Everyone wants to know. Will the economy boom or bust in 2024? Join us as we explore a range of expert predictions, from the shifting trends in housing prices to the looming question of a potential recession or stock market crash.


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More About This Episode:

Learn about the value of maintaining your course during market downturns and why a realistic set of expectations is your co-pilot for successful investing. Whether you’re a pilot accustomed to precision or an investor seeking to understand the market’s nature, this discussion will give you a better idea of how a long-term strategy is built and maintained.


Sky Snippets:

0:00 – Intro

2:41 – Keeping up with change in the industry

4:07 – Using technology to trade

6:58 – Returns

13:26 – Managing expectations

16:56 – Greed vs Fear


Articles Referenced in this Episode: 

Newsweek article

Predictions for housing appreciation

North Carolina State economics professor Mike Walden writes

A recent CNBC article about the stock market

Harvey Dent calls for crash of epic proportions

Why Home Equity Isn’t as Valuable as Many Believe



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Episode Transcription:

(Note, this is an automated transcription. Please forgive any errors.)

00:00 – Walter Storholt (Host)
Welcome to another edition of the Pilots Advisor. So will the economy boom or bust in 2024? Well, we’re gonna talk about it on today’s show. It’s kind of the question everybody wants to know at the beginning of every year which way the economy is going to go. What we’re gonna do is talk a little bit with Ryan Fleming on today’s show about some comments and commentary from a range of experts out there that have made some various predictions for 2024. Talking about shifting trends in housing Are we in a bubble there still? Is that a concern? Do we have a potential recession on the way? Are we gonna see a stock market crash this year? These kinds of questions do pop up every year. But we’re gonna give them the 2024 analysis on today’s show and get Ryan’s perspective on all of these things and try to balance out maybe the optimistic views of these various categories with maybe the pessimistic approach and see which one might be more viable as we head into the year. So let’s get to it 2024. What does it have on tap for us? Let’s talk about it.

Welcome to the Pilots Advisor with Ryan Fleming, a first officer with FedEx on the 777 at the helm, on this show we’ll delve deep into tailored financial strategies, insights and wisdom crafted exclusively for those who rule the skies. We’ll help you navigate your financial flight plan with the same mastery you exhibit in the cockpit. Prepare for takeoff into a journey of financial clarity and empowerment. The Pilots Advisor starts now. Another episode of the Pilots Advisor is here, walter Sturhold, alongside Ryan Fleming. Ryan, it is great to be with you, my friend. We’re talking predictions today 2024. You’ve got your crystal ball, your cap on. That’s gonna tell you all the answers, that sort of thing, right?

01:41 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Oh, absolutely. I know all the answers and, of course, I do have my crystal ball right here. What’s even more alarming, this is the second time I’ve done a podcast with Walter in only a few days, so I don’t know. 2024 is starting out very well.

01:55 – Walter Storholt (Host)
Starting off on a great track. So, yeah, that’s right Again. If you didn’t catch one of our more recent episodes, ryan has gone video nowadays so you can check out the video version of the podcast over on YouTube. We’d love to have you over there and you get to see Ryan in all his glory. Look at Sharp today, ryan, you don’t have the hat on. You’ve got a collar on that shirt. Yeah, I don’t know. At least a little border is up going on.

02:16 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
I don’t know who I was dressing up for. Certainly wasn’t you, not me. No, However now that we talked about the video version and you guys do a lot of editing, it seems to me that when I look at these reels and see all this stuff online nowadays, that you should be able to suck 20 pounds out of my body and put some lipstick on this pig and maybe give me a little bit more air, that’s right.

So I want to challenge you guys to see what you can do that make this look a little better than it does.

02:44 – Walter Storholt (Host)
I’m just going to go to AI and say make Ryan look better, and then we’ll see what it comes up with, it’ll just crash.

02:52 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Cannot complete task or something like that.

02:55 – Walter Storholt (Host)
Well, let’s dive into these 2024 predictions ride. We’ll start in the stock area, but I think it’ll lead us nicely into talking a little bit more about housing prices and maybe where the overall economy is going to go and those kinds of things as well. We’ve pulled a couple of different articles and different perspectives on this, by the way, and we’ll link to these articles in the description of today’s show. So for on YouTube, check it out. If you’re on a podcasting app or Ryan’s website, you can find that there as well. Let’s start with the optimistic view, and I’m just isolating one particular expert here to kind of get your opinions on what he had to say.

This was an investment firm CEO named Jay Hatfield. He says that things are looking good for stocks in 2024. His comments were made in a recent CNBC article that pointed out that most recent economic data validates their theory that 2024 will be the year of rate cuts and that that’s very bullish for stocks, bullish being a good thing. He says. We’re as bold up as we’re ever going to be probably. The positive outlook is held up by a belief that interest rate cuts are going to spark the market into positive territory in a good direction for us. So any initial thoughts on kind of his perspective and approach. This is our optimistic view of the stock market in 2024.

04:12 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Yeah, no matter what you’re looking for, you can find things that are going to tell you there’s going to be a total crash in 2024.

04:20 – Walter Storholt (Host)
Which we’ll have in a moment.

04:22 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
This is going to be the best bull market ever, and there’s a reason for that. All these people, or all these newsmeets, as, whether it’s on TV, whether it’s magazines, they’re trying to sell ratings and what they do is they induce fear or greed, like whatever side you want to be on, and they’re going to run with it, and that’s how they sell their ratings. So I think anything that you see out there take with a grain of salt. The only person that knows what’s going to happen in 2024, of course, is me, and I just get to decide whether how much of this I want to let you guys know about.

04:54 – Walter Storholt (Host)
Yeah, just you’ll let us know once it happens which which one you decided on, or it’ll be obvious which one. Yeah.

05:00 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Yeah, you know, just depending on how I feel or how I wake up in that morning, kind of like my teenage daughter, some days are good, some days are bad, and the market’s gonna be determined by how I feel that morning. I love it, but, but no, we say all that to say nobody knows. The market is totally unpredictable, and then that’s exactly why we have to play the game, follow the rules, be unemotional and let it do its thing. However, if you want to know which side of the coin I have fallen on, I think that 2024 is gonna be a great year, and my reasoning is you know, first of all, you saw what happened in the market the last quarter, mainly in December, when the Fed finally Said they’re gonna get out of the way.

I think most of 2023, despite all the doom and gloom, turned out to be a really good year, but it was us constantly fighting with the Fed and then raising rates, probably too quickly, after not doing their jobs for a couple years. Am I am? I put my opinions in this? Oh, my god, a little bit, yeah, but but I think that I think that not only have, has you know, rates stopped and Inflation starting to slow, I mean we have all the data that’s showing that. But I think if the Fed actually does cut rates in 2024, that it is going to spike the market kind of like it did in December. The other side of it Politics drives so much nowadays. I mean it is insane how divisive our culture you know our people are, but this is a election year, so even the Democrats really, really want this to be a good. What do they call it? Biden, the nomics or whatever.

06:32 – Walter Storholt (Host)
There’s their touting your ass, tout by dynamics.

06:35 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Yeah, yeah but, but both parties need it to be a good year. So, with that being said, I think this the Fed is going to step out of the way a little bit. There possibly could be some rate cuts, and I think all of those things would be positive for the markets.

06:49 – Walter Storholt (Host)
It’s interesting not all you know because in 2023 we saw a lot of rate. Pausing yeah, it started to become a thing, or at least lowering how much things were getting Raised, or the frequency of which, and the market did seem to react to that heavily. So if it truly goes the other direction, you could bet there’s going to be movement for sure. Let’s look at the pessimistic view.

07:09 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Well, absolutely and I don’t mean to interrupt there, but go ahead was the last time that you saw the whole like I don’t want to say society, but at least the whole economy on Pins and needles for every single meeting that the Fed?

07:24 – Walter Storholt (Host)
right only in these last few years right. It’s a sporting event build up to it each, each month.

07:29 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Yeah, and like everything is going to be defined by the Fed, and this goes back to, in my opinion, where we need to go back to a Little bit more capitalistic ways. Where, get out of the way, let markets Determine what prices are going to be, let the markets determine what interest rates are going to be, and I think the whole reason we got into this is just too much government intervention. Anyway, I mean, I All the prices move based off of supply and demand, and when you let that happen and you let businesses fail, if they don’t do a good job, things will all be okay.

08:01 – Walter Storholt (Host)
Well, let’s go to that pessimistic side of the equation, and if you ever need a negative view of what’s gonna happen in the market, you look to one man pretty much.

08:10 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
I know who it is.

08:11 – Walter Storholt (Host)
And you know who it is Harry Dent. He says that we are in store for a crash of epic proportions. He said, quote I think 2024 is going to be the biggest single crash year we’ll see in our lifetimes. He told this to Fox News. He says excessive government spending is going to lead to an everything bubble in which the market housing, crypto and more will fall sharply. He even says and we’ll get into home prices a little bit more in depth later, but he says home prices will chop at half. Stocks could plummet by more than 80%. The problem is, this prediction seems to get made by Harry Dent every year. If I were to go back and look at the beginning of every year, I bet I could find a pretty similar article.

08:56 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
I would agree with that. It’s about every year and he falls under the hey. I was right. Once out of the last 10 years, harry Dent’s got, in my opinion, a very bad name because he’s always out there as a prognosticator that he knows what’s gonna happen and he knows what’s going on and selling all this fear and then it doesn’t come to fruition. But yet here he is, the expert again and always out there. I like to talk about it. He’s the guy that a broken clock is right twice a day, or one I still like to use is. Even a blind squirrel finds a nut some days.

So I don’t feel too confident in anything that Harry Dent says. I don’t lose sleep over any of Harry Dent’s interviews that he might have, but we have those clients I might get them probably once a week where they’ll find some article about how 2024 or whatever year it is, there’s gonna be a massive stock market crash. We’re gonna lose everything. And what do I think? Well, in most cases, I think that everything will probably be okay in the long term and I also think that that’s an article where we’re trying to sell fear.

10:09 – Walter Storholt (Host)
Yeah, it’s a great, great point. Uh, we’ll also link in the description of uh of this episode, uh link to another article. This was, uh, a market insider from a business insiders website and it does kind of have an interesting collection at least finding a few more voices, ryan, than us. Just maybe picking two extremes here Um, others who fall in that hey, this might be a really bad year, um, versus those who say no, we’re, we’re going to be up, and companies like JP Morgan and Morgan Stanley, who have set price targets or uh value targets for the S and P, and some range all the way from the low 3000s and others getting up past 5000, uh, in terms of where the S and P will land. So just another illustration that even the biggest in best banks and investment firms out there are all over the map in terms of uh predictions.

10:55 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Well, and that’s what they are. They’re predictions and I try to be as unemotional as possible. Um, whether you know my, my wife, says I’m a poo poo, that I’m always, you know, in a bad mood and all this stuff. You know she’s a very positive person, which is good. Well, I’m, you know, married to such a woman. You guys balance out a little bit. Yes, what a wonderful woman. And I tell her I’m not, I’m not pessimistic, I’m just a realist. I think I like I try to see the world for what it is, and the same thing with the stock market. I’m not. It’s not that I’m pessimistic or or that I that I’m like all things are going to be great all the time, um, but what I look at is the analytics. I just look at analytics and I’m unemotional about it, and most of the analytics right now are showing that it could be a very good year.

11:38 – Walter Storholt (Host)
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13:11 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Come on, you know, state doesn’t have any.

13:13 – Walter Storholt (Host)
That’s true. For those who don’t know, I’m a Carolina guy, ryan, of course, air Force, so we’re going to pick on the Wolfpack if we get the chance. But this professor kind of had an interesting viewpoint. This was not so much about the stock market itself but more of the broader economy and he said I think there will be two different economies during the year. The first half of 2024 will be challenging, perhaps including a mild recession. The second half will be the opposite, with a rebound in economic growth, moderating inflation and finally lower interest rates. So he’s calling the year 2024 the year of two economies, saying it’s really going to be kind of broken in half. So maybe that’s really just a delay of the recovery that he’s kind of predicting, but it kind of seems to strike it. Maybe some of these apocalyptic predictions might come true, but we’re also going to have some positive this coming year, yeah.

14:05 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
And I think things tend to be a little bumpy starting out the year always. I mean, we saw December, you know, when they talked about possibly having rate hikes and definitely no more. Excuse me, no rate cuts and no more hikes. The economy took off, the market took off, but we pulled the throttles back in January. I mean we had a couple of really bad days. Yeah, that’s kind of normal. I mean, it’s almost like we get that New Year’s resolution and say let’s, let’s see what’s going to happen here.

But but, like anything else with investing, always think long term, be unemotional, like I. I have Some clients that will say something to me like, say, the market loses 1.2% one day. They’re like, oh my gosh, I lost fifty thousand dollars yesterday, you know, okay. Well, first of all, we got to look at it as a percentage of assets you have and let’s not be so dramatic about it. But at the same time, you know, nobody was reaching out to me in December when we were crushing it and the market was going sky-high. So it’s just funny how the motions of investors work.

15:07 – Walter Storholt (Host)
We remember the bad days a lot more than the good days, I think they stick with us more and they also make us react a more severely.

15:14 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Perhaps that’s why you have to be careful what you say, walter, because you know if you say that something really bad, your wife she will file that away. That’s right. That’s right years.

15:24 – Walter Storholt (Host)
The the. The half-life of a good thing doesn’t last very long. It’s very short. I Like that.

All right, let’s talk specifically about housing then, ryan, because they’re not always Related. I mean, the economy and housing often are, have that correlation, but sometimes the stock market and housing can go in different directions, especially with how interesting the housing landscape has become over the last decade or so, really dating back to 2008. Things have always been a little bit more Wild and interesting in the housing market, so there’s different predictions here, as you might imagine. The optimistic viewpoint this is from Lawrence young. This was in a newsweek article.

He’s the chief economist at the NAR National Association of Realtors. He believes that a housing crash is out of the picture at this point. There was talk of it last year. He really doesn’t see it happening. He says there are nearly zero forced distressed sales and homeowners are in fine shape with house, high housing wealth and Low monthly mortgage payments that are locked in and not impacted by inflation. Many experts are also pointing to low inventory as one reason. Prices will stay stable or even go higher in 2024, even if the inventory were to double right now. Basically, they’re saying there’s still plenty of headroom for prices to stay competitive, so the crash just doesn’t really have a lot of a merit. That’s his viewpoint.

16:45 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
What do you say? Water?

16:47 – Walter Storholt (Host)
and I think they’re right in the fact that the Amount of inventory is so low and people’s lives are still changing and need to buy and sell homes and move. It would take a lot of inventory, I think, for the more normal forces of supply and demand to flip at the same time. My parents just bought a house a couple weeks back, ryan, they just retired and it was interesting watching their housing search over the last year and just what a half a million dollars gets you these days Not not what you would have thought.

17:17 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Yeah, it’s, it’s. It’s wild right now when I, when I think about the, the housing market right now, I, you know, we know that inventory is a problem, and then, of course, supply chains and and housing Excuse me supply costs, you know, even put a further damper on that through the pandemic. But what’s so interesting? Right now, you know, rates are probably gonna drop a little bit, but they’re never gonna go. And I, you know, I hate to say never and I hate to be absolute, but I just don’t think rates are gonna go back to the way they were. We’re gonna go back to where hey, maybe our five or six percent, you lock in at that and you’re really happy like, hey, I crushed it, that was great.

But because of that, most people’s buying power got cut in half. You know, if they were went and bought a property or they got it between two and three percent, you’re never gonna be able to afford that house again at that same same areas. So if you’re in a house where you got any, I’m gonna say anywhere from two to four percent You’re probably not gonna move and unless you have to. And so what you’re seeing is People are, they may want to move, but they’re looking at the what they’re gonna have to buy into the market that they’re gonna have to buy into, and that’s causing them not to move because they go hey, I do have this three percent rate and I’m looking at like an eight percent rate right now like I can’t take that mortgage payment.

I think that’s gonna take a long time to play out in In in real estate right now. So I think you know, moving in the trading volume is gonna be a big deal. So I’m good friends with a lady who’s a mortgage broker and she’s done very, very well for very, very many years. She’s fabulous and and that’s one of the things I mean there the volume is just not gonna be there.

18:55 – Walter Storholt (Host)
Yeah, and it’s gonna be a struggle for folks like that and for the industry as a whole. And Not only are you eliminating I think for a lot of those folks housing purchases and sales, but refinances are kind of out the window for a lot of right now too, so that that that is definitely maybe a bubble that has burst at this point is just that, at least the refinance portion of it all.

19:17 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
And there’s something that’s very key about that. So many people are enjoying having all this equity in their home because they bought it at the right time and in Real estate, prices continue to go up. So it’s like, hey, I got all this equity, but if rates never come back down, there’s never gonna be that cash out, refinance, even home equity loans right now it’s gonna adjust at prime in most cases. So even a home equity loans, a pretty high interest loan right now, and so you get yourself into this tough position where you don’t really have the access to the money that you might have within A house.

I’m gonna, I’m gonna send a home equity whiteboard that I have that, walter, I’d like you to attach, and I think it’s a great thing to watch because I don’t think I don’t think many people understand how they can use their home equity To build long-term wealth versus having a dead asset, and I think we’re in a period right now where there’s gonna be a lot of people with equities stuck inside their house that they might not be able to access if they need it.

20:16 – Walter Storholt (Host)
That’s a great point. It was one thing to be able to tap into that equity when rates were in the twos or low threes, and it’s a different story right when things are a lot higher than that. Let’s look at the flip side, the pessimistic viewpoint for housing in 2024. Specifically, this was published from eight of the largest real estate companies out there. They all made predictions for housing appreciation and even the more pessimistic forecast, like Redfin, zillow and Realtorcom’s 1% decline in housing value or appreciation. Realtorcom’s 1.7% dip that they predicted they indicate a relatively flat market rather than a full on crash. Just to go a little further, zillow’s predicting a slight decline of only like 0.2%. And just to note this, I will throw out a caveat here Predictions from these companies should be taken with a very big grain of salt.

Zillow and Realtorcom got their predictions horribly wrong in 2023. In fact, before we even got halfway through the year, I remember they were reissuing like new predictions for the rest of the year and they went from saying that things were going to be down and we’re going to be crazy and go nuts. And they ended up well. They predicted over a 6% appreciation. That was midway through the year. They were still saying, oh, we’re going to see a bunch of appreciation now and things still ended in that short period of time to the end of the year with a 10% decline. So big grain of salt at their predictions.

It’s in their best interest for the market to be good. So exposing those biases again, right.

21:50 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Well, and I love it Predictions, like even these big you know, the big firms you talk about with their predictions. Well, what it really is is an opinion, just like everyone else, and we all have one, if you know what I’m talking about. Yeah, so, yeah, I think it’s funny and, yes, we will take it with a grain of salt and Walter have all the disclosures on this show about. This is not financial advice and it’s just us talking. That’s right.

22:13 – Walter Storholt (Host)
Exactly. Well, let’s let’s put a bow on it all, ryan. So, yeah, here’s a bunch of predictions. You said it. You know we can’t really rely on any of these, whether we’re talking about stocks, the overall economy, housing prices, I mean, in a normal year, all of that is true. And then you throw in an election year and I feel like it just becomes even more muddied or clouded for people to try and make the right moves. So how do you advise clients or someone that’s just beginning the planning process with you and the pilots advisor team to make it through a year like this? Is it just as simple? As we don’t think about it in terms of a year, it’s a longer term picture and therefore the one years ups and downs don’t matter as much.

22:53 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Well, what I try to tout all the time is being disciplined, unemotional and long term. If you focus on the right in front of you, you can kind of you can miss the force through the trees, and with investing, it’s a long term thing and you can’t let the whipsaws of what’s happening day to day affect your decisions. Most people, most of the investors that hurt themselves it’s because they make a short term, emotional decision. So I’m always touting to be unemotional and be long term. However, with you know, we talked a lot about predictions and I’m going to make a prediction and if I’m not right, walter, make sure you cut this out of the podcast. But the national championship is being played tonight, that’s right.

Michigan versus Washington and I’m going to make the prediction that the Michigan offensive and defensive line is just too tough. I’m predicting the Michigan Wolverines to win the national championship and I think a key part of it is the defensive line has to get to the Washington quarterback. I think if they can pressure him, I think it’s just going to be too you know in the trenches, it’s going to be too much.

23:59 – Walter Storholt (Host)
Yeah, I love Washington’s story. I’m going to probably be rooting for them tonight to come out on top just to have somebody you know different hoisting the trophy at the end of the year and getting all the publicity and a little bit of the underdog I would say going into the playoffs and that sort of thing. So I’ll be rooting for them. But you’re right, michigan looks pretty formidable. Well, and you got this pains me.

24:20 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
I mean I was born in Columbus, ohio. Yeah, okay, so a little surprise that you’re. You know I mean no, granted, it’s okay for me to root for the Big 10, but they’re technically both Big 10 teams. Now I don’t know.

24:31 – Walter Storholt (Host)
Yeah, washington coming to the Big 10.

24:33 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
But no, it does pain me to say that I’m going to be rooting for the Michigan Wolverines tonight, but I think I am and I think it’s going to work out Nice.

24:42 – Walter Storholt (Host)
Well, when this episode posts, people will be either viewing this conversation, so that the that means you are right or they won’t be viewing it because you cut it out. Or we’ll have cut it out and then they won’t be viewing it at all and it’ll only exist in the back end of our files. So there you go, yeah.

24:56 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
But to all our listeners I just want to say I think 2024 is going to be a great year. If you ever want to talk about any of these issues, please reach out to me, and you know we I do have to talk investors off the ledge often and just try to take the emotion out of it.

25:12 – Walter Storholt (Host)
Well, we’re happy to help you, as always. If you want to find out ways that you can get in touch with Ryan and interact, you can certainly check the description of today’s show or the show notes section whatever app you’re using to watch or consume the show, just whatever they call it. Look in that section and you’ll find links and contact information to get in touch with Ryan Fleming. I’ll also give you the ways that you can do that right now as well. All you have to do is pick up the phone and call or text Ryan directly at 843-475-3038.

Or you can go to retire pilotscom. Lots of great resources there for you on the website ways to get in touch, ways to get educated, including checking out the opportunity to really get your hands on the retirement toolkit that Ryan has put together. That just has all sorts of great information that we’ve talked about before here on the show for how to prepare for retirement, especially if you are a pilot all of the right moves to make and the best places to get started down that journey. So don’t forget to get your free toolkit. You can fill out the form to get that again at retire pilotscom or check today’s description for links to get that and more. Ryan, thanks for all the help and glad we’re off to a good start in 2024 so far. We’ll see how all these predictions will do an episode at the end of the year, see how all these predictions turned out and go from there.

26:28 – Ryan Fleming (Host)
Sounds good. Walter, take care, and everybody enjoy.

26:32 – Walter Storholt (Host)
We’ll talk to you again next time. Right back here on the Pilots Advisor.