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Breaking insights on the economy, market volatility, policy changes and geopolitical events


September 18, 2023

Beyond renewable energy: More ways to invest in the environment

AS CLIMATE RISKS INCREASINGLY dominate the news, investors are looking for ways to support environmental solutions and their personal financial goals. While you may already have invested in the transition to a low-carbon economy through renewable energy, “new opportunities are arising in less-publicized sustainable investment themes such as water, sustainable agriculture and biodiversity,” says Sarah Norman, head of ESG Thought Leadership for the Chief Investment Office (CIO), Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank. Below, she discusses these ideas for Climate Week.

Sarah Norman, head of ESG Thought Leadership, Chief Investment Office, Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank next to his quote “With water scarcity challenging nearly every continent, investment opportunities increasingly focus on protecting earth’s most important resource”

Hydrating your portfolio

“With water scarcity challenging nearly every continent,1 investment opportunities increasingly focus on protecting earth’s most important resource,” Norman says. That’s good news for the planet and for investors. Opportunities to consider include dedicated water funds focused on infrastructure, innovative technologies and water access, or broader sustainable and climate funds that incorporate potential water-related solutions. And bond investors will find a growing array of water-focused green bonds. Investors can also determine whether individual companies pose special risks or opportunities based on their water use. “Water-efficient companies trade at higher multiples than less efficient peers,”2 she adds.


Feeding the world, sustainably

While agricultural advances have greatly reduced food shortages, agriculture and other land-use industries account for 24% of global greenhouse gas emissions,3 and agriculture uses 70% of freshwater worldwide.4 “We must feed a growing population while using less water, preserving plant pollinators and decarbonizing agriculture,” Norman says. Investors might consider agriculture-specific funds, as well as broader environment-focused funds that invest in themes like clean energy, water infrastructure and waste management, she suggests.


Preserving life in all its varieties

Biodiversity, which refers to the variety of life globally and in specific regions and habitats, will be a top concern for businesses over the next decade, according to the World Economic Forum.5 “Some 85% of companies rely on natural resources or have significant impacts on ecosystems,”6 Norman says. “Companies that actively manage their impacts on biodiversity and ecosystems will likely be rewarded by the marketplace and may have access to new markets, partnerships and financing opportunities.” While investment options are currently limited, the market could exceed $400 billion within a decade,2 she adds. “We see this as an area to watch.”


For more on sustainable investing, read “Climate Risk and the Markets: 5 Key Questions Answered,” and “Sustainable and Impact Investing: More than just a feel-good approach.”


1 United Nations, “Water Scarcity,” 2021.

2 BofA Global Research, “ESG Matters – Global: Unlocking the value of biodiversity,” April 11, 2023

3 EPA, “Global Greenhouse Gas Emissions Data,” February 15, 2023.

4 The World Bank, “Water in Agriculture,” October 5, 2022.

5 World Economic Forum, ”Global Risks Report 2023,” January 11, 2023

6 S&P Global, “How the world’s largest companies depend on nature and biodiversity,” May 10, 2023.



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August 28, 2023

Back to school loan repayments: Big test for borrowers and the markets?

FEDERAL STUDENT LOAN REPAYMENTS, suspended during the pandemic, are set to kick in again this fall after a three-year break, with first payments coming due in October. Already, 43 million borrowers, with estimated average monthly payments of $383,1 are beginning to rework their budgets, causing economists, retailers and investors to brace for a potential drop in consumer spending this fall.2

What could that mean for the markets and the economy?

“We believe the impact, while real, could be more modest than many expect,” says Emily Avioli, investment strategist in the Chief Investment Office (CIO) for Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank. Investors could consider defensive areas, such as consumer staples, over consumer discretionary stocks as spenders begin rethinking major purchases, she suggests. But, overall, “they should avoid overreacting.” Watch the video above for more insights.


How borrowers can prepare

As you begin to look for ways to adjust your budget to accommodate the renewed monthly payments, you could also review your repayment plan with your loan servicer. There are several options to consider, depending on your circumstances and income, and you can switch at any time.


In addition, the government has announced plans to  launch a new income-driven repayment plan, called the SAVE plan, that could reduce payments for some borrowers.3 Helping to ease the transition, the government has proposed  a 12-month “on-ramp” process, during which vulnerable borrowers who miss a payment won’t be considered delinquent, Avioli notes. In addition, “outside lenders may offer to refinance loans with longer terms and adjustable rates.”


For more on the potential impact of student loan repayments, read the CIO’s July 17 Capital Market Outlook.


1 Strategas, July 5, 2023.

2 Chief Investment Office, Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank, “Capital Market Outlook,” July 17, 2023

3, “Biden administration launches new income-driven student-debt repayment plan,” July 30, 2023.




August 3, 2023

Perspective for investors on the U.S. credit downgrade

FOR THE FIRST TIME IN MORE THAN A DECADE, a major ratings agency has downgraded the U.S. government’s long-term debt rating, from AAA to AA+.1


Why they did it: Fitch Ratings attributed Tuesday’s downgrade to the U.S. government’s “steady deterioration in standards of governance over the last 20 years”2 — for example, the lengthy debt ceiling battle that ended in June. Among other contributing factors: tax cuts, spending increases, plus rising costs for Social Security and Medicare.

John Donovan, head of Fixed Income, Chief Investment Office, Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank next to his quote “We believe the downgrade is unlikely to affect Treasurys’ position as a bedrock asset for investors.”

How markets are responding: “While some people were surprised by the news, these trends are well known by market participants and reaction thus far has been muted,” says John Donovan, head of Fixed Income in the Chief Investment Office for Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank.


Underlying strengths: “In our opinion, the government’s fiscal challenges, while real, are mitigated by the strength, competitiveness and diversity of the U.S. economy and the dollar’s role as international reserve currency,” Donovan says. Despite tempting comparisons to a similar downgrade by Standard & Poor’s in 2011, the current move comes as the economy is showing surprising resiliency, he notes. For example:


  • Second quarter real GDP growth is stronger than expected, at 2.4%, according to the Bureau of Economics Analysis.
  • Headline inflation is moderating, to 3.1% now compared with 9.1% a year ago.
  • “Of the three largest global economies — the U.S., China, and the European Union — the U.S. remains the most competitive and innovative,” Donovan notes.


Investor moves: While the government’s fiscal strength bears close scrutiny moving forward, this week’s news should not prompt sudden portfolio changes — not even in U.S. Treasurys. Says Donovan, “We believe the downgrade is unlikely to affect Treasurys’ position as a bedrock asset for investors.”


For a closer look at what the downgrade might mean, read the recent Investment Insights report from the CIO, “Fitch downgrades U.S. government.” For more on the markets and economy, tune in weekly to the CIO Market Update audiocast.


1 The Wall Street Journal, “Fitch Downgrades U.S. Credit Rating,” Aug. 1, 2023.

2 Fitch Ratings, “Fitch Downgrades the United States’ Long-Term Ratings to ‘AA+’ from ‘AAA’; Outlook Stable,” Aug 1, 2023.




July 20, 2023

Will midyear momentum carry us to a new bull market?

“DEFYING EXPECTATIONS, the markets and economy have proven extremely resilient so far this year,” says Chris Hyzy, Chief Investment Officer for Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank. “We’ve seen some impressive returns for financial markets, inflation is trending lower and corporate earnings have largely held up.”

The second half — and beyond

For insights on what the rest of the year might hold for investors, read “Midyear 2023: What’s driving today’s resilient economy?” and watch our webcast, ”Midyear 2023: How to prepare for what’s ahead.” You’ll find useful insights from Hyzy and BofA Global Research’s head of U.S. Economics, Michael Gapen, as well as the Chief Investment Office’s head of Portfolio Strategy, Marci McGregor, and head of Fixed Income Strategy, Matt Diczok. Among other issues, they’ll weigh in on the probability of future rate hikes, the likelihood of a recession still materializing, cautionary signs to track, moves to consider now and investment opportunities to explore in the future.


“Don’t be surprised by periodic choppiness in the markets over the next few months,”  Hyzy cautions. “But we believe a new era of economic growth could emerge, leading to a more sustainable long-term bull market, as early as mid-2024.” Adjusting your portfolio as the markets and economy transition to this new cycle is paramount, Hyzy adds.


For help in making those adjustments, speak with your advisor and tune in to the CIO’s “Market Update” audiocast series throughout the year.




July 6, 2023

Tracking the elusive recession of 2023 — or is it 2024?

AT THE START OF 2023, MOST SIGNS seemed to point to a recession by summer. Well, summer is here, and the recession seems to be playing hide and seek.


Historically, the U.S. economy dips into recession an average of 15 months after the yield curve inverts — meaning when short-term bonds offer higher yields than long-term bonds. “That happened in March 2022. So, we should be there by now,” says Chris Hyzy, Chief Investment Officer for Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank. Yet crucial parts of the economy have so far bucked the trend, and markets have been on a tear.


Have we skipped the recession and gone straight into a new period of growth? More likely, it’s a case of recession delayed, not avoided, as the economy works through the aftereffects of historic pandemic liquidity in unpredictable ways, says Hyzy. Forecasters now expect the recession may not arrive until early 2024, Hyzy notes.

Chris Hyzy, Chief Investment Officer, Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank next to his quote “Whatever the months ahead have in store, don’t invest just for a recession.”

Rollercoaster recession?

“As disruptions hit different parts of the economy at different times, we’re seeing what amounts to a series of rolling recessions, rather than one single downturn,” Hyzy says. While housing and manufacturing have already slowed, the service economy, consumer spending and the labor market have yet to follow suit.


As these areas cool in the second half of 2023, corporate earnings and hiring will likely slow down as well, Hyzy believes. Whether a recession is officially declared or not, investors should expect a softening economy and choppy markets for the balance of the year. Yet the rolling nature of the downturn should prevent a “hard landing,” he adds.


A new bull market on the horizon

What should investors consider as all these factors sort themselves out? High-quality stocks with reasonable valuations could help equity investors preserve and grow wealth amid the uncertainty, Hyzy says. “We’re emphasizing areas such as healthcare, energy and industrials, with solid technology stocks as well,” he adds. As consumer confidence and spending decline, consumer discretionary, materials and real estate may struggle.


“But whatever the months ahead have in store, don’t invest just for a recession,” Hyzy cautions. By mid-2024, with the economy, interest rates and inflation stabilizing, he expects the start of a new, extended bull market cycle driven by innovation and productivity.


For the latest on a potential recession timetable, read “Consensus pushes out recession,” in the June 26 Capital Market Outlook. And for more on recession and your portfolio, see the CIO report, “Timing and positioning for a second-half recession.”




June 30, 2023

Countdown to 2033: Can we fix Social Security?

SOCIAL SECURITY RECIPIENTS WORRIED they wouldn’t receive their benefits during the debt ceiling crisis. That issue was resolved when Congress passed the bill averting government default in early June. Yet larger problems threaten this retirement program, which has supported millions of Americans since the 1930s.


“At current funding and spending levels, Social Security could be insolvent by 2033, according to the Congressional Budget Office,” says Mitchell Drossman, head of National Wealth Strategies, Chief Investment Office, Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank. That’s a year earlier than projected by the Social Security trust fund’s board of trustees in their 2023 annual report.1

Mitchell Drossman, head of National Wealth Strategies, Chief Investment Office, Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank next to his quote “As baby boomers continue to retire, Social Security payouts are increasing a lot faster than contributions. In 2022 alone, the system posted a $22.1 billion deficit.”

Congress will face sizable pressure to prevent insolvency before then, Drossman adds. “Still, retirement savers should review their own retirement funding plans and stay aware of developments in Congress.” A recent Chief Investment Office report, “Social Security insolvency: What can be done and what’s at stake?,” answers key questions about projected shortfalls, possible solutions and what individuals need to know about their own benefits. Here are some highlights.


How is Social Security funded, and what is its current status?

Social Security funding comes mainly from employer and employee payroll taxes of 6.2% each (12.4% total) on wages up to $160,200 per year. The challenge: “As baby boomers continue to retire, Social Security payouts are increasing a lot faster than contributions,” Drossman says. “In 2022 alone, the system posted a $22.1 billion deficit.”2


What happens if the fund becomes insolvent?

That’s not fully clear, Drossman notes. Insolvency means that the trust fund is unable to pay benefits in full and on time. It does not mean that Social Security will be completely eliminated and unable to pay any benefits. But future benefits could only be paid from taxes collected, which would cover roughly 80% of benefits. While beneficiaries would still be legally entitled to their full scheduled benefits, the federal Anti-deficiency Act prohibits government spending in excess of available funds. Since current contributions wouldn’t meet the full obligations, recipients might receive timely but reduced payments or be paid in full but on a delayed schedule.


What are some potential fixes, and when do they need to be implemented?

A wide range of potential solutions have been proposed, including increasing the full retirement age, hiking the payroll tax on wages over a certain amount, and reducing benefits for higher lifetime earners. As for when a fix needs to be implemented, “the short answer is now,” Drossman says. Waiting until the brink of insolvency could place outsized burdens on contributors and/or beneficiaries a decade from now.


What should people planning for retirement consider?

Most proposals for Social Security solvency involve higher payroll taxes rather than cuts in benefits, Drossman notes. Still, the possibility of lower benefits provides another incentive to start saving early, invest in tax-advantaged retirement savings plans and boost your savings rate when you can. Whether you’re just starting out, nearing retirement or already there, your advisor can help you understand your options and strengthen your personal plan. 


For more insights, read “The future of Social Security: How to prepare.” And be sure to check out our other retirement-planning resources.


1 "The 2023 Annual Report of the Board of Trustees of the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance and Federal Disability Insurance Trust Funds," March 2023.

2, 2022 and 2023 Trustees Reports.




June 15, 2023

As inflation cools, a rate hike reprieve from the Fed

AFTER 10 STRAIGHT INTEREST RATE HIKES, the Federal Reserve (the Fed) held rates steady at its meeting on June 14, an encouraging sign that inflation, if not tamed, may at least be headed in the right direction.1 "Over the last year, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) has dropped from more than 9% to closer to 4%,” says Chris Hyzy, Chief Investment Officer for Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank. That’s still well above the Fed’s average target inflation rate of 2% to 2 ½%, but inflation is trending in the Fed’s preferred direction. That being said, the Fed signaled the likelihood of additional increases later this year.1 Much depends on what unfolds in the labor market data in the next few months, Hyzy says.

Matthew Diczok, head of Fixed Income Strategy, Chief Investment Office, Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank next to his quote “The Fed is reluctant to declare victory over inflation prematurely; it’s pausing now but factoring in further hikes.”

Why the pause?

“While some sectors such as housing respond quickly to higher interest rates, changes in monetary policy take time to ripple through the entire economy,” says Matthew Diczok, head of Fixed Income Strategy in the Chief Investment Office for Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank. “After raising rates very aggressively from near-zero to over 5% since March of 2022, the Fed wants to slow the pace of rate hikes to see what effect those hikes are having before adding additional ones.”


What will the Fed be watching?

Even with leading economic indicators suggesting that the economy is slowing, the job market, wages and consumer spending, which directly affect inflation, remain strong. During past inflationary periods, the Fed has sometimes put the brakes on rates too quickly, only to reverse course when inflation proved more stubborn than expected. “This time the Fed is reluctant to declare victory over inflation prematurely; it’s pausing now but factoring in further hikes,” Diczok says.


Where can investors look for yield?

With so many questions unresolved, investors should avoid making precipitous changes, Hyzy says. “The good news is that for the first time in years, higher yields mean bonds are providing not just portfolio diversification but meaningful income,” he adds. For now, short-term bonds are offering higher yields. In the coming months, investors may want to consider locking in long-term yields, in case rates eventually come down when the cycle turns and the Fed starts cutting rates, he says. Generally, though, economic uncertainties make diversification across and within asset classes, including equities, as important as ever.


Tune in weekly to the CIO Market Update audiocast for the latest insights from Chris Hyzy and his team.


1 The Wall Street Journal, “Fed Holds Rates Steady But Expects More Increases,” June 14, 2023.




June 2, 2023

Speedy passage of debt ceiling bill averts default

THE SENATE PASSED A NEW DEBT CEILING BILL late Thursday, June 1, averting a potentially catastrophic default. The Senate vote, which suspends the debt ceiling until January 1, 2025, came quickly after the House of Representatives passed the bill on Wednesday. The president is expected to sign the bill into law by Monday.1

Chris Hyzy, Chief Investment Officer, Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank next to his quote “The agreement adds a degree of stability that markets and investors will welcome.”

How we got here: Democrat and Republican legislators were locked in a standoff since January, when the government reached its $31.4 trillion debt ceiling. Without an agreement by June 5, the government may not have been able to fully meet its payment obligations, including Social Security benefits and payment of interest on federal debt, according to updated estimates by the Treasury.2 “They went from no talks to intensive talks really quickly,” says Jim Carlisle, Federal Government Relations Executive at Bank of America.


The new bill imposes modest cuts to non-military spending — fewer than Republicans sought and more than Democrats hoped for, Carlisle notes. “Nobody loves this compromise, but it’s good for the body politic,” he says, and compromise bodes well for future budget matters. Just as vital for investors is what the bill prevents. “A default could have suspended payments to holders of government bonds, caused a spike in interest rates and jolted U.S. and global markets,” says Chris Hyzy, Chief Investment Officer, Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank.


How markets could respond: “In recent weeks, markets have rallied on anticipation of a deal,” Hyzy says. “The key is that the ceiling has been suspended until after the next presidential election.” Though that eliminates some uncertainty, the economy and markets may continue to face some pressures, he adds. “Even the limited spending cuts included in the bill could create a modest drag on the economy, and the Treasury will need to re-stock its general account, removing some liquidity from the markets,” Hyzy adds. “Still, the agreement adds a degree of stability that markets and investors will welcome.”


Tune in to the CIO Market Update audiocast series for latest insights from our Chief Investment Office.


1 The Wall Street Journal, “Senate Approves Deal Raising Debt Ceiling, Averting U.S. Default,” June 2, 2023.

2 The Wall Street Journal, “Debt Ceiling: House Approves Deal Struck by Biden and McCarthy,” May 31, 2023. 




May 23, 2023

What to expect as the debt crisis comes down to the wire

WITH DEBT CEILING TALKS STALLED OVER THE WEEKEND, the president and Speaker of the House met Monday in hopes of averting an historic default on payments by the U.S. government. Without an increase in the nation’s debt ceiling (the amount it can legally borrow) the government by June 1 could be out of money to support Social Security and Medicare recipients, pay military personnel and other government workers, pay interest to Treasury bondholders, or meet myriad other obligations. 


The face-to-face meeting (in place of negotiations by staffers) represents both the seriousness of the situation and reason for hope that a resolution may be at hand, says Dan Clifton, head of Washington Research for Strategas Research Partners. “That doesn’t guarantee a deal but it puts things on a better trajectory.”

Chris Hyzy, Chief Investment Officer, Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank next to his quote “Consumers have solid balance sheets, corporate profit margins are holding steady, and the S&P 500 is up almost 10% since the start of 2023.”

In the end, neither side wants a default that could send shockwaves through the U.S. and global economies, adds Chris Hyzy, Chief Investment Officer, Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank. “That would almost certainly result in a downgrade in the government’s credit rating, accompanied by a fresh spike in interest rates,” Hyzy says. “This would make borrowing more expensive for consumers and corporations already facing the highest rates in over a decade.”


Clearing the remaining hurdles

Despite positive signs, thorny issues remain before both sides agree to raise the $31.4 trillion ceiling. Clifton points to four key areas:


  • Democrats have been resisting Republican calls for spending cuts as a condition of raising the debt ceiling. A possible compromise: Eliminate $60 billion in COVID funding that has not yet been obligated.
  • Republicans want caps on discretionary (non-entitlement) spending, representing a third of the federal budget. While cuts are unlikely, compromise might reduce spending growth from 2.5% to 2% per year over the next decade, saving about $1 trillion.
  • While the administration opposes proposed work requirements for Medicaid and food stamp recipients, negotiators may agree on modest reforms to Temporary Assistance for Needy Families programs, enabling both sides to claim victory.
  • One area where the sides remain most divided involves expedited energy permitting aimed at increasing production. Democrats want to accelerate renewable energy production and transmission; Republicans seek faster permitting for natural gas. While the issue is not directly related to the budget, negotiators may include language on renewables and natural gas, creating political “wins” all around, Clifton believes.


What’s next when the crisis ends?

When the debt ceiling lifts, investors should still expect short-term market and interest rate volatility as The Treasury, using “extraordinary measures” to pay bills since January 19, re-fills its depleted coffers, Hyzy warns. Over the next several years, the need for government austerity, after historic COVID relief spending, could create economic headwinds, Clifton adds.


The good news: “Consumers have solid balance sheets, corporate profit margins are holding steady, and the S&P 500 is up almost 10% since the start of 2023,” Hyzy says. All of which speaks to the importance for investors not to react in haste to the latest debt ceiling reports or other financial news, and to focus instead on their long-term goals.  Staying the course and maintaining a well-diversified portfolio can help to weather the market’s shorter-term ups and downs. 


For more on the debt ceiling crisis and its potential effects on markets and the economy, read the recently updated CIO report, “Debt Ceiling Questions and Answers.” For regular weekly insights from the Chief Investment Office, tune in to the  CIO Market Update audiocast series.




May 5, 2023

Will the Fed’s latest rate hike be the last for a while?

IN ITS ONGOING EFFORT TO TAME INFLATION, the Federal Reserve (Fed) hiked interest rates by another 25 basis points at its latest policy meeting. It was the 10th straight increase in a little over a year, lifting the fund rate to its highest level in 16 years.1 But that’s not the big news, says Chris Hyzy, Chief Investment Officer for Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank. More interesting is what the Fed signaled about its intentions for possible future hikes.

The next Fed meeting takes place on June 14 and 15. In the meantime, there are other potential challenges to keep an eye on.  Watch the video above to find out why Hyzy says, “We expect markets to continue in what we call a choppy, grind-it-out state” and what you can do to navigate possible ongoing volatility.


1 The Wall Street Journal, “Federal Reserve Raises Rates, Signals Potential Pause,” May 3, 2023.




May 2, 2023

New rules tighten electric vehicle tax credit eligibility

IF YOU’RE LOOKING FOR A NEW CAR THIS SPRING, you may be thinking: Is this the year I finally go electric? Electric vehicle (EV) sales have surged as the larger auto market has struggled in recent months,1 with available state and federal tax credits at least partly driving adoption. Charging stations are popping up at gas stations, office complexes and condos, and as the technology evolves, prices are finally beginning to come down.

Mitchell Drossman, head of national Wealth Strategies, Chief Investment Office, Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank next to his quote “Even if you don't qualify for a tax credit, there may be good financial as well as environmental reasons to consider switching from pump to plug.”

Will you qualify for a tax credit?

Before you make the switch, here’s what you should know about the federal EV tax credit of up to $7,500 for new EV purchases. While last year’s Inflation Reduction Act extended the credit through 2032, it also tightened rules for claiming it. Under those new rules, only individuals earning $150,000 or less ($300,000 for couples) are eligible.2 And even if you personally qualify, your EV must meet strict requirements for percentage of mineral and battery components sourced in North America or by U.S. free trade partners.3


Regulations implementing these rules, which took effect on April 18, reduced the number of EVs that qualify for the full credit. Today, “only a relative handful of models qualify, compared with the 72 that made the cut last year,” says Mitchell Drossman, head of National Wealth Strategies in the Chief Investment Office (CIO) for Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank. And, over the next several years, these sourcing percentages will rise, meaning additional vehicles could fall out of compliance. But, overall, the new rules take a taxpayer-friendly approach that should enable more EVs to qualify for the credits in the coming years, Drossman adds. This Department of Energy site can help you determine if yours makes the cut.


If your model is eligible but your income is too high, leasing could be an option. Companies that buy and lease eligible EVs earn the tax credit and may be willing to pass that savings along as an incentive.4 (Check whether your state offers a tax credit or sales tax exemption for leased or purchased EVs.) Another option: As of January 1, 2023, if you buy a used EV from a dealer for $25,000 or less, you could also be eligible for a federal tax credit equal to 30 percent of the sale price, up to a maximum credit of $4,000.


A growing market — for drivers and investors?

By 2025, EVs could represent 20% of U.S. vehicles, a sevenfold increase over 2021, research by Bank of America Institute suggests.4 Yet hurdles remain, to be sure. For example, while U.S. charging stations are growing, the country will need far more than the current 140,000 in order to support a robust EV market, according to S&P Global.5


So, is this the year for you to seriously consider going electric? “As with any financial decision, it’s important to research carefully and make a choice that suits your needs,” Drossman says. “Even if you don’t qualify for a tax credit, there may be good financial as well as environmental reasons to consider switching from pump to plug.”


For more insights on the size of the EV market, availability of charging stations by state, and other EV trends,  read  “EVs on the Charge,” by the Bank of America Institute.  And listen to “The EV Revolution” Merrill Perspectives podcast.


Get more tax-related insights by exploring “5 Times You Should Always Ask: How Will This Affect My Taxes.”


1 Cox Automotive, “In a Down Market, EV Sales Soar to New Record,” Jan. 13, 2023.

2 IRS, “Credits for new Clean Vehicles Purchased in 2023 or After,” Updated April 17, 2023.

3 U.S. Treasury, “Treasury Releases Proposed Guidance on New Clean Vehicle Credit to Lower Costs for Consumers, Build U.S. Industrial Base, Strengthen Supply Chains,” March 31, 2023.

4 Bank of America Institute, “EVs on the charge,” Nov. 7, 2022.

5 S&P Global, “EV chargers: How many do we need?” Jan. 9, 2023.



Important Disclosures


Investing involves risk, including the possible loss of principal. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.


Opinions are as of the date of these articles and are subject to change.


Bank of America, Merrill, their affiliates, and advisors do not provide legal, tax, or accounting advice. Clients should consult their legal and/or tax advisors before making any financial decisions.


This information should not be construed as investment advice and is subject to change. It is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to be either a specific offer by Bank of America, Merrill or any affiliate to sell or provide, or a specific invitation for a consumer to apply for, any particular retail financial product or service that may be available.


The Chief Investment Office (CIO) provides thought leadership on wealth management, investment strategy and global markets; portfolio management solutions; due diligence; and solutions oversight and data analytics. CIO viewpoints are developed for Bank of America Private Bank, a division of Bank of America, N.A., (“Bank of America") and Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated (“MLPF&S" or “Merrill"), a registered broker-dealer, registered investment adviser and a wholly owned subsidiary of Bank of America Corporation (“BofA Corp.”). 


All recommendations must be considered in the context of an individual investor’s goals, time horizon, liquidity needs and risk tolerance. Not all recommendations will be in the best interest of all investors.


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