Adding relationship value in the internet age

As the digital age spreads like a virus, locally owned “bricks and mortar” businesses are threatened with extinction.  Major companies like Circuit City, Borders, and Tower Records have already succumbed to this competitive threat.  The proliferation of disruptive internet-based solutions has forced many traditional businesses to re-think their value propositions in order to keep their […]

New regs to shine light on investment fees

Retirement plans — including 401(k) and profit sharing plans — affect millions of savers nationwide. A new regulatory change improves disclosure regarding how costly the plans are to the employers that sponsor them and the employees who participate in them. When March 31 participant statements are received, business owners should be prepared for the questions […]

Signs points to further growth

              Emotional markets are often irrational markets.  In both real estate investing and in the financial markets, investors without a discipline can be easily swayed by fear and greed.  By developing a discipline and anchoring decisions to specific facts, investors can maintain their bearings amidst uncertainty and turbulence.  Many […]

From worse to bad at least is an improvement

In spite of continued strength in the leading economic indicators we watch, the market can’t seem to muster a sustained rally. Market volatility is extremely high, with the market seemingly locked in crisis mode in spite of strong corporate profits. We believe that the crisis in Europe is to blame. The Germans have a big […]

Asset Allocation Folklore Revisited

When people thought the sun revolved around the world (geocentrism), the quality of navigational advice was sketchy at best, and might have been downright dangerous at times. For the past twenty years, the quality of investing advice has been tainted by the idea that the one-time selection of investors’ stock/bond portfolio mix accounts for 93.6 […]

Predicting Community Banks’ failure

Lack of research about local banks leaves many depositors worried about whether their bank will be next to fail.  Community Banks of Colorado was taken over by the FDIC and remaining assets were given to Bank Midwest, out of Kansas City, MO, itself owned by National Bank Holdings Corporation, chaired by Timothy Laney, an alumnus […]

Despite so-called debt crisis, U.S. economy improving

Several people have asked me why the media circus du jour concerns about the U.S. debt crisis don’t seem to bother me as much as the Washington, D.C., policy wonks think it should. First, the market doesn’t seem to care much about the latest attempt at political grandstanding. If the market were worried about the […]

It’s time to insure against ‘Eurorisky’ behavior

The Greek bailout didn’t take. Two-year Greek government bonds recently traded at cents on the dollar, resulting in yields of 25 percent. The market is clearly pricing in some element of default in the securities. Effectively shut out of the credit markets, financial pressures have mounted in spite of guarantees and bailout promises by other […]

New economic realities require new indicators

The ups and downs of the stock market and economic growth — or lack thereof — aren’t random. But they are difficult to understand at times. May-Investments developed its own Leading Economic Indicator (LEI) that helps the firm understand the current economic environment. Today’s LEI readings forecast continued economic growth during the months ahead. May-Investments […]

Is the “new normal” actually that normal?

Someone asked me the other day if I’m still in the “double-dip” (recession) camp. That led to an embarrassing confession that while I once believed higher interest rates would choke off the nascent recovery, the current recovery has lasted long enough and remained strong enough that I think those of us who were double-dippers ought […]