We believe in intelligent investing.
Our role as fiduciaries of client wealth is a responsibility we take seriously and with great care. Every successful client partnership is a journey that spans many years and there is no greater reward than to see the positive impact comprehensive planning and disciplined investing have on client’s ability to realize their financial goals and objectives. Intelligent investing begins with an investment philosophy that controls risk so wealth is compounded efficiently across economic and market cycles.
History suggests that portfolio efficiency can be optimized through the ownership of value stocks and quality stocks. Our investment philosophy emphasizes implementation of these factors across both market size and geography and is instrumental in helping to create successful long-term client outcomes.
Financial planning covers a broad area of topics across the lifecycle of wealth, including wealth accumulation, wealth distribution, and wealth transfer. Effective financial planning isn’t a one-time event, but an ongoing interactive process that adjusts over time in conjunction with changes in client goals and circumstances. Common client questions we answer during our comprehensive financial planning process include: Do I have enough money to retire comfortably? How can I help my children/grandchildren pay for college? Do I have enough life insurance? How much longer do I need to work before retiring? How much income can I expect my portfolio to generate annually? How can I tax efficiently transfer wealth to my heirs? How can I be assured I don’t outlive my money? What is a safe withdrawal rate?
These are all important questions and the answers are unique to each client circumstance. We implement customized and comprehensive financial plans so clients can confront these questions with confidence and clarity, no matter where they are on the lifecycle of wealth.
Based on client preferences, we may add individual stocks to their portfolio of mutual funds and exchange-traded funds. Stock selections are researched and managed internally by our investment analyst. Our due diligence process involves researching annual report filings, reading independent research reports, and performing our own company valuation estimates, using discounted cash flow, ratio analysis, and other valuation methods.
Stock selections will follow our investment philosophy, which seeks to buy quality businesses at attractive prices. We typically look for businesses that possess a unique set of characteristics such as a strong balance sheet, durable competitive advantages, high returns on capital, attractive long-term growth prospects, and a shareholder friendly management team. Stock selections must meet our strict criteria or we will hold cash until opportunities arise. Once an investment idea is identified, we build our position incrementally rather than all at once. Each individual stock position does not usually exceed 5% of a portfolio.
Each fund manager we choose for client portfolios follows an objective investment process that allocates capital consistent with our fundamental value investment philosophy. We look for best-in-class managers that produce attractive long-term risk-adjusted returns versus a comparable benchmark, particularly those funds that have shown resiliency in adverse market environments.
Our due-diligence process evaluates funds across these categories: philosophy, process, people, price, product, and performance. Along with our internal due diligence, we also use research from Morningstar to aid in identifying fund managers that are a good fit for client portfolios. Before investing in a fund, we talk with fund representatives and/or portfolio managers as a means of deepening our insight into the fund. Once the due diligence process is complete, the fund is added to our recommended funds list and continually monitored against its benchmark.
In addition to mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETF’s) are sometimes used to lower portfolio cost, improve tax efficiency, and gain exposure to specific factors that are in line with our investment philosophy. Due diligence is a time-intensive process, but it is time well-spent as it deepens our insight and enhances our conviction in the investments chosen for client portfolios.