Author Archive | James E. Wilson, CFP®


Personalize instead of Maximize

Much of the literature on financial planning and investing focuses on how to “maximize” return. Both advisors and clients become wrapped up in the comfortable cloak of chasing the always illusive “god of maximus”. It can become more than an exercise in futility; it can become destructive to sound, long-term planning. There is a better […]

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A “Laffer Curve” for Investing

Most of us remember Dr. Arthur Laffer, an economist who worked in the Reagan Administration and his simple depiction of the relationship between tax rates and revenues. He drew the diagram below (The Laffer Curve) in 1974 on a napkin at dinner. Is there a “Laffer Curve” for investing as well? In Laffer’s design, tax […]

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Financial Bodyguard

Who is Your “Financial Bodyguard”?

One of the most important roles that we fulfill is that of stewardship. Webster’s defines stewardship as “careful and responsible management of something entrusted to one’s care”. Many years ago, one of our clients referred to us as his “financial bodyguard”. While the words may differ, the meaning is roughly the same.  Financial planning is […]

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Are Your Perceptions (about Investing) Harming You Financially?

Our perceptions directly impact how we make decisions. When it comes to investments and other elements of financial life, however, these perceptions can actually harm our ability to accomplish goals. We perceive that the stock market is risky and fixed income is safe; We perceive that real estate only goes up in price; We perceive […]

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Buckets are Better

For all the gyrations over complicated financial strategies and products, one of the best methods to accomplish goals is through the use of “buckets”. That is, organizing savings into tax-deferred (retirement plan accounts) and taxable (dollars invested after taxes) accounts in order to increase long-term flexibility. Sometimes this may mean opting to “personalize“ rather than […]

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