Authored by Jason Siperstein, CFA, CFP | Added 10/23/2017
Personal financial planning is essential, regardless of age or income, and it is vital to meeting life goals, such as buying a home, paying for college or achieving a secure retirement. There are millions of Americans with pressing financial questions that need answers, and unfortunately, many have not had the opportunity to discuss those questions with competent and ethical financial planners.
Equifax is one of the big three consumer credit monitoring agencies. Last week the firm announced they had been breached and consumer data exposed. The hack involved the data of almost 150 million US consumers and involved social security numbers and other personal data.
You should now assume that your data was exposed in the hack. Here is what you can do now to begin to protect yourself:
Authored by Jason Siperstein, CFA, CFP | Added 08/15/2017
Howard Marks, one of the most respected value investors out there, warned on Thursday about inflated financial markets and the growing risk of passive investing in the infamous technology ‘FANG’ stocks.
Authored by Jason Siperstein, CFA, CFP | Added 06/30/2017
With major stock indexes close to or at all-time highs, you may find yourself asking this question. However, if you give in, it may be the biggest financial mistake you make. When it comes to retirement there are two conflicting risks that need to be managed – (1) volatility risk and (2) longevity risk.
Authored by Jason Siperstein, CFA, CFP | Added 06/19/2017
Thinking about retirement is very exciting for most people. It’s a time in life when you’re finally able to do the things you were never able to do with a nine-to-five job. You can travel the world, spend more time with friends and family, pursue your newest passion or hobby, and much more.
From a portfolio perspective, this is the biggest change to your financial life. It represents the shift from funding your lifestyle from cash flow (i.e. your salary) to assets (your investment portfolio). This is often a very strange feeling for many new retirees. And this small fact, changes everything!
Authored by Jason Siperstein, CFA, CFP | Added 06/14/2017
If you turn on the television or read the news, you will surely see something regarding high mutual fund fees. Before I discuss the merits (or lack thereof) of this argument, it is first important to understand the two general types of mutual funds.
The first group is the active funds. These are funds where a portfolio manager is actively making decisions on what to invest in, what to avoid, how much cash to hold, etc.
The second group is the passive funds. These are funds that simply track an index or basket of stocks. There is no manager making decisions. The goal is to passively replicate the market (i.e. S&P 500).
Recently, Jason and I attended the East Coast Ideas Conference in Boston. In attendance were about 100 small companies presenting on their investment merits. Before going to any investment conference, Jason and I evaluate all companies and identify any worth checking out.
Authored by Jason Siperstein, CFA, CFP | Added 05/24/2017
A few weeks ago I attended the Financial Planning Association Retreat. This conference took place just north of Atlanta, GA where advanced financial planners gathered to discuss new ideas regarding the future of the profession.
In 2016 the Department of Labor (DOL) published a new rule governing the treatment of retirement accounts and the relationship between you and your financial advisor. The rule required your advisor to conduct business in your Best Interest with regard to your retirement accounts. Major Wall Street firms have lobbied against the rule.
Authored by Jason Siperstein, CFA, CFP | Added 03/30/2017
Every so often we are asked to give a presentation on the importance of financial/retirement planning. This time we spoke to the folks at Schneider Electric in their Andover office. It was a great turnout! Over 80 people showed up and many more were listening online. Here are some of the highlights:
Authored by Jason Siperstein, CFA, CFP | Added 02/02/2017
Academics have been studying ways to motivate people to save now. However, they are finding that when faced with the decision to satisfy our immediate needs or our future needs that our present needs usually win.
Authored by Jason Siperstein, CFA, CFP | Added 01/13/2017
Not too long ago when people heard the word “retirement” they knew exactly what it meant. It used to be relatively straightforward – save as much as you can, invest as well as you can, let your money grow, and then when you hit 65, retire and enjoy!
Authored by Jason Siperstein, CFA, CFP | Added 12/13/2016
You are probably already aware of the importance of regularly contributing to your IRA (individual retirement account) or 401-K. But, have you ever quantified the value? How much do these tax-advantaged accounts actually save you in taxes?
Authored by Jason Siperstein, CFA, CFP | Added 03/24/2016
Many of my friends often ask for my advice and thoughts on investments and how to best manage their finances. Everyone’s situation is different, but there are 4 general rules of thumb that apply to most people.
Every March, Jason and I head West to Dana Point, California to participate in the annual Roth Capital Partners Conference. More than 500 companies come to the conference, hosted by the investment bank, to speak in groups and one-on-one with portfolio managers to discuss their investment merits
Authored by Jason Siperstein, CFA, CFP | Added 11/04/2015
If you are like most Americans, your largest asset in retirement is your social security benefits. Unfortunately, without some big changes, the Social Security Trust Fund is slated to run out of money in 2034. While I am (cautiously) hopeful that this country will make the reforms necessary to keep this from happening a more immediate change – the elimination of certain claiming options – is looming.
Authored by Jason Siperstein, CFA, CFP | Added 10/14/2015
I recently attended the Financial Planning Association’s (FPA) annual conference in Boston, which featured some of the best minds in the financial planning field. The speakers and attendees were some of the most innovative folks in the industry who came together over the course of four days to connect and share ideas.