Part 3 – Caring for Aging Parents

Last in a 3-part series from the archives of January 2017.

In earlier editions of TGIF 2 Minutes I delved into the topic of “Caring For Aging Parents”. It may seem like overkill to read a “Part 3”, but ask anyone who is in the midst of coordinating care for a parent or spouse if they wish they had gotten advice sooner. Heck, these days even neighbors and friends are enlisted to check in on a 93-year old down the street. Experts in long-term care insurance cite the emotional strain on family members — that can leave a family member or friend in need of serious or costly medical care for themselves after years of caring for others.

Luck vs. Skill – Buchan’s Blog August 2018

Luck versus skill. I talk about this a great deal as it relates to investing, but today I want to write quickly about my life, how incredibly lucky I am to be where I am today and three of my most important mentors/influencers that helped get me here.

It was 2006, I was 32 years old, working at as an Equities Trader in downtown Manhattan. While I could say I was moderately successful in my first decade in the “real world,” I was also very much a lost soul, knowing my current career was on its path to being obsolete (with advances in computerized high frequency trading) but, more importantly, realizing that what I was doing with my life was in no shape personally fulfilling.

Part 2 – Caring for Aging Parents

Part 2 in a 3-part series. Excerpts from the archives of January 2017:

In a previous edition of TGIF 2 Minutes I reviewed the topic of “Caring For Aging Parents”. The subject remains a big, big topic of conversation with friends and clients. PLUS, as people experience caring for a parent they all of a sudden say: How much do I need to be concerned about planning for MY OWN Long-Term Care down the line?!  

Caring for Aging Parents

The following edition of TGIF 2 Minutes originally appeared in January 2017. But due to popular demand and recent inquiries on this critical subject I am re-running it:

Grandma moving in?? Traveling to help Mom and Dad from time to time? Sharing tasks with your siblings to help out your parents?

“Caring for Aging Parents” is an emotional and involved topic that takes FAR longer than 2 minutes to cover. However, it is a critical topic and one that comes up daily in my conversations with friends and clients. Think about it: how many times have you been part of this conversation in the past several months alone… among friends/family?? I bet more than once!

:o) , :/ or :D

What Emoji are you feeling these days when it comes to your financial life? Recall that an “emoji” is that little character that expresses an emotion using the keys on your computer or phone keyboard. Happiness, joy, confusion or sadness….there’s an emoji for it all. But just because the markets have been mostly joy … :o) …. does not mean that your financial life is all joy and satisfaction. :/ (That is the “uncertainty/confused” emoji.)

A Force For Good

I am borrowing from Notre Dame here. But even USC and Michigan fans will accept this as a universal concept.

Last year the University of Notre Dame celebrated 175 years since its founding. There was a lot to celebrate — far more than the 7 Heisman Trophy winners since Angelo Bertelli in 1943. More notably, Notre Dame literally considers its greatest accomplishment as establishing itself upon the principal, “A Force For Good”. These were the words uttered by the Catholic priest founders of the University in the winter of 1842.

Belief Drives Behavior – Buchan’s Blog July 2018

Belief drives behavior. The stronger your belief system, the less likely you are to stray from your desired behavior. The converse is also true – the weaker the belief system, the more likely one is to stray from his/her preferred behavior. This is the primary reason why “normal” investors struggle so much, as highlighted by the annual Dalbar study that shows that the stock market has returned 10% per year over the past 20 years while the individual stock investor has returned less than 4% over the same time frame. If your investing belief system is not strong enough, eventually, certain biases (or what psychologists call heuristics) will creep into the subconscious and entice you to make sub-optimal decisions.

Not Freaking Out

Amidst the “high stakes news” of late maybe it is time for a more mellow message. Whether it has been G-7 talks, world leader summits, US Federal Reserve meetings, celebrity events — or your child’s graduation from kindergarten — the art of not freaking out seems to be harder than ever.

The Luck Factor

Despite all of the calculations involved in investing, there is still an element of luck involved. A specific term for this luck is, “Sequence of Returns”. What on earth is that? Answer: it is a risk. And it may just be the most important concept in the world if you ever wish to spend your savings — and have them last as long as you need.