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Updates From The Experts

Picking Stocks: Sound Fun? Think Again

My dad was a Stockbroker for many years before he went to work with my grandad in the newspaper business. He had played the game, knew the rules, and explained it to me pretty clearly one day while we were sitting on the back porch of our house...

Thoughts on Retirement Income

As you get closer to Financial Independence Day (the day you start taking money out of your retirement accounts), the reality of what was an intangible concept for so many years can be a little stressful.  Here are some thoughts and concepts I...

Great Article I Found on Financial Habits

I love this article by Mikey Rox on Wise Bread called 10 Habits of Financially Happy People (click on the link to read the article). Mikey used the word “happy” instead of “successful” in his title. I don’t use the term “happy” enough, and I...

The Pay and Product Disconnect

Integrity is key. For Advisors, it’s easy to lose sight of integrity because the framework of the financial services industry creates conflicts of interest.  In many cases, there is a disconnect between the cost and the service provided. In...

I Love Market Risk

Yes, I love market risk!  The risk associated with the stock markets is completely beyond our control so most investors would not make such a bold statement. Instead, many make it harder than it has to be by timing the market, making sector or...

Our Depression

Our Depression by Rob Schulz, CFP® April 24, 2012 Instead of the “Great Recession”, I have started calling the downturn of 2008 “Our Depression” because of the significant change in behavior, values, and attitude I have witnessed over the last...

Here's to Your Health!

The whole country watches today as the Supreme Court listens to arguments and debates the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act. Their decision will have massive political and business implications for many years to come, but the health...

Rough Summer?

by Rob Schulz, CFP® June 24, 2011 There is a lot of negativity out there and the stock market has reacted with increased volatility. If I were a gambler, I would bet the market will continue it’s downward trend over the course of the summer.  But...

Fiduciary Overkill

by Rob Schulz, CFP® April 20, 2011   The SEC is currently looking into authorizing a universal fiduciary-duty regulation under the Dodd-Frank financial reform law. If carried out this would subject large conglomerate financial services firms to...

Reality Check

by Rob Schulz, CFP®February 4, 2011 Over twenty years ago my dad died from a sudden heart attack. Since then my life has been marked by many Critical Financial Events (that’s the understated term I use in my practice for a planning opportunity)...

How Before Why is a Formula for Failure

by Rob Schulz, CFP® June 6, 2011 I always ask my clients “why” when we discuss their financial goals and objectives. Why do you want to reduce debt? Why do you want to save for retirement? Reducing debt and saving are not goals, they are...

Fed Turns up the Heat on Wall Street

By: Rob Schulz, CFP®November 24, 2010 You may have noticed the headlines as the Securities Exchange Commission, FBI, and federal prosecutors wrap up what they call the largest insider trading criminal investigation in history. Several Wall Street...

Love and the Stock Market

by: Rob Schulz, CFPSeptember 13, 2010 I read an interesting article in the New York Times the other week. The article by Graham Bowley entitled: In Striking Shift, Small Investors Flee Stock Market, the first line states “Renewed economic...

College Planning Tips

By: Rob Schulz, CFP®April 28, 2009 Gretchen, my oldest, is going off to college next year so I thought I would briefly share some thoughts on college planning with you. Enlist the help of your parents if they are willing and able. Several years...

The Truth About Life Insurance

Myth: Cash value life insurance is one of the worst financial products available. Truth: Many lives will be financially devastated by Dave Ramsey’s advice on life insurance. Dave Ramsey and his advertising client Zander Insurance make their case...

Year End 2007 Market Commentary

Year End 2007 Market Commentary   For 2007, the volatility in the equity market over the course of the year was significant. Most economists point to these factors that affected the equity markets last year, and will likely continue to influence...

What is Your Number?

By:  Rob Schulz, CFP® June 25, 2010 A large insurance company is currently running an advertising campaign, “Do You Know Your Number?” and I like it so much I am going to steal it! You should know your number because the first step towards a...

Financial Markets Q&A

by Rob Schulz, CFP® 09/22/08 Q. The financial world is in a panic. Exactly what is going on? A. In addition to a recession and bear market, we are now experiencing a massive deleveraging as financial institutions that have lost access to capita

If it Sounds too Good to be True.........

May 2009   It was almost one year ago when the mortgage meltdown came to roost in my head, and it’s been there ever since. Like many in my industry, I had been watching mortgage foreclosures mount since the fall of 2007. However; I didn’t fully ...

Volatility Kills

  One of the most important lessons learned over the last few years in the stock market is that volatility kills a poorly managed portfolio.  How? Let’s do the math: Examplele 1:    Fred invested $100,000 in Investment A that earned 50% in the...