We again experienced volatility this week as the stock markets soared on Monday, dipped on Tuesday, and remained choppy but relatively flat the rest of the week. On Monday, Wall Street took the news of China trade talks as a positive. Those gains were quickly reversed on Tuesday when Wall Street took new comments from the
Trump administration and their dissatisfaction with the China negotiations
as a negative. Also, this week Fed officials signaled that they are likely to raise interest rates next month.
On Wednesday, President Trump announced that he would no longer be meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, sending markets temporarily down again. In other trade-related news, the
NAFTA talks seem to remain at a stalemate
and the Trump administration is now looking at options
to impose new tariffs on vehicle imports
With so much trade activity, nobody knows for certain how it may shape up. I prefer to focus on long-term investment strategies and avoid knee jerk reactions that naturally come with short-term volatility. Consider consulting a trusted professional to evaluate your portfolio’s preparedness for possible higher levels of inflation in the coming years.
Are you happy with your investments? Should you be?
With nearly a decade-long bull-market in motion, many investors are currently content with their investment portfolio. But, should you be? For instance, if you look at the time frame beginning at the bottom of the market on March 1
2009 and ending on April 30, 2018 – the S&P 500 Index returned 17.45% annually. If you evaluated that growth in dollars, $100,000 worth of the S&P would have grown to a present value of over $435,000.
Often, an investor will find comfort when his or her investment accounts increase in value over time. Certainly, having investment accounts that grow is a good thing. But, what
your returns be and
should you be content with those figures
Start by asking yourself these questions:
What is my annual performance?
How am I being benchmarked?
What am I paying in fees?
If you do not know the answers to all three questions, there is a good chance you might be less than thrilled with your actual performance.
We find that most individuals who hire financial advisors do not know how their accounts performed and what they are benchmarked against for risk and return purposes. Often, this is because many respective financial advisors will not include this information clearly in their communications. This is usually by design. Many firms are not forthcoming with this information as it opens a dialogue that could result in losing clients due to low performance, improper risk exposure, and high fees.
At MainLine Private Wealth, we clearly explain our fees and display your performance versus a custom benchmark.
As a client, you know exactly how your investments perform and whether they are in line with expectations. If your firm doesn’t provide you with this detail, maybe it’s time to reevaluate.
By decreasing fees, even marginally, and optimizing your asset allocation to fit your desired goals, you may be able to notably improve your portfolio. Even an increase in one half of a percent return each year compounded can be the difference of hundreds of thousands of dollars (if not millions, depending on your initial investment) over 25 years.
If you do not know the answers to the three questions above, you owe it to yourself to get a second opinion from a trusted wealth advisor. Otherwise, you may regret not doing so after it’s too late.
*Historical performance is viewed with the benefit of hindsight, and there are periods where the S&P 500 Index did not perform well.
**This custom benchmark takes the actual percentage of each style and asset class and arrange indexes in that pro-rata form, in order to generate a style blended benchmark which we match to your asset allocation.