Delivering Investment Results Through Process
In today’s no-guarantee world, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed with the ever-expanding universe of investment choices. Often, investors will follow market trends as an alternative to seeking out sound, prudent advice. However, trying to achieve your financial goals by pouring all of one’s assets into emerging markets today, energy stocks tomorrow, and Japanese small-cap stocks next week is no way to feel financially secure. Unfortunately, it’s a risk/reward strategy that offers lots of risk with minimal reward. It’s also an unbalanced and uncoordinated way to invest – a practice that contradicts our philosophy.
For nearly 20 years, Bill Losey has relied upon an investment philosophy that focuses on investor objectives. This philosophy is based upon 5 principles: asset allocation, portfolio structure, tax management, multiple specialist money managers and continuous portfolio management. These principles all work together to deliver a program that offers investors personalization, diversification, coordination and management. It’s a strategy geared toward achieving both short-term and long-term investment goals that make sense in any financial or geo-political climate.
The Investment Challenge
Investors usually follow a process in order to make clear, concise decisions – until the time comes to make long-term investment decisions. At these times, clarity can often lead to uncertainty. Complex financial issues are often reduced to a fervent sales pitch for the current manager or investment product reported as “hot” by the financial media. This “tabloid investing” obscures the two basic goals of serious investors: to define and implement a plan to achieve investment objectives within a comfortable time frame and to receive enhanced return with reduced risk.
BLRS’s Investment Model
Asset Allocation: More Important Than The Investments You Own?
Portfolio Structure: An Integral Part of the Investment Process
Tax Management: Never Ignore the Tax Implications of Investing
Multiple Specialist Money Managers: Designed to Deliver More Consistent Performance
Continuous Portfolio Management: Keeping Investment Progress on Track
More Important Than The Investments You Own?
Many investors believe trying to “time” the market and picking the next “hot” investment are the keys to success in reaching their investment goals. The financial media, and some investment companies, perpetuate this myth. For example, financial magazines and rating services frequently publish ever-changing lists of top-performing mutual funds and money managers. Many investors turn to these publications for guidance; unfortunately, these rankings are backward-looking and cannot predict future success.
Contrary to the message that the fast-paced, e-trading environment of the 1990s instilled in many people, market timing and stock selection are not the keys to reaching your investment goals. Ultimately, the most important step in the investment process is the first step – deciding how to allocate your money among broad asset classes such as stocks, bonds, cash, etc. This process has come to be known as asset allocation and BLRS spends a lot of time in this area with the clients we serve.
Our investment activities are generally defined by principles that are collectively known as Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT), based on the work of Harry Markowitz, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1990. Particularly noteworthy is a well-known 1991 landmark study, sponsored by SEI Investments and later expanded in 1993 by Vanguard, that concludes that asset allocation – not market timing or stock selection – is the primary factor in determining why different portfolios have different return results. One of the primary tenets of MPT is the idea that the future cannot be predicted, and neither can stock prices. Another is that a portfolio composed of several asset classes (indexed-core, active and alpha investment holdings) will experience fewer price movements and volatility than more concentrated portfolios.
“Risk” means different things to different people – danger, uncertainty, opportunity and thrill. In reality, there is risk in any situation where there is a chance of experiencing an unfavorable outcome. BLRS is aware that, when it comes to taking risks, we each have our own comfort zone. Therefore, the asset allocation decision is the outcome of a unique behavioral finance profiling process by which your personal objectives and feelings are carefully defined, and then aligned with multiple strategies built using various assets.
The end result is a diversified and cost-efficient Skill-Weighted Portfolio™ where risk/return potential is quantified, and fees are correlated to the ability of the portfolio managers to add value.
Is your asset allocation appropriate for your objectives?
To learn how we can help you, contact us today.
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An Integral Part of the Investment Process
The number and variety of investment choices, or asset classes, keep growing all the time – U.S. stocks, international stocks, U.S. and international bonds, emerging markets, ETFs, REITs, hedge funds – the list goes on and on. Each market and each segment has different characteristics, return potential and risks.
BLRS believes that a division of assets is only the beginning of the asset allocation story. Financial success and investment risk management requires further diversifying the portfolio structure itself. For example, the U.S. stock market has four distinct sub-classes: large cap value, large cap growth, small cap value and small cap growth. For the best chance at success, your portfolio should be diversified across as well as within these asset classes. In other words, you shouldn’t just own “stocks” but also make sure you have the right mix of large and small cap, growth, value and indexed-core, active, alpha or even alternative investments.
BLRS can help you make sure this discipline is exercised across all of your accounts and all asset classes involved.
Is your portfolio properly diversified?
Contact us today to find out.
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Never Ignore the Tax Implications of Investing
Taxes play an integral role in our investment process. As a result, we employ a special focus on tax management to control tax implications within your portfolio and to help you enhance after-tax returns.
Because we all know that when it comes down to it, it’s not the money you earn – it’s what you keep.
And if you’re a client who must pay taxes on your earnings, not taking tax implications into consideration can directly affect your chances of meeting your life and wealth objectives.
BLRS makes tax sensitivity an ongoing requirement, from portfolio structure (with index funds, enhanced index funds, and ETF's) to daily monitoring to manager selection.
Interested in saving taxes? Let us help you keep more of what you earn.
Get started today by contacting us.
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Multiple Specialist Money Managers:
Designed to Deliver More Consistent Performance
BLRS has found that identifying, hiring and managing “best of breed” specialist money managers helps to deliver more consistent performance. We call this process “managing the managers”.
Money managers who specialize in a particular area of a market have the experience necessary to perfect a specific investment style. They not only know where to seek opportunities but how to anticipate favorable and unfavorable changes. This focus can produce more consistent results than using generalist managers who tend to “roam” the markets or drift from one style to another, often outside of their firm’s core competencies.
To implement asset allocation strategies, BLRS currently utilizes a global network of over 35 specialist money managers whose management styles complement each other. Within each of the stock market’s four major investment styles, we use multiple managers. For example, in the small cap growth sector, using multiple managers with a highly differentiated investment process can ensure diversification within the sector, helping to control risk and enhance return.
BLRS works with an investment team of analysts, many of whom hold the Chartered Financial Analyst® (CFA®) and other advanced designations. They are dedicated to implementing and overseeing this investment process. Team responsibilities include the selection of managers, tracking and managing consistency regarding manager performance, risk control and daily manager monitoring.
Who is managing your money?
Let our dedicated team manage yours.
Contact us today.
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Continuous Portfolio Management:
Keeping Investment Progress on Track
Natural market movements often cause portfolio allocations to “drift” from their original positions as different sectors of the market go up or down over time. For example, a portfolio that consists of 60% stocks could see that percentage increase substantially if the stock market appreciates. Changing a portfolio allocation from 60% stocks to something higher could result in unintended risk. Or, your objectives may shift over time as your personal situation changes. BLRS addresses such inevitable change through its two-step process of continuous portfolio management.
First, your asset mix is systematically rebalanced to its target allocation, helping to reduce risk and keep your strategies on track. In essence, this rebalancing helps enforce the buy low, sell high discipline – helping to take the emotion out of your decision-making process regardless of whether a particular investment is going up or down.
Next, through ongoing monitoring and manager reviews, our investment team ensures that its managers’ investment styles remain consistent with their assigned objectives. After a manager is chosen, analysts continuously monitor the philosophy, discipline, consistency and talent every day – checking portfolio holdings and trades, and ensuring the “purity” of the investment portfolio. For example, performance can suffer if managers invest outside of their assigned mandate. As a result of this continuous monitoring, managers who deviate from their philosophy or fail to achieve stated goals are subject to replacement.
Who is watching your money?
Let our “best of breed” managers continuously watch yours.
Contact us today.
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The Bottom Line
Utilizing low-cost index funds, enhanced indexed funds and ETFs, these principles all work together to deliver a cost-effective investment program that offers personalization, diversification, coordination and ongoing management. BLRS believes that the application of this investment philosophy will add value by enhancing returns and reducing risk, thereby increasing the likelihood of investors achieving their goals.
We will manage your investment portfolio on a fee-only basis starting as low as 0.50% per year (1/2 of 1%). The fee is negotiable and determined based upon various factors including the size of your investment portfolio, the number of accounts you have, and the complexity of your financial situation.
Portfolio management fees are deducted every quarter in arrears with a calculation showing how we arrived at your fee per account. This information will appear on the last page of your quarterly statements. This transparent method of paying for our money management services allows us to keep the fee in the low range of the national fee scale for registered investment advisors.
For more information on how our investment approach and a Skill-Weighted Portfolio™ can help you achieve your financial goals, please contact Bill Losey, CFP® toll-free at 1-866-786-2521.
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