ACTIONABLE ADVICE FOR FINANCIAL ADVISORS: Newsletters and Commentaries Focused on Investment Strategy

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Recent Articles

Gundlach: The Once-in-a-Career Moment in the Bond Market

by Robert Huebscher

In a career spanning more than three decades, Jeffrey Gundlach had never seen the conditions the bond market faced last week. Indeed, he said the “setup for the 10-year Treasury was the worst in his career.”

The Fallacy behind Investor versus Fund Returns (and why DALBAR is dead wrong)

by Michael Edesess

There is no way to determine if investors underperform the mutual funds they own, either because of bad timing or for any other reason.

The Tradeoff Between Income and Capital in Retirement Withdrawals

by John Walton

How can the best performing retirement strategies be combined with annuities, pensions, Social Security and different ‘tilts’ to allow clients to best choose between capital preservation and income stability?

Tips for Dealing with Introverted and Extroverted Prospects

by Dan Solin

Unless you are reflective enough to understand whether you are an introvert or an extrovert, you will be unable to connect with your prospect.

Last Week’s Highlights on APViewpoint

by Marianne Brunet

The top conversations on APViewpoint last week were started by thought leader Larry Swedroe and member Adam Butler. They generated thoughtful discussions on: how the performance of legendary value investors like Warren Buffett matches up against passively managed alternatives; the art and science of portfolio optimization; and the myth of private equity and venture capital outperformance.

Inside the GoodHaven Fund, a Top-Performing Value Fund in 2016

by Robert Huebscher

The GoodHaven Fund (GOODX) is managed by Larry Pitkowsky and Keith Trauner of GoodHaven Capital Management, LLC. As of July 13, the fund had returned 12.75% year-to-date, as compared to 3.84% for the S&P 500, placing it in the top 2nd percentile of its Morningstar peer group.

Three Fail-Safe Ways to Jumpstart Growth

by Beverly Flaxington

We are in a lull right now. Unless we acquire another advisory firm, our numbers will be flat or negative this year. I am looking for a shot in the arm – something to jumpstart our growth and get everyone energized.

Recruiter Spotlight

by Various

Visit our recruiter spotlight to hear from our monthly sponsors about opportunities available for advisors in the industry.

Protecting Your Most Valuable Assets

by Teresa Riccobuono

For many advisors, their practice is their largest asset. As with most assets, it is essential to protect your practice. In addition to E&O insurance, here are the actions you should take to protect this valuable asset.

Congressional and Legal Challenges Won’t Stop the DOL Fiduciary Rule

by Ron Rhoades

I address the likelihood that the core provisions of the DOL fiduciary rule will be implemented as prescribed, on April 10, 2017.

Recent Commentaries

The Perils of Populism

by Carl Tannenbaum of Northern Trust

Populism is not new, and its current incarnation is certainly not its most extreme expression. Wikipedia describes populism as “a political position which holds that the virtuous citizens are being mistreated by a small circle of elites...the elites are depicted as trampling in illegitimate fashion upon the rights, values and voice of the people.”

Will the Gold Bull Market Resume After the Summer Correction?

by Frank Holmes of U.S. Global Investors

Only time will tell which candidate will be triumphant in November, but in the meantime, one of the winners might very well be gold, which has traditionally attracted investors in times of political and economic uncertainty. In the United Kingdom, which voted one month ago to leave the European Union, gold dealers are seeing “unprecedented” demand, especially from first-time buyers. Some investors are reportedly even converting 40 to 50 percent of their net worth into bullion, though that’s not advisable. (I always suggest a 10 percent weighting, diversified in physical gold and gold mining stocks.) In Japan, where government bond yields have fallen below zero and faith in Abenomics is flagging, gold sales are soaring. It’s not unreasonable to expect the same here in the U.S. between now and November (and beyond).

A Tale Of Two Exits—How Different Is This Time?

by Chun Wang of Leuthold Weeden Capital Management

Despite the uncertainties surrounding all the possible paths Brexit might take, and the significant differences in the macro backdrop, we think our best guide is still the 1992 U.K. exit from the European Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM). While the ERM exit was practically forced upon the U.K., Brexit is very much a self-inflicted wound. The initial market reaction was nonetheless similar with big drops in the pound in both cases. Overall, we think the market action of the pound is consistent with an event of this magnitude and there is probably more room on the downside.

The Global Economy’s Hesitation Blues

by Robert Shiller of Project Syndicate

Economic slowdowns can often be characterized as periods of hesitation: consumers hesitate to buy a new house or car, thinking that the old house or car will do just fine for a while longer. Viewed from this perspective, how worried should we be about the effects of hesitation today?

Thoughts on Brexit and the Implications for Investment Strategy

by Gregory Hahn of Winthrop Capital Management

After 43 years of membership in the European Union (EU), Great Britain voted last week to withdraw its membership. In spite of all the polls which leaned toward staying, all the political leaders cajoling voters to remain, and the international pundits from the International Monetary Fund to the President of the United States who lobbied Great Britain to remain in the EU, the British public voted to leave. It appears to us to be a vote for independence and sovereign pride, in spite of the unknown costs.

Equity Investment Outlook

by John Osterweis, Matt Berler of Osterweis Capital Management

Before the surprising outcome of the Brexit vote we would have argued that the fundamental U.S. economic outlook was little changed from last quarter. The pattern of slow growth, low inflation and low interest rates that has characterized the post-2008 recovery was intact and appeared likely to remain so. But the Brexit vote has introduced an element of uncertainty into the equation and increases the risk of an economic slowdown in the U.K. and Europe that could have spill-over effects in the U.S.

ECRI Weekly Leading Index: WLI Up 1.1, Growth Index Highest Since 2013

by Jill Mislinski of Advisor Perspectives (

Today's release of the publicly available data from ECRI (Economic Cycle Research Institute) puts its Weekly Leading Index (WLI) at 138.1, up 1.1 from the previous week. Year-over-year the four-week moving average of the indicator is now at 3.00%, up from 2.53% the previous week. The company's Weekly Leading Index annualized growth indicator (WLIg) is at 7.5, up from last week, its highest since February 2013.

Detecting a ‘Smart’ Investment Strategy

by Andrew Pyne, Markus Aakko of PIMCO

How to pick smart-beta strategies using methods similar to those for selecting active managers.

The Big Picture Hasn’t Changed: Don’t Get Sucked Back Into the Stock Market

by Justin Spittler of Casey Research

Today, we help you make sense of the market's mixed signals...

Recent dshort Posts

World Markets Weekend Update: The Global Rally Moderates

The global rally in equities Moderated last week. The average gain of the eight indexes on our world watch list was a respectable 0.41%, down from the previous week's steroidal 3.87% average. Hong Kong's Hang Seng was the top performer with a 1.41% advance. At the other end, the chronic laggard Shanghai Composite fell 1.36%.

Best Stock Market Indicator Update

According to this system, the market is now tradable and a signal to enter and continue all long trading. The OEXA200R is at 84% and all three secondary indicators are positive.

S&P 500 Snapshot: The Third Record Close of the Week

The S&P 500 hesitated at the open and remained in a quandary for the first 45 minutes or so, then rallied to a mid-day range, after which it drifted higher to its closing 0.46% gain within eight ticks of its intraday high. It finished the week with a 0.61% gain and another record close, the third of the week -- one on Monday, another on Wednesday and again today.

Gasoline Volume Sales and our Changing Culture

The Department of Energy's Energy Information Administration (EIA) monthly data on volume sales is several weeks old when it released. The latest numbers, through mid-May, are now available. However, despite the lag, this report offers an interesting perspective on fascinating aspects of the US economy. Gasoline prices and increases in fuel efficiency are important factors, but there are also some significant demographic and cultural dynamics in this data series.

ECRI Weekly Leading Index: WLI Up 1.1, Growth Index Highest Since 2013

Today's release of the publicly available data from ECRI (Economic Cycle Research Institute) puts its Weekly Leading Index (WLI) at 138.1, up 1.1 from the previous week. Year-over-year the four-week moving average of the indicator is now at 3.00%, up from 2.53% the previous week. The company's Weekly Leading Index annualized growth indicator (WLIg) is at 7.5, up from last week, its highest since February 2013.

The Philly Fed ADS Business Conditions Index Update

The Philly Fed's Aruoba-Diebold-Scotti Business Conditions Index (hereafter the ADS index) is a fascinating but relatively little known real-time indicator of business conditions for the U.S. economy, not just the Third Federal Reserve District, which covers eastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey, and Delaware. Thus it is comparable to the better-known Chicago Fed's National Activity Index.

RecessionAlert Weekly Leading Index Update

RecessionAlert has launched an alternative to ECRI's Weekly Leading Index Growth indicator (WLIg). The Weekly Leading Economic Index (WLEI) uses fifty different time series from these categories: Corporate Bond Composite, Treasury Bond Composite, Stock Market Composite, Labor Market Composite, Credit Market Composite. The latest index reading comes in at 14.0, up from the previous week's 11.7.