Insights & Observations

Stay Informed

You’re busy creating your own success; to help you stay informed, we share our insights and observations regularly through our blog. Whether you want to secure your personal wealth, improve the lives of your employees or elevate your impact in your community, we invite you to read the topics that matter most to you.

  • Safety

    What does “safe” mean?  When driving car or playing baseball, the answer is generally clear.  When investing, the answer is less obvious.  To get where you want to go financially, it is critical to properly frame the problem, by asking the right questions: safe “from what?” and “when?”  Inflation risk? Interest rate risk?  Goal risk?

    Staying the Course

    Often times, the discomfort of sea or motion sickness can be avoided or reduced by keeping one’s eyes on the horizon.  Similarly, keeping a long-term focus can reduce “emotion sickness” of the investor kind. Anticipating and managing such discomfort is paramount, because an investor’s ability to focus on the goal rather than on short-term disturbances… [Read More]

    Trade-offs

    Inflation is one of the various risks investors must consider, and is currently lower than historical averages due, in part, to the slow economic recovery.  However, the prices of goods and services tend, eventually, to rise after a period of eased or stimulative government “monetary policy,” such as we have seen in recent years.   Inflation… [Read More]

    Instincts and Investing

    Instincts are sometimes critical for survival.  If you experience fear of physical danger, your instinct may be what saves your life or the life of others.  Before you’ve had time to think, fear triggers an automatic response that may cause you to run, duck, jump or fight. Unfortunately, an increasing number of behavioral finance studies… [Read More]

    Greek Financial Crisis

    By the first half of 2011, after a post-crash jump in investment prices, many disciplined investors felt a material level of financial and emotional recovery from the 2007-2009 credit crisis market.  The third quarter of 2011, however, was a reminder that the bumpy road to full recovery is not yet over, as the world slipped… [Read More]

    Now vs. Later

    As advocates and advisors to our clients regarding the long-term goals of the assets for which they are fiduciaries, it often feels internally inconsistent when our quarterly letter or meetings sometimes focus on short-term market results.  The constant tension for us and for clients is evaluating the importance and relevance of “now” vs. “later.”  This… [Read More]

    Uncertainty is Unavoidable

    “The only certainty is that nothing is certain” ~ Pliny the Elder, First century Roman. Despite major unrest in parts of Northern Africa and the Middle East, a massive earthquake, the subsequent tsunami and partial nuclear meltdown in Japan, renewed sovereign debt concerns in Europe, and continuing inflationary pressures in certain emerging market countries, the… [Read More]

    2010 Recap

    To start the new year, let’s take a look back at 2010 from an investment perspective.  For the second year in a row, stock markets rose more than the historical averages.  Bonds were also positive for the year.  Discipline was again important – 8 months into the year the S&P 500 Index was down 5.8%,… [Read More]

    Fiduciary Pioneers

    In the last few years, the second worst economic environment in history made markets difficult more often than not.  As a result, our quarterly letters focused primarily on maintaining perspective and avoiding the pitfalls of emotional investing, which are relevant to both individuals and fiduciaries.  Given that the third quarter of 2010 produced strong results,… [Read More]

    Maintaining Reasonable Expectations

    After feeling some recovery related relief after the market bottom in March, 2009, the bumpy last few months are making some investors nervous.  Such recovery related dips, however, are not inconsistent with previous strong markets.  There have been 11 bull markets since 1945, and during those markets there was a correction of 10% on average,… [Read More]

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