Making proper use of your advisor

If you have an investment advisor, you want to make maximum use of them as trusted members of your financial team. A fee based investment advisor is held to a fiduciary standard, meaning they must put your best interests first. This should mean that they can serve as a sounding board for your financial decisions… Read More..

8 Pieces of Advice Newbies Can’t Afford to Ignore

I met a client last week who told me something that really touched my heart. He said “Amanda, looking back on the last 5 years of investing in real estate I realized that I have made so many mistakes along the way that were so costly. Does that happen to everyone and what could I… Read More

Iraqi Oil In Context: 60% Of OPEC Growth Expectations

While Iraqi crude represents about 4.4% of world production, or around 3.4 mmbd (5th largest in the world);   enabling investors to shrug at any fears that ISIS will spread to the South and interrupt this supply (since it will be 'contained'); what many do not comprehend is that in such a tight oil market… Read More

Inflation: Another “False Alarm”?

From Gavyn Davies at the Financial Times: Another false alarm on US inflation? There have been a few false alarms about a possible upsurge in inflation in the US in the past few years, even as core inflation on most measures has remained extremely subdued. ... Another such scare has been brewing recently.... It now… Read More

Why You Should Trade Forex

  QUESTION: "Faced with two choices, the easy (fast) option or the harder (slower) option, which would you choose? This is not a trick question. Promise. No surprise if you went for the easy/fast choice. Our guess is that 99.99% of people would have answered that. It's human nature. Nothing wrong with that. Nothing at all. Who honestly chooses the hard/slow route anyway? Truth is… Read More

Thursday: New Home Sales, Unemployment Claims and More

The scams never end, and this one was really disgusting (ripping off people in financial trouble) ... from the LA Times: Authorities crack down on mortgage-relief scams nationwide Federal and state officials filed lawsuits accusing dozens of companies of ripping off struggling homeowners by falsely promising help in avoiding foreclosures or lowering mortgage payments while… Read More

The Real Estate Investor’s Guide To Never Giving Up

Failure is a loaded word. Throughout school as young men and women, we’re taught that if you don’t make a certain grade, you have failed.  In the real world, however, failure has a different face. In most cases, there are allowances for mistakes and setbacks, but none of these are necessarily failures.  You learn from… Read More

What Is Our Level of Confidence that We Will Reach Our Financial Goals

In a previous post we discussed a couple in New Jersey who wanted to know if they are “Financially Secure”. In the same meeting, they asked “What is our level of confidence that we will reach our financial goals?” This is a very typical question.  It’s a frequently asked question because clients have little knowledge… Read More

It’s Not What You Do; it’s What You Don’t Do

In providing sales training to financial advisors, I often see planners with many great ideas. They offer multiple investments, insurance options or they are CPAs providing investment advice. For a business owner, it’s often fun and entertaining to find new ideas to sell and ways of going after clients. But it takes significant discipline to… Read More

Inflating the Big Mac One Calorie At A Time

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) in June increased 1.8%. This increase was driven by the escalation of oil prices. However, this rate of increase is slower than what consumers are experiencing. This post has been updated from our post on May 15, 2014. Continuing our research into using the Big Mac as a gauge of… Read More

Bill Ackman’s attempt to destroy Herbalife has had exactly the opposite effect

So much for delivering a “deathblow” to Herbalife. That’s what the hedge fund manager Bill Ackman vowed to do on CNBC yesterday, prior to his screed against Herbalife today, which lasted more than three hours. After promising to offer the clearest evidence to date that the international nutritional club is a giant pyramid scheme that preys on Latinos, the hedge fund maestro didn’t deliver… Read More

Is The IRR Metric Any Good?

Well – that all depends… I wrote an article entitled The Definitive Guide to IRR a few weeks ago, in which I discussed the basic premise behind the Internal Rate of Return metric.  I mentioned in that article that a lot of sophisticated investors like to use this metric to assess an investment opportunity and… Read More

4 Reasons You Shouldn’t Blindly Take Advice from a Realtor

Don’t be fooled by the title. Let me start out by saying I love working with Realtors in my business; that is certain Realtors.  What do I mean by that?   I like working with those agents that have also done some investing themselves. Before you take advice from a Realtor in your investing business, you… Read More

Binary Proposition

We have winnowed down our probabilities to just two, and will probably get resolution within 2 trading days.  Let’s examine the most recent evidence. We have a test of the upper boundary of the trading range. The picture is not completely one sided as the bulls managed a close in the top half of the… Read More

Wednesday: Architecture Billings Index, Mortgage Applications

Earlier today, the Richmond Fed manufacturing survey for July was released: Manufacturing Sector Activity Expanded; Shipments Grew Mildly, Hiring Picked UpOverall, manufacturing conditions strengthened. The composite index for manufacturing moved up to a reading of 7 following last month's reading of 4. The index for shipments gained one point, ending at 3. New orders grew… Read More