Who are our clients?
Our clients are young professionals and business owners with myriad needs, from managing multiple retirement plans and IRAs to saving for college to equity compensation planning, while juggling busy lives. They are looking for a smart, structured investment plan, an understanding of the various strategies available to them and quality advice on their specific financial challenges.
How we help – The Fifth Set Program
We create a structured process for our clients that, like training for sport, moves clients toward their goals as they move through the program.
- PHASE 1: Assess — We assess your current situation and future goals, discuss your pain points and the areas you’d like to improve. We analyze your investment portfolios, retirement and college funding plans, estate planning strategies and insurance contracts as well as auto and real estate finances.
- PHASE 2: Plan — We develop goals in each of these areas and create an Action Item list that addresses the pain points and sets priorities.
- PHASE 3: Act — We work through the Action Items together as we improve your investment and financial strategies.
- PHASE 4: Review — We review, evaluate and adjust the plan in a continuous process. This ongoing process ensures clients have the best solutions today and in the future as their lives evolve, they confront new challenges and require new strategies to address them.
As part of The Fifth Set Program, we coordinate the activities of related specialists such as CPAs, estate planning attorneys, mortgage bankers and insurance advisors and act as an independent voice for our clients in which we ensure the best solutions are implemented.
We combine a variety of analytical tools and research with an extensive academic and practitioner background in finance and statistics to develop and manage client portfolios. In addition, because nothing on the market provided the complete depth of analytics we were looking for, we developed an in‐house solution we call PASsiveTM (Portfolio Analytics System). With this tool, we are able to specify, track and manage portfolio targets for asset allocation, factor tilts, fixed income duration and dollars‐at‐risk, among many other elements.
For more information about our investment philosophy, please explore the resources available in the Vantage Point section of the website.
Following are the core Fifth Set investment principles with which we design and implement client portfolios.
|Embrace the Efficient Market Hypothesis||Current stock prices incorporate all available information and expectations and are the best approximation of intrinsic value. Price changes are due to unforeseen events. The empirical evidence overwhelmingly supports the insights of the EMH.|
|Avoid the Gurus||The vast majority of active mutual and hedge fund managers underperform their benchmarks over time. The few that do outperform do not demonstrate persistence into future time periods.|
|Maintain exposure to equity risk||Equity returns are compensation for exposure to equity risk. Take away the risk and you take away the returns.|
|Structure portfolios along drivers of return||Academic research has identified specific characteristics that drive market returns. By tilting portfolios toward those characteristics, expected returns can be increased.|
|Don’t time markets||The precision needed to make market timing worthwhile is not achievable. Missing just a handful of the best trading days over decades diminishes equity returns to the point where it’s not worth investing in stocks.|
|Use strategic global asset allocation||Strategic global asset allocation ensures consistent market exposure and reduces portfolio volatility, which can help increase wealth over time.|
|Diversify||Individual securities add risk without additional expected return. Diversification within asset classes minimizes individual security risk.|
|Reduce frictional costs||Investment expenses and taxes are drags on portfolio performance. Constantly work to lower these costs.|
|Focus on what you can control||Market returns are random and uncontrollable. Discipline, structure, diversification, expenses and taxes are controllable.|
|Seek smart solutions||Understanding the opportunities to enhance returns without additional market risk is key to successful investing.|