New Employee: Because taxes have become so complicated and D3 can often add significant value by helping clients utilize tax planning strategies, we have hired another CPA. Isabelle Crouse, MBA, CPA will be joining D3 on November 2nd. Later on in November or December she will be calling you to introduce herself.
Annual Client Appreciation Dinner: We look forward to seeing you at our annual client appreciation event on Saturday November 21, 2015 at Parkers Restaurant. Please RSVP before November 6th.
Document Shredding Event: We are holding our annual document shredding event on November 13th as a service to our clients, as well as a way to give back to the community through Transitions 99. Since 1998, District 99 has proudly offered continued educational services to hundreds of students with special needs through its Transition 99 Program. By experiencing coursework that includes vital life and work skills after high school, our students have received the foundation they need to grow and to be productive, contributing members in our community.
If you would like to drop off documents to be shredded, please bring documents to D3’s Downers Grove office during business hours by November 11th. Make sure items are in a paper box or bag, as we will not have containers for the shredding.
Client Survey: Please help us improve our service to you. We mailed out our annual client survey and have only a few responses. Your input helps us improve our business to better serve your needs. Please fill this out and mail it back to us, or use the link following link. //www.surveymonkey.com/r/KYN5ZKK
Insurance Review: We completed our annual insurance inventory for all of our Affordable Family Office (AFO) clients. If you have any further insurance questions contact us.
Estate Document Review: In November, for all our AFO clients, we will be reviewing your estate documents. Our objective is to summarize your current documents and identify potential gaps. We will be emailing these summaries out after Thanksgiving. Let Don know if you want to discuss your current estate plans.
D3 Breaking News:
- Adam & Don attended the NAPFA National Conference in Indianapolis October 20-23. Don also presented at the conference. Follow the links for more information.
- Don & Brett attended “Get Covered: Business and Community Health Action Fair” on October 29th. Click here to read more.
- Adam presented to University of Illinois Chicago medical students. Click here to read more.
October has been a “risk on” month for equities. The “risk on” environment has been attributable to the assurance that central banks around the world are willing to do everything it takes to avoid a global recession. The S&P 500 is up about 9% for the month and is now within 2% of the all-time highs set in May of this year. All other domestic and international equities have performed well in October, but not as well as the S&P 500. U.S. small caps stocks were up about 6%, while international stocks were up about 7%. Like many “risk on” rallies, the bond market did not perform so well and was flat for the month of October.
One asset class that that we think has the potential to add to portfolio performance is U.S. small cap stocks. We continue to maintain our current allocations despite their underperforming the broad U.S. stock market this year. Because the strong dollar negatively impacts U.S. exports and in turn U.S. companies with significant international sales, the strong dollar will have less of an impact on U.S. small cap stocks because most of their sales are domestic.
With all the volatility this year, we anticipate portfolio returns will be nothing to write home about. Similar to 2011, we expect flat to slightly positive returns for both the stock and bond markets.
We remain focused on striving to maximize after tax wealth by continuing to review and replace funds that are not meeting our risk reward characteristics. The 3rd quarter gave us the opportunity to “stress test” our funds to ensure they performed as expected in a “risk off” environment. A couple of funds did not pass this “stress test” and we will be replacing them in conjunction with our end of year tax loss harvesting.
In October, the gains in equities mitigated most of the losses from the third quarter. This should serve as a reminder that short-term volatility can cause uneasiness, but as investors we need to maintain a long-term perspective. By focusing our efforts on investment reviews and the financial planning process we can overcome volatility in the short term. We cannot ensure that there will not be more pockets of volatility ahead, but can plan to make sure your portfolios are designed to achieve their long-term objectives.
We want to be attentive to your concerns. Again, if anyone is concerned about how this volatility affects your plan or if your goals or cash flow needs change, please give us a call. As always, thank you for your confidence in D3.
We look forward to seeing you all in November when hopefully some of this uncertainty will be behind us.
Thank you for your confidence in D3 Financial Counselors and share with your family and friends that “We help smart people make smarter financial decisions.”