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  • Storm Warning: The Perils of Reinsurance
    Plus Q2 2017 Market Report

    John Gorlow | Jul 10, 2017

    Insurers are on the hook when a hurricane slams into the coast of Florida, a tsunami hits Japan, a drought-stoked fire consumes large swaths of Northern California, or a Malaysian airline goes missing. Backing the insurers is a nearly $600 billion reinsurance juggernaut that’s also on the hook. As new investment money pours into this sector, some industry analysts worry that a storm is brewing with potentially devastating consequences. Could this be the next banking meltdown? After a review of Q2 2017 market data, we take a closer look at the reinsurance market. 

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  • Climbing the Mountain
    May Market Report

    John Gorlow | Jun 08, 2017
    Alex HonnoldLast week Alex Honnold, the famous climber, astonished the world with his solo ascent up the sheer vertical face of El Capitan, without ropes or safety gear. It was an impossible athletic feat made possible by years of careful planning and expert knowledge. Honnold studied the mountain, practiced, and knew every inch of his route. While the entire feat was insanely courageous and dangerous, he identified places where he could reduce risk. Then he stuck to his plan. There’s a lesson in that for investors. This month we’ll talk about beguiling shortcuts to the mountaintop and why sticking to a proven plan is a better idea. But first, a look at May numbers
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    April Market Report

    John Gorlow | May 11, 2017
    Annuity Confusion

    I frequently write about clever new financial products designed to fleece investors. This month I want to discuss an older, well-established financial product offered through insurers. It’s called an annuity, and I am not a fan. While much has been written about these products, their high costs and restrictive features are not well understood. Here we’ll take a look at how annuities work and explain why we believe they’re inappropriate for most investors. Take a seat, because this blog is longer than usual.We’ll review April numbers at the end. READ MORE

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  • How Wall Street Formed Me
    March 2017 Market Review

    John Gorlow | Apr 12, 2017

    In March 2003, I launched Cardiff Park Advisors in California, becoming an SEC-registered firm a few years later. I’d had enough experience with Wall Street culture to be disillusioned and to know what I didn’t want (more on that in a moment). Cardiff Park was my opportunity to create what I did want: a financial advisory firm based on respect, transparency, and my own principles and values. READ MORE

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  • February Market Report: Do Deficits Matter?

    John Gorlow | Mar 07, 2017
    Trumps Plan SmallThe president’s recent inaugural speech to Congress had an unusually reassuring tone. But the speech raised one alarm after another for deficit hawks and anyone else still hoping that Mr. Trump would slash spending. The fear is that big-ticket plans like Mr. Trump’s lead to big deficits that dampen economic growth and drive down returns. That’s the conventional wisdom, anyway. But is it true? READ MORE

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  • January Market Report: Embrace Uncertainty

    John Gorlow | Feb 14, 2017

    FedResSmallInvestors and markets don’t like surprises. Will interest rates rise slowly or quickly?  Will Congress appropriate mega-funding to US infrastructure, slash taxes, or both? Are Trump’s growth plans mere dreams, or rooted in reality? What will happen to the Affordable Care Act? As financial pundits pondered these post-election questions, the January markets quietly defied expectations. There’s a lesson in that. READ MORE

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  • Q4 2016 Market Review

    John Gorlow | Jan 18, 2017

    2016_ReviewDon’t Believe the News — We may look back at 2016 as the year in which Russia and fake news helped elect an American president. In the financial markets, it was a year of misleading news as well. The facts were right, that’s true, but most financial analysts got the forecast wrong. READ MORE

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    John Gorlow | Dec 05, 2016

    market rally It’s the Trump era. Or a re-do of the Reagan era. Or possibly the “I don’t understand how to work this” era. How should investors navigate this complex new world of what-if scenarios? For once, even the pundits seem unsure. READ MORE

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  • October 2016 Market Report

    John Gorlow | Nov 14, 2016

    TrumpSmallSurprised? Who wasn’t as election results rolled in? Few expected the 45th president of the United States to be a real estate developer with multiple business bankruptcies and a sideline career as a reality TV show host. Is now the time to rejigger your portfolio? Before you act, check out this month’s feature section on how not to become your own worst enemy. READ MORE  

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  • HIGH NOTES and LOW NOTES: Q3 Market Report

    John Gorlow | Oct 11, 2016

    elections&stockmarketsPresidential elections give rise to all kinds of market predictions. This year, the polarization of American political parties and attention-grabbing remarks by Donald Trump are bringing out the pundits in droves. Our advice: keep calm, carry on, and don’t react to the doomsday scenarios. READ MORE 

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