Investment Approach Revisited

October 2017  By: JOEL GOODMAN, CFA, SCOTT McGHIE, CFA, CPA, ALEX MORRIS, CFA, MBA

The S&P 500 continued its march higher in the third quarter and has now increased by 14% (including dividends) in 2017.  International markets have reported even better results, with the MSCI World index (ex-U.S.) climbing 21% over the same period. This marks the continuation of eight bountiful years for investors since the end of the…

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All-Weather Portfolio Construction

October 2017  By: MALCOLM BUTLER, JD

It seems that there has been an increase in severe weather these days including floods, fire, and wind. In Savannah, we suffered a direct hit from Hurricane Matthew last year and endured a mandatory evacuation this year due to Hurricane Irma. Hurricanes are a constant threat during the summer and fall, and we have learned…

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Investment Maxims

July 2017  By: MALCOLM BUTLER, JD

I attended an investment conference recently and one of the speakers was Stephen Friedman, former Chairman of Goldman Sachs. During his fireside chat, he mentioned that when it comes to investing, he follows some basic rules of risk management. He said that these rules were universal truths that grandparents have shared with their grandchildren over…

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Summer Reading

July 2017  By: JOEL GOODMAN, CFA, SCOTT McGHIE, CFA, CPA, ALEX MORRIS, CFA, MBA

As part of our job as investment managers, we read numerous shareholder letters every year. Occasionally, these letters offer a unique perspective or insight that renews our enthusiasm for how we think about businesses and the art of long-term investing. The most recent letter from Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is a gem that has kept…

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Countering Volatility with Counterintuitive Action

April 2017  By: JULIA BUTLER, CFP®, JD, MBA, CFEI

My mom asked me once how I swallowed pills. “Show me,” she said. I went through the motions of pretending to put a pill in my mouth, mimed the act of taking a sip of water, then leaned my head back and swallowed. “That’s exactly the opposite of what you should do,” she said. “Instead…

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Chasing Good Companies, Not Yield

October 2016  By: JOEL GOODMAN, CFA, SCOTT McGHIE, CFA, CPA

In the second quarter newsletter, we noted there were more than $10 trillion of negative-yielding bonds around the world. While U.S. Treasury bonds are not in that group, they are pretty close: the 10-year Treasury currently yields 1.6%, compared to an average of 6.5% over the past 50 years. This period of low nominal interest…

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It’s a Mixed-up Investment World!

April 2016  By: MALCOLM BUTLER, JD

Source: Strategas The most successful investment theme in 2015 centered on investing in high growth stocks like Alphabet (formerly Google), Amazon, Facebook and Netflix. In a slow growth economy, investors placed a premium on companies that could deliver high revenue growth. Thus far in 2016, by contrast, we have seen many slower growing—but good dividend-paying…

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Active vs. Passive Mutual Funds

April 2015  By: JULIA BUTLER, CFP®, JD, MBA, CFEI

Are mutual fund investors better served by investing in actively or passively managed mutual funds and ETFs? Short answer: depending on one’s individual circumstances, both types of funds can play a positive role in a well-diversified investment portfolio. Diversification among active and passive strategies can be additive to a portfolio’s returns, reduce overall expenses, and…

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Corporate Cash Allocation Decisions

July 2014  By: JOEL GOODMAN, CFA, SCOTT McGHIE, CFA, CPA

Although the economic recovery since the 2008 financial crisis has been less than robust, companies have been doing quite well. Corporate profits as a percentage of GDP are at record levels, as companies have benefitted from the tailwinds of low interest and labor costs, while also focusing on the bottom line. This operational proficiency has…

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Understanding Mutual Funds

July 2014  By: JULIA BUTLER, CFP®, JD, MBA, CFEI

When I meet with 401(k) participants to educate them about saving and investing, I always start with the basics—explaining, among other things, what stocks, bonds, and mutual funds are, and how and when they might be utilized in an investment portfolio. Because participants seem to find this information helpful, I thought it might be beneficial…

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