Positive Gains for the Dow Jones

04.04.2016 · Posted in Uncategorized

Dow JonesWith the extreme volatility in the first quarter coming to an end, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) is signaling a positive open to the second quarter.  Tech stocks such as Apple (APPL) and Tesla (TSLA) are pushing tremendous gains for the DJIA, both nearly up 10% since last week.

Tesla just released their new affordable car, the Model 3.  It is being sold for $35,000 and already has about 275,000 preorders.  Tesla was trading at $140 back in February 2016 and as of April 4th, 2016 Tesla stands at $250.02.  Look for this stock to keep gaining momentum as their new model is sold.

Although tech stocks are more volatile than ever with increasing competition, the U.S tech stocks are more of a bullish sector for investment.  Another major reason for the positive open to the second quarter is price of oil.  Oil is forecasted to bounce back from their lows which is gaining investors trust in the market.  As of April 4th, crude oil prices stand at $36.80.  Crude oil prices have been fluctuating over this past week between $36 and $41.  Most stocks are effected by oil, so if oil keeps trending higher in the market, investors have a safer bet on their holding equities.

Emerging markets are extremely attractive to many long-term investors.  Emerging market stocks have followed the recovery of commodity prices and this has resulted in powerful gains for the emerging markets.  With the U.S dollar losing some value due to the potential changes in Fed policy, emerging markets have sustained.  This gives the emerging markets better profit margins and provides positive gains for global growth.  As global growth continues to have the chance to grow positively, markets around the world will look to sustain powerful gains.

A Stock to Consider

03.29.2016 · Posted in Uncategorized

As the stock market begins to build momentum, following the rough start to 2016, many investors are trying to find the right stock to buy. For many, income stocks may be the way to go. Income investing targets companies that provide a steady stream of income. This steady stream of income generally comes through their high dividend yields. Dividends are a less risky component of total return, compared to capital appreciation. Likewise, dividend stocks are historically less volatile than non-dividend stocks. The income investing stocks are a safe bet to create wealth as dividends generally act as a hedge against economic uncertainty, and reflect a company’s solid financial structure and healthy underlying fundamentals.


Another benefit of an income stock is the ability to use the dividend yield to reinvest into the market. When the market is uncertain, or when it is beginning to recover, it is often the “safe” and “smart” choice to invest in an income stock. Though the income investing style is generally overlooked, since it does not provide the fast returns of some stocks, this could be a suitable time for such a strategy as it cushions an investor’s portfolio given the stocks’ low risk and diversification benefits.

If you choose to invest in an income stock, one stock to consider is DuPont Fabros Technology, Inc. (DFT). DFT is a leading owner, developer, operator and manager of wholesale data centers and a real estate investment trust. This particular company has been paying dividends consistently since 1999 and has increased its dividend on a continuous basis.

DFT is currently offering a dividend yield of 4.7% and has a 5-year historical dividend yield of 3.7%. Likewise, this stock has gained over 27% in the past year and has a 5-year historical dividend growth of 40.8%. DFT is currently trading at $40.59, as of March 29th, but has seen tremendous growth. This past  October 1st, 2015, the stock was trading for $26.09. This demonstrates the vast growth of the stock and the potential is has for continuous growth. However, since we are discussing income stocks, the growth of the stock is not the main priority, but rather a side-benefit. Overall, DuPont Fabros Technology offers a consistent dividend yield, posting positive growth, and continuous payment. This is a stock that most investors should consider with their next investment decision. DTF will be extremely attractive to investors who are considering income stocks to minimize risk and create diversification.

Italy Banking Crisis

03.20.2016 · Posted in Uncategorized

The continued banking crisis in Italy is not just trouble for Europe’s fourth largest economy but also for the European Union and already weakened global economy. The issues began for Italy late in 2015 when they had to bail out four small to medium sized banks due to high non-performing corporate loan ratios. Following that, Italian stocks declined roughly 25% since the beginning of 2016. This was due to numerous reasons. The most prominent being the non-performing corporate loan ratio over 25%, equivalent to $370 billion or 21% of GDP. Italy’s largest worries are centered on their larger banks such as Monte Dei Pasci. Monte Dei Pasci has been bailed out twice since 2009. Their percentage of loans that are non-performing are about 3% higher than the average Italian bank. Their effect on Italy is substantially larger than the four small to medium sized banks that were saved in late 2015.

Recently, Italy has been looking for the quickest resolution. They first suggested to the EU to create a single “Bad Bank” that intended to take away all debt from Italian banks. This first plan was rejected and another was suggested. In the second plan Italy wanted to give banks a chance to buy public guarantees enabling them to offload their NPL’s on some asset management company. Eventually the EU came to an agreement with Italy on this resolution and considered it a ‘bail in.’

Although Italy and the EU recently came to an agreement they are still in conflict with them over their current situation especially Germany, their main import and export country. Italy wants support from the EU, while Germany feels they should not be held responsible for lending more money after the Greece debt crisis. Italy’s bank crisis could easily become a political issue as well if the EU cannot figuring out a larger solution to the problem.

Italy’s bank crisis has being said to be considerably worse than Greece’s debt crisis. Greece may hold the top spot in the EU for the worst debt-to-GDP ratio, but Italy comes in second place with a debt-to-GDP ratio greater than 132%. If Italy does not find a resolution to their increasing NPL’s and high debt levels, the worldwide economy will suffer. Economist believe the effect will be much worse because when Greece went bankrupt they were the 44th largest economy in the world. Italy on the other had is the 8th largest.

When making an investment make sure to consider the regions in which the company generates their revenue and hedge whether or not it’s a quality investment. If the company’ sales lie mainly in the EU, especially Italy, then it may not be the best investment to make at this point and time.

Financial Literacy

03.19.2016 · Posted in Uncategorized

Financial Literacy


This past Saturday Stonehill hosted an event exclusive to seniors titled, Financial Literacy. This was a chance for seniors to hear from four experienced individuals about the best ways to manage their money. Our four speakers included Glen Ilacqua, CPA and professor for accounting at Stonehill, Elizabeth Santella, a loan officer, Alan Siegel, a financial advisor, and Robert Spencer, a professor here at Stonehill with an extensive background as an attorney and CPA. The four of these individuals were able to provide financial guidance and advice for various aspects of our lives. From small daily expenditures to budgeting for the future.



Glen Ilacqua explained the importance of filing taxes and how it is quite simple. He stressed that filing correctly is extremely important. You want the correct amount taken from each check and when you are filing your returns you do not want to owe money, you want to receive money instead so make sure to file single zero. He stressed, however, that you must be aware of when to change your tax filing because there will come a time when you are required to do so. As you grow in wealth, acquire a home, and start a family, you no longer will be able to file for the same tax status as you did when you were 22 or 23.

Elizabeth Santella provided some rather simple cost saving tips that most college students and even adults seem to overlook. Ms. Santella, in a comical way, advised us that we should look for the cheaper substitutes in life. She said, coffee is coffee, whether it is at Starbucks or McDonalds. Save yourself a couple of dollars a day and drink McCafe. She said you do not need to be someone walking the runway, try your best not to be addicted to fashion trends and stop by Walmart every now and then. A t-shirt there is still a t-shirt, but for half the price. Lastly, she stressed heavily on the unnecessary expense created by ATMs. Why pay $2 to $4 in charges at an ATM when you can buy a piece of candy at CVS and get cashback? Ms. Santella says, be smart and stay away from unnecessary expenses that can accumulate day by day and week by week. She also stressed to us the importance of establishing credit and maintaining credit. Pay your bills and pay them on time!

Alan Siegel provided insight into retirement plans and how to save up for the future. He said it is imperative to figure out exactly what the company is offering for retirement plans and benefits before accepting the job offer. You want a match plan at minimum, where the company you work for will match whatever percentage of your paycheck you delegate to your 401k. Mr. Siegel talked further about the importance of having a diversified portfolio to ensure that there will be money available when you decide to retire and no matter what, do not touch your retirement money too early as you will be penalized and it will hurt you in the long run.

Robert Spencer wrapped up the seminar with advice about when you are actually working in a job and the importance of future growth. Mr. Spencer provided his own personal experiences as an entry level worker and explained the importance of finding a mentor in the company. He stressed that not any mentor of course. Just because they are older and have been with the company for years might not mean they are the best mentor. Do your research and scout the workers out. You need to find someone who is loyal to the company and who has extensive knowledge of the industry. Once you find that person, try to work with them and learn from them as much as possible because it will benefit you in the long run. He also added to Mr. Siegel advice and said that no matter what, do your research before investing regardless if you are using an advisor or not. Sometimes advisors might not work in your best interest even if they claim they are. Do not be swindled or clueless with where your money is going and how it is growing. Be a part of the whole process as much as possible.

Financial Literacy 2Overall this event was great for second semester seniors as many of them will hopefully have jobs in the months following graduation. The advice they received t oday from these four reputable individuals will surely help to protect them for the future.

We want to again thank all four of our speakers as they did a wonderful job and we wish all our seniors the best of luck for the future!

Visiting W.B Mason

03.18.2016 · Posted in Uncategorized

ThWB Mason Visit CFO Photois Friday Stonehill’s Financial Management Association had the opportunity to visit W.B. Mason in Brockton. Our tour guide was Christopher Mooney, the CFO at W.B. Mason. Some might already be familiar with Mr. Mooney because he also teaches a class here at Stonehill. The building we toured was both full of character and in slight disarray because of the remodeling that is currently underway. W.B Mason is looking to renovate the office areas and move around some of the departments within the building. The renovations were appropriate because the building was first purchased in the 1940’s and its last renovations were in the 1990’s.

We got a chance to see the new office space, the old office space, and the updates that the company is making.  It was interesting to see how W.B. Mason designers took a historical building and modernized it. The push for modernization was a result from the growth of technology and a younger generation of workers. This demographic are using less paper goods and more cloud and internet based storage. More physical and paper office supplies in this industry are declining, according to Mr. Mooney.

Mr. Mooney did state, however, that W.B. Mason continues to grow regardless. They have successfully implemented a strategy for coping with the declining demand, which is supported by their position as number one in their industry. W.B Mason has diversified their product offerings to include anything a business could possible need. For example, they offer coffee, janitorial supplies, break room products, food service/restaurant items, 5 gallon jug, and small pack water. It is important to note that they describe themselves, not as just an office supplier, but as a delivery company that happens to sell a lot of office supplies.

Their customers like that W.B. Mason can be their one stop shop with quality delivery, which W.B. Mason’s competitors cannot match. Another great quality of W.B. Mason is their efficiency in branding. The W.B mason logo, in the Northeast especially, is extremely recognizable due to their delivery trucks and professional sports branding contracts.

WB Mason Field Visit 1The trip was interesting and inspiring. W.B. Mason is a company that has seen real growth over the past years and has thrived in a very competitive environment. We were fortunate enough to meet various Stonehill alumni, who displayed loyalty and enjoyment in their work. Mr. Mooney encouraged us to consider applying for positions at the company, as they have been able to maintain itself as a popular company among Stonehill students looking for both internships and full-time employment.

We again want to again thank both Mr. Mooney and W.B Mason for hosting us!

Suffolk Stands Out

03.15.2016 · Posted in Uncategorized

Suffolk 2







Don’t know what to do after graduation?  Feel like you want to dive deeper into Finance?  Think about graduate school.  This past Tuesday, the Stonehill Financial Management Association brought in some representatives from Suffolk University to hear about the value of getting a MS in Finance or in Financial Services and Banking from the Sawyer Business School.

Associate Professor of Finance at Suffolk, Abu Jalal, stressed the importance of having a resume that stood out. The opportunities and options Suffolk provides could help you achieve exactly that.  Mr. Jalal stated that one of the differences between undergraduate and graduate is that you, “create knowledge for yourself.”


The Assistant Director of MS Programs, Katelyn Lewis, discussed various programs Suffolk offers.  For instance, a program called the 4+1 Program works in favor of undergraduates with degrees in Business with a certain GPA.  The program allows for those who are accepted to graduate in one year of full-time study.  The school offers duel degree programs, combining a MSF with a MSA, MBA, or JD, and a mentoring program perfect for networking.


Some of you may be asking, what makes Suffolk different from all the other universities that offer MSF degrees?  The differentiating is that Suffolk’s program is the only program in Massachusetts recognized by both the CFA Institute and GARP.  These programs ready students for the CFA level one exam to get the Chartered Financial Analyst credential and the FRM exam to be a Financial Risk Manager.  If your interested in Suffolk for graduate education feel free to reach out to Katelyn Lewis, at klewis@suffolk.edu

Make Some Noise

12.08.2015 · Posted in Uncategorized

Photo 2

Mike Ciprari presenting in Stanger

It takes guts to start a drum company in your grand mother’s basement and actually stick with it. Mike Ciprari and his brother Scott (for whom the company was named) started making specialty drums in their grand mother’s basement over ten years ago. Mike shared his adventures as a young entrepreneur with a love for punk music and drums. In his early years, direct marketing was a key to his success; he and his friends would travel around the country following the bands who he wanted to work with. Through networking and quality craftsmanship, SJC landed accounts and eventually grew the company out of the basement and into a success. SJC Custom Drums makes specialty drums of all different sizes and themes for many bands. Most notably he has created specialty drums for bands such as Imagine Dragons and Green Day.

Although SJC was landing well known clients, there was a lot of issues with the efficiency of their manufacturing facilities. Until recently they were producing less, and had more waste and more costs. All of this changed when the company was featured on The Profit, a hit show on CNBC, that works with struggling businesses. The key to making production more efficient was to rearrange the manufacturing plant and introduce new machinery that reduced error, although most of the drum is still assembled by hand. SJC Drums is proud of the quality and unique drums they assemble in America. They noted that most of the materials are sourced in America. Mike talked about his hopes for the future of the music instrument business, more specifically, he hopes business returns to main street America instead of less personal online shopping.

Toward the end of the presentation, Mike warned us that entrepreneurship is a difficult road to take, and that it is especially difficult on families and close friends. Even though the business side of it can be rather difficult, Mike is truly passionate about designing amazing one of a kind drums, and that passion is a large part of why SJC is so successful.

Make sure to check out this link showing off some of his specialty drums


Not-For-Profit & Coaching

11.03.2015 · Posted in Uncategorized





Some of the best advice we received in 2015 came unexpectedly from Marquis Taylor, founder and executive director of the not-for-profit, Coaching 4 Change, and Stonehill College graduate. He encouraged all of us to pursue our craziest ideas and welcome failure as a way to help us learn how to make the next thing even better, but also to build our self confidence in taking risks; fail big as a way to be put on the next level. Marquis also noted that college is the best time to pursue an idea because there is support in the college community. Marquis admitted that Coaching 4 Change is a work in progress, and that it took a lot of trial and error to get Coaching 4 Change to where it is today. He explained that he is extremely proud of what Coaching 4 Change has become and will continue to strive to make it better day after day.

After Marquis concluded his discussion about the development of Coaching 4 Change, he followed by describing into detail how not-for-profits work differently from, yet still very similar to, for-profits. Value exchange between both parties is key to any business, however finding measurable value in non-for-profits can sometimes be more difficult to identify and capture. When it comes to Coaching 4 Change, the value is not necessarily shown on the bottom line, rather it is shown in the data. Numbers to answer questions such as, “how many more kids are graduating high school because of Coaching 4 Change or how much will this save the government in social programs down the road?” Questions like these can be answered with positive numbers, which shows the value being created by Coaching 4 Change. Marquis is a dedicated individual, who is full of energy and honest about Coaching 4 Change.

Marquis is an important part of our community. He has an office here at Stonehill College where people who are interested in Coaching 4 Change or not-for-profits in general can talk to him about anything, even opportunities to volunteer. For those who are thinking about the possibility of a future in not-for-profit, start your search by getting into contact with Marquis!

Who But!

10.06.2015 · Posted in Uncategorized

WB_Mason_Flag_LogoGenerally, if you attend Stonehill College, you will hear the words W.B. Mason quite often and will soon come to learn about the relationship we have with said corporation. W.B. Mason offers much more than just the name of our football stadium and immediate office supplier. The company, has opportunities available for students outside of campus in the form of internships and full-time employment. The FMA decided to bring in one very important member of the W.B. Mason team in to discuss exactly what they have to offer.

Chris Mooney, the CFO of W.B. Mason, came in to talk to us young hopefuls about how he got to where he is today. Mr. Mooney at first did not think he would be working in the office supply industry. Through a turn of events including an acquisition by W.B. Mason, Mr. Mooney got his role in the company because of his ability to show strong leadership skills. Mr. Mooney gave insight into how WB Mason is so competitive. The company offers the distribution capabilities that other office supply companies, such as Staples, cannot compete with. Many do not realize that W.B. Mason has a leg up over even Amazon, because of the incredible efficiency the company has through its distribution centers and its diverse product offerings. If you are wondering about how you can gain some stake in company you might want to hold on for a bit because the company is currently privately held. On the other hand, this might be a great opportunity to get yourself into the company before it goes public. So when it comes time to apply for employment don’t forget, Who But, W.B Mason.

State Street Corporation

09.23.2015 · Posted in Uncategorized

State Street

Ms. Burney presenting in The Martin Institute here at Stonehill

If you have ever gotten your resume checked, received information about an upcoming event or just needed help finding a job, Christina Burney is one of the many capable individuals here at Stonehill who can help you out. Ms. Burney has been an Associate Director of Career Services at Stonehill for 7 years (2007-2015). Sadly, she decided to part ways with Stonehill and entered into a job at State Street Corporation as a University Relations Manager. This was tough news for the Stonehill community because of the great job she did in her 7 years here. As soon as we got comfortable with the reality that she no longer works for Stonehill, rumors broke out in the earlier part of 2015 fall semester that she was making a comeback. Our rumors turned into reality as Ms. Burney decided to come back to Stonehill as our new Director of Career Services.

We thought this would be the perfect person to come in to speak to our Stonehill community because she can provide us with knowledge about State Street and the appropriate tips about how to start the application process. Ms. Burney’s presentation gave the general facts about the diversity State Street has to offer in terms of internship and job opportunities. State Street is composed of four divisions, for example, State Street Global Advisors, Global Markets, Global Services, and Global Exchange. At the time she said that there are opportunities available in their advisory and markets division. She gave a light description of the job details, which can be found on their website.

Ms. Burney went on to define State Street as a G-SIB and was met with some rather puzzled faces as not all the members of the audience knew exactly what that meant. Ms. Burney explained that State Street is considered a global systemically important bank or G-SIB, which means that any distress or disorderly failure by State Street, because of its size, complexity and systemic interconnectedness, would cause significant disruption to the wider financial system and economic activity. This global influence was backed by the fact that State Street is responsible for 11% of the world’s financial assets. All who were in attendance that day were extremely impressed by such statistics.

We concluded her presentation with a quick Q&A, which prompted inquiries about what a typical day is like for a University Relations Manager at State Street. Ms. Burney stated that she would receive resumes that would reach her ceiling, exaggerating of course, but at the same time illustrating how many people do apply to State Street. She told us to not be discouraged when referring to their acceptance rate of applicants. Ms. Burney said the worst thing you can do is doubt yourself and not apply, you never know what can happen!