In October of 2022 I wrote about what's going on in the stock market, bond market and the war (Geo-Politics). This is the first update to that piece which nearly received more reads than I have followers (1,150 followers).

1) Oil prices have gone from $87.55/barrel to $73.28 (down 16%); Expect further decline, despite summer months approaching.
2) Russian GDP has fallen every month at an annualized rate of 3-5%;
3) Since the war started a little over a year ago, Russia has lost nearly 400% more young men and prisoners than the USA lost over 8 years in Vietnam (approaching 200,000 dead and untold wounded);
4) The US Dollar has weakened by about 15% from October 2022 (a variant given that the Fed has been raising rates). Inflation in the US dropped from 7.7% to 5% over this period;
5) Overnight rates (short term) have risen by about 30 bps since 10/22 (not nearly as high as the press would have you believe). This number is important as the Fed will raise rates again on May 3, 2023. I think by 3/8ths.

The war will rage on as Russia attempts to influence US Politics (remember, 2024 is a Presidential Election year - 11/5/24). This will keep gas prices in the $75-80 range. But the US won't replenish the strategic oil reserve until prices drop into the $60 range (which may happen shortly after the election).

Short term interest rates will march higher, as no one is talking about anything worse than a mild recession. The Fed usually likes to have some fear in the markets so look for more rate increases.

I suggest staying in short term instruments (80-90%) and defensive stocks (maybe 10-20%). This should all play out after 11/5/24 and why risk a 20+% decline when you can make 5% tax free in short term instruments.

Disclosures may be found at This is one person's opinion.

Posted by Andrew Walter May CEO on April 20th, 2023 10:44 AM
Factors that influence your credit score

If you are looking for a mortgage to buy your first home, you need to know your credit score and understand the basics of how it will ultimately influence your monthly mortgage payment.  

Before deciding on what terms to offer you on a loan (which they base on the "risk" to them), lenders will want to know two things about you: your ability to pay back the loan, and your willingness to pay back the loan. For the first, they look at your income-to-debt obligation ratio. For your willingness to pay back the loan, they consult your credit score.


The most widely used credit scores are FICO scores, which were developed by Fair Isaac & Company, Inc. (and they're named after their inventor!). Your FICO score is between 350 (high risk) and 850 (low risk).

1.     It Is Not About How Much Money You Have

Credit scores only consider the information contained in your credit profile. They do not consider your income, savings, down payment amount, or demographic factors like gender, race, nationality or marital status. In fact, the fact that they don't consider demographic factors is why they were invented in the first place. "Profiling" was not as dirty a word when FICO scores were invented as it is now.

Credit scoring was developed as a way to consider only what was relevant to somebody's willingness to repay a loan.

2.     You Need to Show That You Make Payments on Time

Past delinquencies, derogatory payment behavior, current debt level, length of credit history, types of credit and number of inquiries are all considered in credit scores. Your score considers both positive and negative information in your credit report.

Late payments will lower your score, but establishing or reestablishing a good track record of making payments on time will raise your score.

3.     Some Parts of Your Payment History Are More Important Than Others

Different portions of your credit history are given different weights:

  • 35% t of your FICO score is based on your specific payment history. 
  • 30% is your current level of indebtedness. 
  • 15% is the time your open credit has been in use (ten-year old accounts are good, six-month old ones aren't as good) 
  • 10% is types of credit available to you (installment loans such as student loans, car loans, etc. versus revolving and debit accounts like credit cards). 
  • 5% is pursuit of new credit -- frequency of credit scores requested.

4.     You Need At Least Six Months to Establish Credit History

Your credit report must contain at least one account which has been open for six months or more, and at least one account that has been updated in the past six months for you to get a credit score. This ensures that there is enough information in your report to generate an accurate score. If you do not meet the minimum criteria for getting a score, you may need to establish a credit history prior to applying for a mortgage.

If you have questions about how your credit score will impact your mortgage rate, give American Dream Residential a call at 919-771-3379. With nearly 25 years of experience in the finance industry and a perfect track record of 0 Better Business Bureau complaints, our team makes sure you are comfortable with the mortgage process and happy with your experience. 

Posted by Andrew Walter May CEO on December 19th, 2017 11:14 AM


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