Reducing Investment Costs: Past Research and Future Strategies

Financial economists use the terms “portfolio friction” or “investment slippage” to describe the detrimental consequences of investment costs (including taxes paid on investment earnings). Recent studies suggest that cost control may be more important to investment results than other factors that have historically received greater attention, such as security selection and market timing. This essay… Read more »

Growth of 401(k) Plans and Fees

Over the decades since Section 401(k) was added to the Internal Revenue Code in 1978, 401(k) plans have become the primary retirement savings vehicle for most Americans. The Investment Company Institute (ICI) reports that at the end of 2012, 401(k) plans held approximately $3.6 trillion in assets, the largest single plan category in the almost… Read more »

Distinguishing Characteristics

Serve as an ERISA 3(21) investment fiduciary Since our firm’s inception, our Consulting Services Agreement has acknowledged our role as a fiduciary providing investment advice. Consequently, we assume a commensurate level of fiduciary responsibility for our investment advisory services. Independent investment advisor As an independent investment advisor, we act in the best interest of our… Read more »

Pound Foolish

It is interesting to observe how financial industry trade journals reacted to the recent publication of the book Pound Foolish, by financial columnist Helaine Olen. The book has mostly been condemned as a biased example of muckraking journalism (although Business Week has given it a fair review). But only a few trade publications have even… Read more »

Investment Advisor Transparency and the SEC

The Securities and Exchange Commission has put out a list of questions entitled: Investment Advisers: What You Need to Know Before Choosing One. These questions are just the tip of the iceberg. We believe in open communication and transparency. Please read the SEC’s guidelines, and our plain English answers to their questions and much more about… Read more »