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judfisher2014smallJud Fisher, a member of the board of trustees of Indiana Trust & Investment Management Company, and president and chief operating officer of the Ball Brothers Foundation, was named The Star Press Person of the Year 2014 Tuesday evening during festivities at the Pittenger Student Center at Ball State University.

Fisher was cited for his commitment to the community — in particular his support for Muncie Community Schools' efforts to merge its two high schools into one — in being named Person of the Year. The Ball Brothers Foundation awarded $6.7 million in grants to worthy organizations in 2014 alone, and Fisher emphasized that his work was a reflection of the community. He cited the lessons he learned in what he said was a college football career with more time spent on the sidelines than on the field.

At the end of his final season, Fisher said, another player told him that he had become the player he was because of Fisher's participation in practices. "That taught me, always be an asset, no matter what," Fisher said.

The evening also honored finalists for Person of the Year, including a cross-section of business and civic leaders who had in common their efforts to improve the community and help others.

The Markets

The United States emerged from 2014 as the best house on a troubled block.  Civil war in Ukraine, a slowing Chinese economy, a stagnant Europe worried about potential deflation, a new recession in Japan, the threat of a new Russian economic meltdown triggered by plummeting oil prices--it all made an improving situation at home look even brighter by comparison.

Even apart from the trouble overseas, the United States by almost any measure was stronger than it's been in years.  The labor and housing markets improved, corporate profits were solid, Congress managed to avert another government shutdown, and the Ebola threat had little impact domestically.  All in all, it was a Goldilocks economy:  not too hot, which could have brought on higher interest rates from the Federal Reserve, and not too cold, which let the Fed end the QE3 bond purchases begun in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis.

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Annual Market Review 2014

Gary R. RenaudIndiana Trust Company mourns the loss of a founder and past Chairman of the Board, Gary R. Renaud, who died at his Elkhart residence on December 7, 2014. As a founding partner of Indiana Trust Company, Gary contributed mightily to the success of Indiana Trust Company. He will be missed by his family, friends and employees of Indiana Trust Company.

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Summary:

A private family foundation is a legal entity created, funded, and operated by a single family for the primary purpose of making grants to charities.  Because of its charitable mission, a private family foundation is given tax-exempt status, like a public charity, and contributions to the foundation by family members are tax deductible, but to a lesser extent than contributions to a public charity.

Private family foundations are typically founded by high net worth individuals and families who want to maintain a high degree of control over their charitable legacies, and are willing to assume significant costs and responsibilities, and adhere to strict rules and requirements.

Typically, private family foundations are named to honor the founders (e.g., the Ford Foundation), and their charitable grant programs continue for many years after their founders' deaths.

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Private Family Foundations

The Markets


Equities generally continued to push upward in November. The small caps of the Russell 2000 were the exception; they ended the month flat and were up less than 1% for the year. However, the S&P 500 and the Dow industrials once again hit new record levels, while the Nasdaq increased its year-to-date lead.


Meanwhile, the Global Dow had its best month since February.Oil prices already on the decline continued to fall, especially after members of the Organization of the Petroleum exporting Countries (OPEC) decided not to cut oil production levels, sending the price plummeting to roughly $66 a barrel. The price of gold continued its year-long downward trend
despite a partial rebound from a dip in early November; it ended the month down roughly 4% at approximately $1,175 an ounce. Meanwhile, low yields overseas continued to lure investors to U.S. Treasuries, sending yieldsdown as prices rose despite the prospect of an eventual Fed rate hike.

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Market Month: November 2014