Business Update:

As you can imagine, we are very focused on taxes for our family office clients.  Final 1099s have been the primary factor holding us up.  If you have not given us your tax information because you have not received a final 1099 from Fidelity, do not wait.  We will be able to access the 1099s through Fidelity when they are final.

On March 4th and March 12th, we are doing introductory consulting sessions for medical professional in our offices at the Garland Building in Chicago.  Not all time slots are filled for March 12th, so if you know someone (a medical professional or someone like yourself) that could benefit from an introductory consultation, please have them follow this link to sign up:  //www.d3financialcounselors.com/garland-consultations/

D3 In The News:

Ryan Pace was invited to be a tax expert on National Public Radio (NPR) on Tuesday, February 24th at 2:00pm.  He discussed tax planning, retirement planning, the Affordable Care Act, and fraud prevention with afternoon-shift host Niala Boodhoo.

Adam Glassberg will be presenting “Using College as a Stepping Stone to Financial Independence” to students at Governors State University (GSU) on March 26th, 2015. Click Here to learn more about the event.

Market Insight:

We recently met with representatives from Goldman Sachs and American Century and have listened to the most recent market updates from JP Morgan.  Interestingly enough, most all of these sources are calling for a continuation of the current trends.  These consistent current trends are that valuations in the U.S. equity markets are fair, U.S. economic growth will continue to be steady, and we will see higher interest rates from the Federal Reserve sometime later this year.

One of our clients, the retired senior economist from Northern Trust Company, has shared his insights in his most recent economics blog.  For some positive economic insight please follow this link:  //the-econtrarian.blogspot.com/2015/02/yes-there-will-be-growth-in-spring.html

Our primary concerns are the continued weakness in Europe and Asia, (i.e. can American pull the rest of the world up?) and that the performance of the major market indexes are being dominated by the largest market capitalized companies.  The top 25 stocks in the S&P 500, contributed 6.5% of the total 13.7% return in 2014.  When stock market performance is not diversified and breadth is limited, historically this throws up a cautionary flag.

Investment Strategy:

We continue to focus on maintaining well-balanced, diversified portfolios to control risk.  Our goal for your portfolios is to generate since inception total returns that that exceed by 1% or more the required rate of return (RRR) as determined in your financial plan. For example, if your RRR is 6%, our goal for your portfolio is to generate since inception returns of 7% or more so that after fees, you achieve your goals with these least amount of risk necessary.

We believe our focus on financial planning goals and portfolio risk management are the keys to long term financial planning success.  If any of your goals change or your ability to tolerate risk changes because of altering circumstances, please let us know.

From an investment product viewpoint, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) changed the rules for valuing money market funds. As a result, Fidelity and all other mutual fund companies will be merging funds and changing the money market funds that can be used as cash sweep vehicles for your accounts.  Essentially, the SEC stipulated that if retail money market funds want to maintain a dollar value, they have to be primarily invested in government securities; otherwise, the funds would have changing net asset values like a stock or bond mutual fund. It makes sense to have the sweep vehicles (money market funds) associated with your accounts to be invested in high quality government securities and to maintain a constant $1 net asset value.  You do not have to do anything; Fidelity will make the changes automatically.

Last Thoughts:

We continue to take on new clients and very much appreciate your referrals.  As you know, “we help smart people make smarter financial decisions.”