The price of oil has pulled back to about half of what it was this time last year. The Federal Reserve may raise rates this year, or not. The government may run out of money in September. However, none of this really matters, and let me explain why. When we put together an investment strategy we are not putting together a portfolio for the next 30 days or even 6 months, we are putting together a strategy that will give you the greatest chance of success for meeting your most important goals over your lifetime!
Recently at Cascade, we did a full day session with Bill Bachrach, an expert in the financial advisor world, on building a world class financial advisory business. I may have never mentioned this to you, but I actually spend time learning about how to provide world class wealth management services to you, my clients. At this particular session we talked about our processes, providing great service, and working with clients we enjoy who appreciate the wealth management tools and knowledge we bring to the table. At some point during the day one of us asked about the stock market and questions we get about the fluctuation in the market, and Bill asked if being able to forecast the market and the daily ups and downs was part of our value proposition. Of course the answer is no; we all know that is a complete fool’s game. What we do have is a process and an investment management philosophy that comes from years of collective experience in managing client portfolios.
Over the course of the day, Bill made another point that I thought was genius. We all have a number – the amount of money we need to reach financial independence. Once you reach this number you are able to continue to work or accumulate wealth because you want to, not because you have to! So let’s assume you are there, does it matter what your returns are? Does it matter what the market does from day to day? So, here is the question: if I told you that you could beat the market every year but never reach your goals, would you be happy with that? I have a feeling most of you saw “beat the market” and your heart leaped. Yes, I would love to do that! Then your heart sank when you saw, “but never reach my goals.” Conversely, what if I told you that you could put together a plan with a portfolio that never beats the market but would meet all your goals. Would you care that you never beat the market? Some of you, the gambler or the keeping up with the Jones’ types, would want to make more. Most of you would be happy that you are meeting your goals, your most important goals, without having to worry if the Fed raises rates or not or if oil goes up or down. The bottom line is that the focus should be on meeting your goals, not the day to day ups and downs of the market.
At Cascade our investment management philosophy starts with what’s important about money to you, recognizing that money is important in different ways to each person. No two investors are the same, and accordingly a cookie cutter approach will not work. Once we understand what is important to you and what goals you want to achieve, a plan is made and we can then begin allocating the right amount of money to your operating, capital appreciation, and strategic portfolios. From there, we then regularly review and make changes as necessary to the investments that make up these portfolios as well as update your plan to make sure we are on track to meet your goals.
We are taking care of the planning wisely and investing confidently so that you can go out and enjoy life!