How Bond Market Investors Cope in a Low-Rate Environment

Bonds

*+-It’s understandable that bond market investors might be frustrated at this point in time. Most already have lower total return expectations than stock market investors, which they accept in exchange for lower overall levels of risk and regular interest payments. However, the total return expectations within the bond market have become so low that investors… Read More


Folio Investing, Motif, and Tailored Portfolios

Geoff Considine

*+-Chris DeMuth, a money manager and well-followed contributor at Seeking Alpha, recently published an overview of Motif Investing. Motif is a young firm that has gotten a lot of media coverage for enabling investors to build, track, invest in, and manage portfolios of individual stocks. Much of the functionality that Motif provides to individual investors… Read More


How Baby Boomers May Impact Asset Classes and Investment Vehicles in the Future

Baby Boomers

*+-Some investors may be wondering how the aging baby boomer generation—many of whom are at or near their retirement age—might impact the investment landscape in the future. Baby boomers control a lot of wealth in this country and the decisions they make regarding that wealth may significantly affect certain asset classes and market sectors. The… Read More


Oil, Markets, Volatility

Oil, Markets, Volatility

David R. Kotok

*+-Sharply lower oil prices have occasioned a huge discussion about their impact. We see it play out daily in newspapers, on TV and radio, at websites, on blogs, and in market letters. The range of forecasts runs from one extreme to another. On one side, pundits predict a recession resulting from a US energy sector… 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


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


The Future of Retail Banking

bank

Geoff Considine

*+-USA Today ran a story in March on the changing nature of retail banking in America.  This sounds kind of boring, perhaps, but it has broad implications both for bank clients and, potentially, for investors.  The gist of the story is that banks are closing retail branches in small towns.  A lack of traditional banking… Read More


Goldman Sachs Predicts 4.5% 10-year Treasury Yields

bond

Geoff Considine

*+-Goldman Sachs just came out with a prediction that 10-year Treasury bond yields will rise to 4.5% by 2018 and the S&P 500 will provide 6% annualized returns over that same period.  The driver for this prediction is simply that the Fed is expected to raise the federal funds rate. Because rising yields correspond to… Read More