Watching the world: How headlines impact your financial plan

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Sound financial advice critical for investors of all ages

September 8, 2015 - Don't live outside of your means. Only take on debt that you can manage. Save. Save more. Keep saving. There are plenty of adages out there that apply to socking money away for retirement. In this video clip, a BAM advisor talks about common-sense financial tips for investors of all age groups.

Financial Tips for Every Generation

Preparing for retirement all about crunching the numbers 

April 6, 2015 - Researchers claims that only half of the households in the United States are financially prepared for retirement. Guess where that leaves the other 50 percent? When it comes to planning for retirement, it's all about crunching the numbers, and this article provides some easy ways to determine if you're ready - or not.

Are You Financially Ready for Retirement?

Take note: the market had plenty to teach investors in 2014

March 10, 2015 - From the failure of forecasts to the dangers of recency bias, BAM's Director of Research, Larry Swedroe, presents ten lessons that investors should have learned from the markets last year as part of this video presentation.

Ten Lessons the Market Taught Investors in 2014

Yearning for work-life balance? Reconfigure the equation.

January 5, 2015 - Once you've abandoned the pursuit of balancing money and life in favor of integrating the two, the question still remains: Now what? Like most personal finance dilemma, the answer is simple, but not easy.

A Four-Step Process to Integrating Money and Life


Planning for tax season? Here's some tips to keep in mind

December 19, 2014 - Whether you're looking to save for retirement or stow away money for a child's higher education, it's important to keep tax implications in mind. That is particularly true at the end of the year, as savvy investors consider the tax effect of every move with filing season right around the corner. In this column published by U.S. News & World Report, BAM's director of investor advocacy, Dan Solin, highlights eight year-end tax planning tips that all investors should examine before celebrating the New Year.

Eight Tax Tips Investors Should Know

What to do if the bear has emerged from its hibernation

November 25, 2014 - It seems like investors have had plenty to worry about recently, even without considering the last few weeks of stock market volatility. If all the negative headlines have caused your stomach to produce a lot more acid, resulting in some sleepless nights, you should answer certain questions before the stress causes you to embark on a bout of panicked selling.

Swedroe: Are You Prepared to Face a Bear?

A few financial words of 'wisdom' that could spell doom

November 3, 2014 -- Still think staying in cash is a prudent financial strategy? Everyone ever tell you that there is such a thing as taking "too much" risk? Or maybe you've been told that picking stocks is the best way to beat the market. There's been no shortage of financial myths spread over the years, and in this article posted to U.S. News & World Report, BAM's Tim Maurer takes them to task by identifying a few fables investors would be best to avoid.

Debunking 8 Common Investing Myths


Don't forget about risk, even during good times

June 9, 2014 - The last few years have been a fun ride. Domestic equity markets have been setting fresh highs nearly every day and the broad indexes have made great gains following the financial collapse of 2008. In this article, Carl Richards, director of investor education at BAM, reminds us not to forget the realities of taking risk in our investment portfolio. Though the market has been stable in the last few years, investors should not allow their judgment to lapse during good times by ramping up the risk and forgetting lessons from the recent past.

It's Easy To Forget About Risk In A Stable Market

Simple steps can lead to financial mastery

June 9, 2014 - Though there is no magic bullet for creating long-term financial security, there are a few key steps that can be taken along the way to move you closer toward that goal. In this piece, BAM's director of investor advocacy, Dan Solin, highlights some of the major points to keep in mind from a study that outlined a simple plan for finding financial freedom.

How To Master Your Finances

Blow-for-blow, Roth IRA always wins the fight

June 9, 2014 - Many investors wonder if they would be better served using a Traditional IRA or Roth IRA to save for retirement. The question often revolves around whether they'd be better served by a current-year tax deduction (Traditional) or having their money grow tax-free in perpetuity (Roth IRA). In this article, Tim Maurer, BAM's director of personal finance, explains why Roth IRAs will always win the tax-planning fight when it comes to long-term investing. 

The Knockout Punch In The IRA Grudge Match

Old maxim of stock market proves to be outdated

June 9, 2014 - It's one of those sayings that spreads through investment circles every spring: Sell in May and go away. But as Larry Swedroe, BAM's director of research, shows in this article, evidence suggests that investors who follow that advice typically lose out in the long run.

Did You Sell In May?

Beating the market is now 'next to impossible'

May 9, 2014 - In that never-ending search for elusive alpha (i.e., the risk-adjusted return on an investment), many investors find in the end that they missed out on even achieving beta, or the returns provided by the market. In this piece posted on Forbes.com, financial author Tim Maurer explains why many investors waste precious time -- and money -- trying to beat the market than simply taking the gains it offers.

Why Beating The Market Is An Uphill Skate

Reverse mortgages not the right fit for every retiree

May 9, 2014 -  Though they've become more popular (and publicized) as an option for funding retirement in recent years, reverse mortgages aren't the right fit for everyone. In this article, published by U.S. News & World Report, Dan Solin, the director of investor advocacy at BAM, looks at a few alternatives for generating cash flow for clients wary of using a reverse mortgage. 

Four Alternatives To Reverse Mortgages

Everyone wants to be Buffett, but few behave like him

May 9, 2014 -  Consistently considered one of the greatest American investors of any generation, Warren Buffett is often cited as an example of what everyday investors should try to emulate in making their own long-term investment decisions. Far too often, however,  investors fail to live up to the passive-style strategy that Buffett boasts of using over the years. In this video presentation, BAM's director of research, Larry Swedroe, discusses ways that investors should incorporate Buffett's advice in setting their own goals and strategies. 

Want To Invest Like Buffet? Start Taking His Advice

Is diversification dead? Not by a long shot!

(MoneyWatch) As we have discussed before, ever since the financial crisis investors have been hearing that, because of globalization, the world has become flat and the benefits of diversification are gone. It's a refrain that I hear repeatedly from the media, as well as from investors concerned about their portfolios. To paraphrase Mark Twain: The rumor of the death of the benefits of diversification have been greatly exaggerated.

What's so surprising is that all one has to do is look at the evidence right in front of your nose to see the truth of that statement. The table below shows the year-to-date returns (through Sept. 30) as well as the 10-year annualized returns of the major equity indices.  Read more...

Don’t fear equities, even in retirement

April 29, 2013 – It's a fear many investors face as they near retirement: They believe that equities are far too risky for someone their age. But in this edition of "The Educated Investor," BAM explains why equity exposure remains a critical component of a long-term investment strategy, even after an investor has left the workforce for good. Though it may be prudent to scale back the amount of equity exposure, investors need to consider the risks of inflation and the potential of outliving their assets before becoming too conservative with their investments.

To access this article, click on the link below: 

You Can Be Too Conservative 


Passive management doesn't mean idle investing

April 29, 2013 – Don’t be fooled by the name. Just because it’s referred to as passive investment management doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty of work going on behind the scenes on behalf of investors. In this article, the BAM Alliance explains some of the tenets of a passive management philosophy, as many investors are often unaware of the differences between a passive and active investment philosophy. For example, in addition to the regular rebalancing of passively-managed portfolios, BAM also points out keys to a successful passive strategy, such as the importance of maintaining the correct asset allocation, selecting the right securities to meet each investor’s risk tolerance, and employing tools such as Monte Carlo analysis to stay on course. 

To access this article, click on the link below: 

True Spirit Of Passive


Latest round of Swedroe blog postings

April 29, 2013 – From his blog on CBS’ “Moneywatch,” BAM principal and director of research Larry Swedroe comments on topics that include why data mining of economic information will do little to help an investment portfolio, the real state of the U.S. economy and why the recent decline in the price of gold is an important lesson about staying off bandwagons. In addition, he also writes about why spending down a portfolio in retirement may be a prudent financial move, how equity markets experience sizable drops more frequently than everyday investors realize and why an expert physicist doesn't equate to a top-notch hedge fund manager.

To access these and other blog postings, click on the links below:

What Butter Production Means For Your Portfolio

Is The U.S. Economy In Trouble?

Spending From Your Portfolio In Retirement

Is Gold’s Price Drop Just The Beginning?

Physicist Hedge Fund Guru Posts Lukewarm Returns

Big Market Drops Happen More Often Than You Think

Don’t Get Too Excited About The Bull Market

Most Common Retirement Planning Mistakes

Why Diversification Isn’t Dead



Though we may have missed a few months of distributing this newsletter out, tax season is now over and we plan on putting it out again on a regular basis. In the meantime, if you know of any individuals who could use a second opinion about their investment strategy or are searching to work with an advisor focused only on their needs, please keep us in mind! In addition to working with individual clients, we also provide services for company retirement plans, specifically working with 401(k) plans. If the company you work for is unhappy with the service they’ve been receiving from their current retirement plan provider, we’d be happy to give them a no-obligation review and show them what kind of service we can provide!


Investment lessons abound after 2012

January 29, 2013 -- With another year behind us, BAM principal and director of research Larry Swedroe takes some time to reflect on the lessons investors should take from 2012. Though the previous year was still fraught with financial fear and anxiety, it also taught us the importance of having a diversified and disciplined financial strategy, as evidenced by the market returns of 2012. In this edition of "The Educated Investor," Swedroe highlights a few key lessons learned that will serve all investors well in developing a long-term financial strategy.

To access this article, click on the link below:

Lessons From 2012

Prognosis negative? Time to recheck the forecasts

January 29, 2013 -- As part of his regular column "Outside the Flags, Jim Parker, a vice president at Dimensional Fund Advisors, examines the contrast between some of the financial forecasts that came out in early 2012 versus the reality of how markets behaved over the past year. Though many of the media projections and expert prognostications were negative in tone, equity markets around the world rallied last year, in spite of decidedly pessimistic news about the global economy. As part of his analysis, Parker points out reasons investors should ignore the so-called experts and stay the course, in good times and bad.

To access this article, click on the link below:

Many Happy Returns


Latest postings from Swedroe's blog

January 29, 2013 -- In the latest batch of postings to his CBS MoneyWatch blog, BAM principal and director of research Larry Swedroe takes a look at predictions investors should start tracking in 2013, why everyone should avoid the "buy gold now" mentality hawked on television and reiterates why past performance should never be a measure of future success. He also talks about the proposal to begin taxing municipal bonds, the ways hedge funds continue to disappoint investors and a trio of additional "fiscal cliffs" on the horizon that investors should be aware of.

To access these blog postings, click on the links below:

Grasping What The Market Can Teach You

The Most Important Lesson For Investors

Financial Predictions To Track In 2013

Should You Be Active In Emerging Markets?

Hedge Funds Disappoint - Again

Ignore The 'Buy Gold Now' Crowd

How Taxing Muni Bonds Would Hurt Cities

Three More 'Fiscal Cliffs' On The Horizon

Tax Deductions Get Thrown Over 'Cliff'

Another Poor Showing For Active Managers






ABOUT US

Managing wealth isn't simply about acquiring assets. It's about you. That's why our services focus on you. Discovering and achieving what matters to you. Providing distinct solutions to address the financial complexities in your life and keeping those solutions relevant for you over time. Building an ongoing relationship with you is integral to all that we do. NAM Advisors - providing tax preparation, wealth management, financial planning and 401(k) advising in McFarland, Wisconsin.