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Friday, Feb 23, 2024

Our Call Volume Increased by 100 Percent

Client Reaction to Pandemic: Our call volume increased by 100 percent – ordinarily we may handle three to five daily formal meetings and this increased to twice that amount. During times of turbulence, I don’t wear a watch so I don’t get distracted. Client Questions/Your Reponses: The most common question was, “is this a fundamental shift in the market or is it a normal correction?” As time proved that this was going to impact our economy significantly and we received more data, our viewpoint changed. This health event turned into an economic event overnight with recessionary implication. Things are always fluid early on, then they become clearer as the situation evolves. Memorable Moments: How quickly America shut down. They will be talking about this in business school forever. This was our Pearl Harbor or 9/11, and we couldn’t blame another country or failure in economic policy. This is what is scary – what stands to cause this again if America doesn’t have a pandemic policy in place?  Changes to Portfolios: Every client has their own goals, so this was done on a case-by-case basis. Generally, we lightened up on international exposure and adjusted allocation based on the client objective and risk tolerance. Fortunately, we had already been doing this in 2019 given the bull market we have experienced. 2020 Economic Disruption Compared to Others: The headlines may change but the news is the same. In other words, volatility and disruption, no matter the source, is not fun. However, this is why we understand that investment is not without risk. What is most important is how you react and behave as a result of the volatility. We tend to forget that investors take on risk to get rewarded. Advice to Clients Now: We are positioning for recovery, whenever that may come. We are looking for opportunities and sectors that will benefit from this economic shift and policy actions that could benefit industries in the midst of change. Financial Management Business: There has been a divide in the financial services industry. Some investors solely use technology and tools to invest themselves while others seek financial advice. We provide the latter and provide technology to help our clients make decisions. In this uncertain time, experienced and credentialed advisors are seeing growth in their businesses. Simply stated, this isn’t our first rodeo and clients appreciate having a team that knows them and their goals. I believe our position has gone from being relevant to essential. Biggest Trends in Financial Management: For sure, use of communication through technology. The ability for our team to use communication tools like Skype for business and Zoom has helped us stay connected. Could we see smaller office space given this trend?  I believe this may reduce the need for larger offices in a traditional wealth management model. Favorite Stress Relief: I enjoy listening to my ’80s music and Dodger Talk on the radio. Good times for sure! Final Thoughts: America will beat this. We work out our problems and we win. We have rule of law, strongest science and educational institutions and free markets. Capitalism is not perfect but it is good and as I remind people quite often, “don’t let perfect get in the way of good.”

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