I have just gotten back from an LPL Financial Advisor’s Conference in Washington, DC. It was an exciting three days filled with investment and political discussion, plus the chance to see some of the great historic sites of our fantastic capitol.
If you have not done it in a while, let me encourage you to take a couple days and take a trip to D.C. (Great opportunity for Grand Mom and Grand Dad to do something fun with Grandkids). The great men and women who are the fabric of our country’s history are honored and remembered in parks, monuments, and museums throughout the city. Christy and I spent an afternoon walking along the main streets, looking at statues, going into galleries, and visiting museums. Being a fan of the old west, a highlight for me was to see General Armstrong Custer’s white buckskin coat. Not only is there great history in D.C., but, boy, does D.C. also have some great restaurants! Be prepared to spend a little money, but if you like fine dining, that is another reason to take the trip.
Besides the touring and the dining, I also attended some very good business sessions. There are three main points I came away with that I would like to share with you.
- Everyone who spoke about the economy had a similar theme: the market is in and will continue to be in a trading range. This trading range will be tilted up slightly in the U.S., which could likely have the equity markets end the year up slightly higher than where we are now. But there are enough world factors out there to continue to make the market ride a bumpy one.
- Politics are playing a “BIGGER” part in the market’s direction. The issues of who will be our next President, which parties will control the legislative branch, and the potential tax changes on the horizon are factors which we will have to consider in planning. It appears that Washington is beginning to focus on the national debt debate (SLOWLY). All of this means that politics are now having a bigger effect on how you and I will invest our money.
- Finally, how we used to do things when it came to investments, I mean things like diversification, buy and hold, not being over weighted into specific areas, etc., are no longer the way we will be investing in the future. New approaches using “alternative investments,” which are not correlated to the stock market, will be part of our portfolios. Over-weighting sectors for an investment objective just might be a strategy we use, and strategic buying and selling will be the norm.
I came away from this conference understanding several things: first, that what we are doing here at HMC Partners for you is on the right track; second, that we need to be as fully informed and dedicated to obtaining the best and most advanced knowledge we can to manage your money; third, our country has a great history which helped me understand the great opportunity before us all; and finally, I came away with further understanding of the dedication that Gib, our staff, and I all have for you.
*Alternative investments may not be suitable for all investors and should be considered as an investment for the risk capital portion of the investor’s portfolio. The strategies employed in the management of alternative investments may accelerate the velocity of potential losses.