“You can't suddenly say, 'I want a brand new habit tomorrow,' and expect it to be easy and effortless.” -Charles Duhigg
Sometimes it’s hard for an old guy like me to think about change. It’s uncomfortable. It’s intimidating. We all have our ways of getting into routines and habits. We like what we like; we do what we do. Sometimes we don’t even know what our routines are or how important they are to us until something, or somebody, interrupts them. In many ways, these routines are just fine. They’re normal. They keep us...
by Fred Martin
“Without forgiveness, innovation is impossible.” -Doug Lennick, Think2Perform
The concept of forgiveness might seem, on its surface, to be unrelated to investing. Forgiveness is an emotionally-charged, maybe even an emotionally-daunting, word. Connecting it to investing might seem too abstract to make sense. Shouldn’t investing be neutral and concrete? Shouldn’t it be free from emotion or impulse and be completely guided by trusted data?
Investing is not neutral and concrete, because investors are people, and people make mistakes. They act impulsively. They are blinded by ambitions and fears and they’re motivated by different things...
by Fred Martin
The best day in history to start investing was decades ago. The second best day is today.
There are lots of reasons that people procrastinate investing. Most of the reasons come down to waiting for a more ideal season of life. When they have more time, more money, more knowledge, more experience, that is when they’ll be able to really invest. But that philosophy keeps hard working people from doing good things with their money. It also piles up years of wasted time.
The best way to start: Small.
You have to learn the process. Buy...
Some Thoughts from Fred Martin
In the years I’ve spent helping people manage their investments, I’ve seen it all from unbelievable earnings to inevitable crashes. I’ve seen people think they can beat the market and I've seen people let themselves get beat by it, giving up and going home when things looked dismal. I’ve met more than one person let a bad investment decision take them out of the game, and I’ve seen more than that never get in the game at all.
Those who know me well won’t be surprised to hear me...
A Message from our Founder
Fred Martin, Founder, Lead Portfolio Manager, Disciplined Growth Investors
Two things have defined my adulthood – marriage and managing investments. My first marriage of 33 years ended in divorce and I count it as the greatest failure of my life.
Today, I believe my industry – financial services – teeters on the same edge of failure.
Everywhere I look I see signs that my industry’s relationship with our clients is headed for a breakup every bit as profound as a divorce. The vast majority of investment management relationships are not productive. Both advisors and clients can...
Sally is 38 years old and the mother of 3 children. She and her husband have a financial advisor who is helping them save for retirement and for their kids’ college.
They have goals that are pretty well defined and they don’t connect very often with their financial advisor.
A Moment of Panic
Sally’s friend read somewhere that college is going to cost $200,000 by the time all of their kids are in school. This, of course, made Sally decide to call her financial advisor. She was worried that her future wasn’t as secure as she’d thought. She needed...
The Way to Better Investing
Not all of us know how to be an investor. We don’t know what we don’t know...and that puts us at a disadvantage.
If you are an unsophisticated investor…if you want to trust your advisor but don't know how to manage that relationship…if you’re new to investing or have decided that it’s time to be more active…then take a look here at these three questions:
1.) What percentage of my assets is invested in stocks and what percentage is in bonds?
This is the most important decision you...
Our Profession Can Be Lucrative...But There’s a Catch
The financial services profession is generally highly lucrative, ensuring that financial professionals do not need to worry about their own financial well-being.
But there is a catch to this prosperity.
From the very first day they join our industry to their last day of employment, a financial services professional will face a critical question: Will my actions today align with my client’s best interests?
There’s no middle ground
You see, our industry is lucrative so that we never have to put our own interests ahead our clients. So...
There are only two steps necessary to become an investor.
Learn How to Save...
...not in big amounts, but every month...like clockwork. You will learn how to defer buying today in order to gain rewards tomorrow. I have never met a good investor who was not a good saver.
Learn How to Procrastinate
Yes, I know this is not what our mothers taught us (“Clean up that mess now!”). And yes, I know that procrastination can bring conflict into relationships. I am a professional procrastinator and am married to a woman who never, ever procrastinates. Trust me, we have...
Investors Have Some Questions to Ask
Most investors invest in a dizzying array of mutual funds…most with exotic names. A skeptic might say that the mutual fund companies create these names so that the clients cannot figure what they really own.
So the question that arises...What should an investor do?
Insist on transparency.
Require your advisor to look under the hood of the mutual funds, which are pools of capital that invest in stocks and bonds.
Here is what you want to ask:
1. What percentage of my assets is invested in liquid assets and how much in non-liquid...