Tag Archives: retirement planning

More Good Press For B Corps

6 Feb

This week’s theme has been about leadership, being bold, changing things up with new ideas.

Many of you know we are a Certified B Corporation.  This is sometimes something I think our company deserves more credit for being. But I understand why it flies under most people’s radar. it is a bit of a complicated philosophy.

Earlier this week, I wrote about a failure in leadership. I followed that post with a few posts about people making change.  Today, I share with you David Brooks’ NY Times op-ed piece on “How to Leave a Mark.”

Please, take a moment to read it.  Take a moment to discover more companies that are B Corps. If you can, support them.

The Value of Partnership – Commonwealth Financial Network

10 Nov

Today represents a wonderful milestone for MJ Everson Financial, Inc. – Five Years With Commonwealth Financial Network.

I thought I’d touch on a term that is often unclear and what it means to us and to you – broker-dealer. Our industry, financial advice, is one that can be confusing to outsiders.  First, the language.  IRA, SEP, 401(k), Roth, RMD, margin, loss, broker-dealer…it is a language that can be difficult to understand.

Here is a definition form the website Investopedia – A person or firm in the business of buying and selling securities, operating as both a broker and a dealer, depending on the transaction.

Yea, I’m sure that clears it right up for you?  So, someone who works for a big Wall Street firm, say Morgan Stanley, works for a broker-dealer (BD). And our firm is associated with a broker-dealer, too.  Commonwealth Financial Network (Commonwealth) out of Waltham near Boston.

We feel that Commonwealth is different than any BD in the business. Why is Commonwealth unique? We could compare CFN to the largest publicly held independent BD, called LPL. LPL spent the entire past decade recruiting advisers on board in what appeared to be a mad rush to increase revenue in order so they could list their company publicly and the founders could ‘cash in’ on the IPO.  In doing so, they not only alienated their old advisers but it doesn’t appear that they spent too much time vetting those newly recruited advisors.  There is a cost to doing business this way. LPL is now finding that out.

Commonwealth, on the other hand, is still owned by Joseph Deitch and a handful of Principals who either founded the company or who have played an integral role in growing it to the firm it is today. They like to say they are “Anything but Common.” And they back it up. These folks tell me every year there is no plan to go public, cash out or sell to the highest bidder.  The peace of mind that gives us is hard to convey.

Let me give you one small example why Commonwealth is different in their approach to this business. In the financial news this week there are two stories that likely flew under your radar.  Many of you own an investment in your portfolio known as ‘alternative.’  Lately, because of the varying level of quality in these investments, regulators have been having a look at the sales practices around them and also the quality of the actual investments.

Now, Commonwealth would never tell me or push me toward any specific investment that they’d want me selling to a client.  That’s because they are independent and have no proprietary investments they need sold. But they do look at the quality of alternative investments such as Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) and they do a large amount of due diligence on alternative investments before they will allow them into the Commonwealth adviser’s platform.

Two years ago, during the annual Commonwealth conference, one of the Commonwealth advisers asked a question during a session on REITs.  He wondered why Commonwealth had not approved for sale a particular investment from a company named American Realty Capital Properties or ARC.

The gist of the answer was that Commonwealth’s research team was not thrilled with that company’s recent acquisition spree, didn’t like the leverage employed and were worried about some of the activity they saw and concerned what that might mean for investors.  Two years ago, mind you.

Last week, that same company was in the news quite a bit.  Like the article above on LPL, the news is less than positive. LPL is being hit with bad press for declining revenue, increasing regulatory fees and fines and also made news for finally deciding to pull all ARC products from their platform. We see ARC like a race car which blew a tire and is tumbling over and about to hit the side wall. It isn’t good. Luckily, in this case, our business and your accounts are exposed to neither company’s foibles.

We don’t worry that tomorrow we’ll read Commonwealth is going public. We feel confident that our computers and your private info will not be hacked, thanks to industry leading technology at Commonwealth.  We know your needs and ours are fully supported with independent experts. Sounds so simple, yet so few firms can say this.

I’m proud that our company was founded on August 1, 2001. But to be honest, we became a very real and mature firm on November 9, 2009. That’s when we switched to Commonwealth.  With their invaluable partnership, we have made our little firm into a well-organized business that serves the needs of some very select folks -you! Today, we celebrate 5 years with our broker-dealer.  We couldn’t be happier!

Weekly Market Update

21 Oct

Our blog today links to the most recent “Market Update” from the experts at Commonwealth Financial’s Investment Research team.  If you have any thoughts or questions, please feel free to give us a call.

Weekly Market Update

23 Sep

Our blog today links to the most recent “Market Update” from the experts at Commonwealth Financial’s Investment Research team.  If you have any thoughts or questions, please feel free to give us a call.

Weekly Market Update

26 Aug

Our blog today links to the most recent “Market Update” from the experts at Commonwealth Financial’s Investment Research team.  If you have any thoughts or questions, please feel free to give us a call.

Weekly Market Update

20 Aug

Our blog today links to the most recent “Market Update” from the experts at Commonwealth Financial’s Investment Research team.  If you have any thoughts or questions, please feel free to give us a call.

Weekly Market Update

12 Aug

Our blog today links to the most recent “Market Update” from the experts at Commonwealth Financial’s Investment Research team.  If you have any thoughts or questions, please feel free to give us a call.

An Expert’s Opinion on the Markets

7 Aug

Yesterday, I mentioned how I went to Boston last week.  But I didn’t have time to share with you that one of the sessions I sat in for was about the current state of affairs in global markets.

Brad McMillan is the chief investment officer at Commonwealth.  His insight is one I truly value and when he speaks, I listen.  Brad got into a talk about where markets and the economy stand today.

His talk was a tale of two worlds. Wall Street vs. Main Street.   What Brad was saying is, in his opinion, Main Street is doing pretty well and we might want to be cautious about Wall Street right now. Check out his blog, it is well worth the time.

For more on his insight, check out the link above.  If you have any questions, please call me. I’d be happy to talk over the points in the article as well as anything else on your mind regarding the financial world.

Weekly Market Update

5 Aug

Our blog today links to the most recent “Market Update” from the experts at Commonwealth Financial’s Investment Research team.  If you have any thoughts or questions, please feel free to give us a call.

Time Machine

4 Aug

Did you wonder if I’d ever write again?  The trip I took to Brazil in June really threw my writing routine for a loop. But for August, we start fresh again.  My plan is to stay on the writing tip consistently from here on out.

I’ll start easy!  How about a walk back through time? If you click on this link –

http://interactive.guim.co.uk/embed/2014/apr/image-opacity-slider-master/index.html?ww2-dday

You can do just that!  Once you are at that website, you’ll notice a photo of US troop boats. This is April 5, 1944 in a little English village named Weymouth.  But the fun is in clicking and holding your mouse clicker and then sliding your mouse to the right.  The photo morphs into that same spot but how it looks today.

Scroll down and there are several more photos where you can play with the ‘time-machine’ and see how much things have changed but also how much they have remained the same.

Enjoy!

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