Chart of the Week: Millennials Buying the Most Homes

Chart of the WeekWe have been hearing so much about American millennials being saddled with college debt that it is encouraging to see they are also buying the greatest percentage of houses. According to a recent study released by the National Association of Realtors, the largest group of home buyers in 2014 were millennials (ages 18 to 34), who composed 32% of all buyers. Generation X (35 to 49) bought 27% of the homes, younger baby boomers (50 to 59) 16%, older baby boomers (60 to 68) 15%, and the silent generation (69 to 89) 10% of all buyers. Continue reading

Posted in Chart of the Week | Comments Off

Q2 2015 Global Asset Allocation Perspective: Global Opportunities, Global Diversification

Rich Weiss

Rich Weiss Senior Vice President and Senior Portfolio Manager

The biggest change to our positioning is a shift toward European stocks, which have underperformed relative to U.S. equities and offer more attractive valuations. Central bank policy, a weaker euro, and lower oil prices all support a European recovery. We are also making some enhancements across the board in our asset allocation portfolios to move away from our U.S. equity bias and toward global and non-U.S. equity strategies, as well as adding exposure to non-U.S. bonds.

These changes are part of our disciplined, systematic approach in which we routinely evaluate various asset classes for inclusion in the portfolios. We believe these changes will broaden the portfolios’ diversification, reduce exposure to any single country, and increase opportunities to improve risk-adjusted performance at a time of heightened economic and policy uncertainty. Continue reading

Posted in Core, Diversification | Comments Off

Chart of the Week: Women Are Better Investors Than Men    

Chart of the WeekOverconfidence appears to be the Achilles heel of male investors. They tend to save less and trade stocks more, which puts them at a competitive financial disadvantage relative to women. Women generally save more in their retirement accounts than men and manage their portfolios more conservatively and with less risk, but they still lack confidence when it comes to investing. In fact, a recent survey disclosed that more than 75% of women are comfortable discussing their health with a doctor but less than half are confident when talking about money or investments with a professional investment advisor. Continue reading

Posted in Chart of the Week | Comments Off

Chart of the Week: Where Are the Best Countries to Retire?

Chart of the WeekIf one of your first answers was the United States, you would have had to wait until number 19 on the retirement ranking list. According to the 2015 Global Retirement Index compiled by Nataxis Global Asset Management, Switzerland grabbed the top spot due its citizens sustaining higher levels of material well-being (strong banking system and a healthier economy than its European neighbors).  Continue reading

Posted in Chart of the Week, Retirement | Comments Off

Check out the Q1 2015 CIO Insights and Podcasts

Miss this quarter’s CIO Insights? Click on each chief investment officer’s blog post below to listen to the full text, or download the podcasts from iTunes (search “CIO Insights”).

CIO Insights: Risks and Rewards from Normalizing Markets
G. David MacEwen and Victor Zhang, Co-Chief Investment Officers

CIO Insights: Normalization, with Higher Risks and Yields
G. David MacEwen, Co-Chief Investment Officer

CIO Insights: Normalization Creates Global Opportunities
Mark Kopinski and Keith Creveling, CFA, Co-Chief Investment Officers, Global and Non-U.S. Equity

CIO Insights: The Value in Volatility
Phillip N. Davidson, CFA, Chief Investment Officer, U.S. Value Equity

CIO Insights: No Crystal Ball? Try Diversification
Scott Wittman, CFA, CAIA, Chief Investment Officer, Asset Allocation & Disciplined Equity

CIO Insights: Growth Amid Volatility
David Hollond, Chief Investment Officer, U.S. Growth Equity – Mid & Small Cap

CIO Insights: Turn the Page, Not the (Investment) Process
Scott Wittman, CFA, CAIA, Chief Investment Officer, Asset Allocation & Disciplined Equity

CIO Insights: Greater Volatility, Greater Opportunity?
Greg Woodhams, CFA, Chief Investment Officer, U.S. Growth Equity – Large Cap

Posted in Chief Investment Officer (CIO) Insights | Comments Off

Chart of the Week: It’s the Right Time to be Looking for a Job

Chart of the WeekIf you have been waiting for a window to land a job—as if you were a double-dutch jumper trying to time the swing of the rope—this might finally be your opening! According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of available jobs posted by employers in the United States reached a 14-year high in December 2014. Job openings rose nearly 4% at the end of last year, as more than 5 million jobs were available. This is the first time the labor market has hit the 5 million job-opening mark since January of 2001 (before the dot.com bubble burst). Continue reading

Posted in Chart of the Week, Unemployment | Comments Off

CIO Insights: Greater Volatility, Greater Opportunity?

Gregory Woodhams

Greg Woodhams, CFA, Chief Investment Officer, U.S. Growth Equity – Large Cap

In this quarter’s other CIO Insights, the discussion has been about the “normalization” of economic growth, interest rates, and financial market conditions. A more normal market characterized by higher volatility—as well as a greater dispersion and lower correlation of returns among individual securities—could present active managers with greater opportunity to generate excess performance through stock selection.

Continue reading

Posted in Chief Investment Officer (CIO) Insights | Comments Off

Chart of the Week: Baby Boomers Overwhelmed by Millennials

Chart of the WeekThis is the year that millennials will overtake baby boomers as the largest living generation. According to population projections released by the U.S. Census Bureau in December 2014, millennials (ages 18 to 34) will number 73.2 million in 2015, just ahead of the 74.9 million baby boomers (ages 51 to 69) left in America. Generation X (ages 35
to 50) is expected to surpass the baby boom generation by 2028. Continue reading

Posted in Chart of the Week | Comments Off

CIO Insights: Turn the Page, Not the (Investment) Process

Scott Wittman

Scott Wittman, CFA, CAIA, Chief Investment Officer, Asset Allocation & Disciplined Equity

This quarter, we address the potential return of stock market volatility and our investment process. Whatever the market conditions—“normal” or not, more or less volatile—we apply the same multifaceted approach. One reason we use that multifaceted approach is that the underlying drivers of  stock performance go in and out of favor  over time. Whether conditions can be deemed to be normal or something else,  it makes sense that different companies  and different stocks would do well at different times.

Continue reading

Posted in Chief Investment Officer (CIO) Insights | Comments Off

Chart of the Week: What Is Our Greatest Source of Stress?

Chart of the WeekWe have so many obligations as Americans that it’s no wonder that things inevitably stress us out! The American Psychological Association recently published a report on stress, concluding that stress about money and finances are the nation’s most prevalent source of strain. In 2014, the top four sources of stress—when people were asked on an individual source basis—were money (64%), work (60%), family (47%), and health (46%).    Continue reading

Posted in Chart of the Week | Comments Off