Ask the CFP

A Bridge Over Troubled Water?

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “Move fast with stable infrastructure.” ~Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook  Question: Our nation’s infrastructure problems are obvious. With the Trump Administration’s commitment to fixing the problems, what are your thoughts on this sector? Answer: It’s easy to agree that we need to maintain and upgrade our infrastructure. If these issues aren’t addressed, the American ... Read More »

But I Like to Drive…

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “Wealth is the ability to fully experience life.” ~ Henry David Thoreau  Question: What are your thoughts on how artificial intelligence may impact the economy and society? Answer: Artificial intelligence (AI) is an innovative advancement that’s changing our world. AI makes predictions based on compilations of loads and loads of relevant data. The goal ... Read More »

Animals on Wall Street

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “The markets are moved by animal spirits, and not by reason.” ~ John Maynard Keynes Question: I’ve heard the phrase “animal spirits” on several financial news networks. I’m curious as to what it means. Can you explain this? Answer: Animal spirits is a term first used by the economist, John Maynard Keynes in his ... Read More »

Should the Tax Tail Wag the Dog?

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “Every difficulty slurred over will be a ghost to disturb your repose later on.” ~ Frederic Chopin, Composer Question: How much will the possibility of tax reform influence financial markets, and should I wait until this is completed before reviewing my estate planning documents? Answer: There’s an old adage on Wall Street; “Don’t’ let ... Read More »

When Life Changes, So Should Your Beneficiaries

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “Don’t let the possibilities be suffocated by procrastination. Go! Now!” ~ Robert H. Schuller, American Author (1926-2015) Question: My neighbor’s husband recently passed away and from what she’s told me it appears that things didn’t unfold as she thought they would. He told her she’d be “okay” and that’s not the case. How often ... Read More »

The Power of Dividends

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “The beauty of dividends is that you get paid, whether or not the market is up.” ~ Howard Silverblatt, Senior Index Analyst with Standard & Poors  Question: What are your thoughts on how interest rate increases, regulatory reforms and tax changes may influence dividend paying stocks? Answer: Gradually increasing interest rates and the implementation ... Read More »

What’s Your Ethical Threshold; Sustainable Investing

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “Ethics is knowing the difference between what you have a right to do and what is right to do.” ~ Potter Stewart of “I know it when I see it” fame. United States Supreme Court Associate Justice, 1915-1985. Question: I’ve been reading about sustainable investing. Is this the same as socially responsible investing? Answer: ... Read More »

5 Questions to Ask When Your Broker Changes Firms

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “Clarity affords focus.” ~ Thomas Leonard, American businessman  Question: My financial advisor called to let me know that he changed firms again and sent paperwork to move my accounts. Why would he be moving and what should I do? Answer: There are a number of reasons why advisors would change firms. In fact, I’ve ... Read More »

Building Your Financial Team: Who Should Make the Cut?

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “If you have knowledge, let others light their candles at it.”  ~Margaret Fuller (1810-1850) Question: How do I find out if my financial advisor is a fiduciary, and why is that important? Answer: Your question has become more prevalent and relevant recently because the Department of Labor’s (DOL) new rule governing retirement investment accounts ... Read More »

Strategies Beat Predictions and Hunches

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.” ~ Earl Weaver (1930-1993), Baseball Hall of Famer and “the sorest loser who ever lived.”  Question: What will happen to the markets during 2017? Answer: Strategists, economists, and even Certified Financial Planners™ are notorious for trying to predict markets. Over my career, it’s ... Read More »

It’s a Work in Progress

Ask The CFP®  Practitioner Question: During the holiday break we took the advice offered in your last column and held a holiday huddle to review family finances. Although awkward at first, I think everyone was a bit relieved now that we’ve discussed the “what ifs.” What’s next? Answer: Now it’s “go time!” If you have a plan in place, be sure ... Read More »

Santa Claus Rally & Holiday Huddle

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “Oh, Christmas isn’t just a day, it’s a frame of mind . . .” ~ A Miracle on 34th Street What does the term Santa Claus Rally mean? The Santa Claus Rally is a catchy phrase and it is cheery to think that even Wall Street receives a visit from Old Saint Nick. Many ... Read More »

Planning to Give

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “Wisdom is oftentimes nearer when we stoop than when we soar.” ~William Wordsworth Question: What are the best ways to make gifts to charitable organizations? Answer: That’s a common question that comes up each year around the holidays. For that reason, let’s review how to best fulfill your charitable inclinations and make a difference ... Read More »

Ask The CFP®Practitioner: What’s Next?

Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “Begin challenging your own assumptions. Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in a while, or the light won’t come in.”  ~Alan Alda  Question: What are your thoughts on how the Trump presidency will influence the economy and financial markets? Answer: Just when you think there aren’t any surprises left in ... Read More »

Managing Expectations: Hype Versus Reality

ASK THE CFP® PRACTITIONER Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “Government’s first duty is to protect the people, not run their lives.”  ~Ronald Reagan  Question: How much influence will either presidential candidate have on financial markets when one of them moves into the White House? Answer: A study by American Funds® Capital Group reviewing U.S. presidential elections since 1934 shows that market returns over the ... Read More »

Trust Your Instruments

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin Question: Should I be worried about the problems with Deutsche Bank? Answer: That’s a question many in our industry have been asking. The answer is “it depends.” The markets had just settled down after the post-Brexit rally and now Deutsche Bank is reviving some of that volatility. Much of the concern over the bank’s future ... Read More »

Let’s Get Fiscal

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin “I always avoid prophesying beforehand, because it is much better policy to prophesy after the event has taken place.”  ~ Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965) Question: What is the difference between fiscal and monetary policy? Can you also explain the role of central banks, especially during these interesting economic times? Answer: Central banks exist to oversee ... Read More »

Real Estate, a Sector of Its Own

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin Question: I’ve heard that real estate is being added as a new sector to the stock market. Is this true? Answer: Yes, you’re right. As of August 31, 2016 stock-exchange listed real estate companies officially became a sector of their own. Prior to this, real estate fell under the financial sector. Some investors thought that ... Read More »

Funding Your Future

Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin “Constant dripping hollows out a stone.” – Lucretius, Roman Philosopher, 99-55 BC Question: What is the best way to start spending funds during retirement? Answer: There’s no one-size-fits-all approach, exact scientific formula or precise system to use when it’s time to start taking withdrawals from your retirement funds. It’s more of a subjective and ongoing ... Read More »