Is a College Education Worth the Debt?
In the last few decades a college education has become an increasingly large part of the American dream. Unfortunately that portion of the dream has seen significant and sustained rising costs that have resulted in the large majority of students requiring some sort of loan financing to obtain it. Read more »
Guess This Team Member 9
A fun series designed to help you get to know our team members better! We think our team members are some of the nicest, most competent folks on the planet; people who truly care about the goals and well-being of our clients, and we hope you agree! Read more »
Cyber Security; Protecting Yourself and Your Personal Information in the Digital Age
Breaches and hackings are becoming the new norm in today’s digital age. It’s no longer a question of if it will ever happen – it’s a question of when and how bad will it be. It’s important to be prepared when a breach affects you, protect yourself as much as possible, and know what to do when your information does become compromised. Read more »
Kick out Your Kids to Boost Home Prices
The articles over the last few months have mainly been looking at the greater stock market, so this month we will narrow the focus to an area near and dear to most people: residential real estate. While prices have stagnated or declined in many parts of the country in recent months, most of the underlying data promotes the idea that price gains will resume in the not too distant future. Read more »
September 2014 Market Update
Last month’s CWM article was all about my expectations for increased market volatility, but this opinion should not be construed as an expectation for an economic recession or a bearish stock market. Compared to the most recent stock market peaks, most metrics still look very favorable and it is doubtful that another major recessionary period is near. Read more »
Getting Your Financial House in Order
I recently had a discussion with a client in which we shared horror stories about family members who had passed before getting their financial house in order. In my own family, we’ve seen first-hand what can come from failure to communicate and document final wishes in writing, and even when those documents have been drafted, what can happen when they housed them in a mystery location unknown to the executor or remaining family members. Read more »
Guess This Team Member 8
Welcome to a fun series, designed to help you get to know our team members better! We think our team members are some of the nicest, most competent folks on the planet; people who truly care about the goals and well-being of our clients, and we hope you agree! Read more »
A Yawn Inspiring Marketplace and the Likely Coming Wake Up Call
Watching the market these days is just about as exciting as watching grass grow, paint dry, or whatever euphemism you can insert here to designate extreme boredom. While we vastly prefer this to the “exciting” days of 2008-09 (who can forget those), this lack of excitement does bring on the age old expression of, “It’s quiet… Too quiet…” During periods of low volatility, like we have experienced over the last few years, it is easy to forget that normal market places usually have significant value swings each and every year. Read more »
A Changing of the Guard
July is here and along with the change in season comes change at Comprehensive Wealth Management (CWM). I am pleased to say that Gary Arford, my father and founder of the firm, had his last official work-day at CWM on June 27th and has had an opportunity to step away for a hard-earned retirement. Read more »
Guess This Team Member 7
Welcome to a fun series, designed to help you get to know our team members better. We invite you to "Guess this Team Member"! Read more »
Something Inflationary This Way Comes
The stock markets by and large have had a good second quarter, tacking on +4% or more in many cases. As the market continues to rise, the prudent investor will continually monitor changing data points in order to determine how to position assets for the future. One data point your CWM team is keeping an eye on with particular interest is the unemployment level as it is likely this information will provide some ability to forecast future wage pressures and inflation. Knowledge of these areas, and the ability to make accurate economic forecasts, can allow for better positioning of portfolio assets and the potential to benefit from the future market environment. Read more »
Why Doing Nothing Is Sometimes the Best Strategy
For the most part, the major U.S. stock markets continue to be slightly positive to unchanged for the year. Sideways markets are sometimes the most difficult to invest in because there is an immense temptation to start making unnecessary changes in the pursuit of greater growth opportunities. In order to determine if a potential change is warranted, the facts must be considered and disciplined strategies must be adhered to. Sometimes this means the best decision is to do nothing beyond following standard rebalancing and reinvesting strategies. Read more »
Guess This Team Member 6
Welcome to a fun series, designed to help you get to know our team members better. We invite you to "Guess this Team Member"! Read more »
Big News
As many of our clients and friends are aware, I have been working on CWM’s continuity planning since 2001 in preparation for passing on a successful multi-generational business.The CWM Team is among the very best in the industry and our Performance Targeting System (PTS)™ provides us with a systematic disciplined approach to investing that we believe will help provide a real long-term advantage to our clients and our company. Read more »
Kris Muhlestein – Now a Stanford Certified Project Manager
CWM is proud to announce that one of our many outstanding team members, Kris Muhlestein, recently completed a post-graduate program from Stanford University and may now officially use the professional designation of SCPM (Stanford Certified Project Manager). We decided to sit down with Kris and gain some insight into this certification and what it brings to the CWM team and our clients. Read more »
The Year So Far and Expectations Going Forward
There has been a little market volatility so far this year, due mostly to some major snowstorms and tensions with Russia. But if you have just awoken for the first time this year, it would seem like nothing much had happened marketwise since the end of 2013. After the big stock market run up last year it shouldn’t be too surprising if things took a breather for a bit while investors reassessed expectations for the coming year. Your CWM team expects that market performance, at least in the near term, should continue to be positive for investors. Read more »
2013 IRA Contributions
A few reminders regarding your 2013 IRA contributions. Read more »
Why it’s a Good Idea to Buy Bad Assets, and a Bad Idea to Buy into the January Effect Theory
Much is being made over the poor stock market performance in January, especially in the emerging market (EM) space. This beckons the question as to whether this is a bad omen for the rest of the year or is an opportunity for savvy investors. As always, we have taken a deep look at these ideas and have compiled a considerable amount of data to help inform our decision making process. Read more »
2013 Tax Time Checklist
Read this before you file your taxes! We've compiled this list and descriptions of the documents you or your CPA will need to prepare your 2013 taxes with respect to your CWM managed accounts. Read more »
2014: Continuing Opportunity or Batten the Hatches
Over the past few months, we have documented our belief that the equities markets may have more room to run. However, whenever large run ups in value have occurred, there is always the danger that a correction is in the offing. Why? Fear is more motivating than greed for most people and the events of the 21st Century to date have made everyone gun-shy. In effect, what goes up may (and probably will) go down, and fear usually drives the market down in a steeper dive than the ascension of the market on the upside. Read more »
Guess This Team Member 5
Welcome to a fun series, designed to help you get to know our team members better. We invite you to "Guess this Team Member"! Read more »
Stock Markets Rallied BIG TIME in 2013! Does That Mean we are in a Bubble and Due for a Crash?
It’s no secret that most global stock markets have performed very well throughout this year. While this has been a lot of fun for all those invested, it does bring on the questions: “have stock values gone beyond reasonable levels” and, “should we begin repositioning accounts for an eventual downturn?” The current bearish arguments seem to be that the market cannot possibly have another positive year after having a year like 2013; markets have already rallied significantly over a long period of time since the 2009 bottom, valuations are expensive, and economic fundamentals do not support a continuation of the current trend. When considering investment related questions like these, it is usually useful to refer to past experiences to help give meaning to present events. Read more »
Holiday Recipe: Pecan Pie
This years’ holiday recipe comes from CWM's Ashley Doedens. Ashley is an avid CrossFitter and health-food enthusiast, so we were excited when she shared with us her healthy(-ier) version of a holiday classic, pecan pie! Read more »
Are Bonds a Dangerous Investment?
Many people are becoming worried about bond related assets, due mainly to the media regularly discussing how we have entered a rising rate environment, which they forecast to be horrible for bond investors. Before we all panic and sell out of our bond holdings, let’s consider the historical perspective. Read more »
We have all read and heard about the all-time highs in the market. Now, we are hearing that the market is frothy and may be due for a tumble. Is it? Let’s look at the realities since the 21st Century began. A Growth portfolio is generally thought of as 80% stocks and 20% bonds/cash. CWM defines it as a ”real person’s diversified portfolio”. It is dangerous to put all your eggs in one basket and we need to diversify thoroughly for protection. Read more »

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