Getting ahead

Is now the right time to get into the markets?

It would be an understatement to say that financial markets have experienced a bit of volatility this week.  In fact, the VIX surged to its highest level since the height of the Global Financial Crisis more than a decade ago.  To be sure, we believe that a host of issues ranging from the unmitigated spread of the coronavirus in the U.S. and around the world, a seeming concerted effort by the Saudis and Russians to flood the oil markets and…


Three quick steps to help manage financial anxieties during uncertain times

If the coronavirus, recession angst or elections are keeping you up at night or have generally increased your level of anxiety, you can take comfort in knowing that what you’re feeling is natural.  In fact, our brains are primed for an anxiety response during times of heightened uncertainty.  At least that’s according to one research paper published in the journal Nature.  And as the researchers point out, higher levels of uncertainty disrupt our ability to assign clear probabilities of success…


Economic update: Downside risks still increasing

The outlook for the U.S. and global economy has deteriorated yet again.  Unsurprisingly, the culprit behind the outlook downgrade has been news of the coronavirus’ continued spread.  To be sure, risk assets sold off this week and financial market volatility increased as concerns about the virus and its potential impact on the global economy dented investors’ up-until-recent euphoric sentiment.  More importantly, worries about the coronavirus come at a time when economic conditions in the U.S. and around the world remain…


Why the coronavirus is relevant to your finances

It’s getting harder and harder to ignore the potential financial fallout from the novel coronavirus (nCoV-2019) outbreak underway.  Some of this fallout was evidenced in the global stock selloff on Friday and futures (as of this writing) point to a weaker start at Monday’s open.  Indeed, the concerns surrounding the ongoing spread of nCoV is likely to weigh on market sentiment for weeks.  But why is nCoV relevant from a financial perspective?  Well, in our opinion, the quickening spread of…


Let the good times roll: the beginning of the end?

Stock market prices continued to grind higher as economic data releases surprised to the upside this week.  Indeed, a host of indicators suggest to some that growth in the U.S. may in fact be improving after a softer showing in 2019 which has supported a rally in risk assets not just in the U.S. but globally this year.  A key question for investors and savers now, however, is whether the good times are just getting started or the data mark…


Personal financial playbook: your path to getting ahead

Households will face many near- and long-term financial market complexities and economic uncertainties in the years to come. A personal financial playbook can help people get ahead despite these challenges.   We believe that a flexible and adaptable personal financial playbook should include three important elements: 1) a well-defined statement of financial purpose, 2) prioritization of financial outcomes and 3) a financial operating plan. Partnering with a trusted advisor can also potentially multiply your chances of achieving your financial goals…


Acute threat: a looming U.S. recession

The threat of a U.S. recession will add to a number of looming issues contributing to heightened financial market and economic complexities and uncertainties in 2020. While some of the latest economic data suggest that growth in the U.S. economy remains steady, some key market and economic indicators are more consistent with a downturn, like the inverted yield curve. The health of the U.S. consumer is likely to hold the key to the health of the U.S. economy and the…


Getting ahead isn’t what it used to be

Various economic and market indicators suggest the U.S. economy is in a better spot today than a decade ago. While some are more well off today, the traditional life playbook for getting ahead has seemingly failed many households. Looking ahead, we believe that the key to households getting ahead financially will be for households to customize their own personal financial playbooks. By many measures the U.S. economy is in a better spot today than it was a decade ago.  In…


The rise in wealth and a decline in financial security

Financial conditions have become increasingly complex and uncertain even as the economy and financial markets have gained in recent years. A lack of financial preparedness, fewer savings opportunities for a younger generation and retirement insecurity are just a few reasons why a growing number of people find it harder to get ahead in life financially. Nevertheless, we believe that the development of a customized personal financial playbook can help households navigate coming complexities and uncertainties and ultimately get ahead in…