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Middle Retirement Planning

If you read financial planning textbooks, you might be left with the impression that people report to the financial planner’s office to begin the planning process as soon as they land their first job. However, that’s not how it usually happens. Instead, people need a sense of urgency to get started. This often comes after …Read More

“What’s Bonnie Going to Do?!” – Part 2

Most of you know by now that, as of January, I began cutting back my hours at Bell and moving into a career transition most commonly known as “Semi-Retirement.” I have to say, it has been smoothing out a bit since the first quarter of the year, which is good news. Don’t get me wrong, …Read More

What is a “Normal” Interest Rate, and Why Does it Matter?

At a 2010 lecture discussing the financial crisis of 2007-2009 – Navigating the New Normal in Industrialized Countries – Mohamed El-Erian (now chief economic advisor at Allianz) said, “The crisis was not a mere flesh wound. The crisis cut to the bone.” Once you start cutting bone, you change the structure of whatever is being …Read More

“It Was the Best of Times, It Was the Worst of Times . . .”

…So wrote Charles Dickens in his famous opening line of A Tale of Two Cities. Dickens wrote this novel in part as a warning and as an encouragement to his fellow citizens of Great Britain not to devolve into indiscriminate mass murder and mob violence as he compared the relative safety and stability of London …Read More

“What’s Bonnie Going to Do?!”

Ever since Jim’s Succession Letter went out last month announcing that Forrest has become President of Bell  Investment Advisors, people have been asking me about my own plans for 2019, as if now I would be joining the Peace Corps or the circus, or finding a new job, or traveling to the Far East all …Read More

Earthquake Insurance

Over the past two years, the number of homes destroyed by wildfires in California has prompted many homeowners to reconsider their homeowners insurance policies and for good reason. Homeowners policies that are written to insure a home from damage affecting a single home might not provide coverage for damage that results from a larger disaster. …Read More

Reaping the Harvest

It seems like, every year, the very day after Labor Day I am ambushed by fall. While I am still holding onto summer, still wearing my white jeans, and still having barbecues, I don’t want to even think about fall. This year the weather even joined the conspiracy in Berkeley, so we could have our …Read More

California Taxpayers vs. the New Federal Tax Law

On September 1, 2018, the California State Legislature adjourned without conforming the California State Income Tax to any part of the Republican Federal Tax Law, known as the Tax Cuts & Jobs Act, passed last December. Consequently, the federal law will not cause Californians to pay more in state income tax for 2018 (more below …Read More

Do You Have a Bias Against International Small-Cap Stocks?

With the S&P 500 fully recovered from the correction earlier this year, and hovering near its all-time high, the current bull market in U.S. large-cap stocks remains one of the longest in history. The reasons for this bull market are still in debate. Skeptics suggest the rise is a product of artificially low, government-suppressed interest …Read More

How to Plan and Take a Vacation Even If You Are Unemployed

Who doesn’t love a vacation? The mere word, which means “planned time spent not working,” along with other descriptors such as “break, breathing space, intermission, recess, recreation, respite, and rest,” immediately releases some sort of dreamy enzymes into the veins. But as I have heard from more than one of my unemployed clients, “vacation” is …Read More

Market Analysis

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Best Quarter for U.S. Stocks Since 2009
April 5, 2019 The breadth of the U.S. stock market gain in the first quarter of 2019 caused all sectors of the …Read More

Publication

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Middle Retirement Planning
April 17, 2019 If you read financial planning textbooks, you might be left with the impression that people report …Read More

Latest News

Schwab Phishing Attempt Reported

Bell received notification from our custodian, Charles Schwab, of a text message-based phishing attempt imitating Schwab. The phishing attempt appears to have been sent to a random set of phone numbers, not necessarily clients of Schwab or Bell Investment Advisors. The phishing attempt was conveyed through text messages appearing to come from Schwab, but in …Read More

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