and more tension between countries. Some see great opportunities for wealth with best performances coming from energy, entertainment, land development, technology, and banking.

China’s Vice Premier Liu He, born in the Year of the Dragon in 1952, will be in Washington on Wednesday to sign a partial trade deal with President Trump, born in the Year of the Dog in 1946. The trade war between the two superpowers has generated much uncertainty for global investors for the last two years. And although markets cheer the accord, and relief to some businesses comes with the Phase One truce, for the time being tariffs continue to impact chemical makers, apparel retailers and auto parts manufacturers. A substantial percentage, perhaps close to two-thirds, of everything Americans buy from China will still be tariffed.

2020 in the Gregorian calendar is a leap year. It is a decennial census year, a presidential election year, and a year in which the United Kingdom and Gibraltar are scheduled to leave the European Union. Tokyo hosts the Summer Olympics, the World Expo opens in Dubai, and NASA launches a rover mission to study the habitability of Mars. The financial markets will focus on the eight scheduled meetings of the Federal Open Market Committee, beginning on January 28, but will also pay close attention to the Democratic primaries which start on February 3 and conclude with the convention in Milwaukee on July 16.

The new trading year began with the targeted U.S. MQ-9 Reaper drone airstrike that killed Iran General Qassem Soleimani followed by the deployment of 3,500 additional U.S. troops to the Middle East. Markets were roiled and investors fled to safe havens out of concern for retaliations and an escalation of conflict. Once Iran appeared to stand down, tensions very quickly faded and the U.S. rallies resumed. At this writing, the Dow is up 368 points since the start of the year, the S&P 500 is up 57 points, and the Nasdaq is up 301 points or 3.4%, while the Russell 2000 Index of small cap companies manufacturing or producing goods in the U.S. is basically flat at 1,668. Oil prices spiked briefly but have settled in the $59 range, down nearly 5% in 2020. Gold prices have gained $27 an ounce and stand at $1,549.

The bond market continues its 30-plus year-long rally, buoyed further by the temporary flight to quality. Although the 2-year Treasury yield is up 2 basis points on the year to 1.58% at this writing, the 10-year benchmark has fallen 7 basis points to 1.84% and the 30-year yield is down 8 basis points to 2.30%. $8.19 billion was added to high grade corporate bond funds in the opening week of 2020, and high yield funds reported inflows of $1.12 billion. Ten-year Baa corporate bond yields have dropped 11 basis points to 3.59%.

Municipal bonds are still on a tear. Yields, as measured by the AAA general obligation MMD scale, have compressed by another 10 basis points. The 2-year is at 0.94% and the 10-year at 1.35%. The 30-year benchmark at 1.98% is 105 basis points lower than where it stood one year ago. Continuing the 53-week pattern, municipal bond mutual fund inflows continue to set new records. Investors added an astonishing $2.89 billion into state and local government debt funds during the first, traditionally sleepy, week of January. More than $612 million was added to high yield funds.

During the first full week of issuance, $5.9 billion of bonds were issued and the high yield muni sector saw little activity. The California School Finance Authority sold $32.3 million of non-rated revenue bonds for Arts in Action Charter Schools that came with a 40-year final maturity priced with a 5.00% coupon to yield 3.67%. And the Build NYC Resource Corporation issued $9.3 million of non-rated revenue bonds structured with a 30-year term bond priced at 5.00% to yield 4.00%. This week’s $6.6 billion slate include a $23.5 million non-rated South Carolina Jobs-Economic Development Authority deal for Hilton Head Christian Academy. The 30-day visible supply of visible bonds totals $12.3 billion. On the cusp of a new calendar used by one quarter of the world’s population, we join in wishing all a Happy New Year.

What You Need to Know about Electronic Wills

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By Megan Morrow

While most adults believe that wills are important, less than half of them actually have one, according to a recent survey, the chief reason being that “I have not gotten around to it yet.” Designed to make the process of creating a will easier and more accessible for all, electronic wills have previously required printing and signing on the dotted line in front of a witness. While e-signatures are common and widespread, e-notarization is not.

However, Indiana and Nevada have passed laws permitting e-signatures while Arizona and Florida are expected to adopt such legislation in 2020, with more states to follow. This sets the stage for expanded use of electronic wills that can be wholly completed online.

The Uniform Electronic Wills Act was adopted by the Uniform Law Commission to create a model for executing a will with online technology that other states can follow. In essence, those who wish to create an electronic will could do so online, then connect with a notary via video chat. The notary can talk with the individual and ask any pertinent questions before notarizing the will and returning it. The electronic will is constituted as valid, without the testator ever having to be in the physical presence of the notary.

Benefits of electronic wills include access, availability, convenience and simplicity. No matter where you live or what your schedule, you can create a valid will on your own time table.

Concerns with electronic wills center on fraud – particularly the possibility of undue influence or duress in the creation of the document. Likewise, without the advice of an attorney, individuals could use boilerplate wills that lack the details or specificity that their estate requires. A one-size-fits all will, naturally, will not work for everyone. Issues with revocation and storage also remain to be further determined.

At present, electronic wills might be ideal for younger people – only one in five Millennials have a will – or those with fewer assets and complications. With more states expected to adopt electronic will legislation in the coming years, options for online wills are anticipated to grow as well.

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.

Twenty Trends to Anticipate in 2020

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By Megan Morrow

What will the next year bring? What will phase in and what fill fade out in 2020?

According to prognosticators across industries, the following twenty trends will top the charts in the upcoming year:

  1. The workforce will become more global: More people of all ages will move and migrate in search of new experiences and cultures.
  2. Mobile apps will continue to redefine industries: Apps will continue to provide convenience, customization and customer service across industries.
  3. “Enough-ism:” As opposed to consumerism, the concept of enough-ism insists that we already have enough and may need fewer things, less time at work and reduced expectations in order to enjoy a more satisfied and fulfilled life.
  4. More robots and artificial intelligence: Companies will seek to save more money by using more predictive technology to meet their customers’ evolving needs.
  5. Patience is no longer a virtue. As Amazon reduces its shipping time to near-instantaneous, customers are demanding fast service and faster delivery. More companies will find a way to meet this interest for consumers who want something “right now!”
  6. Businesses prioritize worker happiness. Companies are increasingly recognizing that happy employees are productive, long-term employees and are therefore, investing in programs and incentives to this end.
  7. Cloud health: As people seek to prevent chronic disease, personal mobile tools (housed within the Cloud), can deliver customized fitness and diet solutions designed for prevention and healing.
  8. Crowdfunding will get even more crowded. Crowdfunding platforms continue to explode as a means of funding new enterprises, supporting individuals in need and creating new partnerships. Expect even more crowding in the year to come.
  9. Cybersecurity will be a threat and a focus: Cyber-threats across industries continue to plague companies and their customers, who need their information to be safe and secure. Companies must continually update software and security planning efforts to prevent ongoing threats to cybersecurity.
  10. Menus meet health needs. Diners are in search of food that offers natural enhancement and health. More healthy substitutes and plant-based foods will make their mark, and restaurants and grocery stores will continue to serve customers interested in Paleo, keto, gluten-free and other specific diet trends.
  11. Recommendations are required. User reviews and recommendations from friends will be king in the year to come. Many consumers will not buy anything without first finding the right reviews.
  12. 5G is a high five. Changing how we interact online, 5G offers incredibly fast download speed and will expand to drones, smart vehicles and other applications.
  13. Mindfulness matters. To combat the stress of a busy life, meditation, yoga and other forms of mindfulness will continue to inspire people to slow down, breathe deeply and let go.
  14. Baby Boomers will retire while Millennials move into management. These generational trends will change the face and shape of the workforce for the future.
  15. Home design will be neutral and blue. A deep shade of blue and neutrals, as well as geometric patterns and the natural world, will inspire home design in 2020.
  16. The gig economy will grow. Workers love flexibility and the ability to freelance, further enhancing this already growing trend.
  17. Consumers become partners in their own health care. Rather than simply watching and absorbing, patients will become more active and aware in their overall health care.
  18. Voice is everywhere. Alexa, Google Assistant and their cousins become even smarter and more connected in homes, offices and on the go.
  19. Politics… You probably do not need an expert to tell you that the political scene in 2020 is expected to be contentious, engaging and memorable.
  20. Retirement planning is more important than ever. As legislation and individual needs evolve, it is critical to pay attention to your retirement plans. Naturally, the start of a new year is a great chance to connect with your advisor to discuss your plans going forward.

What are you looking forward to in 2020? Doubtless, you will enjoy trends and experiences for you own top-twenty list.

Contact an Advisor

Should you have any questions about this subject matter, contact your financial advisor to help navigate any challenges you may have. 

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: Welcome to the Next in the Series of Roaring ’20’s

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Two hundred years ago in the Era of Good Feelings, Maine and Missouri were admitted to the Union, the Territory of Florida was ceded to the United States by Spain, the first train began operating over the Granite Railway in Massachusetts, the first camera photograph was taken in France and the first modern stock market crash occurred in London. President James Monroe delivered a speech to Congress in which he warned leaders in Europe that any future attempt to exert influence in the Western Hemisphere would be seen by the U.S. as a threat to its security. Due to an Electoral College stalemate in which none of the four Democratic-Republican candidates won a majority, the presidential election of 1824 was the first and only one in history decided in the House of Representatives under the 12th Amendment. John Quincy Adams of Massachusetts, became our sixth President after earning only 31% of the popular vote. His opponent, Andrew Jackson of the Carolinas, a former U.S. Army General and justice on the Tennessee Supreme Court who had served in both chambers of Congress, had the plurality of the popular vote at 41%, and eventually succeeded Adams in 1829. President Jackson opposed paper money and demanded that the government be paid in silver and gold coins. He believed that the central bank at that time, the Second Bank of the United States, lacked constitutional legitimacy and was a corrupt institution, dangerous to American liberties. He vetoed a bill re-chartering the bank and was re-elected on an anti-bank platform.

One hundred years ago during the decade of the Roaring Twenties, communism and fascism spread in Europe, the U.S. placed harsh restrictions on immigration, and prohibition took effect. Republican Warren Harding of Ohio campaigned for a “return to normalcy” after World War I and won 60% of the popular vote and 404 votes in the presidential election of 1920, the first in which women had the right to vote in all 48 states. “Winnie’s” Vice President, Republican Calvin Coolidge of Massachusetts, won every state outside of the south in the 1924 race for the Oval Office but chose not to run for re-election. “Silent Cal’s” Republican Secretary of Commerce, Herbert Hoover of California, became the first president born west of the Mississippi River when he gained 444 electoral votes and 58% of the popular vote. The Electoral Colleges at the time were heavily influenced by certain gridlock in Congress. For the only time in American history, legislators failed to agree on a reapportionment plan following the 1920 Census. Representatives from rural districts were fearful of losing power to the cities, and worked to delay and block consideration of the required enabling legislation. So, the distribution of Congressional seats from the 1910 Census remained in effect for 23 years. The decade ended — as we know — with the Wall Street Crash of 1929.

January 1, 2020, marked the start of a new decade in this century, but we are clearly linked to the ’20s of our past. On the economic front, our economy continues to roar and its powerful engine, the consumer, feels good despite concerns for the intensifying conflict with Iran and rising food and gas prices. We are in a presidential election year where the Electoral College may once again produce results that differ from the popular vote. The composition of the College will change if Congress approves reapportionment this December based on some of the significant population shifts that have occurred; as a result of this decennial Census, Florida is likely to receive several new U.S. House seats at the expense of California, Illinois, New York and/or Minnesota. We live in an era of major threats to our security and the President has an emerging doctrine. The central bank has become a real lightning rod for him, but his Treasury Department delivers approximately 21 million paper notes a day to the Federal Reserve. The price of gold increased from $19.39 in 1820 and $20.67 in 1920 to $1,575.80 per ounce today.

Not everything was worth a cheer at the start of the New Year. Over the course of the last decade, student debt increased by 108%, auto loan debt climbed by 82%, credit card debt was up by 10.8% and mortgage debt rose 6.7%. The federal debt stood at $23 trillion, and the budget deficit for FY19 exceeded $984 billion. Global debt topped $250 trillion, more than three times the combined gross domestic product. The Fed held $4.1 trillion of assets and the collective balance sheet assets of the Fed, the European Central Bank, the Bank of Japan and Bank of England totaled 35.9% of their nation’s GDPs. The investor’s Wall of Worry included geopolitical tensions in the Middle East and North Korea, political polarization at home, trade conflicts with China, political and fiscal policies in Europe, market volatility, a virtual rolling impeachment process, natural disasters, corporate and municipal defaults leading to massive fund redemptions, price cuts and market illiquidity, regulatory and legislative uncertainty, underfunded pensions and other post-employment benefits.

The last decade ended with champagne and fireworks-filled celebrations by those in the stock and bond markets. The U.S. enjoyed 120 consecutive months of expansion, and states reported nine consecutive years of revenue gains. For the first time in 70 years, we became a net exporter of petroleum. Unemployment at 3.50% was at a 50-year low, well below the 9.70% reported in January of 2010. The number of unemployed persons per job opening was 0.8 versus 5.8 in 2009 and the labor force participation rate for prime age workers (25-64) was 82.8%, the highest in 10 years. The S&P 500 Index gained 30% last year and the Bloomberg Barclays Bond Index rose 15%. Investors rode out unprecedented monetary interventions, negative interest rate policies which produced a high of $18 trillion of negative yielding sovereign bonds, algorithmic trading, artificial intelligence, cloud technology, cyberattacks, the introduction of blockchain and cryptocurrencies, sovereign near-defaults, major changes in tax and health care laws, taper tantrums, debt ceiling and government shutdown crises, power shifts in the Congress and White House, media-induced frenzies over the prospect of higher rates, recession and widespread municipal defaults. Investing has been made easier with online access, index funds, robo-advisors and zero-commission trends. During the past decade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 18,110 points and the Nasdaq Composite Index rose 6,703 points. Oil prices fell $18.30 a barrel while gold prices rose $281 an ounce. The 10-year Treasury yield decreased by 192 basis points from 3.83% to 1.91% and the spread between the 2-year and 10-year shrank from 270 basis points to 35 basis points. The 10-year Baa-rated corporate bond benchmark fell 221 basis points from 5.91% to 3.70%. Bond market volatility, as measured by the CBOE/CBOT US Treasury Note Volatility Index, declined from 7.01 to 4.13.

In the municipal bond sector, the 10-year AAA municipal general obligation bond yield plummeted by 156 basis points from 3.00% to 1.44% between 2010 and 2019. The spreads between 2-year and 10-year yields narrowed from 242 basis points to 40 basis points. The slope of the yield curve has rarely been so flat since 1964. Issuance exceeded $400 billion four times during the decade, including $421 billion in 2019. Last year, there were $90 billion of net inflows into muni mutual funds over 51 consecutive weeks, and throughout the past decade, investors have added a net of $366 billion, increasing assets to $803 billion. Demand for tax-exempts was predictably highest in the high-tax states of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, California and Massachusetts. Returns for the year averaged about 7.74%, with high yield and long-dated bonds reporting some of the best returns. Taxable municipal bond issuance doubled last year to $67 billion, primarily due to the number of advance refundings under the 2018 tax laws. The 30-year AAA rated taxable municipal bond benchmark closed the year at 3.20%, which looked mighty attractive versus the German 30-year sovereign yield which finished the year at 0.349%, the French at 0.922%, and the Italian at 2.465%.

U.S. fixed income markets total $41 trillion with $906 billion of bonds traded daily and annual issuance approximating $8.1 trillion in 2019. There are approximately $15.9 trillion of U.S. Treasuries, $9.4 trillion of corporate bonds, and $3.8 trillion of municipal bonds outstanding. $602 billion of Treasuries, $11 billion of municipals, and $35 billion of corporates are traded every day. Monthly issuance in 2019 averaged $234 billion for governments, $124 billion for corporates and $34 billion for munis. U.S. equities have a $30 trillion market capitalization, with 6.8 billion shares traded daily and $228 billion of underwriting activity.

Despite all the failed forecasts for 2019, economists and analysts of all stripes have looked into the crystal ball and made their predictions for 2020; some have dared to go out as far as five years. The predictable wild cards are central bank policy mistakes, Brexit surprises, convention and election outcomes, Census surprises, recession, weather-related disasters, oil price shocks, debt crises, trade war escalation and market corrections. In the municipal bond sector this year, we expect issuance to exceed $410 billion with perhaps $120 billion of refundings, and $85 billion of taxables. At least $288 billion of bonds will mature or are scheduled to be called and redemption totals are bound to grow with advance refundings. We have seen projections for the 10-year AAA muni yield to end the year as low as 0.8%. At this writing, the 10-year yield stands at 1.34% and the calendar for this first full week of January is estimated at $9 billion.

We welcome everyone back from the holidays and encourage you to share your predictions, interests and concerns with our sales, trading and banking staff this month. In the interim, we wish you a happy, healthy, and prosperous 2020.

Steps for Life Boca Raton!

Please help us support Gift of Life’s annual Steps for Life 5k run/walk and Superhero Kids race, which will be held at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton on Sunday, January 19, 2020.

We invite you to join the HJ Sims’ team!

Registration is only $30; Register today! If you are unable to join, please consider supporting Gift of Life with a monetary donation; your donation is tax-deductible.

We also encourage you to please join the registry to help save a life!

CSR Spotlight Newsletter

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For news about our employee’s support of charities in their respective communities, please read our CSR Spotlight Newsletter.

The HJ Sims team places value on helping to make the world a better place. We contribute to our communities via our Corporate Social Responsibility program, an initiative that focuses staff volunteer efforts and contributions to non-profit, charitable organizations. Please learn more by visiting: www.hjsims.com/servingourcommunities. For questions or submissions, please email Tara at tperkins@hjsims.com.

The Upside of Aging

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By Megan Morrow

Yes, you will have “senior moments.” And true, your short-term memory may start to fade, and aches and pains may last longer. Yet, many older Americans are discovering that there is a true upside to aging, from relationships to wisdom to free programs and tax benefits.

If you tend to brush your birthday aside or worry about the number of candles on your cake, it might be time to focus on the benefits of getting older, which can include:

  • Happiness! Older people tend to be happier. Studies show that most people are unhappiest in their 40s and 50s as they face stressors from work and family and that happiness increases as middle age passes. Happier people are also healthier, more productive and more aware of what they have.
  • Seniors are better at navigating emotions. They tend to learn how to manage social conflicts, with the abilities to imagine alterative points of view and work out compromises. What bothers someone in their 20s hardly makes a blip on the radar of someone a few decades older, according to studies.
  • Financial perks such as guaranteed minimum income, Social Security, Medicare and senior discounts. Programs such as Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid can support seniors with health insurance and a safety net. Likewise, special senior discounts can provide incentives for getting out, exploring new things and staying engaged.
  • Seniors are more likely to be involved. From politics to volunteering, seniors often have more time to participate in activities and organizations that matter to them. One in four seniors volunteers actively, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and those over the age of 65 report the highest voting rate of any age group.

While stereotypes about aging persist, more people of all ages are recognizing the beauty of getting older and wiser. We also know that attitude goes a long way: Participants in a study on aging who had a positive attitude about the process also showed enhanced cognition, one more reason to focus on the upsides of aging.

No matter what your age, it is important to maintain relationships and connections with people of diverse ages and backgrounds and to cultivate a positive mindset.

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.

HJ Sims Provides Seed Capital for New University Related Life Plan Community

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DECEMBER 19, 2018

CONTACT: Tara Perkins, Assistant Vice President | 203-418-9049 | tperkins@hjsims.com

HJ Sims Provides Seed Capital for New University Related Life Plan Community

FAIRFIELD, CT– HJ Sims (Sims), a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm founded in 1935, is pleased to announce the successful $15,000,000 financing in October 2018 for Broadview Senior Living at Purchase College, a Life Plan Community under development in Purchase New York. Broadview will be located on the campus of Purchase College, a public four-year college of visual and performing arts, liberal arts and sciences, founded in 1967 and one of the 13 colleges of the State University of New York (SUNY) system.

Known for its arts programs and home of the Neuberger Museum of Art and The Performing Arts Center, Purchase continually attracts the local community to its campus. In 2003, the President of Purchase assembled a task force to determine how to best fulfill the college’s commitment to lifelong learning. A plan was formulated for the development of a senior residential community to be located on a 40-acre leased parcel of the campus and focused on intergenerational and lifelong learning. Broadview will initially consist of 220 independent living apartments and villas, 18 assisted living beds, 16 memory care beds and amenity space with room for potential expansion in later years. Twenty percent of the units will be set aside for residents earning below 80% of the local median income.

The Purchase College Foundation Housing Corporation provided $5 million to fund initial costs. An estimated $15 million will be required before permanent financing, anticipated to occur within three years. As a community under development with no operating history, financing was a challenge. Sims structured a five-year, $15 million Bond Anticipation Note (BAN) issue to fund the remaining costs. In a BANs issue, interest payments are not paid currently but with proceeds of the permanent financing.

With little collateral and repayment contingent on obtaining permanent financing, these are speculative bonds which limits potential investors. Following close cooperation with management and development teams, Sims secured the required financing commitment with an experienced institutional investment fund. Sims’ Private Client Group sold approximately $4 million to individual investors, despite a $100,000 minimum investment. Sims closed on the $15 million tax-exempt BAN issue with an interest rate 11%. Sims expects to provide up to $325 million for the construction and permanent financing of Broadview.

“The Sims team, especially Andrew Nesi, has been like a partner since we started this venture and guided us along the way. Importantly, they’ve really believed in us and the vision of creating a unique senior learning community at Purchase. We’re grateful for their hard work and professionalism in successfully securing our pre-development funding and looking forward to continuing to work with them through permanent financing,” said Wayne Rush, Vice President and Project Manager, Purchase Senior Learning Corporation.

For Financed Right® solutions, contact: Andrew Nesi at 203-418-9057 | anesi@hjsims.com.

ABOUT HJ SIMS: Founded in 1935 on Wall Street, HJ Sims is a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm with $2.2 billion of assets under management. HJ Sims is known as one of the country’s oldest underwriters of tax-exempt and taxable bonds, having raised $25+ billion for projects throughout the US. The firm is headquartered in Fairfield, Connecticut, with nationwide investment banking, private client wealth management and trading locations. HJ Sims is not affiliated with Purchase College, Broadview or Purchase Senior Living Corporation. Visit www.hjsims.com/ourstory. Investments involve risk, including the possible fluctuation of principal. Member FINRA, SIPC. Follow HJ Sims on FacebookLinkedIn and Twitter.

HJ Sims Partners with Duncan-Williams to Finance Start-up Construction of The Farms at Bailey Station, an RCA Community

CONTACT: Tara Perkins, Assistant Vice President, Marketing Communications, HJ Sims | 203-418-9049 | tperkins@hjsims.com

Michelle Vincent, Retirement Companies of America | 901-794-2598 | mvincent@retirementcompanies.com

Gary Lendermon, Duncan-Williams, Inc. | 901-260-6847 | glendermon@duncanwilliams.com

 HJ Sims Partners with Duncan-Williams to Finance Start-up Construction of The Farms at Bailey Station, an RCA Community

FAIRFIELD, CT—HJ Sims (Sims) is pleased to announce the completion of a $219,250,000 financing for the new construction of The Farms at Bailey Station (The Farms), a Life Plan Community (LPC), located in Collierville, TN. The Farms is a sister community of Kirby Pines Estates (Kirby), located in Memphis, TN, which was voted Best Retirement Community in Memphis and the Mid-South. The Farms is designed to offer city and country living within a luxurious setting. With customizable homes, a menu of amenities, and the security of covered long-term care, The Farms will offer residents effortless, elegant living. Kirby and The Farms are run by Retirement Communities of America (RCA), a mission-driven organization with a 35+-year legacy of faith-based caring.

Duncan-Williams, Inc. (Duncan) served as co-manager on the financing. Founded in 1969, Duncan is a full-service broker dealer and nationally recognized investment banking firm headquartered in TN. The Farms is 70% pre-sold. Rees Architects and Renaissance Group served as architects; Dalhoff Thomas design studio of Memphis assisted as landscape architect. Linkous served as general contractor.

“The Farms has been a labor of love. RCA assembled a team that worked tirelessly toward a successful closing. The Sims team brought expertise, creativity, commitment and flawless execution with Duncan-Williams, and Greystone Communities. The team took a personal interest, and was sensitive and responsive to the complexities of the project and the desires of our Board Members. They successfully facilitated the financing and delivered a favorable rate structure, while with the Sims and Duncan-Williams team executed placement of the bonds masterfully,” Michelle Trammell-Vincent, Senior Vice President, RCA.

Sims structured a 40-year financing to lower annual debt service (the only 2019 senior living financing with this amortization length). The financing included non-rated, fixed rate bonds and bank purchased draw-down bonds for the independent living apartments, assisted living, memory care and skilled nursing portion of the project. The Community also obtained a bank revolving credit facility for the garden home portion of the community. Involving banks saved the project $6+ million in carried interest. Sims structured a Liquidity Support Agreement and Coverage Support Agreement to enhance credit and security for investors. Sims and Duncan placed the bonds with 20 institutional investors and $17+ million with accredited individual investors.

“We were honored to work with The Farms to provide its complete financing. The LPC will be the most up-to-date in its market and will be a beautifully landscaped campus of garden homes, apartments, assisted living, memory care and skilled nursing,” William Sims, CEO and Managing Principal, Sims.

Chauncey Lever of Foley Lardner LLP, John Stevens of Iberia Bank, Charlie Trammell and Michelle of Retirement Companies of America, David Williams of Butler Snow LLP, Jimmy Rester of HJ Sims, Michael Bradshaw of Butler Snow LLP, and Abe Benavides of McCall, Parkhurst & Horton LLP.

Financed Right® solutions: James Rester at 214-558-7175 or jrester@hjsims.com

ABOUT HJ SIMS: Founded in 1935 on Wall Street, HJ Sims is a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm. HJ Sims is known as one of the country’s oldest underwriters of tax-exempt and taxable bonds, having raised $28+ billion for projects throughout the US. The firm is headquartered in Fairfield, CT, with nationwide investment banking, private wealth management and trading locations. Visit www.hjsims.com/ourstory. Investments involve risk, including the possible fluctuation of principal. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. HJ Sims is not affiliated with Duncan-Williams, RCA or The Farms at Bailey Station. Member FINRA, SIPC. Follow HJ Sims: FacebookLinkedInInstagram and Twitter.

Axxcess Platform Announces Partnership with HJ Sims

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HJ SIMS: Tara Perkins, AVP Marketing Communications, tperkins@hjsims.com | 203-418-9049

AXXCESS PLATFORM: Alexis Brock, Marketing and Communications, alexis@axxcesswealth.com | 866-217-5607

AXXCESS PLATFORM ANNOUNCES PARTNERSHIP WITH HJ SIMS

FAIRFIELD, CT— Axxcess Platform (Axxcess), an enterprise turnkey asset management platform, announced today a partnership with HJ Sims, a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm headquartered in Fairfield, CT. HJ Sims and Axxcess have partnered  to deliver a suite of portfolio management technology for the HJ Sims private client wealth management team.

“We are thrilled about partnering with HJ Sims to equip their team with our asset management solution to help them continue to deliver a rich client experience. We are confident the HJ Sims team will find incredible value in our platform, which offers the tools and resources needed in one technology stack, further optimizing their client management approach,” says Michael Seid, CEO of Axxcess.

Founded in 1935 on Wall Street, HJ Sims is entrusted with $2.3 billion of assets under management. Herbert J. Sims, founder, was an innovative and revolutionary thinker with an imaginative and pioneering spirit. During the Great Depression, Herbert recognized opportunity to create jobs and support important infrastructure, such as county roads, natural gas systems, and bridges and causeways, through municipal financings. Today, HJ Sims supports individual investors, organizations, municipalities and institutions with expert wealth management, trading services and investment banking solutions.

HJ Sims will utilize the Axxcess platform as an end-to-end portfolio management tool, allowing their wealth management experts to serve their clients’ financial needs with a seamless and scalable approach–including aggregating accounts, identifying risk, analyzing holdings, modelling and blending investment strategies, and accessing third-party directed solutions.

“Partnering with Axxcess by incorporating their customized technology and sophisticated interface via a first-class portfolio management tool will help our advisory team deepen their client relationships. The comprehensive technology platform provided by Axxcess empowers us to revolutionize our client experience with open architecture and access to best in breed money managers,” said Dan Mullane, Managing Principal of HJ Sims.

ABOUT AXXCESS PLATFORM

Axxcess integrates third party investment managers alongside real estate, private equity, and hedged investments to create a unique UMA/TAMP Platform to transform your Wealth Management practice. The Axxcess Platform is built for the experienced Advisor looking to improve its current RIA Platform, or as an operational solution for a high caliber professional thinking of going independent and seeking a seamless transition. We offer Advisors open architecture, with a full array of wealth management and investment advisory services to move your practice upstream. Axxcess combines true alternatives like private equity, private credit, hedge funds and directed real estate alongside traditional SMA strategies.

Our focus is on 3c(1) and 3c(7) clients and the Advisors that serve them. If you are interested in providing a platform of services designed to move your business upscale, Axxcess is your solution. Contact: 866-217-5607 |https://axxcessplatform.com/

ABOUT HJ SIMS

Founded in 1935 on Wall Street, HJ Sims is a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm. HJ Sims is known as one of the country’s oldest underwriters of tax-exempt and taxable bonds, having raised $28+ billion for projects throughout the US. The firm is headquartered in Fairfield, CT, with nationwide investment banking, private wealth management and trading locations. Visit www.hjsims.com/ourstory. Visit www.hjsims.com/ourstory. Follow HJ Sims on FacebookLinkedInInstagram and Twitter.

Investments involve risk, including the possible fluctuation of principal. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. HJ Sims is not affiliated with Axxcess Wealth Management. Member FINRA, SIPC.