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Equity REIT breakdown

What is a REIT?

Have you ever wondered who owns the skyscrapers in America’s major cities? It’s not just Donald Trump. In fact, unless The Donald puts his name on it, chances are a REIT owns it.  A REIT (rhymes with “tweet”) is simply a corporation that owns real estate. The acronym stands for Real Estate Investment Trust. Long […]

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More than 1/3 of Americans have saved nothing for retirement

Many Americans have no retirement savings A new survey has determined that 36% of Americans have saved exactly nothing for retirement. Nada. Zero. Although the coverage I’ve seen so far suggests that the issue is most serious in the case of Millenials, I disagree. If you’re in your twenties, you have time to recover, […]

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O'Reilly cap

What Is a Stock’s Market Cap?

Sometimes, we in the financial services industry get so immersed in what we do that we kind of forget that the rest of the world may not understand about the terminology we use.  In other words, we tend to throw around lingo without checking to ensure that we are being understood.  That’s not a concern […]

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Market Risk

Investing is Risky – Market Risk

In an earlier post I introduced a new series that will lay out some of the key risks that accompany investing in various types of securities.  This first entry will address the general market risk faced by stock investors. Market Risk for Stocks Market risk is risk that is driven by the ups and downs […]

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Investing is Risky

Investing is Risky – New Series on Risk

One of the areas that I think is difficult for investors to truly get their arms around is risk. Specifically, the level of risk individuals are taking when they invest. One of the reasons for the fuzziness is that there are a number of ways to view risk. Warren Buffett views it as the likelihood […]

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CFP Board Issues a Reality Check to Consumers

The CFP Board has launched a new round of ads targeted at raising awareness regarding the importance of working with a Certified Financial Planner™ professional.  This latest campaign, titled “If They’re Not a CFP® Pro, You Just Don’t Know” involves pulling random people off the street, arming them with some industry jargon, and sitting them down […]

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Apple bite

When the Structure Breaks Down

The free fall in Apple’s share price has been documented ad nauseam by the financial media in recent weeks.  But how has it impacted fixed income investors? This weekend’s Wall Street Journal (subscribers) features an interesting case study that details how investors in income-generating “structured products” fared poorly by investing in products that are linked to Apple’s stock […]

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Retirement Plan Contribution Limits for 2013

There is some good news in the land of Retirement Planning for 2013.  Of course, it remains hard to predict what our taxes will look like next year, but everybody will have the ability to set aside more than we did last year on a tax-advantaged basis. 401k contributions For 2013, the maximum 401k contribution […]

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From TwentySomething to Millionaire

My fellow financial blogger and Garrett Planning Network member Jim Blankenship has challenged members of the financial planning community to do our part to encourage an increase in the overall savings rate in America.  The numbers are pretty dismal of late.  According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, our savings rate was actually negative in […]

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Dollar Cost Averaging

What is Dollar-Cost Averaging?

A general investing maxim that has been passed down over the years is that Dollar Cost Averaging (DCA) is a good way to invest, particularly for beginning investors. The basic approach is that you invest a consistent amount at regular intervals, which ensures that you buy more shares when prices are low (and fewer shares […]

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