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Strengthening demand, so-so supply – this is the municipal bond market in a nutshell. The result of this imbalance is rising muni prices, as more cash in the market chases fewer securities available for purchase. The total return for the asset class was just under 4% through the first five months of the year; this compares to a 0.2% total return for all of 2016.

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Investors hoping for a surprise out of this week’s Federal Reserve meeting are not going home disappointed. As anticipated, the Fed voted to raise short-term interest rates by another quarter-point. This latest rate increase is the fourth in a slow tightening trend that began in December 2015.

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Since early March 2009, the best answer for equity investors has been U.S. large caps. In fact, The Standard & Poor’s 500 has returned more than 300% since the post-financial crisis bottom. Nowadays, however, that answer is being called into question.

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U.S. large-cap stocks have been strong performers so far in 2017. Through Tuesday, the Standard & Poor’s 500 index was up nearly 9% on a total-return basis. But that number might have a casual market-watcher wondering, “Really? Only 9%?”

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Credit spreads for corporate bonds — the yield difference between corporates and Treasuries of the same maturity — are close to the tightest they’ve been in the past two decades.

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