Oct 2017
20th Oct 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 10/20/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 102017
Sep 2017
29th Sep 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 9/29/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 092917
22nd Sep 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 9/22/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 092217
16th Sep 2017

Time for ICOs to Grow Up

Today, the People’s Bank of China banned individuals and organizations from raising funds through initial coin offerings (ICOs), claiming that the practice constitutes illegal fundraising.  Headlines were quick to proclaim that China had killed the cryptomarket, even as several Chinese exchanges announced that trading in crypto currency would continue as before the ban. Following the news, a number of experts predicted that the SEC will soon follow suit, driving a stake through the heart of the ICO market.  Here’s why we believe this prediction is flat wrong.

The PBOC has an interest, as do other central banks, in ensuring orderly markets and the prevention of fraud and money laundering. China has an additional interest in maintaining its currency controls.  While blockchain proponents trumpet the benefits of freedom offered by autonomous markets…. especially freedom from government oversight and intervention… crypto markets have predictably failed to serve the public interest:  fraud is rampant, there are few protections for unsophisticated investors, and the mechanisms for keeping out bad actors are limited.  PBOC reacted predictably: it saw an activity that was damaging its reputation and undermining its control, so it banned it. Do not be surprised to see a limited reversal of the ban within 36 months, after some of the more egregious problems have been rectified and the market has been regulated.   Read Full Article
16th Sep 2017

5 Tax Planning Tips for Millennials

David Barral, CPA, is a tax and accounting manager in New York City, and an adjunct professor at Wagner College in Staten Island. In the September issue of Journal of Accountancy, he offers a number of recommendations on how tax professionals can offer effective tax planning to millennials. Here are some of his top recommendations, recast as advice for the millennials themselves.



(1) Finance a first-time home purchase. Do not draw upon retirement funds, such as 401k plan accounts or IRAs, withdrawals from which are included in income and generally subject to income tax.

(2) Consider claiming educational expenses as a business tax deduction. Expenses must be for education-related expenses that maintain or improve skills in one's trade or business, or that meet the express requirements of the employer.

(3) Take advantage of benefit cafeteria plans at work. Younger employees may avoid income tax and FICA on contributions to these plans. Flexible benefits may include health care or dependent care expenses and transit pass benefits, which could result in hundreds of dollars of tax savings.

(4) Evaluate student loan refinancing options to maximize interest savings and tax benefits. Compared to a few years ago, individuals have a wide array of options available to consolidate or refinance their student loans. As with any major asset or liability, it makes sense to be on the lookout for options to reduce the burden of student loans. Consider applying for the Public Student Loan Foregiveness (PSLF) program, if eligible.

(5) Start a ROTH IRA. Even a contribution of $100 makes sense, as ROTH IRAs have a five year minimum term requirement that starts at the time of the first contribution. Although many millennials do not have much ability to contribute to their retirement, starting the clock on a ROTH is a no-brainer.

If you would like to receive other tax and investment ideas that are applicable to your specific circumstances, contact Daren Dearden at North Capital. Daren, who is a millennial himself, works with a number of young professionals and other fellow millennials who are getting started on their savings and investment journeys.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
15th Sep 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 9/15/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:






Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 091517
1st Sep 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 8/31/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 090117

 
Aug 2017
28th Aug 2017

Visit us at Finovate NY

We are very excited to announce that North Capital has been selected to demonstrate TransactCloud, our exempt securities transaction and compliance SaaS suite, at Finovate, September 12, 2017 New York City.






If you work for a private fund manager, a registered broker-dealer, or a funding platform, you won't want to miss the recent enhancements to our platform, designed to expand your access to capital and improve your closing process.



  • Learn how we are helping our customers close more trades, with more investors, than ever before.

  • Demo our automated KYC, AML, suitability, and accredited investor verification APIs.

  • Find out what's new with escrow, payments and same-day ACH.

  • Learn how our API functions are being used in ICOs.


Hedge funds, private equity funds, real estate sponsors, and private issuers are currently using our technology to streamline the offering, transaction, and settlement of exempt securities.

25th Aug 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 8/24/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 082517
25th Aug 2017

WSJ’s 19 Questions to Ask Your Financial Advisor

Jason Zweig wrote this piece for the Wall Street Journal.   Based on his questions and model answers, North Capital earns a solid A.



The burden of finding an adviser who will act in your best interest is on you.


Getting all stockbrokers, financial planners and insurance agents to act in the best interests of their clients is a struggle that financial firms and their regulators still haven’t resolved. That should be their job — but for now, it’s yours.  Read More....
18th Aug 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 8/18/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 081817
11th Aug 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 8/11/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 081117
4th Aug 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 8/4/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 080417
Jul 2017
28th Jul 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 7/28/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 072817
21st Jul 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 7/21/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 072117
14th Jul 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 7/13/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:

 



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 071417
7th Jul 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 7/7/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 070717
Jun 2017
23rd Jun 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 6/22/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 062317
15th Jun 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 6/15/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 061517
14th Jun 2017

The CFA Institute addresses the fiduciary rule in a letter to Jay Clayton

by James P. Dowd, CFA

 

As a CFA charter holder, today I received a copy of Paul Smith's letter to incoming SEC Chair Jay Clayton.  Smith is the CEO of CFA Institute, the leading professional organization for investment management professionals.  The letter offered several recommendations, the first two of which I have supported publicly for many years as an individual and as CEO of North Capital. Beyond the specific policy ideas, Smith's letter simply and elegantly highlights the issue at the core of the debate over the fiduciary rule:  misrepresentation.   Smith's basic point:  commission salespersons have a role to play in financial markets, but that role is not providing advice with limited oversight under a made-up title "financial advisor."  The full letter may be viewed here, but these two paragraphs shine a bright light on the central issue in the debate:

 

"We, like the Commission’s Investor Advisory Committee , recommend that the Commission require that anyone wishing to refer to their title and/or activities as advisory in nature (e.g. “adviser” or “advisor”) adhere to the Investment Advisers Act and the fiduciary duty implied by common law interpretation of the Act. Such control of terminology would not be new to the Advisers Act, which already expressly limits use of the term “investment counsel” to those who must adhere to the Advisers Act’s requirements.

 

At the same time, we believe commission-based sales activities serve important client needs and give investors options for how they wish to conduct their investment activities. Whether commissioned brokers provide investment ideas or execute trades, we support that they be permitted to pursue their business activities, so long as they are clear about their roles vis-à-vis their clients. Specifically, we recommend that the Commission require that they refer to their roles with the title, “salespersons.” For too long, these sales staff have blurred the line between what they do – selling investment ideas to generate commission-based transactions – and what investment advisers do – advising clients on investment strategies and tactics to achieve their financial goals."

 

Mic drop.
9th Jun 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 6/8/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:



Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 060917
2nd Jun 2017

North Capital Weekly Update on Sector Benchmarks 6/1/17

Top 10 Performing Asset Classes over recent trailing time periods up to 5 years:


Get the full picture here: North Capital Weekly Update 060217
May 2017
28th May 2017

Advisor’s Alpha:  Quantifying the Value of a Financial Planner

by Devin Frampton and James P. Dowd, CFA

 

Are the costs of professional financial advice outweighed by the benefits you receive in trying to build your retirement nest egg? Should you avoid this cost by undertaking investing and money management on your own, or is this a penny-wise and pound-foolish approach? If you are asking these questions then you might already have saved yourself more then you know.  The value added by a financial advisor, referred to as “advisor alpha,” varies depending on the knowledge, skill and effort of the individual investor to whom the advisor is giving advice.  If someone does a terrible job looking after their own investments, advisor alpha will be high.   If an individual does a good job on their own, then it might be substantially less.

 

Asking questions about your finances and investments is smart and prudent, whether you work with a professional or go it alone.  It makes sense to educate yourself while researching your options, even if you ultimately plan to work with an advisor for part or all of your planning and investment needs.   Financial planners do more than manage your money;  they can help you quantify your needs, articulate your goals, manage your time, keep your emotions in check, and deal with your family.  Some observers have likened the job of a financial planner to that of a therapist or a counselor, providing support and guidance as much as money management services.

 

If you have the time and interest  to become educated about finance and investments, regularly monitor the market, and critically evaluate your investment options, then you may want to handle your investments on your own.  If you do not have the time, are not particularly interested in the topic, and/or have difficulty managing your emotions when making investment decisions, then a financial advisor can save you time, money, and aggravation.  Finally, financial planning is not one product or service.  Some individuals find that they need help putting together a plan, or that they would like a second pair of eyes overlooking a plan they have developed on their own.  While not all advisors offer these types of ad hoc services, many do.  Flat fee or hourly-based engagements can be a good way to bolster your own efforts and supplement your own knowledge of specialized topics, such as investment location and tax.

 

What about paying a financial advisor an asset-based fee for money management?  Vanguard produced a piece on Advisor’s Alpha in 2013 that explains why professional advice can make sense for even the most fee-conscious investor:  “For some clients, paying fees regardless of whether transactions occur may seem like ‘money for nothing.’ This is viewing the advisor’s value proposition through only one portion of the cost benefit lens. The benefit and wisdom of not allowing near-term market actions to result in the abandonment of a well-thought-out investment strategy can be underappreciated in the moment.”   The piece continues:  “...an advisor’s alpha (that is, added value) is more aptly demonstrated by the ability to effectively act as a wealth manager, financial planner, and behavioral coach—providing discipline and reason to clients who are often undisciplined and emotional—than by efforts to beat the market.”  In short, the goal is not to outperform the market, but rather to outperform an investor working on his / her own, without professional advice.

 

Another study by Terrance K. Martin Jr., Ph.D. and Michael Finke, Ph.D., CFP® compared profiles of planning and advice over the span of 14 years. The four categories were Comprehensive Planning, Planner Only, Self-Directed, and No Plan. Martin and Fink noted that few academic studies had attempted to quantify the value provided by a comprehensive financial planner, so this one was one of the first to draw any such conclusions.  As they wrote in the  Journal of Financial Planning:  “Those who had calculated retirement needs and used a financial planner (which likely captures those who used a comprehensive planner who follows a more thorough planning process that includes retirement needs assessment) generated more than 50 percent greater savings than those who estimated retirement needs on their own without the help of a planner.”

Their report continues:  “When average retirement wealth was examined by survey year (1994–2008), households with a comprehensive strategy to retirement planning consistently recorded higher mean values of accumulated retirement wealth.

 

In conclusion, professional financial advice is not right for all investors, but understanding the value of a good advisor will help lead you to a successful outcome, whether you work alone, receive ad hoc advice from a professional, or hire a comprehensive, professional wealth manager.  Ultimately you must make the decision that feels right for you.