529 College Savings Plan Resources

November 2019

529 Education Savings Plans are a meaningful topic for parents, grandparents, and anyone else who wants to help a student they know with the cost of higher education. To help you learn more about these accounts and the tax-advantaged savings opportunity …Read More

Providing for Your Children and Others with a 529 Plan

by Forrest Bell, CFP®, President, Financial Planner & Senior Investment Advisor
July 2019

The three biggest financial commitments that most people will make in their lifetimes are buying a home, raising children, and retiring. Of the three, the cost of raising children might be the most surprising. While the cost of a home is easily found on …Read More

Middle Retirement Planning

by Forrest Bell, CFP®, President, Financial Planner & Senior Investment Advisor
April 2019

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. …Read More

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

by Bonnie Bell, MA, MDiv., Principal, Director of Career/Life Coaching
April 2019

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 …Read More

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

by James F. Bell, CFP®, Founder and Chief Investment Officer
April 2019

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 …Read More

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

by James F. Bell, CFP®, Founder and Chief Investment Officer
January 2019

…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 …Read More

“What’s Bonnie Going to Do?!”

by Bonnie Bell, MA, MDiv., Principal, Director of Career/Life Coaching
January 2019

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 …Read More

Earthquake Insurance

by Forrest Bell, CFP®, President, Financial Planner & Senior Investment Advisor
January 2019

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 …Read More

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

by Forrest Bell, CFP®, Senior Investment Advisor, Financial Planner
October 2018

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. …Read More

Homeowners Insurance

by Forrest Bell, CFP®, Sr. Investment Advisor, Financial Planner
July 2018

On October 8, 2017, a fire began in Calistoga, California, that would kill 43 people and displace 100,000 others. Because of the weather conditions, the fire moved fast. The following morning, I remember hearing that the fire had jumped the 101 freeway …Read More

American Consumers Get Great Deals from the Trade Deficit

by Jim Bell, CFP®, Founder and Chief Investment Officer
July 2018

In 2017 investors benefited from an unusually non-volatile market with consistent growth, but 2018 has been notably less euphoric. So what changed? In short, tariffs: these economic and political tools are the only force holding back the U.S. stock …Read More

Trump Punishes Craft Beer

by Jim Bell, CFP®
April 2018

Thanks to the St. Patrick’s Day editorial page of the Wall Street Journal, I learned about American Keg in Pottstown, PA, the only remaining U.S. manufacturer of stainless steel beer kegs. Their biggest seller is the 15.5 gallon keg, very popular with …Read More

What About Umbrella Insurance?

by Forrest Bell, CFP®
April 2018

Last month, the radio show Radiolab aired a story about the Benrath Senior Center in Dusseldorf, Germany. Like many centers of its kind, some of its patients suffer from dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. On occasion, these patients would try to walk …Read More

Long-Term Care

by Forrest Ryan Bell, CFP®
January 2018

Some years ago, a client came to me concerned about his long-term care policy. He purchased the policy through CalPERS. It would cover much of the cost of long-term care for all of his life, but he had just been informed that his premiums would be going …Read More

Are You Guilty of Self-Induced Poverty?

by James F. Bell, CFP®
January 2018

Believe it or not, there is a new concern afoot that retired Americans are not spending enough money! This runs completely counter to the dominant conversation that Americans are in a retirement crisis and woefully unprepared for life after work. Finance …Read More

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Market Analysis

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“There Are Better Things Ahead Than Any We Leave Behind”
January 6, 2021

As December came to a close, the global equity markets added several percentage points to their …Read More


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Webinar: 2020 Election Impact – What Investors Should Know
October 22, 2020 Presenters: Laurent Harrison, CFP®, Senior Investment Advisor and Financial Planner Ryan Kelley, …Read More

Career/Life Coaching Blog

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Thoughts from Bonnie on Balance in Times of Stress
May 12, 2020

Originally Posted March 15, 2011 Back in 2011, the world was in a different form of crisis. The …Read More