Archive for July, 2011

Test drive your retirement plans

When it comes to retirement security, nobody likes uncertainty and certainly nobody like surprises. The same holds true when buying a car. In both cases an evaluation of stability, along with an understanding of the features and associated costs, are needed in order to make a decision you’ll be satisfied with for years to come. In  last quarter’s

July 28, 2011 Categories: Portfolio Corner

Taxing Times: Tipping Point? Why August 2nd matters in the Debt Debate and how it affects you

As the deadline approaches to lift the U.S. debt ceiling, lawmakers debate competing proposals linking future tax policy and spending increases. Differing budget proposals range from $1-4 trillion in spending cuts over the next ten to twelve years in exchange for an agreement to lift the debt ceiling.1 Each alternative purports to narrow the large operating

Jul 26, 2011 Categories: Economic Insights

“Intermediate” Gratification

At the risk of stating the obvious, the restoration of investor confidence and the recovery of the global economy are inseparable. Everyone knows that. I tend to think that the appearance – and reality – of powerlessness and uncertainty about the basic effectiveness of our institutions are among the most scarring after-effects of the global

Jul 21, 2011 Categories: Economic Insights

Fox in the henhouse

Ever heard of Dr. Myron L. Fox? He was part of an experiment conducted in the early 1970s which studied how audiences respond to experts. Every time I see CNBC or some other financial news channel with the expert of the hour, I think of Dr. Fox. In a series of experiments, Dr. Fox delivered

Jul 19, 2011 Categories: The Art of Advising

Asset allocation continued to serve investors well

The second quarter of 2011 was a stressful ride for investors. Following a strong first quarter, the second quarter started off okay with the Russell 3000® Index up almost 3% from April 1st through April 29th, but things quickly turned difficult for equity markets, with the Russell 3000® down 7.5% from April 29th through June

Jul 14, 2011 Categories: Portfolio Corner

An attention deficit: the market’s take on jobs number

What a difference a week makes. The market was basking in the glow of strong economic data just a week ago, but Friday a stark U.S. jobs number sent the market retreating. Is this just a matter of short attention span? Or do the lackluster employment figures off-set the positive news of the past two

Jul 12, 2011 Categories: Economic Insights

Conversation Starters: Searching for clues

We find the topic of advisor-investor conversations endlessly interesting. Of particular interest is what clients bring with them to the meetings and calls. Russell’s 2nd Quarter 2011 Financial Professional Outlook indicates that clients often bring news items and what they’re reading on the Internet to their advisors. We see this as a golden opportunity to ask

Jul 7, 2011 Categories: The Art of Advising
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