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Resources / Education

Insight Blindness

  When all the discussion these days is about the Presidential Election tomorrow, we find it apt to quote Andrew Carnegie who said: “As I grow older, I pay less attention to what people say. I just watch what they do.” However, the question inevitably gets posed as to what impact the elections will have on the stock markets.  Speaking strictly in historical numbers, the stock market would indicate a slight preferential edge for Republican nominations, but the best…

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May You Live in Interesting Times

  The old Chinese proverb comes to mind when we speak about current interest rates; “May you live in interesting times”.  The problem for many folks is that subject is much more vibrant than their interest rates are at present.  In prior monthly communications to you, we have talked about equities / stocks, but let’s take a little time to talk about the other portion of your portfolio which is bonds / fixed income investments. For perspective, some very…

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Who Knows

There are two messages in this article, but they are related and we think you’ll find them beneficial. The first is a story about George, a former business owner and a friend of ours. We’ve been meeting at 6:30 am on Monday mornings for 6 years mostly to talk about spirituality and how it pertains to our current world.  Though he is advanced in years, George made the thoughtful decision toward, and was accepted into, a seminary.  But that’s…

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Life’s Success

  A very successful client recently told us– our greatest contribution to he and his wife is not the investments.  That comment perplexed us and, given my deep respect for him professionally and personally, we sat back to listen. He told us the investments are terrific and he enjoys my enthusiasm and passion for the research and getting them the best we think exists.  But the real value, the more important value to him, is the peace and confidence we…

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Steady As She Goes

  As we were initially drafting this article in late May 2012, we was referencing the markets falling off from its first quarter 2012 peak.  Now, as of this June 1, 2012 writing, we observe the market dropping another 250-300 points mid-day and thought about revising the message. But we’re not.  The message is the exact same. Three main points; Markets go up and they go down.  They roared up in the 4th quarter 2011 and 1st quarter 2012 (between…

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It’s A Matter Of Ethics

  Let us tell you a story. We spent 7 years researching the financial services industry.  In the process, we learned about investments, various product structures, performance, risk and the best ways to do professional financial planning.  However, in the process, we also learned the details on the industry’s little tricks, how it presents things to look good when they are not, how payments flow, and where the conflicts lie.  It was those secondary elements of learning that we…

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All Hat, No Saddle

  This article focuses not on the imperative of having great investments—that message is easy and low hanging fruit.  The message instead is that over my years we’ve come to understand that investments are actually secondary to the greatest problem investors have: reacting emotionally to markets and not intellectually. Take a look at the almost perfectly juxtaposed graphs embedded below.  They represent; The inevitable rise in the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) from its great recession low on March 9,…

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Safe Is Risk

  The world these days seems uncertain, but your investments here have performed like gangbusters.  Congratulations on staying exactly with the plan we put together which makes you a great investor (and one with higher wealth to go along with it). That result makes everyone happy but, as you know, we are numbers guys and think long term.  We want to make sure you’re next 20 plus years are good ones.  Many folks are these days looking for safety, and…

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Success Isn’t Magic

  One of the greatest myths of Wall Street is that you have to be complicated in approach to win the financial security game.  That statement, like much of what Wall Street would espouse, is lacking in veracity.  Or, in my old Minnesota vernacular, it’s a lie. Like Steve Jobs of Apple would advocate, the beauty of things lies in their simplification.  There are really only five things a person has to do right to have a successful financial…

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