The Uncommon Average

“I have found that the importance of having an investment philosophy—one that is robust and that you can stick with— cannot be overstated.” —David Booth The US stock market has delivered an average annual return of around 10% since 1926.[1] But short-term results may vary, and in any given period stock returns can be positive, negative, or flat. When setting expectations, it’s helpful to see the range of outcomes experienced by investors historically. For example, [...]

October 9th, 2017|

The 401(k) Series #6: What is the right deferral rate for your 401(k)?

When you’re laying the foundation for your retirement, the first big step is choosing your deferral rate. When you say it that way, it seems easy. What if I said, “how much of your paycheck will you sacrifice now for your future self?” Your 401(k) contribution rate will set the financial tone for your retirement plan. First let’s start with the factors that go into this determination: Age of the Contributor – younger participants traditionally [...]

September 21st, 2017|

Yield vs. Total Return

Many investors, including retirees, rely on their investment portfolio to fund their cash needs. This need can be approached in one of two ways. In this blog, we explore the yield vs. total return approaches to generating income in a portfolio, and address misconceptions about the benefits of emphasizing dividend and interest income at the expense of other portfolio issues. Using Interest and/or Dividends from securities to fund cash flow needs The traditional appeal to [...]

September 1st, 2017|

The 401(k) Series #5: Roth or Traditional Deferral?

The 401(k) is the preferred financial vehicle for saving for retirement, and will likely be your largest asset when you do retire. If you're starting a new job, participating in your company's 401(k) plan not only allows you to capture tax advantages, but often includes an employer match of your contributions. As we discussed in #1 of this series, signing up is almost always a great idea. Recently, many companies have added a Roth option to their 401(k) [...]

August 16th, 2017|


COSTS MATTER. Whether you’re buying a car or selecting an investment strategy, the costs you expect to pay are likely to be an important factor in making any major financial decision. People rely on a lot of different information about costs to help inform these decisions. When you buy a car, for example, the sticker price tells you approximately how much you can expect to pay for the car itself. But the sticker price is [...]

August 1st, 2017|

The 401(k) Series #4: Health Care in Retirement

Funding your future can be extremely daunting and confusing. One of the hardest expenses to plan for in retirement, could also be the largest one. Young or old, it’s crucial to plan for steep medical expenses and avoid the health care sticker shock that awaits. Medication costs continue to rise, and the out-of-pocket costs for other preventative services are astronomical. Over time, health care costs could exceed Social Security payments. And when we really break [...]

July 20th, 2017|