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Oaktree Financial Advisors Blog

Discipline and Patience

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As you are no doubt aware, stocks have experienced much volatility over the last few years.  This is a good time to remember that the market doesn't deliver returns in a straight line.  Market ups and downs are normal, and it takes a lot of them to balance out to the average.   

Investing based on facts, not emotions

Emotions–including our own–should not have a role in making decisions about your investments. That is why we do not act on stock tips, guess where the market will be in six months or try to predict the direction of interest rates. We have always said that we will not play guessing games with our client's life savings.

We are planners, not prognosticators.  We help people with long-term financial planning, not short-term speculating.  It's evident that no matter how much time and energy we or anyone else put into studying the market and economy, no one knows what it's going to do in the short run, but we do know what it's done in the long run.

Is America Prepared to Retire?

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64% of Americans have no financial strategy at all. That's right – no plan whatsoever to build wealth or keep it. That finding comes from the 2009 National Consumer Survey on Personal Finance conducted by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (The survey collected data from 1,700+ U.S. residents.)1

Only 17% of us have a written financial plan that is updated regularly. So congratulate yourself if you are in that group. The CFP Board found that just 17% of the 36% polled who did have a written financial plan had reviewed it in light of changing times. Notably, 48% said they had benefited from having a written plan.1,2

Just 38% of the 36% having written financial plans retain a financial advisor. The really troubling part: 37% of those with written plans are doing their financial planning on their own. Another 12% of respondents with written plans have consulted a friend or family member who isn't a financial services professional for advice.1

Lilly 401(k) Match Changes

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*Oaktree Financial Advisors is neither endorsed by nor affiliated with Eli Lilly

Effective 2012, Lilly will discontinue the practice of matching your 401(k) contributions with contributions to the Lilly stock account.  Lilly's match will be allocated based on the same percentage investment selections you have made for your own contributions to the plan.

Lilly Adds Roth 401(k) Option

*Oaktree Financial Advisors is neither endorsed by nor affiliated with Eli Lilly

Effective January 1, 2012, Lilly will add a Roth feature to the current 401(k) plan. This new option allows you to contribute to your retirement savings with after-tax dollars. There are several reasons contributing after-tax dollars might be beneficial to you.

When you contribute after-tax dollars to your Roth 401(k), these assets will grow without being taxed. Likewise, when you withdraw these funds in retirement, they are not taxable.  You must have had the Roth account for five years and be age 59½ or older to withdraw funds without tax and penalties.

Keep in mind that the company match provided on the first 6 percent of base salary that you contribute to the plan, up to IRS limits, is taxable and will always go into the pretax portion of your 401(k).

This is a great opportunity for those whose income prevents them from making a Roth IRA contribution.  If you have questions or want to discuss whether this is right for you please give us a call

Even Seasoned Investors Can Fall Prey to Their Emotions

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Making investment decisions based on emotion can kill long-term performance.  It's very easy to get caught up in the day-to-day drama of the markets or some current crisis – it's human nature.  The latest version of a study that's done every year was recently released and the results once again show that average investors dramatically underperform both the market as a whole and the investments in which they are actually invested.1