First Trust Financial Forum

Nicole Treadwell |

Last week, Debbie and Nicole attended First Trust Portfolios’ Financial Forum and heard from three very knowledgeable and entertaining speakers. They all reminded us of how lucky we are to live in the greatest country on earth.

The first speaker was Jim Bowen, First Trust’s CEO.  His unique presentation centered around the “Spirit of America” and how we have seen so much progress on many fronts in this country over the last several decades because of good old American ingenuity.  From the rise in corporate assets and profits to the rise in manufacturing; to the rise in oil production and exports; to the reduction in cancer mortality rates, the U.S. is in constant progress mode, always searching for a better way of doing things.

The second speaker was David McGarel, CIO of First Trust. With over 25 years of experience, he has managed portfolios through bull and bear markets, recoveries and recessions, political turmoil and political stability.  His message was simple, math wins over time.  There is always value to be found in the equity markets and he is constantly looking for it.

Last but certainly not least, Brian Wesbury, First Trust Chief Economist, concluded the evening with a very inciteful and upbeat look at the economy. He pointed to the recent decrease in corporate tax rates and regulations to the U.S.’s more competitive stance in the world. Biggest take away from the night: the US is only 4.5% of the world population but responsible for 25% of the world’s GDP.  He also said he sees no slow down or recession in the next year or two. The “App” economy will continue to be a source of growth and government spending, though not a huge concern for the overall economy, will continue to be a lag.

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