The Gift That Keeps On Giving: Lessons From My 13 Year Old

In investing there is one gift that trumps all other gifts. It is a gift to the future that not nearly enough people take advantage of the way they should.

In this week’s podcast I invite my 13 year old son to join me and discuss the lessons he learned about this special present. He helps me walk through the principles and numbers that should be a key part of your financial strategy. The gift that keeps on giving.

I hope you enjoy the podcast below.




Head to head: the individual investor vs a financial advisor by the numbers.

In this week’s podcast I am talking about how individual investors, those who go it alone, do versus having a financial advisor. My data is from DALBAR’s annual survey of investors and their performance.

You’ll find it fascinating. I’d also encourage you to analyze your current performance versus that data. It will help you frame your investment decisions going forward.

See how you compare to the survey results in the podcast below:




How to Handle Headlines: The Helpful Handbook for Hysteria

This week’s podcast is all about what the news headlines are taking about right now: a market fall. As well as how to handle headlines. Because, if you let them, they can make you behave irrationally.

Click below to listen and enjoy!




Are stocks reasonably priced right now?

In this week’s podcast, our All Cap Value portfolio manager Brian Hunsaker is filling in for Brett. He’s talking about a big question on A LOT of investor’s minds right now. Should I be getting out of stocks with indexes at or near all time highs?

Brian dives into the question with an analysis from his man-crush Warren Buffett, whose investment approach Brian models. The answer comes down to comparing stocks with the current risk-free rate of return in bonds. Brian also discusses the impact of interest rates.

Listen to how Brian thinks about current stock market prices in the podcast below.




The markets decline 57% (true story) how prepared are you?

Ten years ago this past October 9th marked the stock market high, to that point, before the housing recession-led crash of 2008 and 2009. From that point, for the next seventeen months the markets declined as much as 57% — the single biggest decline in the markets since the 1929 crash.

This week’s podcast is about the questions you need to ask yourself when faced with such a market environment.

Do I have a strategy in place for severe bear markets? How do I know what the right decision is in the face of such a situation? How do I avoid acting with “panic” when others are doing so, and instead use rational decision making?

These questions and several more are what I focus on today. As you’ll see from the data I share, the results of proper decision making are a dramatic shift in your overall wealth.

Please click below to listen and think about how you’d approach a severe bear market as we review a thoughtful course of action.

What We’re Reading

The Unreasonable Formation of Unreasonable Things. Morgan Housel is a fantastic analyst and author. This is another great article of how bubbles form, and the role of behavior in that bubble.

Stocks Won. Brian Wesbury, an Economist that we actually really like (there aren’t that many of them), discusses what we mentioned in our podcast. The power of equities, even at their worst moments, are the best investments for building wealth.

Shit Happens. These are two very important charts that help people focus on the long term. A very quick read, but as important as anything else you will read.




How will you react to the next Black Monday?

Every October we remember the great crash of 1987 known as Black Monday. It’s a “haunting” memory for a “haunting” month. How did you handle Black Monday? What was your response as an investor? Or are you even old enough to remember it?

In this week’s podcast, we revisit that fateful day in 1987 and discuss the behavior of the average investor versus the wise investor. The different is stark! If you behaved as many people, you likely saw a significant decrease in your net worth for some time. And here’s the kicker: the right choice was completely counter-intuitive.

Let’s talk about thirty years ago and what we should learn from the lessons of Black Monday. May it lead to more treats for you and fewer market tricks.

Click below to listen:




How Do You Compare To The Average American? Surprised At This.

CNBC recently ran a survey the call the “All America Survey” in which they go out and survey Americans across all income levels and backgrounds. They try to get a pulse on what the average American thinks about the markets, investing and other financial topics.

I found it quite insightful to see what the “average American” is thinking right now. How good an investment environment are we in? What are the best investments available today? How stocks compare to bonds or real estate to gold.

You have to compare yourself to this crowd for one great reason: it will tell you a lot about your investment savvy. And let me tell you, the “average American”, at least according to this survey, is not terribly savvy.

Today’s podcast dives right in and talks about these results and how you might compare. I hope you enjoy.




How much Bitcoin should I have in my portfolio: IGGA Podcast

Based on numerous client and associate discussions I have been having I know what is on many people’s minds: Bitcoin. Today we are going to take a look at Bitcoin and how the smart investor should be viewing this relatively new phenomenon of cryptocurrencies.

I hope you enjoy our take on Bitcoin and what it can mean for the informed investor.

What We’re Reading

An Experts Guide to Calling a Market Top: This is by Barry Ritholtz and is a fantastic article. We found ourselves not only nodding our heads as we read it but laughing as well. This is a great piece that is a must read for anyone.

The $12-million iPhone: In light of the new iPhone X launch, this article seems very appropriate. This is by Bret Swanson. After reading this article you will see just how blessed we all are to live in the times that we live in.

19 Questions to Ask your Financial Advisor: If you’re looking to hire a Financial Advisor and need a list of questions to ask, this is as good as we’ve seen. Jason Zweig, who’s been writing on these topics for decades, knows exactly what you need to ask an Advisor before working with them. Our take, call us and ask us these questions, we have answers for them all! (you will need a Wall Street Journal log-in to read this article)




Do You Have Home Country Bias and Other Behaviorally Driven Investor Topics

In this week’s podcast I’m basing my thoughts on the string of client questions I have been receiving over the last couple of weeks. You may have heard me say before, as a financial advisor I consider myself a behavioral advisor as much as a markets advisor.

Investors are antsy and they’re asking questions like:

“The market is at an all-time high is it the time to sell?”

“This political environment is making me antsy, how do I trade it?”

I address these topics head on. What does history and what does probability tell us about them? The answers formulate our response.

Finally, I also address a critical behavioral weakness of many investors: home country bias. You like many others may have this. It can hamper your portfolio’s performance.

So click below to listen as we discuss these very important topics and see how you would grade yourself against our recommended approach.




This Client Asked Two Common Questions: Here’s Our Answer

A client recently asked me two questions:

1) What is the market going to do over the course of the next year?

2) What is the secret sauce that has led to our success in the markets?

What I did was walk him through why those aren’t the right questions to ask an adviser. I walked him through what I believe any client or potential client should ask their investment adviser.

The reasoning for my answer is deeply connected with why I believe a large number of investors, either on their own or with an adviser, don’t achieve the success they should be able to.

Today’s podcast is a simple review of that conversation. I hope you enjoy.

What We’re Reading

The first rule of Investing is . . . This is a fantastic, quick read that we agree with wholeheartedly. The key to any “rules” is to implement them. It’s one thing to know the rules, it’s another to implement them.

What Matters and What Doesn’t in Investing (and in Life) This echo’s a lot of what we discussed in our podcast. There are some things you shouldn’t waste your energy worrying about (even though the media sure does!).

Two Simple Ways to Trounce the Market – While trouncing the market is never “simple,” this article does point out some two important principles that we agree with. In fact, for a lot of our clients, this is how we manage their money.