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

Most Recent Articles

Ranking the Top 10 "Differentiators" for Advisory Firms by Bob Veres

If we have a clear idea of what foregrounds one advisory firm ahead of others, then we can deliberately cultivate those characteristics. The problem is, nobody has ever compiled a comprehensive list of differentiators, much less ranked them according to importance. So, to fill that obvious void, I've ranked the top 10 differentiators that I've personally seen advisors use in their positioning and marketing.

Most Recent Commentaries

Is the Stock Market Cheap? by Doug Short of Advisor Perspectives (dshort.com)

Here is a new update of a popular market valuation method using the most recent Standard & Poor's "as reported" earnings and earnings estimates and the index monthly averages of daily closes for the past month, which is 1,961.53. The ratios in parentheses use the monthly close of 2003.37. For the earnings, see the table below created from Standard & Poor's latest earnings spreadsheet.

Stronger Growth Should Push Equities Higher by Robert Doll of Nuveen Asset Management

A rash of positive news propelled stock prices higher for the fourth consecutive week, marking the longest winning streak for equities since last November. The S&P 500 Index pushed above the 2,000 level for the first time as it gained 0.8% for the week.

China’s Reforms Open New Path to Equities by Stuart Rae, John Lin of AllianceBernstein

For investors in China equities, there have traditionally been two ways of approaching the market: through expensive growth stocks, or risky contrarian plays. Now, thanks to China’s reforms, there’s a third way which may offer a better balance of risk and return.

Banking on BRICS by Mark Mobius of Franklin Templeton Investments

In July, leaders of the five emerging market countries known as the “BRICS” (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) met in the Brazilian city of Fortaleza and announced the creation of a New Development Bank (NDB).

US Home Prices Rise In July by Team of GaveKal Capital

CoreLogic released their home price index for July today and it showed another 1.25% month-over-month gain in June (including distressed sales). Their index is 7.4% higher than one year ago.

Late, Not Lost: The Economic Drag From the Millennial Generation by Joshua Anderson, Emmanuel Sharef, Jason Mandinach of PIMCO

We believe concerns of a student debt "bubble" and perpetual financial weakness among Millennials are largely overstated. Understanding Millennials' financial trajectory is critical to our secular (3-5 year) outlook for home prices and the broader economy. We expect Millennials' financial position to improve, and pent-up demand could result in longer-term strength in housing and housing-related assets.

The Exaggerated Death of Inflation by Kenneth Rogoff of Project Syndicate

Modern central banking has worked wonders to bring down inflation. Ultimately, however, a central bank’s anti-inflation policies can work only within the context of a macroeconomic and political framework that is consistent with price stability.

Democracy in the Twenty-First Century by Joseph Stiglitz of Project Syndicate

The economist Thomas Piketty’s forecast of still higher levels of inequality does not reflect the inexorable laws of economics. Indeed, the main question today is not really about capital in the twenty-first century; it is about democracy in the twenty-first century.

Can Retirees Still Use a 4% Withdrawal Rate? Practical Applications of Monte Carlo Analysis by Wade Pfau and David Blanchett

Some advisors remain critical of Monte Carlo simulations, instead preferring to use analysis based on rolling historical periods or specific pre-defined scenarios. We believe Monte Carlo is a superior tool for measuring the uncertainties in long-term financial planning. As an example, we use it to predict the likelihood of a successful 4% withdrawal rate under today's market conditions.

How to Raise Sensitive Issues with Clients by Dan Richards

Important issues - so-called elephants in the room - threaten the financial futures of clients and their families. Clients and advisors normally recognize these issues, but because they are emotionally charged, they are difficult to discuss. Here are three steps to talk about these subjects.

Use Your Fingerprints to Gather More AUM by Daniel Solin

A colleague of mine calls it "assumicide" - trying to convince a prospect to say yes by offering a careful and exhaustive presentation of a proposal's assumptions and merits. There's a more powerful route to yes, however: using heuristics to align yourself with your prospect.

A Marketing Strategy to Reach Millennials by Melanie Cressman

Millennials are a hands-on generation in every aspect, including finances. How can financial advisors connect with them?

Helping Clients Redefine Retirement by Beverly Flaxington

Sometimes I fear my clients do not know what retirement will look like to them and so planning for it, financially or otherwise, is challenging. It's why I believe they need an advisor, but I want to be sure I am doing the best I can for them in these discussions.

Career Center by Various

Find career opportunities for firms that seek to add financial advisors and planners to their staff. Read more to find out how to post opportunities at your firm.

Your Clients Don't Care About You by Megan Elliott

Conversations with clients should be about them, not you.


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