retirement planning

Optimists Rule

Optimists and visionaries have built our great country. Railroads, autos, airlines, rockets, and computers were created by individuals who focused on changing the world. They didn’t let “experts” tell them their ideas were a waste of time or their inventions wouldn’t work. The Wright Brothers, Henry Ford, Amelia Earhart, Andrew Carnegie, John D.

Who Cares?

Who cares that the current bull market has risen more than 260% when stocks have dropped 7% in the past month? Does it matter that stocks have generated an average annual return of 10% for the past 100 years or markets rise 75% of the time when this year will be negative? Stocks have outpaced bonds and cash for decades, but so what? This year bonds and cash have the upper hand.

Is Bad Good?

Global markets have dropped considerably the past three months. The Dow Jones has fallen about 8% as investors react to negative headlines about trade wars, Brexit, interest rates, and several other issues. They have been selling stocks to buy bonds or park money in a cash account.

Ditch Your Estate Plan?

Estate planning is vital for people with significant wealth. A properly structured plan can aid in the successful distribution of your assets to those you love. Transferring assets to your beneficiaries, while avoiding estate taxes, is paramount for most individuals.

Riptides

Growing up in Southern California I spent a considerable amount of time at the beach – Huntington, Newport, Laguna and Mission - boogie boarding, body surfing, snorkeling, or scuba diving. On occasion I’d get stuck in a riptide.

Correlation: Positive One

A diversified portfolio is always recommended. Balancing your accounts between stocks, bonds, and cash will allow it to grow with less risk than a concentrated portfolio.

What Is a Mutual Fund?

Several years ago, I met with a client who was retiring from his long-time employer. He wanted to purchase a basket of stocks for growth and income. We discussed mutual funds as an alternative to owning numerous stock positions. He wasn’t aware that mutual funds could own stocks. I informed him that a mutual fund is a portal for owning stocks, bonds, or other investments.

Are You Maximizing Your Giving?

We are entering the giving season. It’s the time of year when churches and non-profits raise most of their funds because individuals wait until the last minute to give a donation. In other words, most people give from their last fruits, not their first fruits.

Sound Familiar?

From November 11, 1974 to November 20, 1974 the S&P 500 fell 9.6%. It dropped because of economic uncertainty and political unrest.

Let’s explore the major themes from 1974.

In August 1974 President Richard Milhous Nixon resigned. He was the first, and only, U.S. President to resign. His resignation was a result of the Watergate scandal.

Di-worse-i-fi-ca-tion?

Diversification or concentration? To create wealth, concentrate; To preserve it, diversify. A concentrated portfolio can produce huge gains, if you own the right stocks. Of course, if you own the wrong ones, your wealth will be wiped out. Buying the right sector, at the right time, at the right price requires multiple factors, most of which are out of your control.

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