Spring 2016 Newsletter
Looking out the office window, I see blue sky, robins hopping around searching for a meal, and buds appearing on the trees. Spring must be here!
As nature’s growing season begins, we are pleased to report that our financial services practice continues on its positive growth path as well. We are pursuing a couple of exciting opportunities to support and enhance this growth, and as these develop I look forward to sharing more details with you. For now, I can relate that we are searching for an additional administrative assistant to join our financial services team.
Despite its horrendous, record-setting start to 2016, the markets have basically recovered. As of March 31 YTD, the Dow is up 1.49%, the S&P 500 is up .77%, MSCI Emerging Markets has rejoined the living, up 5.37%, and the Barclays US Aggregate Bond index is up 3.03%. Yet to recover is the MSCI EAFE down 3.74% and the NASDAQ Composite down 2.75%. The majority of this recovery occurred in March, so your March monthly statement should be a pleasant sight.
Looking ahead, markets will continue to exhibit enhanced volatility. There are many causes for this in my opinion, including ongoing energy price weakness, China economic slowdown concerns, horrific geopolitical events, a U.S. election campaign unlike any other in my memory, concerns about Fed interest rate hikes, and the list goes on. Financial markets don’t like uncertainty, and there seems to be no end to that in sight. Perhaps we need to get used to that as the “new normal”, an over-used but effectively descriptive term. We continue to monitor and evaluate investment performance during times like these and adjust our strategies and recommendations as we feel is justified.
Our industry is anxiously awaiting the regulations from the Department of Labor (DOL) on what advice we will be allowed to give to retirement savers. As is anticipated, the rule will require brokers/advisors to adhere to a “fiduciary” standard when making investment recommendations on retirement accounts. A fiduciary is a person who holds a legal or ethical relationship of trust with one or more parties. Typically this involves prudently taking care of money or other assets for another, putting the clients’ interests ahead of our own. In our practice, we feel we have always and will continue to act in this way, rule or no rule. But when the rule is enacted, we may need to convert our commission-based IRA’s over to a fee-based model. If any of your accounts will be affected, we will notify you accordingly and schedule a meeting to make the change. At our annual broker/dealer conference in May, we expect to learn the specifics of the new rule and its effects on us and our clients. Here is another instance where the misdeeds of a few in our industry leads to government regulations that affect us all.
Joe to Go: RETIRE 360: A Holistic Approach
As we mentioned in our last newsletter, this year we have kicked off our Retire 360 program. This "holistic" approach will give you an organized picture of your financial life, provide objective advice, prepare for life transitions in advance, increase collaboration between your financial professionals (ex: taxes, investments, estates), and save you time and money in the long run.
Many of you are already in the program (most of Joe’s clients). If you are not and the program sounds beneficial to you, Darlene will send you our Family Financial Organizer to complete before your review in order to begin the process. However, if you are comfortable with our current relationship and level of service, that is great. We value all of our clients and want to deliver the level of service that is right for you.
From time to time we need to communicate with you about various things. One of the best ways for us to do this is via email. However, we realize all of you get bombarded with tons of unwanted emails every day. We experience that same thing. We are asking a favor from you, our clients. Please read the emails we send you, even if you do not recognize the name of the person it came from. Our staff is growing and someone you may not be familiar with may be requesting information from you that is necessary in getting something done for you. One way to tell if you need to read the email is if it’s from email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. That will always be from someone from our office. Thank you very much for your cooperation with this!
On behalf of all the D&B Financial Services Team, have a great Spring!
Jim Hagel, CFP® Joel Johnson, AIF®
Securities offered through Cetera Financial Specialists LLC, member FINRA/SIPC. Advisory services offered through Cetera Investment Advisers LLC. Cetera entities are under separate ownership from any other entity.
* Bloomberg-Investors cannot invest directly in indexes. The performance of any index is not indicative of the performance of any investment and does not take into account the effects of inflation and fees and expenses associated with investing.