Author - Sam Fawaz, CPA, CFP®

1
How Firm is your Investment Character?
2
What’s Going on in the Markets February 5, 2018
3
A Strawberry Alarmist?
4
Running for the Hills
5
Is A Donor Advised Fund Right for You?

How Firm is your Investment Character?

One time Fidelity Magellan Fund manager and investing legend Peter Lynch once said “The real key to making money in stocks is not to get scared out of them.”

Benjamin Graham said “What investors need, but few have, is a “firmness of character.”” What he was referring to is the ability for investors to keep their emotions in check.

Investing success is more influenced by DQ than IQ. Our Discipline Quotient, or the ability to remain disciplined during emotional times, is what sets investors apart. Exercising investment discipline is a difficult, but not impossible endeavor.

Buy Low, Sell High

Every …

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What’s Going on in the Markets February 5, 2018

It’s been a long time, more than a year, since I’ve posted an article about what’s going on in the markets. Market volatility, until last week, has been mostly subdued. For what seems like years now, markets seemed immune from any meaningful drop. But this still young month of February has seen volatility return with a vengeance.

This means that the U.S. stock market will finally get something that happens, on average, about once a year: a 10+% percent drop—the definition of a market correction.  The last time this happened, known as a bear market, was a whopper: the Great …

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A Strawberry Alarmist?

“Good sense, innocence, cripplin’ mankind
Dead kings, many things I can’t define
Occasions, persuasions clutter your mind
Incense and peppermints, the color of time

Who cares what games we choose?
Little to win, but nothin’ to lose”

— Song Lyrics from the 1967 hit single “Incense & Peppermints” written by Tim Gilbert & John S. Carter and performed by the group known as The Strawberry Alarm Clock

Suppose somebody came up to you and shouted: “I have terrible news about the economy. I think you should sell your stocks!”
Alarmed, you say: “Oh, my God. Tell me more!”
And this …

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Running for the Hills

I’ve never seen anything like it. The mere mention of Amazon eyeing another kind of business can send chills down traders’ backs who might own stocks in that line of business. It seems no one wants to be caught owning the next business Amazon might want to conquer.

As a result, on Tuesday morning, Wall Street traders woke up to something they haven’t experienced much of lately: actual market volatility.  One trader posted an image of his Bloomberg terminal at the market opening, which showed an immediate scary-looking plunge in U.S. equities as the opening bell rung.  By the end …

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Is A Donor Advised Fund Right for You?

Executive Summary: Setting up a Donor Advised Fund (DAF) for 2017 (before December 31, 2017) and front loading charitable deductions can save you thousands of dollars in taxes immediately, while directing distribution to charities in/for future years. Even if you decide not to establish a DAF, you should consider whether accelerating next year’s charitable contributions to 2017 makes sense for you, especially if you are phased out of itemizing deductions starting next year.

As you’ve heard by now, President Donald Trump has signed the Tax and Jobs Act of 2017, which mostly makes sweeping changes to tax rates and eliminates …

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