FVIM's Insights

News and information about preserving your life savings

Good Decisions Call for Good Advice

Let’s play make-believe. Imagine you’re in charge of a major metropolitan city. You’ve been informed that a Category 5 hurricane is building offshore. If it grows and comes your way, it could devastate everything. However, forecasters are projecting low odds that this worst-case scenario will actually happen – only about 5 percent. Do you evacuate anyway? Moving a half-million people is dangerous in itself, and everyone will blame you if it’s for nothing. But what if that 5 percent risk is realized? Thankfully, few of us are ever required to make such momentous calls. But you probably do make difficult...
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Fiduciary Musings

It’s about time our regulatory agencies started taking my advice. For years, I’ve been beating a steady drumbeat about why investors should insist on fiduciary standards of care from their financial advisors, so I was heartened by the recent Department of Labor (DOL) fiduciary rule , which has at least pounded a few more nails into the coffin of conflicted advice. Could it be that Labor Secretary Thomas Perez has been reading my blog? Okay, probably not, but it makes for a nice musing. With the DOL ruling, anyone offering you advice about your retirement assets should be doing so...
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Managing the Market Menagerie

Have you ever noticed how often we compare market conditions to the animal kingdom? There are the long-familiar bulls and bears . Given the hoopla we’ve seen so far in 2016, perhaps the market knows that it’s the Chinese year of the monkey , a period of heightened tumult and trickery . We’ve also seen the market compared to the fabled tortoise and the hare . With a nod toward spring, there’s the related notion that we might be in a bunny market, in which returns are seen hopping up and down – but to what end? In our opinion,...
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Foolish Predictions Make for Dangerous Decisions

It’s nowhere near April 1st, but it seems there already are plenty of pundits making foolish predictions about what the markets have in store for us for all of 2016 – as if a few, admittedly raucous days foretell the tenor for the rest of the year. The popular media – and, let’s face it, we readers – seem to enjoy shivering over scary market absolutes, indulging in oversized headlines like, “ Dow has worst four-day start to a year on record ,” accompanied by the usual images of anxious exchange traders clutching their heads in disbelief. The implication is...
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