Are Your Investments Dressing Up For Halloween?

BooSo here’s a scary tale just in time for Halloween . . .

When I’m asked to look at investment portfolios that have been assembled on a DIY basis or on the recommendation of a financial advisor, I regularly find index funds dressed up as actively managed funds.

As you may recall from my past articles, index funds are low cost, broadly diversified mutual funds that invest in an index representing a broad swath of the investment market.

For instance, you may be familiar with or have heard of an S&P 500 index fund. This is a fund that invests in all the stocks in the S&P 500 index.

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5 Mistakes Women Can Avoid Before Filing For A Divorce

FiveDivorce ranks as one of the most stressful life events. The same could be said of the period that immediately precedes the decision to file for divorce.

If you’re like most women in this situation, you’re stressed, unsure and scared. Objective, healthy decision-making doesn’t always flow from those emotional states. That’s why it’s important to avoid these five mistakes when considering divorce, according to Melody Richardson of Pachman Richardson LLC, family law attorneys in Atlanta, Ga. Richardson, whose practice exclusively consists of family law, is a firm founder with nearly 20 years of experience in family law.

  1. Hoping that your husband will change: In most cases, the patterns of behavior in your husband and that relationship that led you to consider divorce won’t change. While change is possible, especially with good will and therapy, in many cases that doesn’t happen. That leads to more procrastination, more fights and a bigger impact on any children you may have.

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Do You Know Your Investment Risk Score?

GoldilocksAbout 20 years ago, as I was just beginning my career as a financial advisor, I thought about and discussed investment risk with clients like it was something out of Goldilocks and the Three Bears.

I’m sure you remember the story of Goldilocks innocently breaking and entering into the home of a family of bears. After tasting their porridge and then testing the comfort of each of their beds, she settled on the “least extreme” choice.

Not too hot; not too cold — just right.

Not surprisingly, the Goldilocks Principle exists to describe our preference to avoid extremes and choose something that falls comfortably between them.

And this describes how I thought about and presented investment risk to my clients. You certainly didn’t want too much risk. But just as importantly, you didn’t want too little.

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What A POLST Is And Why You Need One

POLST GeorgiaI was recently speaking to my friend and colleague, Ronnie Genser of Bereavement Navigators.

She asked if I was familiar with “POLST.”

I told her that I wasn’t.

Over the next 5-10 minutes, Ronnie explained what a POLST is and why everyone should consider putting one in place.

I found the information so interesting – and important – that I asked Ronnie to spend some time with me on another phone call so I could record our discussion and share it with you. Below is a recording and transcript of a call between Ronnie and myself on September 30, 2014.

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3 Questions Every Woman Should Ask Before Hiring A Divorce Attorney

3 QuestionsDivorce is such an emotional experience, it can be hard to know how to determine which attorney has the potential to help you achieve the best outcome with divorce and custody issues. With that in mind, I spoke to Melody Richardson and Rachel Miller, experienced family law attorneys with Pachman Richardson in Atlanta, about the best questions to ask attorneys that you might select to represent you in your divorce. Their answers are below.

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