Blog

At Plancorp, we don’t wait for you to ask the right questions.
We take the initiative to offer insights and guidance — real enlightenment for real life.

Fed Raises Interest Rates

Today the Federal Reserve­­­ announced that they will raise interest rates for the first time in nearly a decade.  The Fed’s decision to move rates higher signals that the economy is no longer in a state of emergency and healthy enough to continue growing with modestly tighter monetary policy. Read more…

When Should You Take Social Security?

Last week President Obama signed the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, which raised the federal debt limit and avoided another debt ceiling issue.  Tucked within this new law is a provision labeled “closure of unintended loopholes,” which eliminates a couple strategies for maximizing Social Security Read more…

Give Back and Earn Income with a Strategic Financial Plan

With the end of the year and holiday season approaching, there is no better time to consider some end-of-year planning. Read more…

After a Daughter’s Death, Making a Plan for Unused College Savings

Plancorp’s Steven A. Frank was recently featured in a Wall Street Journal story discussing the complexities of 529 plans and how they can be utilized in special situations. For instance, after a long illness, a couple’s teenage daughter died after her senior year in high school. The couple needed Read more…

The Failure of Active Management

For the past 11 years, the S&P Indices Versus Active (SPIVA) Scorecard has been the de facto scorekeeper of the active versus passive debate, and last month they released their mid-year update. Below is a graphic of active funds that failed to beat their respective index.  As you can see, the Read more…

The Collective Knowledge of Markets

Meet Penelope the cow. NPR’s Planet Money asked the internet how much Penelope weighed and got 17,205 responses. The average of all the responses was 1,287 pounds and the actual weight was 1,355 pounds. The average was off by only five percent. This experiment, which was originally conducted in Read more…

Stock Market Correction

I wrote an article at the beginning of the summer titled Volatility is Not the Enemy. I remember thinking it would be the perfect article for whenever the market had a correction. Since it had been nearly four years since the last correction, I figured it should be published and referred back to Read more…

5 Estate Planning Documents You Need

Estate planning is a little different for everyone.  While you are alive, the estate planning process allows you to manage and preserve your assets.  At death, your estate plan allows you to conserve and control their distribution after your death according to your goals and objectives. Read more…

Bond Portfolio Basics

Individual investors never seem very interested in their bond portfolio. Maybe it’s because bonds lack the sense of identity that often comes with owning a stock. Think about it: nobody brags out about lending money to Apple, they brag about owning Apple. In addition, you can theoretically own a Read more…

China's Bear Market

China’s stock market has fallen over 30% in the past few weeks and wiped out roughly $3.5 trillion in wealth – or about 33% of China’s GDP. Our direct equity exposure to China is roughly 1.5%, so we don’t see reason for panic at this time. In fact, any related volatility could be good for long-term Read more…