You’ve seen the news. The pandemic, race riots, geo-political unrest, and economic uncertainty. For some reason the news presented to us has always seemed to be glim, and even more so now. All the information we have access to is overwhelming and it is difficult to digest and fully discern its accuracy. I personally feel like this has been a roller coaster of a time. I feel confident and full of hope one day and down the next. As a man of faith, I remind myself that my hope, true hope, doesn’t come from the circumstances of the day.
In a financial plan, timeless wisdom prevails. These times reiterate the value of spending less that we earn, the importance of an emergency fund, and being careful with debt. This pandemic reinforces the importance of asset allocation and diversification.
“Everyone has a plan ’till they get punched in the mouth” – Mike Tyson
I love this quote from Mike Tyson. This wit and wisdom of Tyson indicates that it is human nature to have a plan and follow it until there’s a shock to the system and then we begin to flail. We have a plan in place for a time such as this. Although it can be tempting, this is not the time to flail. Now is the time for confident resolve.
The very things we try to avoid at all costs, are the same things that accelerate our personal and collective growth. We do not grow in spite of tribulation; we grow because of it. There is no doubt, it’s a high cost for growth. But challenging times accelerate ingenuity and problem solving. Think of the failed moon launches: budget pressures, technology challenges, political pressure, waning public support, and the time crunch. What was the result of all these tensions?
“One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind” – Neil Armstrong
I have confidence in our desire and ability to thrive because of tough times. What do we learn? How do we get better?
Staying the course does not mean standing still. It means we have a plan and we adjust…looking for opportunities.
Covid-19 has been an accelerant for previously existing trends…
- Cloud Computing
- Online eCommerce
- Efficient Logistics
- Working from home
- Home fitness
- Online education – possibly reducing higher education costs and reducing future student loan debt.
- Deglobalization, diversifying, and shortening of the supply chain – possibility of new automated and intelligent factories manufacturing moving closer to the end consumer and out of China
- Less business travel and in-person conferences
- Home cooking increases
- Investing in virology and anti-infectives
- New standards for hygiene and sanitation
Plan of action:
What are our actions considering the market and these trends?
We plan to:
- Look for mutual fund managers who are actively overweight the sectors with higher trending demand like tech and healthcare and underweight the sectors with a lessening demand like brick and mortar retail and office and retail real estate. Managers that look to discover companies that are winners considering these trends. We believe now is a time for active management rather than indexing or even factor-based investing. Now is not the time to indiscriminately buy the whole market.
- Tax-loss harvest
- Roth conversions
- Optimize asset location and allocation
I appreciate you, your business, friendship, and confidence in these unusual times. I pray for you and your family’s wellness. These storms will not last forever and the sun will shine again.