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Financial Planning Insights

Active Management, Reviews, Your Personal Website

 

I saw this in the WSJ* this morning; on Active Management of fixed income (bonds)

 

“The problem: Treasurys tend to offer investors lower yields and produce weaker returns than other kinds of bonds, such as high-quality company debt or securities backed by mortgage payments. Yet as the government steps up borrowing to fund last year’s tax cuts, index funds end up holding more Treasurys, squeezing out the securities that pay higher rates of interest

Some analysts said investors should consider the growing weight of Treasurys in indexes before purchasing mutual funds. Actively managed bond funds have performed better than their index-tracking peers recently, a trend some analysts credit to their efforts to pare back Treasury holdings. Rising rates erode the value of outstanding bonds, because newly issued debt offers higher payouts. And Federal Reserve officials have penciled in additional increases into 2020.

“The value from active management is going to be more important,” said Kathleen Gaffney, director of diversified fixed income at Eaton Vance, who bought dollar-denominated corporate bonds in emerging markets because U.S. corporate yields remain low by historic measures.You’re not going to want market risk.”  

Through the first six months of this year, active managers topped indexes in five of 14 categories including municipal bonds and short- and intermediate taxable bonds, according to data from S&P Dow Jones Indices. That is coming off a 2017 in which actively managed funds had their best year since 2012, when active managers beat passive funds in nine of 13 categories the firm then measured.” *11/29/18

I have been pointing out the danger of the recent popularity of index funds and ETF’s = especially in fixed income  during economic  times when things are NOT going our way – like they have for most of the past 10 years, since the financial crisis for a long time now. It is coming…we just don’t know when, when it does – smarter to have someone watching out for you! (*because most of the folks around here are conservative – so – by definition – you are going to own a high % in fixed income.)

Reviews: I think regular reviews are the best use of our time – once we get a plan in place. Know why? Things change. What ‘regular’ is – depends on you – but at least once per year up to quarterly, which many of you – do. With computer hook up meetings, these days – there is no real excuse left.

Personal Website: I preach and preach and preach and yet SOME of you are NOT using your personal website to its capabilities. Yep….I get it – we older folks get sick and tired of messing and re-messing with all our technology. But I have had 5 clients die this year and a 6th is near death due to the scourge of cancer. I’ve had two who had serious health issues and all the folks who care for them – come to us for help.

 

Rant over. I tell folks all the time, the reason we are NOW getting recognition for being outstanding financial planners, is NOT that we get the best returns, or have the most money under management, or have a crystal ball on market movements. It is because we simply do things the way we were trained. Take advantage of that excellent training, for over 34 years now.

 

 

 

 

 

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