Taking Investors Seriously is Serious Business

Sometimes I think we forget what’s happening when a client decides to work with an investment advisor or a financial planner of one kind or another.

The industry has made this “transaction” something of a product sale rather than an objective with goals and real outcomes. These products are supposed to provide a certain set of promoted benefits. But there seems to be a disconnect that happens along the way.

I can’t think of one person over 45 who would have said in their 20s that what they really want is a bunch of mutual funds, six insurance policies, two mortgages and an annuity. Yet every day I find 40, 50 and 60 year olds with a host of products similar to these but with no real plan. Worse than this, seldom is the client able to clearly connect the products they own to the outcomes of a safe and secure retirement.

Retirement investing should not be complicated. There are many myths about this topic that investors need to uncover and destroy in order to be successful.

The most common three are these:

  1. Stock Picking can be done by Gurus.

  2. Market Timing is key to investing success in the long term.

  3. Track Record Investing is a valuable methodology for choosing mutual funds.

Quite often, the list of what you don’t need to know to be successful is longer than what you do need to know. Nowhere is that more true than with investing. Let me unpack these three myths with you over the days ahead.

For the complete, concise antidotes to the above investment myths and for the comprehensive answers about How to Win Using Capital Markets, attend our World Class Investor Coaching event in October.

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Trust >>> Higher Balance >>> More Trust

When trust is not growing, neither are investment balances.

In my last email, I stated a simple fact: Most investors don’t trust capital markets and as a result are reluctant to contribute to their own investments.

Let me give you an example of something that happens rather consistently for us as we take over a new company retirement plan. This should illustrate both the reason for the reluctance and the answer to that dilemma.

When we come into a company to provide work-plan investment services, we do at least three things that the participants have never experienced before:


  1. We tell them what they can expect in the long term and in the short term given the kind of choice they make for their investment mix. No surprises will be coming around any corners in their investment balances as a result of stock-market volatility. They know what can happen.

  2. We show them every dollar they pay every quarter in cost to us and to others – the last page of their statement is dedicated to communicating all fees. Nothing is hidden.

  3. We offer education on-site twice per year (quarterly off-site as well for all clients and smaller companies), and we call each participant three or more times per year to make sure they don’t have questions or discomfort about anything having to do with their investments.

As a result, after a year or so of working with us, the participants contribute more money than they had previously. This, along with sound investment management, increases the sum of the total investments. In turn, this reduces fees and further increases the participant’s incentive to contribute.

Seems like a rather obvious positive cycle, but you really need to experience it to understand it fully.

When investors are taken seriously, they appreciate it and contribute more.

If your employer’s investments provider has not done the above for you, consider attending our next event. Feel free to bring your HR representative or the CFO of your company (large or small).



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Moon Shots and Millenials: WEB GEMS

We went to the moon! . . . “So what?” says Robert Higgs of Mises Institute.

Corporate “Inversion” . . . The real reason that corporations are reincorporating abroad (and you may just find yourself agreeing with them).

Are your competitors gaining market share? . . . Just stop competing and do what auto dealers in Georgia are doing to Tesla. Sue.

Parenting is not a crime (12:00) . . . Lenore Skenazy of Free Range Kids discusses our irrational obsession with child safety.

Millennials, You’re not listening! . . . “Yes,” say the Millenials. “And that’s the whole point.”


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TRUST – We’re Richer For It

Where trust does not grow neither do investments…

In the past 24 months the amount of money my firm manages has doubled. One reason for this is that client accounts have increased because of very good gains across all market sectors (I had nothing to do with this—it was just the market doing its thing). Another reason is that my clients have added a considerable amount of their own money to accounts that we already manage. And finally, we have taken a host of new clients during the past two years. As I analyze these three sources, I see that the growth is pretty evenly divided between the three.

Our clients are succeeding, and, just as importantly, they feel like they are succeeding.

So, in the face of my clients’ gaining exceptional market returns, adding significantly to their investments from their own income, and introducing our services to others they care about, why are so many Americans so reluctant to invest in stocks?

The answer is TRUST. Or lack of it.

Join us in October for our 4th-quarter World Class Investor Coaching Event and find out why.



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Cart-Wheel Bans and the American Dream: WEB GEMS

The American Dream (4:00) . . . Mark Matson still believes in it, and he tells us why we should too.

Equal Opportunity Was Not Enough (20:00) . . . Nick Gillespie talks with Jason Riley, author of Please Stop Helping Us: How Liberals Make it Harder for Blacks to Succeed. 

A Mea Culpa from the Fed? . . . There’s been an implied one, anyway, which is a good start.

At Home in Our Phones (2:00) . . . According to a recent Supreme Court verdict protecting our phones from warantless searches, that’s pretty close.

Australian Kids are Safe Now! . . . at least the ones who go to the Peregian Springs State School where they have banned the barbaric practice of doing cart-wheels. And handstands.






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