I was a licensed Broker/Financial Advisor for Merrill Lynch for 14 years but have not kept my securities license and do not charge any fees for investment advise. Disclaimer: You are at your own risk. I am a licensed Real Estate Broker (not practicing) and involved in the mortgage world for over 25 years. I now work with clients helping them with their Mortgage (which I do get compensated for) and as part of this service I help them with planning in other areas of their lives. When they are ready I will refer them to a Financial Advisor that can continue to help them on an ongoing basis. While at Merrill Lynch I was not allowed to advise my clients to get out of a market. In other words in 2008 I could not tell you to get out of the stock market it was called “market timing” and was forbidden. Now advising you to get in to the stock market was OK because that’s called “investing.” I believe there is a “safe” way to invest and still get a return that will get you to your goals.
Have you ever wondered why one stock may be affected by something that is not related to it at all? Kind of like a bank missing its “expected” earnings report and Microsoft stock goes down in value? These days everything is based on computerized trading. There are programs that detect the slightest movement and execute trades for an institution. It’s called “program trading.” Your best investment is the index which is usually a large group of assets (S&P 500 is 500 stocks) and it’s usually diversified which is adding more safety.
What exactly is a “Safe” investment? Well, I would say it is something that you have very little “risk” to lose value in. The safest investment would probably be something that had a guarantee against loss of principal. But then you have to ask who or what is giving the guarantee? One example would be a U.S. Treasury bond or note. If I purchase a ten year Treasury note for $10,000 that has a 4.00% coupon I know that if I hold it for ten years I will get my $10,000 back, even though the “value” may go up and down, and I will receive $400.00 per year in interest. Buying Gold is not a safe investment because its value changes constantly. Yes over time it tends to rise with inflation but that depends on when and at what price you purchased it. We just learned this regarding Real Estate. I think the best rout is to be invested in multiple asset classes.
I’ve just finished revising my investment portfolio which consists of a five asset class allocation: Stocks (both US and international), Real Estate, Commodities, Alternative investments and fixed income or Bonds. I am a firm believer that asset classes: Stocks/Bonds, Growth/Value, US Stocks/International Stocks, Commodities, Futures, and Fixed Income or Bonds all trade in patterns and are either directly related or indirectly (opposite) related and will tent to trade in ranges. They trade in Cycles. The key is to be able to take advantage of the pieces of the cycle. So I’ve come up with a strategy that will do this. It’s very simple actually and there are ways to do it free or at little commission.
The strategy is to invest in the Index, or the closest thing to it which is a non-managed Exchange-Traded-Fund that mirrors the index. You must re-balance the portfolio once a year. I do it early in January because it’s easier to track. You will be taking funds from asset classes’ that performed well and re-allocating the gains to an asset classes that underperformed. It’s the classic buy low and sell high philosophy. Your returns will come from reallocating, so don’t forget.
If you’re interested in getting the spreadsheet, simply fill out the contact form and I will send it to you.
Mortgage Advisor MLO# 445991
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