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The Political Sell: Bad Choice or Horrible Choice?

Today, as I was watching CNBC and other news outlets, the coverage was primarily centered around a tweet that President Trump made earlier in the day. No one really knew what the tweet meant, but the fact that everyone was trying to figure it out was interesting to me. Back on May 17, the market fell 1.8% on the news that there could possibly be an impeachment. President Trump and his dealings with Russia would come back to bite him, and take him out of office. The news outlets, again, were going crazy with the news. All this recent fascination with President Trump had me thinking: What if someone sold their stocks every time the President did something stupid? How would that strategy work out? Below is a chart of the S&P 500 along with some stupid things that Presidents have done in recent memory. As you look at it,
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Categories: Market Commentary, Markets, and Personal Finance.

If You Fail to Plan, You Plan to Fail

What a glorious time to be invested in the stock market! The market has rallied 14% since the election on Nov. 4, the major indexes have rallied to hit all-time highs. We are far from the “euphoria” that Sir John Templeton discusses as being the end of a bull market. Despite all the good news, it’s impossible to know with certainty when it will come to a screeching halt. The hardest thing to do—we may even call it impossible—is time the market consistently. Someone may get luck once, or maybe even twice, but to time it again and again is a fool’s errand. At Iron Gate Global Advisors, we have what we call a “Bear Market Game Plan.” It’s part of our process that we implement when that Bear Market rears its ugly head. Below are a few of the characteristics of our plan. Know when to sell your stocks:
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Categories: Markets, Personal Finance, and Strategy.

The BIG Fallacy: ”No one cares about your money more than you do.”

You’ve all heard it. It’s been said over and over by anyone trying to sell you a trading service, software, newsletter, or anything similar: “no one cares about your money more than you do, so sign up today!” However, if there is one thing that over fifteen years of working with people has taught me it’s this: that phrase couldn’t be further from the truth! Let me explain. For 10 years, I worked for the biggest and best investor education company in the world today. Early in my career with that company, I was the one that used to utter that same phrase to anybody and everybody. I honestly thought it was true…until I saw what people actually did with their own money. Below are a few examples of what I’ve seen people do with their own money. Destroy their chances of a retirement because of some option or stock
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Categories: Personal Finance.

The Major Portfolio Threat Hiding In Plain Sight Of Most Investors

Over the last few months, I have reviewed over a dozen portfolios for individuals who weren’t clients but needed more clarity on their current portfolio. Within thirty minutes of looking at their portfolio, we—analysts at my firm and I— can determine the overall risk and forecasted return on a portfolio. Though I never wish to speak ill of other advisors, I have consistently seen one key mistake in people’s portfolios that is losing them far too much and giving them far too little. When we analyze a portfolio, we do this by stress testing the portfolio against bullish and bearish markets, analyzing its sensitivity to interest rates, and reviewing the expenses. The last of these, expenses, are what is driving me insane (and what I mentioned in the last paragraph)! Let me explain. There are three types of expenses that most people incur: An Advisor Fee. This is the fee
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Categories: Personal Finance.

January Market Commentary: Are You A Pessimist or an Optimist?

If you know a pessimist when it comes to the markets, you have to get them to watch this Market Commentary. Hopefully, it will change the way they invest. Why? Because we talk about wise investing for the long term and how there is almost no time in history when optimism hasn’t won out. I’ll also talk about performance. Usually in our Market Commentaries we are focused on the prior month and discussing performance. This time around however, we’re looking at 2016. Wow. What a year. So many excellent lessons epitomized by this past year. Finally, we talk about your money and how you should have it managed with us, or someone with a philosophy like ours. We have a process based on probabilities that will optimize your chance at success and minimize your likelihood of failure. So many people I talk to simply have a terrible plan in place
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Categories: Market Commentary and Personal Finance.

Did Confirmation Bias Hurt You As An Investor in 2016?

If 2016 taught you anything, it’s to expect the unexpected. From the worst start E-V-E-R in Wall Street history at the beginning of 2016, to the June Brexit shock and finally to November’s Trump Rally, this past year has been a roller coaster ride. Through all the volatility there is one thing that the great investors do. It’s part of their process, and it’s part of our process at Iron Gate Global. Jason Zweig from the Wall Street Journal said it best, he said – “To be a good investor, you have to be right much of the time. To be a great investor, you have to recognize how often you may be wrong.”  An example of this from the past year. The Election. How divisive was this past election? It was insane. We had Clinton voters arguing that Donald Trump is going to destroy the world and the markets,
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Categories: Markets and Personal Finance.

What Can You Learn From the Rearview Mirror of 2016?

We’re coming to the end of another wild year. In January, the markets recorded the worst start to any year in history . . . and now we’re floating towards DOW 20,000. Just a crazy roller coaster ride! Regardless of how the year goes, whether the markets are up substantially or down, an important exercise that every money manager should go through is a self-evaluation. This includes asking yourself the questions, what did I do well? What mistakes did I make? What would I do different? Were my mistakes emotional or something else? Jason Zweig of the Wall Street Journal said the following regarding self-evaluation. Evaluating yourself honestly is at least as important as evaluating your investments accurately. If you don’t force yourself to learn your limits as an investor, then it doesn’t matter how much you learn about the markets: Your emotions will be your undoing. This whole idea
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Categories: Personal Finance and Strategy.

Middle Market: The Investment for the Super Rich That You Can Access Too

The U.S. economy is by far the largest economy in all the world. It’s worth $18 trillion followed by China at $11.4 trillion which is followed by a market that few know about and fewer invest in. If treated as its own economy, the U.S. middle market economy is the third largest economy in the world, worth $5.9 trillion. It’s bigger than Japan, Germany and the U.K. yet no one on CNBC or Fox Business even talks about it.1 In fact, it’s an area of the market that I really didn’t know anything about until a friend of mine introduced it to me several years ago. After years of research, and my own money along with some client’s money being invested in this area of the market, I think it’s something more people should be aware of. I really got excited about middle market investing during the first part of
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Categories: Markets and Personal Finance.

Myth Busting: Stop Losses are a great tool for investors

One of the best phrases in the market today is a “stop loss.” Think about that . . . who wouldn’t want to stop losing? No one! However, I will tell you from experience, the only thing a stop loss does is stops you from making money! In fact, I’ve talked with several people in the last week that have experienced the very things I discuss in this email. It’s got me so fired up, it deserves to be this week’s content. Let’s start with the basics . . . For those unaware, a stop loss is an order that you can enter with a brokerage saying that you would like to sell a stock (or option) at a certain price. For example, let’s say that you just bought XYZ stock. You’re really excited about the investment BUT you definitely don’t want to lose money after you buy it (who
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Categories: Personal Finance and Strategy.

Does Your Financial Advisor Eat Their Own Cooking?

Here’s a great question to ask your financial advisor: How much of their own cooking are they eating? This is one of those pertinent and telling questions to help you suss out a solid financial advisor vs. a salesman-like advisor. In this week’s video Brian and I help you figure out if you have a financial advisor who believes in and is passionate about what they offer. It could change the way you think about your advisor in a big way. What we’ve been watching and reading: America is truly an amazing place to live and invest: Jamie Dimon, CEO of JP Morgan, was interviewed by the Economic Club of Washington D.C. This entire interview is fantastic, but we really enjoyed from 10:20 to 13:30 as he discusses how great and how much potential the United States has. He also discusses the role of banking in the financial crisis. Some
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Categories: Personal Finance.
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