Archive - August 2013

1
KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid) Your Way to Financial Health
2
Is a Market Correction Imminent?
3
Lessen Anxiety, Build Confidence, And Achieve Security
4
At What Tipping Point Does Less Become More?
5
What You Need to Know About Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs)

KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid) Your Way to Financial Health

Are you familiar with the KISS (“Keep it Simple, Stupid”) concept? KISS helps you refine your elevator speech, write concisely…and can boost your financial health. KISS can help you cut through the endless avalanche of financial and investment information/tips.

After working with hundreds of financial planning and investment clients, here are relatively simple and  straight-forward KISS (“Keep it Simple, Stupid”) ways to improve your financial health. Guide to the perplexed: If you look at this list and roll your eyes in exasperation, consider leaning on a trusted financial advisor who does thorough financial planning and who has YOUR best …

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Is a Market Correction Imminent?

The market has allowed itself a well-deserved "cool down" period during the month of August. In fact, heading into today, both the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average have seen four straight negative days and endured losses during nine of the last eleven days.

After the roaring bull market we've enjoyed since April 2009, it is natural for investors to question whether this is a turning point and the market is destined for a significant pullback. First and foremost, it is valuable to remind ourselves that even through the woes of August, the S&P 500 is only down …
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Lessen Anxiety, Build Confidence, And Achieve Security

Greetings, from the end of summer! It sure doesn’t feel like the end of summer with this weather, but with the academic year starting up again, offices coming out of summer hours, and the suits and ties coming back out it must be happening anyway. I’ve noticed the “end of summer” atmosphere here at Step By Step, too, with clients checking in on their financial progress and calling, ready to take the next step.

Their friends have been calling, too. Personal referrals are the absolute best compliments I can receive, and I’m glad to speak with those who are interested …

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At What Tipping Point Does Less Become More?

A reader recently discovered a terrific online financial resource – http://www.mrmoneymustache.com. Mr. Money Mustache controverts conventional thinking (or rather, lack of it) about spending and saving. The co-authors, husband and wife, reached financial independence at the age of 30 by saving aggressively in their 20s. They are raising their kids and spending time as and where they wish. They are by no means “deprived.”

Of course, “deprived” is a self-determined definition. Related to our self-definition of “deprived” is our self-definition of “enough.” What is enough for some might be deprived for others. What is enough at one point in …

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What You Need to Know About Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs)

Exchange-Traded Funds (or ETFs for short) trade like a common stock, yet typically give broad exposure to the stock market or a specific market sector. They have been around for 2 decades now and were officially launched in the U.S. by State Street Global Advisors in 1993. The very first ETF (and still the largest one today) trades under symbol SPDR, and is commonly called a ‘spider’. The fund tracks the Standard & Poor’s 500 Stock Index, and as of March 31, 2013, held about $129 billion in assets.

ETFs can be a cost effective way to invest because they …

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