Monthly Newsletter
October 2020
At ML&R Wealth Management, we want to ensure our clients are In The Know.

In this month's newsletter we have an article that gives women 6 tips for taking charge of their finances and we have another article that takes a deep dive into looking at Value funds. We are continuing our employee spotlight and introducing you to a very important member of our team - our support associate. As usual, we are sharing helpful COVID-19 resources from our parent company, Maxwell, Locke & Ritter, and relevant investment articles and videos from Dimensional. And finally, October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month so we've got some important reminders to keep you safe online.

We are a firm that understands that managing your assets is about more than money. It is about empowering your future. At ML&R Wealth Management, we focus on you.

Getting Involved and Taking Charge of your Financial Well-Being

Ladies, we have come a long way in the last century. As we celebrate 100 years of being able to vote this election year, we also celebrate the tremendous growth of the role of a woman at home and in the workforce. Long gone are the days where women had little to no input and power over their future. To highlight a few of these accomplishments, today, for those in the workforce, women represent 40% of all breadwinners. This is a significant increase (4x) in the last six decades. In addition, we have gained tremendous traction in business ownership, as 30% of all privately owned businesses are owned by women. What is even more impressive is that in today’s workforce, women now represent a larger proportion of management and professional roles than men, coming in at 52%. Way to go, Ladies!

While there is much to be proud of and much to celebrate as we wrap up the first century post the women’s suffrage movement, it is important to note that along with these accomplishments, for most of us, we are still also considered the primary caretaker of our families. While I personally believe this means we are all superheroes, the reality is that this amplifies our responsibilities to our families, especially as it relates to financial planning and investing. For most households, even though women are thriving at work and at home, they are still lagging in the financial planning department by leaving those matters to their spouses.

Vanessa McElwrath, CFP®, CPA, Wealth Management Partner

There is a preponderance of evidence supporting the fundamental investment principle that value stocks tend to outperform growth stocks, producing a value “premium.” For example, well-known and respected academics such as Eugene Fama and Ken French have published data and research that spans nearly a century in the US to support the notion that value stocks have higher expected returns relative to growth stocks. Their research further finds that this relationship is not unique to the US stock market. Data spanning almost five decades supports this same investment principal in stock markets outside the US.

Putting recent returns into context.

This market premium for value stocks, however, has seemingly been turned on its head as of late. It’s not news to most investors that value stocks have struggled over the past decade. Growth stocks have been on a tear, enjoying a significant run of outperformance versus their value counterparts. This trend emerged as we came out of the Great Recession in 2008/2009, and the recent pandemic has been the equivalent of throwing gas on the fire. But, it’s important to keep recent returns in perspective. Based on the chart below, we see a widening gap in periodic returns for value versus growth in recent years. Over the first seven years of the last decade (July 2010-June 2017), value stocks actually outperformed their prior long-run average return, 14.3% versus 12.8%. However, it was growth stocks that was the outlier. They had above average returns relative to their long-run average (16.6% versus 9.0%) which produced a negative value premium for this period. The last three years were a different story though. While growth stocks continued to produce historically high returns, value stocks produced a return of -3.3%, trailing growth stocks by -21.22% over the period. While growth stocks’ performance was significantly above the historical average, value stocks’ performance was significantly below the historical average.

October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month

At ML&R Wealth Management, not only do we focus on you and your finances but we also want to help keep you safe online. We created the following infographic that has some great reminders of do's and don'ts that you should do (or not do) in order to keep safety top of mind while you are online.
Employee Spotlight

We are excited to spotlight Lauren Dockter this month! Below are some fun facts to help you get to know her better!

Birthday: August 10

Tell us about your family: I married this one guy a couple months ago. His name is Jason. We met in college and he owns a bar in downtown San Marcos. I like him a lot and I think I'll keep him. We have 4 fur babies together.

Favorite Movie? Wuthering Heights

Favorite Hobbies? Reading; Doing Hair and Makeup

What's your secret talent that no one knows about? I am really good at guessing what position someone plays or played in football..... It's a really useless talent but fun at parties.

What's your favorite family tradition? Listening to our family band at get togethers.

What is your favorite way to spend the weekend? Getting things done around the house, swimming, and hanging out with my friends.

What is your favorite part of working at ML&R? My favorite part of working for ML&R is the people. It's so nice to work with hard working people who value you as a person.
Financial Wellness Q&A
In this section we will address common personal finance questions. Email if you have a question you would like answered.

Question: What specific steps can a spouse take to get more involved with the financial planning and investing?

Answer: (1) If you work with a Financial Advisor, begin by making it a priority to attend the meetings and ask to be included in all communication. (2) Sit down with your spouse and go over your insurance policies, wills, investments, etc. (3) Know where your documents and accounts are and how to access them. (4) Ask lots of questions.
Upcoming Events
2020 has certainly been an eventful year: new legislation, a global pandemic, an election year, market volatility, and new cybersecurity attacks. ML&R Wealth Management invites you to our virtual webinar on November 12th at noon. ML&R’s Retirement Plan Services team will have an informative presentation followed by a time set aside for Q&A at the end of the session. ML&R Wealth Management partner and investment advisor, Vanessa McElwrath, and associate, Julie Reinhardt will cover the following topics:

  • Review of recent regulatory changes including those from the SECURE Act and the CARES Act
  • Introduction to the upcoming document restatement cycle for qualified plans
  • Fiduciary review of best practices including ways to avoid an IRS or DOL audit
  • Cybersecurity tips and online safety reminders

Feel free to invite staff who administer the retirement plan or make decisions about retirement plan issues.

*1 hour of continuing education credit provided to CPAs

Thursday, November 12, 2020

12:00 - 12:50 p.m. ~ Program
12:50 - 1:00 p.m. ~ Q&A

The anticipation building up to elections often brings with it questions about how financial markets will respond. But the outcome of an election is only one of many inputs to the market. Our interactive exhibit examines market and economic data for nearly 100 years of US presidential terms and shows a consistent upward march for US equities regardless of the administration in place. This is an important lesson on the benefits of a long-term investment approach.

Investors often wonder whether the market will rise or fall based on who is elected president. The data show that capturing the long-term returns of the capital markets does not depend on which party controls the White House. In a recent webcast, Dimensional’s Mark Gochnour and Jake DeKinder offered lessons from history.

As the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to spread in the U.S. and across the world, our priority at Maxwell Locke & Ritter is the safety and well-being of our people, clients, families, and community. We are monitoring daily updates and recommendations from the CDC. Additionally, we are minimizing the impact that COVID-19 could have on our services and are staying abreast of all filing deadline adjustments. We understand that in this time of uncertainty you may have growing concerns for the financial health of yourselves and your businesses, employees and families. We have curated some helpful resources for you and will continue to update this page as new information and updates occur.

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About ML&R Wealth Management:
At ML&R Wealth Management, we take investing personally. Your ML&R Wealth Management advisor will work to develop a lasting relationship with you, keeping in touch to understand your changing goals and to provide an asset management strategy to help achieve them. Whenever you need sound financial advice, you have a direct line to a trusted advisor.

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