December Investment Comments

Date posted: December 15, 2014

After the S&P 500 hit a record on September 18th it went downhill until October 15th, declining 7.4%.  In a slow period for corporate news, investors focused on the growing threat of the Ebola epidemic, select weak economic numbers in the U.S., and poor performance from international economies, particularly China and Europe.  While we have […]

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Scott’s Sales Pitch: There Really Is a Difference Among Advisors

Date posted: December 15, 2014

Everyone seems to call themselves a “financial advisor” these days.  Your bank probably has an investment desk willing to sell you a mutual fund or an annuity.  What used to be called a stockbroker now goes by a less threatening title like “financial advisor” or “financial consultant.”  Most are salespeople.  I have nothing against salespeople; […]


November Investment Comments

Date posted: November 3, 2014

October is unfortunately living down to its reputation as a particularly difficult month for stock investors.  So far through mid-October, the S&P 500 is up 1.6% in 2014 excluding dividends.  The Russell 2000 Index of small stocks is down 8.5%.  Substantially all of the deviation has occurred since the end of July.  While smaller stocks […]


Hypocritical Capitalism

Date posted: November 3, 2014

Whether blameworthy or not, the use of the cloak of social responsibility, and the nonsense spoken in its name by influential and prestigious businessmen, does clearly harm the foundations of a free society. Milton Friedman   Capitalism served up a heaping plate of poetic justice recently.  Kip Tindell is the founder and CEO of storage […]


October Investment Comments

Date posted: September 29, 2014

U.S. growth remains a little tepid, but we seem to be in better straits than most of the rest of the world.  The S&P 500 rallied 4% in August, touching 2,000 for the first time in its history on August 25th.  It’s not unusual for an index to pull back after rallying to a milestone. […]

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College Fund Planning

Date posted: September 29, 2014

The daytime air was cool and crisp; the afternoon sunshine lit up the red and orange foliage like a blazing fire, and college football was in full swing.  Ah yes, my favorite time of the year…autumn.   I was sitting back on a lazy fall Saturday afternoon watching college football with a group of friends; […]


September Investment Comments

Date posted: September 5, 2014

After a pretty solid start to 2014, the S&P 500 fell 2.0% on July 31st, ending down 1.4% for the month.  This was the first monthly decline since January.  Even so, year-to-date through July the index is up 5.7%, not bad after coming off a 32.4% gain for 2013.  Given recent stronger economic data we […]


Defining Inflation Down

Date posted: September 5, 2014

The U.S. economy has experienced a decade of extremely low inflation—at least by the official statistics.  Over the last ten years, the consumer price index (CPI) compiled by the Bureau of Labor Statistics has increased just 2.3% per year.  The latest reading was only 2.0%. Does that match your experience?  I’m absolutely certain prices are […]


Philmont Scout Ranch

Date posted: August 11, 2014

“Nothing worthwhile was ever accomplished without the will to start, the enthusiasm to continue and, regardless of temporary obstacles, the persistence to complete.” Waite Phillips   “It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life.” Steve Sarlitto Assistant Scoutmaster, Troop 743   Last month Scott Horsburgh wrote about change.  There is an interesting […]


September Investment Comments

Date posted: August 11, 2014

After a pretty solid start to 2014, the S&P 500 fell 2.0% on July 31st, ending down 1.4% for the month.  This was the first monthly decline since January.  Even so, year-to-date through July the index is up 5.7%, not bad after coming off a 32.4% gain for 2013.  Given recent stronger economic data we […]