Broker Check

Newsletter Archive - 2020

2020 in the Rearview Mirror

December 31, 2020


I sometimes like to go back and read some of my old newsletters, especially those written at inflection points, to see how my views and expectations held up in the future I was predicting.  Today I reread my year-end newsletters for the last two years. ...

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What Happens When the Dust Settles?

November 16, 2020


Got an email this morning from a close acquaintance who, it happens, is not a client.  Just someone looking for some free advice.  Not that anyone reading this would know him, but to preserve his anonymity, we’ll call him “Ricky”.  I had been pondering on whether I wanted to publish a post-election newsletter, but was really struggling with what I could say that would be meaningful without aggravating half of my audience with comments that could be perceived as pro- one or the other of the less-than-inspiring characters we had to select between last week.  Ricky’s very succinct question gave me the opportunity to respond in uncharacteristically succinct terms. ...

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Call DFS!

October 16, 2020


That’s the thought everyone should have when any financial decision needs to be made. Unfortunately, people forget often enough that Jim has a saying: “It happened again!” Sometimes people solely think of us as retirement planners, wealth managers, and maybe income tax professionals, and so miss out on advice we can offer in other areas. ...

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It's the End of the World, Boys and Girls!

October 5, 2020


Multiple Gulf Coast hurricanes, one after the other.  Massive forest fires across the Western states.  Covid pandemic showing signs of a potential second wave. The most divisive presidential election in our lifetimes, if not ever.  And now the President has Covid, and it seems there may be a hotspot working its way outward from him at the center, if not from an epidemiologic perspective, certainly from a political one. ...

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Third Quarter 2020 Outlook

July 1, 2020


Back at the end of March, I told you to ignore your quarter-end statements as largely meaningless point-in-time snapshots and not terribly accurate reflections of big-picture economic or market conditions.  That turned out to be a reasonably accurate assessment under the circumstances as the market recovered much more quickly than any of us would have hoped for, much less been willing to predict. ...

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Coronavirus Market Update

May 7, 2020


During times of crisis it’s normal for humans to be fearful.  Our minds always go to the darkest places – we imagine the worst possible outcome, and we fear that’s where we are headed.  But think about it; how many crises have you actually experienced, and how many ended as badly as they could have? ...

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2020 First Quarter Wrap-Up

April 8, 2020


If you haven’t seen them already, your first quarter investment reports will be showing up in your mail over the next few days.  My advice … ignore them.  Don’t open them.  Nothing good will come from that.  After all, what are they going to tell you that you don’t already know? ...

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Coronavirus Financial Relief

April 1, 2020


Virtually everyone has heard that, in response to the coronavirus, both the congress and the federal reserve are turning on the spigots, and large amounts of money are soon going to be falling from the sky on most of us.  Here’s what I think you need to know. ...

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Coronavirus (Again)

March 17, 2020


We’ve had a couple of phone calls asking about our office operating status and intentions so let me start with a report on our continuity of operations plans.  As of today, we expect to remain open for normal operations.  Obviously if some kind of government-directed stoppage should occur, we would comply and close, but we are not a high traffic operation, so there is neither a need to close down, or a greater than normal risk of exposure to us or our customers.  Barring government direction, we will be open and available for your calls. ...

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March 9, 2020


This will probably be the briefest newsletter I have ever written.  There’s really not that much to be said. It’s Monday morning, the market is tanking, and it looks as if before it’s all over we are going to be at least 20% below the record highs we set – are you ready for this? – about two weeks ago.  This will probably go down as the quickest bull to bear market in history.  So what to do? ...

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2019 Review and Looking Forward to 2020

January 8, 2020


2019 was the best year we’ve had in a while, in fact since 1997 by some measures, with gains in the 20 to 40% range depending on which index you want to cite.  In summary, this was the kind of year that rewards the patient and disciplined investor who accepts the long and sometimes scary flat and down periods as a deposit against the sudden, unexpected, and occasionally explosive gains that the market can deliver from time to time. ...

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