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The Role of Insurance in Risk Management

I address the role of insurance in a portfolio fully understanding that it’s not a favorite topic for investors.  Subjects like “saving for college” or “accumulating wealth for retirement” are seen as positives, while insurance is looked upon as something of a negative consideration.

But let’s take a closer look, because insurance is an essential part of risk management.  We know from experience that ignoring “what could go wrong” can have dire consequences, and insurance is designed to reduce or eliminate the negative impact of unfortunate circumstances.

New Investment Firm Widens Our Options

In a recent blog, I outlined the criteria I use when searching for a new investment firm as a partner.  Today, I’m happy to announce that I have added a new firm to the options we currently have for implementing client portfolios. 

I should also point out that this firm – like many of the others we use – is not open to retail investors.  Access to this firm is a benefit of working with a professional financial advisor.

How I Select Investment Management Firms

In previous blogs and throughout our website, I have outlined my approach to building strong and individualized portfolios that allow clients to accumulate the resources they need to reach their objectives.

A key factor in the success of a portfolio is the expertise of the investment managers who implement it.  Because of this, I follow a carefully disciplined process for selecting an investment management partner.  Obviously, it’s critically important to select a firm that can deliver positive results in the various allocations within a portfolio.

My Approach To Working With Women Investors

I am proud to have many women clients, and understanding how the majority of them prefer to approach investing has helped me be an effective partner in creating their portfolios.

Research shows that most women want to have a good deal of information before making a decision.  Once an investment is made, however, they are more likely than men to stick with their decisions.  They trade less often than men – and their portfolios tend to perform better.

How Women Investors Differ From Male Investors

One may think that investing is a gender-neutral process.  After all, it would seem men and women want the same thing – enough resources to meet their financial goals, whatever those may be.

However, experience clearly indicates that a woman’s approach to investing often is quite different from a man’s.  And much of the reason stems from general differences commonly found in life circumstances.

Ten Common Retirement Mistakes

Retirement-age individuals who try to manage their own financial affairs often encounter various pitfalls that prevent them from enjoying a secure, comfortable retirement.   Professional financial advisors are aware of these and work to design plans for success.

Here are ten of the most common retirement planning mistakes:

Turning on the Spigot in Retirement – Strategies for Drawing One’s Funds

I often find that clients with good incomes during their working careers do not pay much attention to their monthly expenses.  That’s a common practice, since they know another paycheck will be coming to cover them.

But what about after that last paycheck when they will need to draw on retirement funds to handle the expenses?   What’s the most efficient, cost-effective approach to do so?

Distributing Your Retirement Funds – An Often Overlooked Planning Factor

The “front end” of financial planning for retirement seems straightforward, the objective being to maximize returns on portfolio investments to generate assets needed to support a client’s desired retirement lifestyle.

However, an often overlooked and underrated aspect of retirement planning is the execution of strategies to most effectively distribute the funds. Distribution requires a disciplined process, because there are a multitude of factors to consider.

Planning for Retirement – Beyond the Finances

For virtually everyone, enjoying life in retirement is a major goal, often the dominant one among the various objectives in a solid financial plan.

Certainly, the role of a financial planner is to help assure that clients have the resources they will need for the type of retirement they desire.   However, I believe it goes well beyond the accumulation of funds.  A good planner should also help clients identify the various phases of their retirement vision, and then develop a plan to generate the resources to support them.

The Changing Landscape of Retirement Planning

Stereotypical retirement:  After 30-40 years of work, a rocking chair on the front porch -- the iconic picture of leisure.

Stereotypical retirement plan:  Accumulate as much money as possible – it’s all about finances.

I’m pleased to say that today’s typical retiree has little interest in the “rocking chair scenario,” and, to that end, we financial planners need to consider factors beyond straightforward accumulation of wealth.