Capstone Connections

Investment Perspective – 2nd Quarter 2019

The U.S. stock market rebounded sharply in the first three months of 2019 posting its best quarterly return in almost ten years. Similarly, international stocks performed well, reversing course from losses in 2018. These early-year stock market gains were buoyed by growing optimism on a potential U.S.-China trade resolution and new indications from the U.S. Federal Reserve (and other central banks abroad) that interest rate increases in 2019 are off the table… Continue reading

Posted in Investment Perspective, Investment Planning |

How to Potentially Increase Your After-Tax Portfolio Return Without Adding Risk

For taxable investors, the cost of annual taxes paid on portfolio income (i.e., interest and dividends) and capital gains can be one of the biggest detractors to a portfolio’s return. Unfortunately, the amount of portfolio return lost to taxes is not explicitly identified on most types of portfolio performance reports. For this reason, investors can easily forget to periodically review their portfolio to ensure it is tax-efficient… Continue reading

Posted in Tax Planning |

How to Manage and Quickly Pay Down Student Loan Debt

It’s no secret that student loan debt is as high as it’s ever been in America. According to the latest studies from 2017, student loan debt nationwide totals $1.4 trillion across more than 44 million borrowers. Paying thousands of dollars each year can be daunting for recent graduates who may not get the job they want immediately after graduating, or who may have relatively low starting salaries… Continue reading

Posted in Cash Flow and Liability Planning, Next-Generation Planning |

3 Important Financial Planning Steps to Take in Your 20s

When starting a new journey, the hardest part can sometimes be taking that first step. The same holds true when it comes to your finances. A starting point for many can be in their early twenties, when they are beginning a new career and starting the process of becoming financially independent. Although everyone’s journey to financial wellness may look different, there are a few good habits that can quickly and effectively put you on the right path to success. Continue reading

Posted in Financial Planning |

Investment Perspective – 1st Quarter 2019

International stock markets declined throughout 2018, and investor pessimism eventually pulled U.S. stocks down sharply at the end of the year. While stocks finished 2018 down 5.2% in the U.S. and 14.8% internationally, both went through “bear markets”: declines of 20% or more from recent peaks. The significant fall across stocks that had finished 2017 with double-digit returns reflected a healthy, albeit painful readjustment of lofty investor expectations… Continue reading

Posted in Investment Perspective, Investment Planning |

Our Perspectives on Recent Market Volatility

During the last three months of 2018, stock markets around the world sold off as investors became increasingly apprehensive about a global economic slowdown. Concerns about a slowdown actually started earlier in the year. Tariffs and threats of such slowed international trade, impacting China and Europe. Meanwhile, unfavorable currency movements hurt emerging market countries across the board that are heavily dependent on imports, exports, and international investment. More recently, investors are concerned that the slowdown is spreading and might eventually hurt the U.S. economy… Continue reading

Posted in Investment Planning, Topical |

2 Types of Insurance to Protect Your Family’s Long-Term Financial Security

According to the Social Security Administration, a person who turned twenty years old in 2017 has a 6.1% chance of dying before normal retirement age and a 26.8% chance of becoming disabled. As sobering as these statistics are, they are very much a reality of life. As with most financial decisions, the need for life insurance and disability insurance depends on an individual’s situation… Continue reading

Posted in Insurance Planning |

How to Protect Your Personal Assets from Lawsuits

It is nearly guaranteed you will see at least one billboard advertising legal services when you drive on a highway these days. Although accident and injury litigation are seemingly advertised the most, family and business conflict litigation are common as well. Due to the widespread use of “contingency fees”, individuals can sue one another without having to pay a dime in legal fees. Given the realities of this environment, the risk of loss that exists for individuals with significant assets is extremely high. The good news is that proper asset protection planning can help ensure that one’s assets are shielded from most legal claims… Continue reading

Posted in Estate Planning |

Capstone Welcomes John Koenig, CFP® as Financial Planner

Capstone Financial Advisors is pleased to announce the addition of John Koenig, CFP® as a Financial Planner. In his role, John will work with Capstone’s Senior Wealth Advisors to assist in the development and implementation of customized financial plans and advice for clients… Continue reading

Posted in Firm Updates |

Our Perspectives on Recent Market Volatility

It’s always hard to pinpoint exactly what causes market volatility like what we’ve experienced recently. This time around, it’s been a confluence of factors including, but not limited to, interest rate increases, currency movements, and trade tensions. Regardless of the causes, the result has been a quick and sharp sell-off in global stock markets, with technology stocks and emerging market country stocks leading the way down. Investor sentiment shifted quickly from elevated levels of optimism to pessimism… Continue reading

Posted in Investment Planning, Topical |