The US economy has marched forward despite major natural disasters across the country and ongoing debate about the implications of sweeping tax changes. October marked 85 consecutive months of US job growth, an unprecedented streak that spans more than seven years. The October initial jobs report surged to 261,000 new positions and revised the negative estimates for the previous month into positive territory, with 44,000 jobs filled in September despite setbacks in the wake of catastrophic hurricanes. Unemployment dropped to 4.1%. In the latest edition of the BRIEFING, Transwestern chief investment officer Tom McNearney outlines the positive fundamentals that he expects will drive continued economic expansion in 2018. “While there has been a general inflation in asset prices of all kinds, the markets do not appear to be suffering from the irrational exuberance that has characterized the end of other expansions. In fact, investors are exhibiting worry, uncertainty and caution,” he said.—Lisa Brown