Quarterly client letter: 2024 Q2  

July 1, 2024

As the market continues its rally and headlines and pundits fret about potential global uncertainty, this edition of the quarterly client letter examines the twin emotions of fear and FOMO (fear of missing out) and takes the opportunity to remind your readers of the lessons history has to teach us about long-term investing and a portfolio built to match their goals, timeline and risk tolerance.

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Quarterly client letter (2024 Q1)  

April 1, 2024

Reflections on strong Q1 markets and the importance of avoiding stock picking and market timing in hot and cold markets; also includes an homage to the late Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2023 Q4  

January 1, 2024

Commentary on the strong 2023 annual returns nobody saw coming, along with timeless advice for informing 2024 investment decisions.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2023 Q3  

October 1, 2023

Reflections on a mixed-bag quarter and how to remain focused on long-term outcomes and personal financial goals instead of reacting to the latest undependable forecasts.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2023 Q2  

July 3, 2023

This quarterly letter celebrates strong quarterly and YTD returns, while encouraging clients to stick with their long-term investment strategy across strong and weak markets. It also includes an homage to the recently passed Nobel laureate Professor Harry Markowitz.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2023 Q1  

April 2, 2023

This quarterly letter reflects on the impact of inflation, interest rate, and banking news in the quarter past, and how, if you’d missed the events in real time, you may not even have known they’d happened. Invest instead according to your investment strategy and individual goals.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2022 Q4  

January 4, 2023

This quarterly and year-end client letter looks back on negative returns in 2022, and cautions clients against letting potential pessimism alter their asset allocation decisions. You never know what the near-term future holds, so long-term planning remains advised.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2022 Q3  

October 3, 2022

This quarterly client letter reflects on having entered bear market territory, and why it still makes sense to remain invested in a globally diversified portfolio that reflects each investor's personal financial goals. It references both current commentary as well as historical insights.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2022 Q2  

July 4, 2022

This quarterly client letter touches on a series of disorienting conditions in current markets, such as the fact that stocks and bonds are down simultaneously, and reinforces sticking with one's long-term, globally diversified portfolio, including a value tilt when appropriate.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2022 Q1   Free Sample (Click on title to download)

April 4, 2022

This quarterly client letter explores the essentials of investment planning amidst current market volatility, aggravated by inflation, interest rates, and economic concerns. It optionally points to the recently completed three-part report on the same.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2021 Q4  

January 3, 2022

This quarterly client letter explores recent and future market returns in the context of investors' personal financial goals--considering the "parts" and the "whole."

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2021 Q3  

October 4, 2021

This Q3 2021 quarterly client letter puts recent market highs and lows in the context of more enduring news and views.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2021 Q2  

July 1, 2021

This 491-word Q2 2021 quarterly client letter compares recent speculative ventures like FINRA-fined Robinhood’s IPO filing, with the 50th anniversary of index investing.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2021 Q1  

April 1, 2021

This 416-word Q1 2021 quarterly client letter reminds clients why it's just as important to ignore hot hands as cold fears in ever-changeable markets.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2020 Q4  

January 4, 2021

This 487-word Q4 2020 quarterly client letter reviews the wild ride 2020 delivered and why it’s important to stay the course through both bear and bull markets. It lists the ways you’ll be helping them do that, in the context of current financial and political news.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2020 Q3  

October 1, 2020

This 558-word Q3 2020 quarterly client letter reminds clients of why it’s important to ignore distractions that might have detracted from their ability to participate in the market’s recent strong overall returns. Illustrations include chasing FAANG stocks, trying to predict presidential elections, and more.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2020 Q2  

July 2, 2020

This 460-word Q2 2020 quarterly client letter reminds clients of the importance of sticking to plan despite near-term market noise in 2020.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2020 Q1  

April 3, 2020

This 652-word Q1 2020 quarterly client letter prepares clients for putting last quarter's returns in perspective. It reviews the activities you're doing on their behalf, encourages them to be in touch if their investment resolve is wavering, and reminds them of the perils of market-timing.

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Quarterly Client Letter — 2019 Q4  

January 2, 2020

Use this 540-word quarterly client letter to reflect on one- and 10-year retrospectives in the new year, including how and why to separate short-term reactions from long-term strategy.

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Quarterly Client Letter — 2019 Q3  

October 2, 2019

Use this 442-word quarterly client letter to remind clients to stay the course amidst breaking global news. It explores how reflexes in your brain can play tricks on your financial resolve.

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Quarterly Client Letter — 2019 Q2  

July 2, 2019

Use this 632-word quarterly client letter for Q2 2019 to describe Daniel Kahneman's research into decision-making "noise," and how it can be employed for improved investing.

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Quarterly Client Letter — 2019 Q1  

April 1, 2019

This 520-word quarterly client letter reflects on the differences between breaking news and timeless investment tenets, noting in particular the contrast between Q1 performance and recent volatile returns just prior.

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Quarterly Client Letter — 2018 Q4  

January 2, 2019

This 515-word quarterly client letter offers two talking points on how to consider current market conditions in the context of long-term market performance. "Average" returns aren't the norm, and recency bias is a risk.

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Quarterly Client Letter — 2018 Q3  

October 1, 2018

This 530-word quarterly client letter offers three reasons investors should avoid the temptation to engage in market-timing by abandoning their existing plans and investments out of concern that the market may be "overpriced" and headed for a fall.

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Quarterly Client Letter — 2018 Q2  

July 3, 2018

This 400-word quarterly client letter reflects on the mixed bag of scary and enticing market news from the quarter, encouraging clients to stay on course with their well-built portfolio to maintain the highest odds of achieving their personal goals.

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Quarterly Client Letter — 2018 Q1  

April 2, 2018

This 500-word quarterly client letter reflects on the recent uptick in market volatility, encouraging clients to be in touch with you if they need a "pep talk," a shift in their investment plans, or both.

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Quarterly Client Letter — 2017 Q4  

January 1, 2018

This 425-word, fourth quarter client letter reminds clients of the importance of adhering to their Investment Policy Statement using disciplined rebalancing in the context of strong 2017 market returns.

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Quarterly Client Letter — 2017 Q3  

October 1, 2017

This 330-word, third quarter client letter reminds clients why an evidence-based investment approach remains in their best interests, using an illustration from a Russell quarterly report based on less-dependable advice.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2017 Q2  

July 4, 2017

This 440-word, second quarter client letter reminds clients to avoid market-timing and focus instead on asset allocation and rebalancing -- in good markets and bad.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2017 Q1  

April 4, 2017

This 525-word, first-quarter client letter summarizes some of the noteworthy market and economic events in Q1 2017 and puts them into the usual "stay the course" context.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2016 Q4  

January 3, 2017

This 425-word, fourth quarter (year-end) client letter acknowledges that 2017 remains an unknown and reminds investors of the durability of what really drives market returns -- which is global human enterprise.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2016 Q3  

October 4, 2016

This 480-word, third quarter client letter reflects on a relatively quiet summer, celebrates some recent market milestones and reminds clients that, despite continued domestic and global uncertainties, the best approach is the long-term, evidence-based strategy.

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Quarterly Client Letter – 2016 Q2  

July 4, 2016

This 360-word, second quarter client letter reminds clients that the markets' responses in the aftermath of the Brexit referendum illustrate the inherent uncertainty involved in maintaining a disciplined, globally diversified portfolio designed to manage risks and capture expected market returns.

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April Q1 2016 Client Letter (Guess the Media Source)  

April 1, 2016

This 445-word, first quarter client letter reinforces the importance of staying invested according to plan. It juxtaposes distracting headlines from the popular press with timeless advice from solid sources such as WSJ's Jason Zweig as well as your own evidence-based investment advice. It also reminds clients that you are there to serve their highest financial interests (in case they've been seeing the news about the DOL's impending fiduciary regulations).

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January Q4 2015 Client Letter (Peek-a-Boo Markets)  

January 4, 2016

This 420-word year-end client letter observes that 2015 markets were like a game of peek-a-boo with respect to global returns. It reminds clients how "recency" can trick them into making the wrong moves at the wrong time, and why it's important to stay invested in their personalized, evidence-based, globally diversified portfolio.

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October Q3 2015 Client Letter (Google Hits vs. Long-Term Investing)  

October 3, 2015

This 470-word article looks at how popular Google results, similar to other forms of headline news, may distract investors from their long-term strategy. It provides salient recent quotes on the importance of remaining disciplined during market uncertainty.

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July Q2 2015 Client Letter (What We Know Now)  

July 3, 2015

This 400-word letter reminds clients that current market conditions fueled by the Greek debt crisis are an illustration of how and why (1) market risk contributes to future expected returns, and (2) they are probably already best prepared to ride out the risks with their existing, globally diversified portfolio. Use this letter with your quarterly client reports to share a timely message with your clients.

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April Q1 2015 Client Letter (Relevant/Fiduciary Advice)  

April 2, 2015

This 350-word client letter addresses the timeless relevance of robust advice versus secondary and/or "robo" advice. It describes how the advice you offer complements evidence-based investing and best serves adviser and investor alike. Two versions of the letter are bundled into this downloadable zip file: The US version uses the term, "fiduciary." A global version references transparent, objective advice.

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January Q4 2014 Client Letter (Recency & Tracking-Error)  

January 4, 2015

This 390-word client letter can be used as a cover letter to accompany your quarterly client reports or as a stand-alone communication. It advises clients to avoid recency and tracking-error regret as they consider 2014 annual returns (when a concentrated large-cap U.S. position outperformed the typical globally diversified strategy).

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October Q3 2014 Client Letter (CAPE ratio)  

October 2, 2014

This 420-word client letter can be used as a cover letter to accompany your quarterly client reports or as a stand-alone communication. It presents recent media coverage of Shiller and Malkiel's assessments of the CAPE ratio and stock pricing, and why it remains prudent for clients to stick with their long-term globally diversified portfolio.

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July Q2 2014 Client Letter (Wm Sharpe)  

July 1, 2014

This 375-word client letter can be used as a cover letter to accompany your quarterly client reports or as a stand-alone communication. Based on a SensibleInvesting.tv interview with Nobel laureate William F. Sharpe, it reminds readers that, even as time, technology and terminology march on, some investment essentials remain as strong as ever. (Ties well with recent Evidence-Based Investment Insights series covering the benefits of diversification.)

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April Q1 2014 Client Letter (Michael Lewis & HFT)  

April 3, 2014

This 475-word client letter can be used as a cover letter to accompany your quarterly client reports or as a stand-alone communication. It addresses Michael Lewis' March 30th, 2014 "60 Minutes" discussion about his new book on high-frequency traders. The incident is a good lesson on why clients need to be aligned with a fiduciary advisor like you to look out for their interests in a market that is expected to reward patient investors, but that clearly has its dark side.

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January Q4 2013 Client Letter  

January 5, 2014

This 350-word (one page) client letter can be used as a cover letter to accompany your quarterly client reports or as a stand-alone communication. It reminds clients that, in the context of great 2013 returns but an uncertain future, it's better to base one's decisions on the durable science of investing than on past performance or attempts to time the market.

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October Q3 2013 Client Letter  

October 4, 2013

This 340-word (one page) client letter can be used as a cover letter to accompany your quarterly client reports or as a stand-alone communication, reminding clients to stick with their disciplined plan in the face of current political and economic uncertainty (government shutdown, debt ceiling, interest rate climate, etc.)

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July 2013 Client Letter  

July 2, 2013

Overview of market conditions in Q2, 2013.

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