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Insights



Investing Through Emotions

Rising inflation, interest rate movements, ongoing trade wars, COVID-19 variants, bear market predictions, the Russian attack on Ukraine and heightened geopolitical uncertainty, …that’s a lot to think about. The first quarter of 2022 reminds us all how much uncertainty can fill the world at any given moment— and how little control we have over it all. This perceived lack of control can lead to feelings of anxiety and stress in our everyday lives. One of the best coping techniques is
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Broker/Advisor Outperformance?

Can an individual broker/advisor and their team consistently deliver outperformance? Perhaps we can look to the mutual fund industry for the answer. Afterall, individual brokers/advisors and their teams are essentially a smaller version of larger active mutual fund managers. Both are looking to deliver outperformance through specific stock picking and market timing. Each year, Dimensional analyzes returns from a large sample of US-based mutual funds. The objective is to assess the performance of mutual fund managers relative to benchmarks.* This
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All-Time-High Anxiety

KEY TAKEAWAYS Financial journalists periodically stoke investors’ record-high anxiety by suggesting the laws of physics apply to financial markets—that what goes up must come down. But shares are not heavy objects kept aloft through strenuous effort. They are perpetual claim tickets on companies’ earnings and dividends. If stocks have a positive expected return, reaching record highs with some frequency is exactly the outcome we would expect. Investors are often conflicted about record-high stock prices. They are pleased to see their
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Are You a Smaller, a Baller, or an Aller?

Whether it happens sooner (perhaps as early as next year) or later (but likely no later than 2026), there’s a good chance we’re going to see a significant drop in the federal estate tax exemption amount. And while there’s some uncertainty around exactly when it will happen, one thing that is certain is that if/when it does, substantially more Americans will be subject to this tax. Such potential changes on the horizon mean that one of the best ways to
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Key Questions for Long-Term Investors

Whether you’ve been investing for decades or are just getting started, at some point on your investment journey you’ll likely ask yourself some of the questions below. Trying to answer these questions may be intimidating, but know that you’re not alone. Your financial advisor is here to help. While this is not intended to be an exhaustive list, it will hopefully shed light on a few key principles, using data and reasoning, that may help improve investors’ odds of investment
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‘Everything Screams Inflation.’ How to Interpret the Headlines

KEY TAKEAWAYS After last year’s economic shocks, we shouldn’t be surprised to see prices rebounding. But the potential for inflation is one among many factors investors take into account when agreeing on a price at which to trade. A look at headlines from the past 50 years shows the difficulty of timing markets around inflation expectations. Investors may be better served sticking to a long-term plan. How quickly things change. Two years ago, the New York Times reported, “Federal Reserve
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Don’t Let the Perfect Be the Enemy of the Comfortable

One of my favorite Warren Buffett quips reads, “The most important quality for an investor is temperament, not intellect.” Not a greater example of this exists than in the introduction of Morgan Housel’s fabulous book, “The Psychology of Money.” In a nutshell, he describes two individuals. One is a first-generation high school graduate and lifelong janitor and gas station attendant. The other is a Harvard-educated and University of Chicago MBA graduate who was chosen for Crain’s “40 under 40” list
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Who Manages Your Money After Death?

In the simplest situations, after your death, you leave your money outright to your spouse if he or she is living. Then, when your spouse passes, they leave the remaining money to your children. This assumes a straightforward family scenario, perhaps with only one marriage involved. Ideally, everyone is experienced with money management, has happy and stable relationships themselves, and there are no major personal issues to worry about. The ideal and uncomplicated situation is rarely the real family dynamic.
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Should You Invest When the Market Is High?

Concerns about market downturns certainly come as no surprise. After all, steep corrections and crashes can be disconcerting for even the most steely and disciplined investors. What has been surprising to me, however, is the number of inquiries I have received over the years raising concerns about the stock market being “too high” or “overvalued.” These concerns generally manifest themselves in some variation of questions like the following: “Now that the market is so high, should I reduce (or eliminate)
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The Next Normal

A year ago, at the end of March 2020, the S&P 500 was down nearly 20%(1) and the world was scrambling into lockdown. Many experts wrote articles telling us where we would be in a year. I don’t remember reading any that said the S&P 500 Index would be up 56% over the next 12 months. But that’s what happened. I didn’t predict any of that. I never do. Last June, I spoke about the Old Normal and how we
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