November 2019

Fixed Income or Growing Income>

In July we made a case for investing in bonds, however, we continue to have confidence in owning stocks for both income and growth investors.  After all, equities have treated us and our investment income well – for years now.  Should you own stocks for higher income?

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October 2019

Amber Lights Are Flashing: A Time for Caution

What awaits us on the economic horizon in 2020?  As it approaches, we wonder what the economy will be like, later this year and in a year’s time.  Perhaps more importantly, we wonder how to best prepare right now for what may come.

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September 2019

Breaking News!

If you watch the news on any given day, the media will explain to you how the financial markets, the world, and our very existence as a free country are teetering on the precipice of sure oblivion, or at least an economic recession.


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July 2019

Should you invest in Bonds?  It depends!

Sometimes, bonds don’t get the credit they deserve.  They are often viewed as old-fashioned or boring.  They also do little to assuage investors’ FOMO, or Fear Of Missing Out.

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June 2019

Don’t Just Do Something, Stand There!

We have been told by others, “Don’t just stand there.  Do something”.  Much to the contrary!  Adopting a buy and hold strategy has proven to be a wise choice for investors, and often results in better returns than an actively traded portfolio.

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May 2019

Should the Markets Be Fearful of the 2020 Elections?

We have entered the election season.  It is easy to get caught up in the fray, but in the end, does any of it really matter to the markets, and to the economy in general?

The answer is …. read more …

April 2019

How Making  Charitable Contribution Can Land You in Jail!

By now, you’ve heard about the Varsity Blues college admissions scandal – some famous – have been implicated in a scheme where bribes helped them secure admission for their children to certain elite colleges and universities.

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March 2019

Why Care About Social Investing?

While it feels easy and natural for some to join the wave of social investing, what about those who do not believe that values and investing should be combined?  Why should they, and all investors, care about social investing?

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February 2019

Scamming Seniors: The Ugly Underside of the Graying of America

The American Bankers Association reports that one in three Americans is over 50 and this population segment holds 70% of all bank deposits and in excess of 80% of the wealth.

It’s also bolstering dark industries – those that scam seniors.

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December 2018

KISS… Keeping your Investments Simple and Safe

Investment Counsel stands for transparency in its communication and investment strategies.  If we cannot explain an investment to you in simple English, we won’t support it.

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November 2018

Stock Market Continues to Climb the “Wall of Worry”

The news media tell us that the world is ending.  That news certainly gets our attention.  Are we seeing the last days of an aging bull market?  Just how bad (or how good) are things?

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October 2018

Why Don’t I Have International Stocks In My Portfolio?

Many US investors feel strongly about keeping their money in US equities, both to keep their money in their own country, and to support domestic enterprise.  But, the reason for keeping your investments within the US may go far beyond a conviction or commitment to personally held beliefs.

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September 2018

Can China Be Trusted?

If you’ve so much as glanced at a news site in the last month or two, you’ve seen the headlines: Tariffs and TradeWars. Do tariffs ever make sense and have they ever worked?

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August 2018

Social Security 101: Four Key Facts

If you were to visit five random Americans in a room on any given summer afternoon, one would likely be receiving Social Security benefits in some form.

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July 2018

An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure

Cybersecurity 101: What to Watch for and How to Protect Yourself

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June 2018

Todays $64,000 Question

During the 1950s, the television show, The $64,000 Question, was so popular with American viewers that the quiz show ratings exceeded all other television competition.

Human nature propels to seek answers to questions. Today the economy’s $64,000 Question is: Are we in the midst of another 1950s-type boom right now?

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May 2018

“The Only Thing That Is Constant Is Change” -Heraclitus

Markets change. What was free yesterday won’t always be free today or tomorrow.

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April 2018

Studies in Growth – 3M

At Investment Counsel, our goal is to provide superior service and smart investment choices for our clients. We apply our experience, discipline and know-how to your portfolio to help you reach your goals. When we invest in stock, our primary objective is long-term ownership.

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March 2018

I Heard of a Guy That Quit His Job and Got Rich Day Trading!

Buy low. Sell high. We can put that advice to work in many ways. With options come complexity. And risk.

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January 2018

How long can this bull market last?

This is a question weighing most heavily on investors’ minds.

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December 2017

Can Tax Reform Extend the Bull Market?

We take a step back, isolate the core tax code changes most meaningful to investors, examine the changes they may bring to your investments, and consider whether these changes may just extend the current bull market.

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November 2017

When to put down the plow?

By electing to take Social Security benefits early, you could receive as little as 75% of the full retirement age monthly benefits. Nonetheless, there are good reason to take Social Security early ……

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October 2017

Sector Studies: Technology and the Energy Sector

Technology advances have acted as a catalyst in transforming the global energy landscape. Developments in both oil and natural gas are especially relevant to follow because there may be material changes in each respective vertical in the near future.

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September 2017

Five Lessons Investors Can Learn From Lottery Winners

The Powerball paid out the largest single jackpot in North American history. We thought it is a perfect time to look at five reasons why lottery winners squander their earnings, and point out lessons that can be learned for the non-lottery-winning investor.

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August 2017

The “Magic Bullet” to Becoming Rich

Earning a high income does not automatically make someone rich. High earners can often neglect a budget and spend more than they make. Still, there is a multi-pronged, “magic bullet” that can almost guarantee a person’s chances of becoming rich.

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July 2017

When Am I Rich?

Rather than defining richness by the amount of possessions one owns, Investment Counsel believes being “rich” is closely related to security and stability.

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June 2017

Investing is More Than Math

Investing requires a tailored approach that takes into consideration several factors of your life. Some factors include:

1. Risk comfort level

2. Amount of return you want investments to produce

3. Longterm investment goals

Saving for different financial goals is a very personal endeavor that often requires considerations beyond numbers.

Read more …

May 2017

Help! Financial Advice Beyond Investing

Our clients told us that they were interested in:

1. Retirement and Education Planning

2. Social Security Income

3. Healthcare costs

Each person’s situation is unique, but we wanted to give a general overview of these topics in this newsletter.

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April 2017

It’s Not What You Earn, It’s What You Keep

Paying taxes is an inevitable part of life. In most cases, taxes are the largest expense investors will incur over the course of their investment horizon.

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March 2017

Employee Spotlight: Scott Milligan

In this newsletter, we want to introduce our newest associate, Scott Milligan, in some detail for those who have not had the chance to meet Scott.

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February 2017

8 Common “Do It Yourself” Investor Mistakes

When an individual has ample time, high knowledge of the markets, and sufficient interest, do-it-yourself investing may be a viable option.

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January 2017

2016 Review / 2017 Preview

As we embark into a new year and look back on 2016, we forecast what might occur over the next twelve months.

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December 2016

Studies in Growth

Each of our client’s portfolios is customized based on the client’s goals and risk tolerance. We only invest in high quality stocks and bonds and focus on absolute returns to help grow wealth long term.

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November 2016

“Money for nothing, and your (distributions) for free”

Individual Retirement Accounts all a great deal of tax advantages over a long period of time. These accounts also carry with them Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) at a certain age that are important to understand and manage.

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October 2016

Clinton or Trump? Your investments are indifferent.

While presidential election outcomes can affect tax rates, foreign policy, and health care, past elections have not significantly affected investments long term.

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September 2016

Are You Planning to Retire?

All too often, many Americans reach retirement only to find that they cannot support their lifestyle …

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August 2016

How to Value an Education

Investing in an education is a decision that requires careful valuation and planning.

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July 2016

“Disinherit” Your Kids

Rather than waiting for one generation to pass, we like to start when all parties are still of sound mind and body.

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June 2016

The Power and Peril of Asset Allocation

Much has been made of asset allocation over the years. So much so that by now most people know they should own a variety of securities in their portfolio.

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May 2016

Relationships and Results

Over the last forty-plus years, the investment management industry, through innovations like hedge funds, ETF’s and now rob-advisors has trended to being ever more product focused and less service oriented. We believe this is a mistake and a dis-service to clients.

Read more …

April 2016

Buy … and Hold!

With so many different investment strategies out there all shouting BUY, BUY, BUY or SELL, SELL ,SELL, it’s hard to figure out which one’s are legitimate and which aren’t.

We propose an alternative to the BUY/SELL roller coaster. It’s tried and true, some might even call it boring, we call it BUY & HOLD – and it works!

Find out when it’s time to HOLD in this month’s The Investment Letter (Hint: it’s almost always time to HOLD).

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March 2016

Identifying Opportunities in Equity Markets

One of the most frequently asked questions in investing has always been; “Where are the opportunities today?”

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February 2016

Over-reaction or Opportunity?

The start of 2016 was worse than almost anyone could have imagined – at least in terms of the performance of global equity markets.

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February 2016

Video Newsletter

January 2016

2015 Review / 2016 Preview

As we look at the year ahead we consider some of the possibilities that await us over the next twelve months.

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December 2015

Year – End Financial Checkup

Before the ball drops on 2015, and we ring in the New Year, it”s important to consider whether some of the following year-end money moves are appropriate for you.

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November 2015

Leave Your Job, Not Your Money

If you’re at or near retirement, changing companies or going through an acquisition or merger at your workplace, you’ll want to continue reading.

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October 2015

The Dirty Dozen: 12 Financial Products to Avoid

As with many things in life, it’s not only what you do right, but also avoiding mistakes that lead to success.

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September 2015

Summer Swoon?

Lately, most of the financial media’s attention has been on the market’s dramatic swings.

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August 2015

Unintended Consequences

Over the years, we’ve seen investment bubbles and fads come and go – from dot coms to housing most recently, all the way to Dutch tulip mania in the 17th century.


July 2015

Decoding Financial Alpha, Beta Soup

While we cannot eliminate all the complexities and confusion that surrounds financial lingo, we can, hopefully, demystify some of the more common terms you’re likely to come across while researching a stock.

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June 2015

All In the Family

Everyone loves a great success story. There’s even a popular expression that illustrates the dramatic rise from humble beginnings: “From Rags to Riches.”

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May 2015

Investment Lessons from Samuel Langhorne Clemens

Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known by his pen name, Mark Twain, had an unparalleled way with words.

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April 2015

Father Knows Best

Upon reviewing our old correspondence files, the following letter was discovered. We believe it was written in the 1950’s and the author is only known as “Your Loving Father.”

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March 2015

The “F” Word

Fiduciary. A fiduciary is a person to whom property or power is entrusted for the benefit of another, in other words someone who puts the interests of others before his or her own interest.

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February 2015

Too Good to Be True?

Would you like to invest in something that gets all positive returns of the stock market, while ensuring there are no losses even in bad years?

Read more …

January 2015

2014 Review / 2015 Preview

Uncertainty filled the air as we sat here exactly one year ago.

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Special Edition

Pennies From Heaven?

Money, and particularly investing, is a topic many people fear, as they feel ill equipped to manage it effectively.

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December 2014

Year End Money Moves

As 2014 winds to a close and we’re firmly in the midst of the holiday season our thoughts naturally turn to the three “Fs” Family, Friend & Food. ….fourth, often overlooked ‘F’ – Finances.


November 2014

Don’t Get Spooked by October Volatility

Have you followed the stock market over the last couple of months?

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October 2014

Death & Taxes

Celebrities are just like us. Sure, they might appear appear on more magazine covers than the average person, but when it comes to the important things we
are all very much alike.

Read more..

September 2014

“Know what you own, and know why you own it.”

For as long as investing has been around, so too has the tendency to buy ‘hot’ investments

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August 2014

Studies in Growth – General Electric: Imagination at Work

Throughout the 85+ year history of our publication, The Investment Letter, we have periodically brought our clients a deeper-dive into their holdings through a series called Studies in Growth.

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July 2014

Ownership has its privileges

If any of the titans of industry, either past or present, asked you to partner with them in their businesses would you accept? Names such as John D. Rockefeller, Bill Gates, J. P. Morgan, and Steve Jobs have all made outsized contributions to their respective industries and the impact their companies have made on our daily lives continues to be felt now and will continue into the future.

Read more..

June 2014

Investment Success: The Two Step Process

Achieving investment success is much like losing weight. The formula for slimming down, as any personal trainer can tell you, can be broken down into two important components; 1) eating less and 2) exercising more. Similarly, to achieve investment success one needs to 1) maximize
returns and 2) control costs.

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May 2014

Advisors and Brokers and Planners, Oh My!

Have you ever given any thought to the difference between a Financial Advisor and a Planner? Or perhaps whether there are differences between an Investment Advisor and a Broker? Chances are you, like most people, have not. These terms are used interchangeably in everyday speech, without second thought. However, the terms themselves, in their true definitions, are not synonymous and in fact the nuanced differences between them are quite important to understand.

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