Category: Epic Insights

Impact Investing: Performance, Purpose and Positioning

May 29, 2016

impact-investingThe phrase “impact investing” has become the lead moniker chosen to represent several purpose-driven or values-driven strategies that have evolved over the last two decades. Other names such as “sustainable investing”, “socially responsible investing or sustainable, responsible and impact (SRI)”, “corporate social responsibility (CSR)”, “environmental, social and governance (ESG)”, all seem to have been folded-up under the simple more widely accepted term impact investing. The ability to align ones wealth with their values and create a positive impact, in some form or fashion, through the deployment of their investment dollars. (more…)

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Why We Embrace Conscious Capitalism®

Apr 6, 2016

CC Principles“Conscious” Capitalism? An oxymoron it is not. It is a movement sweeping across the globe and growing in size, popularity and in the impact that it is having for those business leaders who embrace it. It, in my opinion, should become the standard by which businesses are evaluated for investment and judged in the court of public opinion for its popularity by the consumer. A bold statement indeed, and maybe one better served as a vision for an ideal world, but the pragmatic nature of its four core tenants give it great viability. (more…)

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How to Live a Beautiful Life

Feb 29, 2016

rohn_howtobuildabeatifullifeThis is the first time that I’ve ever posted an article from someone else, but this particular article struck me. Maybe it’s because I still consider myself a fairly new father with a 19-month old and an “almost” 3-year old at home. Simply enough, I thought this was worth sharing. In fact I believe anything that helps to keep “life” in perspective should be worth sharing, especially for those of us who recognize how important a balanced life is but struggle to actually create that balance. This article was written by a man whom I greatly admire and have learned a tremendous amount from since being introduced to his work years ago … that man, is Jim Rohn. (more…)



A Lesson from Uganda

Feb 12, 2016

FullSizeRenderExactly one month ago today, I returned from a 12-day trip to Uganda. While there, myself and a group of 15 others did water projects such as building a rainwater harvest tank and making and distributing bio-sand filters. The organization that hosted the trip was a non-profit based out of Boone, NC called Wine to Water. Their founder, Doc Hendley, received a CNN Hero award back in 2009 for the incredible work that he himself had done both in Darfur and Uganda. Doc has inspired thousands, myself included. The work they do at Wine to Water changes lives. In fact, it changes entire communities. They do real boots on the ground stuff, bringing clean water to those in need. They make an impact with what they do. And I’ve seen it first hand. (more…)

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The Zuckerberg Impact

Dec 3, 2015

facebook_like_logo_1If #GivingTuesday wasn’t great enough on it’s own, Facebook ‘s founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg stole the show with an absolutely extraordinary pledge to give away 99% of his Facebook fortune over his and his wife Priscilla Chan’s lifetime. That amount, as it stands today would total over 45 billion dollars. This will be done through their ongoing platform entitled the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative. Basically, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative allocates money to organizations around the country — and eventually, the world — in order to make it a better place for everyone. (more…)

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2014 Mid-year Outlook

Jul 3, 2014

2014 Mid-year Outlook GraphicAt this year’s halfway point, we are pleased to offer the LPL Financial Research 2014 Mid-Year Outlook: Investor’s Almanac Field Notes containing key observations and updates to our outlook for 2014. Similar to a farming almanac, our Investor’s Almanac is a publication containing a guide to patterns, tendencies, and seasonal observations important to growing. The goal of farming is not merely to grow crops, but to sustain living things—investing shares the same goal. (more…)



We’re Off to See the Wizard!

May 30, 2014

Ruby Slippers“We’re off to see the wizard!” a simple phrase that is universally known. To think, a movie that was released in 1939 still to this day brings great imagination and memories into the hearts of children and adults alike: the legendary film The Wizard of Oz. It was voted a “top 10 movie” of all time and, more importantly, it was my mother’s favorite. She was a big Judy Garland fan and was head-over-heels for musicals. One of the most memorable scenes was when Dorothy exited the door of her house after it had been swept up by the tornado and landed in Munchkin Land. She exited the door, Toto in arm, and immediately the movie turned from black and white to color. It’s a beautifully put together scene and an incredible use of Technicolor, a fairly new film-coloring technology at the time. (more…)



Are You Fi-Organized?

May 5, 2014

May ImageIs your financial house in good order? Do you know where everything is?  How long would it take you to pull together all of your important financial documents? Minutes… or hours? Some of you may be thinking it could take days because you aren’t the one who handles the finances for the household or even if you do, you may have forgotten how to access certain financial documents online, or maybe worse, things are just scattered everywhere. The answer should be “minutes.” And if it’s not, it’s truly time to get financially organized, or as I like to call it, Fi-Organized or Fi-Org’d for short. (more…)



Stress Test Your Portfolio

Mar 27, 2014

Photo Image - Egg on the EdgeI believe it was Peter Lynch, the legendary mutual fund manager of the Fidelity Magellan Fund that once said, “Prior to retirement have as much in stocks as you can possibly stomach, and then after retirement, have as much in stocks as you can possibly stomach.” In other words, the amount of risk you should take in the stock market, completely and without question, depends on your own personal tolerance for risk. How much risk can you stomach?  That’s the million dollar question.

Last month we discussed controlling the one thing that you can control when investing and that’s YOU.  Hence, keep your emotions in check.  Easier said than done, right?  Or is it?

Most of us probably have some maximum level of tolerance for the emotional pain of losing money (albeit in most cases, we’re talking about temporary losses during a market downturn). Do you know what that level is for you? Let’s say you have an investment portfolio worth $500,000.  At what level would you really begin to panic if it began to lose value?  Would you be losing sleep if it was down $50,000?  What about $100,000? I’m going to assume we have some pretty savvy investors reading this, so how about $200,000?  Would that send you running for cover in Certificates of Deposit or cashing out to stuff the remainder in your bed mattress?  What if you saw it drop by half?  Two-hundred and fifty smackers.  That’s big. That should cause just about anyone, even the most iron-stomached seasoned investment vet to get weak-kneed.

That 50 percent market plunge actually happened, only about five years ago. I’m sure most remember it like it was yesterday. I certainly do. Painful memories.  But here’s the thing; just because the market was down 50 percent, (more…)



Take Control of the One Thing You Can Control … YOU

Mar 4, 2014

Final PicWhy do we plan a vacation? Many, if not most of us, lay out meticulous plans to ensure that our trip goes smoothly. Doing so enables us to do all the things we want to do and see all the things we want to see. But what would happen if we didn’t create a plan in advance? Might a relaxing vacation turn out not so relaxing? Might a potentially great experience turn into a frustratingly negative one? Don’t get me wrong, I know some folks live for spontaneous adventure, but I can’t imagine too many of us like to travel without some sort of plan. By setting an itinerary or planning ahead many of the main aspects of your trip, you can have your expectations become a reality and help to minimize most travel snafus. We plan because there are rewards for doing it.

Now let’s move this idea of planning into the world of financial planning, or investment planning – whichever. I jokingly say that I help people plan for the longest vacation of their life … their retirement. But it’s true. And with most clients, we lay out a pretty meticulous plan. Coincidently, it’s well known in the financial planning industry that most people actually spend more time planning for vacations then they do planning for their own retirement. That’s unfortunate. I’m in my early (cough cough) 40’s and if you think I’ve got great confidence in Social Security footing my bills in retirement, think again. You better believe I plan.

The first thing to do when laying out a financial plan or an investment plan is to know what things can derail your plan. Taking the time to understand the many things that are out of your control, can be time well spent. Here’s a sneak-peek: interest rates, inflation, the stock market, the Federal Reserve, the bond market, corporate (more…)

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More Insights

May 29, 2016

The phrase “impact investing” has become the lead moniker chosen to represent several purpose-driven or values-driven strategies that have evolved over the last two decades. Other names such as “sustainable investing”, “socially responsible investing or sustainable, responsible and impact (SRI)”, “corporate social responsibility (CSR)”, “environmental, social and governance (ESG)”, all seem to have been folded-up … Continue reading “Impact Investing: Performance, Purpose and Positioning”

Apr 6, 2016

“Conscious” Capitalism? An oxymoron it is not. It is a movement sweeping across the globe and growing in size, popularity and in the impact that it is having for those business leaders who embrace it. It, in my opinion, should become the standard by which businesses are evaluated for investment and judged in the court … Continue reading “Why We Embrace Conscious Capitalism®”

Feb 29, 2016

This is the first time that I’ve ever posted an article from someone else, but this particular article struck me. Maybe it’s because I still consider myself a fairly new father with a 19-month old and an “almost” 3-year old at home. Simply enough, I thought this was worth sharing. In fact I believe anything … Continue reading “How to Live a Beautiful Life”

Feb 12, 2016

Exactly one month ago today, I returned from a 12-day trip to Uganda. While there, myself and a group of 15 others did water projects such as building a rainwater harvest tank and making and distributing bio-sand filters. The organization that hosted the trip was a non-profit based out of Boone, NC called Wine to Water. … Continue reading “A Lesson from Uganda”

Dec 3, 2015

If #GivingTuesday wasn’t great enough on it’s own, Facebook ‘s founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg stole the show with an absolutely extraordinary pledge to give away 99% of his Facebook fortune over his and his wife Priscilla Chan’s lifetime. That amount, as it stands today would total over 45 billion dollars. This will be done … Continue reading “The Zuckerberg Impact”

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