Customized Asset Management 

Part of our unique value to our clients is customized portfolio management.  We build portfolios for our clients using individual stocks, exchange traded funds, mutual funds, bonds and bank certificates of deposits. Our risk based models are carefully coordinated with your financial planning goals, and managed closely to minimize expense and manage taxes.  We manage our models with independent research and discretionary, block trading tools commonly employed by large institutional money managers. 

Our Process  >>

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Portfolio management, like a great dining experience!

When explaining our approach to asset management, we sometimes compare our process to that of an exceptional dining experience.  Perhaps you've experienced a meal at a restaurant owned and operated by a professional chef; where the evening is more of an experience than a meal, and every detail matters.  Starting days before the meal is served, the chef is focused on finding the very freshest, best ingredients with which to build her dishes.  Each plate is carefully calibrated for nutrition and taste as well as beautiful presentation.  The overall menu offing a wide variety of choices to address different palates while still efficiently leveraging the core choices of ingredients.  Particular attention is paid to the cost of the ingredients ensuring that the overall cost is a great value to the patron.  Your meal is prepared by the chef and a well trained team all focused on delivering a great dining experience for you.

Our Process:

Our process for managing your assets begins with careful research and selection of individual stocks and bonds, exchange traded funds, mutual funds and other investments that will serve as the core to all of our client portfolios. Because we are independent we are not limited to one company's platform of products; instead, we are free to research and deploy what we believe to be the best investments in a given area, seeking the best companies and managers at the most competitive prices. With our investments vetted, we build our own proprietary models using these assets to reflect the allocations most appropriate for our clients' specific needs and risk tolerance. We then manage, monitor and re-evaluate these portfolios on an ongoing basis by adjusting the individual securities and investments as research dictates while addressing changes in the clients' needs and direction.

A closer look at our investment process:

The Advantage of Customized Asset Management   >>

Often investment professionals who offer planning services outsource their investment management. This may matter for several reasons:

  1. If your adviser isn't selecting your investments directly, then you are paying a third party, either directly or indirectly to make these choices.  Aside from the obvious addition of expenses, your adviser has ceded control of your investments to a third party.  This means any number of new conflicts and motivations could be introduced into selecting your investments. 
  2. Likewise, there is now a third party between you and your money that may not be focused on how your specific needs relate to your investments; for example, the third party manager may make a change that creates an adverse tax event without regard to your unique circumstance. 
  3. Lastly, consider that financial professionals who outsource your investing may not be sufficiently engaged with your investments to properly manage your specific needs and the risks of ever changing markets.  Many advisers outsource this critical function to free up time for marketing and to focus on client meetings.  This common approach leaves the adviser disconnected from markets and your portfolio.  

We personally research, select and monitor each investment in your portfolio.  Investments are selected based on how well we believe they can contribute to the risk and return goals of the asset classes they represent.  Further, we build specific allocations of these asset classes to meet the needs of our clients, from the most conservative to the most aggressive.

How "Discretion" and "Bock Trading" Help Us Invest for You  >>

Imagine an adviser with 300 clients.  He doesn't use discretion but rather confirms each individual purchase or sale of a security with you, each time, every time a change needs made.  Over the years he's recommended dozens of investments now in your portfolio. Consider that something happens and he recommends, urgently, that you sell an investment.  How long will it take him to get his 300 clients on the phone and have a conversation about the investment- days, weeks?  Who will he call first?  His family and friends?  His largest clients?  Clients with the letter A?  What happens if he can't get you on the phone?  How much has the price of the security changed in the weeks that follow?

For many years the norm was that investment professionals called "stock brokers" bought and sold individual securities for clients by getting permission for each purchase and sale and getting paid a "commission" for the transaction.  More common today is a discretionary approach to investing where the adviser, working as a fiduciary, buys and sells investments according to an investment plan without individually reviewing each trade ahead of time with you, the investor.  No commissions are paid to the adviser, rather the adviser is paid an agreed upon fee for managing the account separate from transaction charges. 

Our approach also includes using "block trading".  This allows us to do a single trade when buying or selling a security and allocating the shares or proceeds to all of our clients based on their portfolio models, investment holdings and investment plans.  Each client gets the same average price so all clients are treated fairly.

Combining discretion and block trading means that we can efficiently manage your assets; quickly making changes to positions in our models while ensuring every client gets fairly treated on price.

Why You Should Own Stocks Directly  >>

It's common for investors to own multiple mutual funds, ETFs and other managed investment products.  What might be surprising is that many of these investments hold the same individual investments.  It's not unusual for investors we meet to own the same stock in three or more investments.  Each investment charging its own management fee to hold that security.  Often times we find investors incorrectly believe they are diversified because they own many different investments only to discover they are paying management fees to own very similar portfolios from different managers.  While managers sometimes offer great value, we believe that investors can benefit from owning large, publicly traded stocks directly.  In addition to avoiding the underlying fee paid to the mutual fund or ETF manager, the client can gain much better control of when capital gains taxes are generated from the sale of highly appreciated shares.  Likewise, investors holding individual stocks in their portfolios can choose to sell stocks at a loss that can offset gains elsewhere in their portfolio.

The Importance of Controlling Taxes and Expenses  >>

No one can control the markets or the ultimate returns realized through investing.  Two things we can influence are how much expense we pay for our investments and how and when taxes are incurred from our investments.  Not all investments are taxed the same.  Some income from investments is considered ordinary, the same as regular income earned.  Other investment income is treated as dividend income, taxed at a lower rate.  Still other income from investing might be treated as capital gains.  Income from certain investments is a return of capital and not taxed at all. Investment and account types can sometimes offer shelter from tax for a time or avoid it all together, like in the case of Roth accounts.  Certain investments might complicate your IRAs while others might exacerbate the taxes you pay at death.  Careful consideration to which types of accounts you invest in, which types of assets you invest in, and how you own these investments can all make a difference in how much you pay in taxes and expenses.  Compounded over time, these two factors can become the largest manageable component of your investment return.

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