Robo Advisor Performance: Beware Hypothetical Returns

Beware Robo Advisor's Back-tested Performance

Geoff Considine

-+*Robo advisors have been getting a great deal of press and the rate at which they are attracting new clients and growing assets under management is impressive.  One topic that I have seen nothing written about is how these firms show the historical performance of their strategies to potential investors. When you look at a… Read More


Saving Through the Ages

Saving through the ages

Matthew Amster-Burton

-+*Reputable financial advisors, websites and your mom say to save for retirement, college, a down payment for a home and emergencies. A typical response might be, “Yeah, but how much?” and “When?” Libraries of books have been written on this subject. The implication is that determining your proper savings rate involves solving differential equations, brushing up… Read More


Is the Fed Really “Stealing from Savers”?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Geoff Considine

-+*In a recent article on MarketWatch, Chris Martenson asserts that the Fed’s low interest rate policy and quantitative easing in recent years is deliberately stealing from savers. This article has elicited a big response, with almost 800 comments and almost 2000 likes on Facebook. The key point of the article is that the Fed’s policy… Read More


How Much am I Paying in Investment Expenses?

Abstract Business Tip of the Dollar Iceberg.

Geoff Considine

-+*This is the seventh installment in our series on how individual investors can assess their financial health. In my experience, I’ve found that many people have no idea how much they’re paying for the privilege of investing. And survey data supports my observations. Ignorance is not bliss. Analysis of investment expenses suggests that many people… Read More


Am I Effectively Diversified?

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Geoff Considine

-+*This is the sixth installment in our series on how individual investors can assess their financial health. Diversification is a perennial topic among investors, and if it seems controversial at times, that may be due to the fact that people don’t always share the same understanding of what it means. But diversification isn’t about investing… Read More


Is My Portfolio at the Right Risk Level?

Return and risk balance concept

Geoff Considine

-+*This is the fifth installment in our series on how individual investors can assess their financial health. At every stage of investing, you should periodically ask yourself how much risk you can realistically tolerate. The primary way to measure the risk level of your portfolio is to look at its allocation of stocks vs. bonds. … Read More


Am I Better Off Investing or Paying Down Debt?

paying-bills

Geoff Considine

-+*This is the fourth installment in our series on how individual investors can assess their financial health. A common dilemma in personal finance is whether to use funds to pay down debt faster or to invest more. The question crops up in various forms: Should I pay off all credit card debt or make smaller… Read More


Am I Saving Enough to Reach My Goals?

Businessman using tablet computer

Geoff Considine

-+*This is the second installment in our series on how individual investors can assess their financial health. The starting point for any discussion of a household’s financial health is to evaluate current savings and savings rates in the context of financial goals.  The three largest expenses that most families will face are buying a home,… Read More


How Am I Doing? An 8-Point Financial Checklist

investment-performance

Geoff Considine

-+*A question that nags at many people is whether they are on track financially.  Even an average financial life can seem remarkably complex.  How does anyone know whether he or she is doing the right things?  A range of studies on how people manage their money suggests that many, if not the majority, are making… Read More