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O'Brien Wealth Partners Q1 Client Letter

Quarterly Client Letter – Q1 2022

The past several months have seen a volatile pullback in most asset markets, largely driven by the Federal Reserve (Fed) tightening cycle and the war in Ukraine. The war in Ukraine has been a humanitarian catastrophe, and we continue to wish for the safety and peace for everyone that has been impacted. But probably the biggest contributor to market volatility has been the ambiguity around the outlook for the Fed.

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O'Brien Wealth Partners Q4 Client Letter

Quarterly Client Letter – Q4 2021

As we look back at the year 2021, we were pleasantly surprised by the progress that occurred – even though it didn’t always feel like we were moving forward in the moment. Over nine billion COVID vaccinations were administered globally. Sales of zero-emission vehicles surpassed sales of diesel vehicles for the first time in Europe. NASA’s Perseverance rover was able to make oxygen on Mars. Juneteenth became a federal holiday. Tom Brady won a record seventh Super Bowl. And global stocks posted their third consecutive year of double-digit gains – the first time that has happened since the mid-2000s.

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O'Brien Wealth Partners Q3 Client Letter

Quarterly Client Letter – Q3 2021

After five consecutive quarters of gains – the longest such period in over four years – and an 89% rally, global stocks finally paused to catch their breath in 3Q. Concerns over the spread of the COVID Delta variant, a shift toward tightening policy in China and the U.S., peaking global growth rates, and a rapid surge in inflation caused by economies reopening combined to drive global stocks (as measured by ACWI) down roughly one percent. While these concerns are valid, we also believe them to be transitory.

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O'Brien Wealth Partners Q2 Client Letter

Quarterly Client Letter – Q2 2021

2Q was another solid quarter of performance for markets, with every major asset class posting a gain. Stocks once again outperformed bonds, and within stocks the U.S. again led other regions. For the year, global stocks are now up double-digits, while investment-grade bonds are down slightly.

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O'Brien Wealth Partners Q1 Client Letter

Quarterly Client Letter – Q1 2021

Welcome to Day 385 of the 15 Day Plan to Flatten The Curve. If you are anything like us, you are looking forward to a bit more in-person human contact. As we look back at the first quarter of the year it almost feels a bit mundane when compared to the roller coaster ride that was 2020.

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O'Brien Wealth Partners Q4 Client Letter

Quarterly Client Letter – Q4 2020

What a whirlwind the past 12 months have been! This time a year ago the coronavirus was just a pneumonia-like health scare in Wuhan, China. There was only one confirmed death from the virus globally . President Trump was yet to face his first impeachment trial and was experiencing his high-water job approval mark of roughly 50%. Former Vice President Biden was still one of a dozen candidates for the Democratic nomination. The economy was humming along with the unemployment rate at a mere 3.5% — the lowest rate since the 1960s.

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O'Brien Wealth Partners Q3 Client Letter

Quarterly Client Letter – Q3 2020

The whirlwind that is 2020 shows no sign of abating as we enter the final quarter of the year. Yet, despite significant uncertainty – and the market pullback in September – the markets delivered another period of strong performance during the third quarter with global stocks up 8%, the S&P 500 up 9% and bonds rising slightly as well. Since the market bottom in March, the S&P 500 has now risen almost 50%, global stocks almost 45% and the U.S. Aggregate Bond Index almost 7%. Stock markets are now positive for the year.

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O'Brien Wealth Partners Q2 Client Letter

Quarterly Client Letter – Q2 2020

It has been a tough year so far. Despite the S&P 500 experiencing its best quarter of performance in over 20 years, stocks are still down for the year and there is still a lot of unease in investors’ minds. Moreover, that unease now comes from sources beyond the still-to-be-resolved coronavirus outbreak. For one, the recovery in financial markets has vastly outpaced the recovery in the economy and labor markets. Social unrest, and reactions to that unrest, are rising as well.

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O'Brien Wealth Partners Q1 Client Letter

Quarterly Client Letter – Q1 2020

Coronavirus. Social distancing. Containment. Pandemic. With hindsight it is remarkable that none of these words were part of our regular lexicon when 2020 began. So much has changed in such a short period that it feels almost impossible to summarize it – not only what happened last quarter, but also where we think may go from here – in just one investment letter. Nevertheless, we will give it our best shot.

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O'Brien Wealth Partners
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