MONEY matters

Mark Zaifman's thoughts on money, global economic trends and politics

Mark Zaifman

Long-Term Investing - Why 5 Days Over 10 Years Have Made All the Difference
Mark Zaifman   |    Tue, Feb 16, 2016 @ 10:26 AM

These past couple months, and especially the past few weeks, have been particularly nerve racking for investors. With memories of the last stock market crash still etched into our collective psyches, it’s challenging, even for disciplined long-term investors, not to get caught up in the frenzy.

A Market Decline is Temporary-Selling at a Loss is Permanent
Mark Zaifman   |    Mon, Jan 18, 2016 @ 11:31 AM

Here we go again…..up, down, up, down. If this stock market roller coaster ride has you feeling anxious, you’re not alone.

Do I Need to Adjust My Retirement Income Strategy in 2016?
Mark Zaifman   |    Wed, Dec 30, 2015 @ 08:52 AM


It’s been a so-so year for investors in 2015. Lots of volatility throughout the year with little upside performance to show for it. I believe the title of this recent article says it best: The Year Nothing Worked: Stocks, Bonds, Cash Go Nowhere

With the recent enhancements high frequency traders have made, volatility looks to be the ‘new normal’.

In 2014, the Ibbotson/Morningstar asset allocation models we use when constructing portfolios projected an estimated return of 7.2% for a 60% allocation to equities and a 40% allocation to fixed income. At our firm, this would be considered a moderate risk portfolio.

Now, heading into 2016, Ibbotson is projecting a 5.27% return for that same 60/40 asset allocation. For investors with 10+ years before retirement, while not good news, it’s not the end of the world as you’ll have time to course correct if needed.

Finding Your Financial Balance in 2016
Mark Zaifman   |    Wed, Nov 25, 2015 @ 12:50 PM

The stock market is volatile. Your bills are skyrocketing. Getting a grip on your finances, however, goes beyond your checkbook. Take a good hard look at your relationship with money, and you’ll finally figure out how the two of you can start getting along.

Is Your Retirement 10-Years Away or Sooner?
Mark Zaifman   |    Fri, Oct 23, 2015 @ 01:51 PM

If your retirement is 10-years away or sooner, you'll want to read, Get What’s Yours - The Secret To Maxing Out Your Social Security by Laurence Kotlikoff, Philip Moeller and Paul Solomon

One of the most overlooked elements of preparing for a successful retirement is deciding when to start drawing your Social Security. If you’re a married couple, the decision becomes even more complex.

Up until recently, the majority of people, usually by default, either started collecting Social Security at their full retirement age, early, at age 62, or waiting if possible until age 70. Simple on the surface right, three relatively easy choices.

Guess what. There are dozens of Social Security strategies that most people are unaware of. And remember, in the game of money, strategy is king.

Sticking with Your Financial Plan When the Going Gets Tough
Mark Zaifman   |    Wed, Sep 30, 2015 @ 02:38 PM

Next week, your monthly investment statements will arrive via mail or email. And unless your portfolio has been invested 100% in Treasury Bonds, you’re going to see unrealized losses on your statement, as it’s been a terrible month/quarter in the stock market.

Keeping Stock Market Volatility in Perspective
Mark Zaifman   |    Thu, Sep 03, 2015 @ 10:02 AM

It’s often impossible to explain stock market volatility until long after the dust has settled. And these past couple weeks of volatility are no different.

Bond Funds and the Prospect of Rising Interest Rates
Mark Zaifman   |    Wed, Jul 29, 2015 @ 01:21 PM

Since the stock market crash of 2008-2009, interest rates, especially the 10-year Treasury, have stayed historically low. Last quarter, the 10-year Treasury saw its largest rise since the end of 2013, halting a streak of five consecutive quarters of falling yields.

Your Investment Strategy-Never Confuse Risk Tolerance with Risk Capacity
Mark Zaifman   |    Fri, Jul 03, 2015 @ 11:12 AM


Women & Money & the Fear of Being a ‘Bag Lady’
Mark Zaifman   |    Thu, Jun 04, 2015 @ 05:36 PM
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