Mind Dump | 4/22/2020

In the Short-Run, the Market Is a Voting Machine, But in the Long-Run, the Market Is a Weighing Machine

Benjamin Graham? Warren Buffett? Ronald A. McEachern? Ben Bidwell? John C. Bogle? Apocryphal?…one of these people

Reflections and Takeaways

Wow…there is just a lot going on right now and it is hard to not only keep up with the flow of information but continue to mentally and emotionally adjust to the possibilities that sit in front of us across many domains of our lives.

I was pretty early to the party in terms of having my ears perked to the threat of a potential pandemic and was able to make a combination of mental, physical, and emotional preparations specific to it. More importantly, however, I started to go through a major adjustment process of my own about five years ago in the wake of some difficult times I was going through. Within that process I started to realize what an unsustainable path our global society was on in several contexts.

In terms of economics and financial markets I first went through a state of confusion and partial denial because pieces of my longstanding paradigm(s) around money were being challenged. From there I moved into a state of feeling a bit overwhelmed because I felt like I knew less than nothing. It seemed like there was so much to sift and sort through that I would never be able to get an accurate narrative about all of this straightened out inside of my head. As I overcame that through taking action via reading, listening, and learning I started to become extremely angry and disillusioned – I was pissed.

Now I am less angry about it because I am realizing that we are just doing what we have always done – booming and busting due to a lack of memory and foresight. I also feel at least mentally and emotionally prepared for just about anything that we have to confront going forward because of the number of possible scenarios that I have allowed to play out in my mind.

I had a call with a client today and we spent some time talking about our perceptions of the current and future expected circumstances. We have been talking about this for years so it was no surprise for him to receive my pessimistic view related to the financial markets. I have been pleading with him since the fall of 2018 to at least consider making some significant adjustments in terms of his equity exposure and some specific concentrated risk exposure that he has in his investment portfolio. As I pointed out some of the more obvious pieces to this puzzle his paraphrased response was that he understood what I was saying and that it made sense but that he just didn’t believe it. As I probed further he considered out loud the possibility that maybe he just didn’t want to believe it.

Not believing something or not wanting to in the face of a mountain of evidence to the contrary of our beliefs and desires won’t make it not happen. We all need to square up to reality here and begin going through our own adjustment process, starting right where we are at now…and this isn’t just a money or investment thing. I’m talking about taking a step back and figuring out how we can create a better, more wholesome, more sustainable future in service to the generations ahead of us.

Thoughts, questions, comments on this one? Hit me up on my contact form.

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Mentions

CARES Act and The Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

I have spend quite a bit of time working on the CARES Act but in the last week or so have had to step away to work on business operations, client work, and just give myself a rest from the firehose of constantly changing information flying at us related to COVID-19 and the economic stimulus.

With that said, I had started building a page and ongoing posting routine specific to the CARES Act and am ready to get back to work on that. Some may have heard about a large stimulus package related to agriculture. If you don’t know already, I am deeply committed to local food security and a sustainable, nutritious, delicious food supply chain. I have been helping some the farmers that I know and purchase from with navigating the CARES Act stimulus. One farmer that I have worked with was able to secure over $30,000 from the Paycheck Protection Program and that is encouraging.

More recently legislation was passed for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program. This is a $19 Billion relief package with two parts. Here are a couple of articles that I read on the topic:

Press Release: USDA Announces Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

Trump Announces $19 Billion Relief Program for Farmers

I still have more to learn on this but don’t think it will be of much help to the local farmers that I am working with. More to come on that soon.

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Published by

Sean Rogers, CFP®

Sean Rogers is a fee-only financial planner in Grand Rapids, MI. He serves individuals and families right in his back yard in West Michigan. He also works virtually with clients all over the country. Sean's firm, Capital Stewardship Partners delivers value-aligned, competent, conflict-free financial advice to Gen X and Millennials. The firm does not have any minimum requirements for net worth, investable assets, or income. This means that you can have affordable access to a fee-only fiduciary regardless of how much money you have available to invest. Sean Rogers is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, an XY Planning Network member, a NAPFA-Registered Financial Advisor, and member of the Financial Planning Association and Society of Financial Service Professionals.​