11 Most Read Articles of the Week!

1. Win More Prospects: Show Them You Are the Goals-Centric Advisor Clients Want

As a financial advisor, you have one job and one job only—to help your clients achieve their financial goals. At least, that’s how your clients see it. That’s according to a research study by Morningstar, which revealed what clients value most in an advisor. Advisors would be well-served to keep that in mind in their efforts to win over more prospects. — Don Connelly

2. Who’s Afraid of an Inverted Yield Curve?

The current slope of the US Treasury yield curve is inverted. Two-year yields are higher than 10-year yields, and to us that means that investors are focused on a few things. — Matthew Sheridan

3. 65% Jump in Fintech Use, With Boomers the Fastest-Growing Cohort

The use of finance apps jumped by almost two-thirds in 2022 – with boomers the fastest growing demographic, reveals new data from one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory, asset management and fintech organizations. — Geroge Prior

4. Private Commercial Real Estate Is a Key Component in Alts Conversation

Following a brutal 2022 in which the S&P 500 posted its seventh-worst showing since the 1920s, the Bloomberg US Aggregate Bond Index slumped to its worst performance since inception in 1976, and the 60/40 portfolio suffered its worst annual returns in 100 years. We think it’s safe to say that financial advisors may be reviewing their clients’ portfolios, and are reexamining the role of alternative investments and how they may help improve their risk/return profile when added to a traditional portfolio. — CrowdStreet Advisors

5. Are Home Buyers Back in the Game?

With mortgage rates down, mortgage applications for purchase surged last week, indicating some renewed enthusiasm from potential home buyers. Additionally, the NAHB’s survey of home builders showed what could be a bottom in negative sentiment or at least a reprieve from a terrible 2022. Friday’s Existing House Sales declined less than feared. All these reports combined suggest to us that the housing market may be stabilizing after being hobbled last year by the Fed’s rapid policy rate increases in the face of surging inflation. — Brian Clark

6. Is the Fed Trying To Wean Markets off the Monetary Policy?

Is the Fed trying to wean the markets off monetary policy? Such was an interesting premise from Alastair Crooke via the Strategic Culture Foundation. To wit: “The Fed however, may be attempting to implement a contrarian, controlled demolition of the U.S. bubble-economy through interest rate increases. The rate rises will not slay the inflation ‘dragon’ (they would need to be much higher to do that). The purpose is to break a generalised ‘dependency habit’ on free money.” — Lance Roberts

7. Has Crypto Failed?

I’ve enjoyed the rise and rise of the Libertarian dream of ungoverned finance. In 2022, facing the reckoning, it’s now quite funny to see the Libertarians saying we need regulations. As I’ve always said: you cannot have money without governance. The challenge here however is what governance? Do we need central banks and nations to regulate digital money or can we create a governance structure that is truly decentralised? — Chris Skinner

8. Unlock Additional Cash Flow to Grow AUM

Helping clients with expense reduction is an overlooked way for financial advisors to add value and accelerate their wealth building. Learning how to guide your clients through this process can result in benefits to both of you. — Gordon Stein

9. Passive Value Investors Are Not Value Investors

Investment management can be silly, just like the title of this article. When researching potential investments, we often must choose between math and facts versus irrational human behavior. For instance, the rise of passive investment strategies has many investors favoring “value” stocks not on valuations or earnings trends but on self-serving Wall Street classifications. As a result, larger companies that meet vague categorizations attract more passive strategy dollars. This makes them even more prominent and further inflates their valuations. — Michael P. Lebowitz

10. A Macro Regime Shift Requires a Portfolio Allocation Shift

And they’re off!" Markets shot out of the gate the first two weeks of this year like horses at the start of a race with the S&P, Nasdaq 100 and even the investment grade bond market up over 4%, 5% and 4% respectively. Among many analysts’ forecasts, those numbers would have already hit the mark for full-year results. As last week’s market declines point out, unfortunately, the race has only just begun and continuing with the metaphor, all horses on a circular racetrack end in the same place they started (unless they break a leg!). — Cliff Corso

11. What Do Life Insurance Customers Want?

One of the questions that continually vexes professionals is “what do customers want?“ In the life insurance area of financial services the answer is even tougher to find than usual, because insurance for virtually all consumers is an absolute grudge purchase.  When we think about it logically every person who buys insurance (especially life or disability insurance) hopes that they are wasting their money…the last thing they want is a claim, isn’t it? — Tony Vidler