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Realistic Expectations: A Study in Putting Investment Returns in Perspective

If we look at a conventional portfolio of 60% stocks, 35% bonds, and 5% cash and apply the historic returns in the chart below, the annualized return from 1928 to 2014 for the portfolio would have been approximately 7.7%. Is it realistic to expect these kinds of returns in future years? With U.S. stocks now at an all-time high and bond and money market interest rates at all-time lows, it is worth pausing to consider what might be reasonable investment…

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A Journey Tree Sponsorship: The Oxford Consortium for Human Rights

Journey Tree is pleased to sponsor two University of Oregon students who are participating in The Oxford Consortium’s Human Rights in Armed Conflict Program. This program brings students from all over the United States to study both the theoretical and practical applications of Human Rights Conventions during armed conflicts. The students travel to Oxford, England where they participate in a weeklong seminar at Oxford University. Through presentations by professionals in the Human Rights field, students are encouraged to expand their…

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Market Commentary – Spring 2015

Tug-of-War It has been a turbulent quarter for the U.S. stock market. For about a third of the time, prices have moved up or down at least 1% per day making this period more than twice as volatile as the average for last year. Despite all this movement, the net result was essentially a flat market with the S&P 500 index up about 0.5%. Most bond funds were up 1.5 % – 2% and European and Asian stocks each climbed…

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Market Commentary – Winter 2015

“The goal of investing is asymmetry: to expose yourself to return in a way that doesn’t expose you commensurately to risk, and to participate in gains when the market rises to a greater extent than you participate in losses when it falls.” “Superior investment results can only stem from a better-than-average ability to figure out when risk-taking will lead to gain and when it will end in loss.” Howard Marks, Oaktree Capital Management Successful investing is simple but not easy.…

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Social Security Retirement Benefits: The Mini-Series

INTRODUCTION In my last article, I provided an overview of the calculations behind taking benefits early or delaying benefits. In this installment, we were going to meet Pat and Val, a married couple with gender-neutral names, and review some of the simple and complex Social Security planning strategies available to them. Unfortunately, I have been fighting a headache for a several days and I cannot get by head around that topic just now. Instead I will fast forward to the…

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Announcing the New AdvisorClient® Mobile App for your iPhone®!

TD Ameritrade Institutional is pleased to announce that you can now take the convenience of AdvisorClient.com with you, wherever you go, with the launch of the AdvisorClient Mobile App. AdvisorClient Mobile enables you to view real-time account balances, positions and transaction history from your Apple iPhones.* Other convenient features include: • Consolidated account balances • Remote check deposit • Detailed quotes • Third-party research • Quick access to Advisor contact information If you wish begin using AdvisorClient Mobile, visit the…

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Social Security Retirement Benefits: The Mini-Series

In my last article, I provided a bit of history regarding the inception of Social Security, some trivia regarding its early days, and a few key definitions. This installment is going to give you an overview of the calculations behind taking benefits early or delaying benefits. Be forewarned, this article is full of acronyms. What’s Your FRA? If you remember from the last newsletter, FRA stands for Full Retirement Age and is based on your year of birth. See the…

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Market Commentary

“Markets are exiting nothing less than a half-decade era of chronic low volatility fostered by ultra-loose monetary policy by the Federal Reserve and other major central banks as they pushed interest rates toward zero and implemented unorthodox policy measures.” David Kotok, Chief Investment Officer at Cumberland Advisors, October 10, 2014 Since the end of the 3rd quarter on September 30, market volatility has picked up significantly, as evidenced by the Dow Jones Industrial stock index experiencing a decline of nearly…

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Estate Planning Alert: Review of Wills for Newly Married Couples

By Nicholas Frost, Attorney, Hershner Hunter (reprinted with permission of the author) Many same-sex couples who are now getting married as a result of the recent Oregon federal district court ruling may be revoking their wills without knowing it. Oregon law generally provides that marriage revokes an existing will. Many previously unmarried Oregon couples may now opt to get married in light of the court ruling overturning Oregon’s ban on same-sex marriage. Those couples may not realize the risk that…

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Social Security Retirement Benefits: The Mini-Series

This is the first of a series on Social Security – primarily focusing on the retirement benefits. The goal for this series is to address the key questions asked by our clients. Questions like: When should I begin taking Social Security? What options are available to me? Which options are better for my circumstances? Will my benefits be taxable? I am going to heed Sgt. Joe Friday’s words and provide “Just the facts, ma’am.” Therefore, I will not be making…

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