Check in with the market
The following is a high level discussion of the recent history of the S&P 500 stock index.
Past performance is not indicative of the future. This discussion is not intended as specific
advice for any particular investor, but is intended for general education purposes only.
Investors should consult with a qualified financial professional. All other DRWFinancial.com disclaimers apply.
The last time the S&P 500 traded at the current levels (in the mid 1500 price range) was Fall of 2007. On October 5 of that year, for example, the index closed at 1558. Today, as of ~ 10am, the index is right at 1550. In many ways, this comparison can feel depressing: what do we have to show for the last 5.5 years!?
But the larger picture is a little more positive, and a little more interesting. This chart shows the percentage price change in the S&P 500 over the last 10 years (3/22/2003 - 3/22/2013):
As you can see, from that starting point in 2003 the market rose more 70%, then fell considerably, and has since risen again overall ~ 79.75%. Someone invested in a fund that tracks the index (like the SPY exchange traded S&P 500 fund) over those 10 years would have experienced similar growth.
Evolution of giving
This talk, delivered at The Philanthropic Initiative in May, 2011 raises some very interesting talking points on intentional giving. I quote broadly from the talk below the break; the general idea is that an individual's relationship with philanthropy evolves as it matures. I really like this view of philanthropy, and it aligns well with my firm's desire to help move giving minded folks along the curve to more impactful and sophisticated giving.
Learning to give effectively
I have found that among its other benefits, giving liberates the soul of the giver.
One of the founding principles of DRW Financial is that we are concerned with community involvement and charitable giving. Our society values helping others, and at DRW Financial we believe that a robust financial plan should include consideration of giving.
I am personally excited to be engaged in a graduate course focused on philanthropy in a planning context. I hope to soon earn the designation as a Chartered Advisor in Philanthropy. The CAP course is designed to grow my knowledge about effective giving strategies, and to better equip DRW Financial to facilitate donors in their quest for maximum impact.
Planned giving strategies range from the simple to the complex, and could include anything from charitable distributions from an IRA, to gift annuities, to charitable remainder trusts, to simple bequests...the variety of possible solutions allows individual donors and their families to find an approach custom tailored to their own situation.
This blog and its contents are intended for general education and information.
This blog is not intended as financial advice. Prior to implementing an investment plan, a person should thoroughly consider their own risk constraints and objectives.
A very common question individuals pose to the financial advice community is "how do I get started?" This is often followed by "how much money do I need to make this worthwhile?"
Both questions are valid, but there exists a temptation to make the answers too simplistic. The best answers are that each person's situation is unique to them, and that any financial plan or investment approach needs to be highly tailored to that person.
Having said, there is a general top down approach that DRW Financial would take with a prospective client:
David R Wattenbarger, president of DRW Financial
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