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Summer 2021 Update

Updates about the team:

Dan Emmons and his wife, Christina, are eagerly awaiting the school season when they can wave at the school bus and breathe a sigh of relief.  For them, this will mean the end of pandemic home schooling!  Dan just took his youngest child, Bethany, on a daddy-daughter five mile hike to celebrate her 4th birthday.  Dan has been with our team for eight years now and has become my indispensable wealth planning partner.  

Kathy Arey, and her husband, Mel, recently enjoyed a trip to Tennessee to see her 91 year-old father after 18 months of quarantine.  They also spent a week at the Outer Banks with their three daughters, granddaughter, (Riley), and grandson (Wyatt).  Kathy Arey and I have been working together for 16 years.  She is our team’s go-to person regarding client RMD (required minimum distributions) notifications and handles any operational issues surrounding estate settlements.  Since we provide continuing education (CE) courses for CPAs each year, she also navigates the complex requirements of the governing body, overseeing CE regulations for CPAs.

Christine Parks has already taken a beach trip with her family and two-day trips with each parent.  She says everyone was ready for a change of scenery.  Christine celebrates five years with our team and has created – and updates – all our platforms on social media.  She also coordinates and helps promote our ongoing client and CPA educational events in addition to assisting with the service needs of our clients.

Diana Castro and her husband, Gabriel, are enjoying having their kids at home for the summer, as the oldest son just completed his first year at Clemson.  She still enjoys running and riding her bike competitively. As the newest member of our team, Diana has now been with us for two years, and has also become essential to us in helping with operational issues regarding investment plans and portfolios.

THIS IS WORTH REPEATING: In a recent e-mail, we explained that there is a significant difference in your diversified, actively managed portfolio, and the “market indices” reported in the news. Consider this chart:


A review of this chart shows that 41 out of 500 companies in the S&P 500 index represent 50% of the value of the index.

Although the returns are always reported as “average return” for the entire index, they are strongly skewed by fewer than 10% of the companies represented in the index.

Our team uses proactive managers and diversifies portfolios so you “do not put all your eggs in one basket” of just a handful of companies. Remember that the indices above do not represent your portfolio and are not an accurate “litmus test” for how your portfolio is mitigating risk through diversification. We continually employ a disciplined approach in our investment process to help you pursue your long-term financial goals.

While diversification does not ensure a profit and may not protect against loss, it can play a key role in establishing a sound investment strategy and reducing risk.

Inflation Concerns: The headlines and advertisements are discussing inflation these days, some even promoting greater risk, highly volatile assets instead of well-balanced, managed portfolios. It is important to understand that owning stocks of quality companies historically has been a good inflation hedge for long-term-minded investors. The reason is simple: Industry leaders with brand loyalty and market share have the ability to “pass on” higher, inflated prices to consumers when necessary. There is a saying that, “If you want to stay ahead of inflation, then own the companies that are causing it (raising the prices).” 

Having an actively managed portfolio means your accounts are continually adjusted for economic trends and, if inflation becomes a serious concern, managers can make changes to own those stocks which have historically provided more inflation protection over time.

We hope that you will let us know if you would like to schedule a review either by Zoom or in person. Our office is now opened again after the completion of renovations.

Warmest regards,

Magay Shepard, CFP®
Senior Vice President/Investments

Kathy Arey
Senior Registered Client Service Associate

Diana Castro
Client Service Associate
  Dan Emmons CFP®, MBA
Financial Advisor

Christine Parks
Client Service Associate


Stifel does not provide legal or tax advice.  You should consult with your legal or tax advisor regarding your particular situation.  Diversification and asset allocation do not ensure a profit or protect against loss.  Indices are unmanaged and are not available for direct investment.  Past performance is no guarantee of future results.  Index returns include the reinvestment of dividends but do not include adjustments for brokerage, custodian, and advisory fees. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) is an index that shows how 30 large, publicly owned companies based in the United States have traded during a standard trading session in the stock market. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index is a capitalization-weighted index that is generally considered representative of the U.S. large capitalization market. The NASDAQ Composite Index is a capitalization-weighted index that is comprised of all stocks listed on the National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotation System stock market, which includes both domestic and foreign companies.