In some respects, we wish this piece weren’t worth re-posting. We’d prefer it if today’s investors no longer needed to be on the look-out for the opaque fees and conflicts of interest described. Unfortunately, with only a few minor updates, the information is still as relevant today as it’s ever been. So even if you’ve read this before, we recommend revisiting this important message again. For extra credit, you may also...

So, have you heard about the Department of Labor’s (DOL’s) new fiduciary rule, now governing the advice you receive for your retirement plan assets? If so, congratulations, you’re in an elite group. Maybe the news would have received wider coverage if the election year weren’t in full swing. Maybe not. As one of my colleagues observed, “Sad to say, ‘fiduciary’ is boring.” The word alone causes eyes to glaze and...

The credentials alone may say it all about Michael Kitces and his Nerd’s Eye View on financial planning. With two master’s degrees in financial services and taxation, a CFP® mark, and five other financial certifications to his name, that’s some serious nerd power. But what’s decidedly cool about Kitces is his passion for sharing his “journey of continuous education” with fellow advisors as well as with investors looking for a...

If you are keeping an eye on the financial press, you may be noticing a flurry of commentary of late, with respect to a financial advisor’s duties and obligations to his or her clients. The White House recently released its report, “The Effects of Conflicted Investment Advice on Retirement Savings.” Shortly after, the Department of Labor reignited its own efforts to raise the bar on retirement plan advisory stewardship. Much of...

All the talk of relationships this past Valentine's Day had us reflecting on our client engagements and the two-way relationships they represent. Our Client Pledge As we dedicate ourselves to placing our clients’ financial interests even ahead of our own, we make a commitment that goes something like this: We pledge to … Act as a fiduciary, treating your finances with utmost care and prudence, and placing your best interests first – even ahead...

2014 was a pretty exciting year at SageBroadview. For starters, it is our first year as a combined SageBroadview force. Even as we threw ourselves into combining the energy of two good firms into one, we also took on a variety of personal goals. Most noteworthy was Associate Advisor Chris Annello’s achievement of his CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ marks. We couldn’t be more excited for Chris, who has now officially followed...

In our previous post, “How to Hold a Financial Fire Drill,” we discussed the importance of understanding your true risk tolerance and routinely practicing how it applies to your investment plans. That way, when market risks arise for real, you’ll be less likely to abandon those best-laid plans. A key tool to help you stay on course is your Investment Policy Statement (IPS). Your IPS: A Living Document Your IPS is a...

Former director of financial services at Dimensional Fund Advisors, now retired, Dan Wheeler continues to share financial insights on his personal blog. In his post, “Fire Drill,” Wheeler recommends practicing what you will do the next time the markets drop, especially if the declines are as precipitous as they were during the financial crisis in 2007–2008. Otherwise, he observes, now that the pain we experienced then has started to fade,...

In our last post, “What’s Driving Your Advisor Relationship,” we discussed some of the qualitative ingredients that go into a satisfying advisor relationship. Essentials such as fiduciary duty, seasoned experience and transparent fees are critical. But qualitative assessments should also be combined with quantitative insights to yield the best recipe for success. If you doubt us, try baking a cake sometime without measuring out your baking soda or checking to...

In our last post, “Good, Better and Best Advisor Value,” we shared some reasons we feel it’s worth working with a professional financial advisor rather than going it alone. As we continue to explore the worth of sage advice this month, we’ll describe how to identify, not just any advisor, but one who is best positioned to justify his or her worth. As much as great advice can be of great...