Money Talk

Episode 39

The Risk Reward Profile of Individual Investors

Today’s topic is the Risk Reward Profile of Various Individual Investors. Put it another way, what is your DNA for risk and reward? We’ll talk about the arts, the sciences, licensed professionals, entrepreneurs, financial advisors, corporate executives.

Welcome to our listener supported podcast, Money Talk. Uncompromised, absolute financial truths behind financial perceptions with hosts, Ed Sutkowski and Chuck LeFebvre. Let’s listen in.

Chuck LeFebve: I am Chuck.

Ed Sutkowsk: I’m Ed. Today’s topic is the Risk Reward Profile of Various Individual Investors. Put it another way, what is your DNA for risk and reward? We’ll talk about the arts, the sciences, licensed professionals, entrepreneurs, financial advisors, corporate executives. By way of a disclaimer, we’re reporting on what we have seen for, now, combined more than 75 years of practice. We don’t invest anyone’s money, but we see how people do accumulate wealth. We’re not suggesting this is negative or positive, we’re again, reporting. It doesn’t necessarily mean our respective investment ideas, but the issue is where do you place yourself on the risk reward continuum from no risk to outstanding risk? Is it fair, Chuck?

Chuck: That is, and I can probably start out with a little story.

Ed: Sure.

Chuck: That’s appropriate to this topic which was back in my time when I was something of a banker. I was being immersed in, you know there’s what they refer to as Modern Portfolio Theory. You’ve heard that-

Ed: Oh, yes.

Chuck: This idea behind reducing the risk of investments while maintaining performance by diversifying your investments across various asset classes and various assets within a particular class, and so on and so forth, and all this statistical analysis that goes with that, and so forth. One day I was having a conversation with one of the commercial lenders at the bank about that. He said, “Well, everything you’re talking about makes perfect sense, but the people who I’ve observed who have made substantial wealth have done so by doing the opposite of that. Rather than diversifying their investments, they have concentrated investments.” Which is true, right?

Ed: Absolutely true. Plus, rebalancing at the end of the year, and handholding, well, it goes on, and on, and on.

Chuck: Right. Well, that’s all fine, but bearing in mind that when you hear about somebody who goes from zero to a billion dollars, Jeff Bezos has a highly concentrated investment in one company, and that’s made him fantastically wealthy.

Ed: I have seen some go from 0 to 100 million, significant concentration and significant leverage, manageable leverage, but remember this process is nothing more and nothing less than a game. When you come to realize it is a game and you keep score with numbers. it could be beads, it could be cars, it could be whatever you keep them up, but you are playing a game and measuring your performance against something else. If you don’t like the game, get out of the game.

Chuck: Right. Well, plenty of people do.

Ed: That’s okay. The point of our discussion is that the risk reward relationship. maybe it’s a function of your DNA I don’t know where it comes from, but some people like risk and some people don’t like risk, and that’s okay. We’re not saying you should enhance your portfolio by risk and yet– Warren Buffet doesn’t have any debt, I think. He’s done okay, but the story is, eggs in one basket, watch the basket and live a long time, and watch for how compounding of interest works. Anyway, let’s talk about the least DNA that is the most averse to risk. I’d say there’d be artists and authors. Have you ever known of an artist or an author that plays the accumulation game?

Chuck: If they do, they don’t do it consciously.

Chuck: By which I mean that they may have an investment that they don’t really think of as an investment, for instance. An artist who is investing in their own materials and their own development and that kind of thing, that can be a substantial investment that maybe they’re not even thinking of it that way. They’re just thinking of that as what they do. No, typically you don’t see these people play in the market.

Ed: And authors. You introduce me to an author, and I’ll show you someone that likes to write and to read, to think and communicate, but not to invest, especially no debt. We have the educators, the professors, whether in law school or business school, especially those that teach finance in the business school, are they investing? Maybe, but not the way an entrepreneur would invest. I focus on the inheritor, the beneficiary. What’s been your experience as far as cash, risk reward of the folks that come into megabucks?

Chuck: There, I’ve seen a wide variation within that class of people. Usually, whatever their preconceptions are prior to inheritance, it takes a long time to shed them, even after they maybe are inheriting a nest egg that’s already been invested in a way that’s really not in alignment with their own philosophy. For instance, you can take it to an extreme here where you have somebody who has spent his entire life thinking that cash is the only true investment, who then inherits a family-owned business, which is the ultimate in the concentrated investment in my mind. That person, what you tend to see happening is looking for a way of, “Gee, is there a way I can sell this so that I can get back to cash?”

Ed: Yes. We don’t see many folks that are reincarnated in the form of their ancestor. The ancestor was born with green eyes and the descendant with a different color eyes. It’s unusual to see a family business transition downward, a successful family business, especially owned by two brothers. The Greeks never had two brothers in the same business. Fear, greed and revenge. Revenge is a good source of legal expenses. Anyway, then the next level and a little more investment-conscious would be the licensed professional, the lawyer, trial lawyer, the tax lawyer, the general practitioner, the engineer, the MD, the vet, the dentist, and not-for-profit executives. Let’s talk about any of those and what has been your reaction. I think there’s a common denominator, but let me hear what you have to say.

Chuck: First of all, my main observation about this group of people is that they tend to, by the time they have set aside cumulatively enough to have a real investment portfolio, it tends to be a little bit later in their careers, a little bit later in their lives. This is a group that my own observations, although this is definitely not true across the board, but it seems like, typically, their rate of savings tends to be relatively low. Typically, you’re talking about people who their retirement is on the horizon for them quite often. There’s obviously exceptions, particularly with lawyers, but a lot of these licensed professionals are eager to retire at a younger age. By the time they’re really thinking heavily about investing, they’re already thinking about investing conservatively. These are people that this Modern Portfolio Theory has a lot of appeal for. They tend to be swayed by the terms of investment advisors who tell them stories about diversifying their risk and diversifying their portfolio, and so on. That’s just what I’ve seen with obvious exceptions.

Ed: In my world, my favorite clients, by the way, are the lawyers. They tend to, after they’ve established a relationship with you, believe you. “Okay, I’m going to do what you suggest.” That puts quite a burden on you to do the right thing and minimize costs and expenses, but the trial lawyers look at every leaf on the tree. When they get over the idea that, “Oh, maybe these guys do know what they’re talking about,” the tax lawyer, “I’m not sure I want to take a risk here. I really represent the IRS. rather than you, Mr. Client.” There’s barrier. The licensed professional has been taught not to make a risk, not to make mistake, malpractice issues. It is always what you can’t do, what you shouldn’t do, and so they’re not set up to think about if I do something maybe I can improve my lot, but it’s, “I don’t want any risk. I don’t want to be criticized.”

Chuck: How often have you seen, for instance, a licensed professional say, “Okay, you’ve spelled out for me an opportunity to set aside a greater amount than I otherwise would into a qualified retirement plan of some type, but in order to do that I’m going to have to go into debt.”

Ed: Oh, not going to happen.

Chuck: It seems like that is just a bridge too far for this particular group of people.

Ed: Also engineers.

Chuck: Oh, yes. Definitely, would put them in that category.

Ed: Those folks male or female are individuals they got solutions in their mind, but looking for the problems. It’s upside down. Everything’s got to be precise. I could recall one story an engineer visiting with a retail establishment, talking about some chairs. while the recliners said to the owner, “Look. this recliner A, this color goes back three foot six inches. This one goes back three foot two inches.” The owner said, “We know the differences. The robots make these things, but you see human beings make the furniture. The point is. everything has got a foot. Everything’s got to be precise, no risk and don’t worry about the reward because it’s fun and having everything foot.” Their DNA for investment opportunities is pretty bad, not much going on. The MDs and the vets, any experience there with the MDs?

Chuck: Much of what I said before about licensed professionals applies largely to a lot of the doctors that I deal with, with the exception being that typically or you’re a little more likely to find in this group people who have high enough income that they really do have plenty to be able to set aside without really having to crimp and save in order to make that happen. You’ll find some investors among that group, but here again these are people who it seems like they’re all over the map in terms of their philosophy about investing or their risk profiles. I’ve seen some that are just afraid to do anything aggressive and others that are constantly saying, “Okay, how can I make this grow faster? What do we need to do in order to make this grow faster? I’m willing to take high risks.” That’s been my own. It’s hard to paint with a broad brush with that particular group, at least with my own experience.

Ed: I agree, but look at the profile, the DNA, the thought process for a doctor is quite different than for someone else. They have this myriad of issues which bone is broken, which does this work. In other words. they’re not necessarily really creative. It’s discovery, if you will. Risk averse, but the problem I see with the licensed professional is the time devoted to become a licensed professional precludes a discussion or a learning process of something else, for example, financial matters.

Chuck: Oh, that’s very true.

Ed: They’re at a disability coming into the end of the real world.

Chuck: The other thing is that, although these licensed professions have the opportunity to generate plenty of disposable income, quite a few of the people in this group they start out deeply in debt without a lot of disposable income. They climb their way out of a hole in the early parts of their professional lives.

Ed: Yes, and it’s troublesome when you look at a balance sheet which should be very basic, assets liabilities with the difference. The ability to comprehend that is difficult because of the training they’ve experienced. If you’re a surgeon, have you been looking at financial statements? I understand where they’re coming from, but it’s nice to understand the nature of the DNA of the individual that you’re working with. For those that are listening to this podcast, where do you fall on the continuum of risk and reward? We started with an artist, we’ll end up with the guys and girls that are really aggressive. In the meantime, we’re talking about the licensed professionals and the next would be the wealth advisors and the financial planners. It’s interesting, back to your diversification, and rebalance every year and, “Oh, man.”

Chuck: This is a group that in my mind is both the most transparent in some respects and the most opaque in other respects in terms of their own propensities, because they certainly spend their entire lives talking about investment philosophy, but they really hold their cards extremely close to their own chest when it comes to what their own financial life looks like. How much they’re setting aside how they’re investing it, et cetera, is very difficult to ascertain with this group, although I think we can surmise that for the most part, they do tend to drink their own Kool-Aid. If what they’re preaching is Modern Portfolio Theory, then they’re probably investing in a wide diversification of assets and asset classes, and so forth, in an attempt to essentially replicate something like the S&P 500, but not to go very much aggressively beyond that. This is a group that I will say that I’ve had a number of conversations with plenty of them about the use of leverage and it is like you’re talking about taking away their first born child, essentially.

Ed: That’s right. It’s amazing.

Chuck: You would think this would be very familiar territory to them, but, oh my goodness, it really does set off alarm bells in their minds as a group.

Ed: When we talk leverage, we’re not talking about ratios of 80% debt, 20%. In other words, we’re talking about a manageable amount of investment debt with a positive rate of return. Yes, it’s going to go up and it increases volatility, but is Tesla stock a stock that you should have in your portfolio if you like to avoid risk? It’s up and down every day, so you can handle it, that’s fine. Well, and with the financial planners investment advisors that I’ve come across, so to speak and the client will say, “Ed, what do you think?” I say, “Well, fine. There’s just this one question. Mr. Advisor, let’s see your balance sheet for the last three years. Not your income statement, let’s see how you’ve handled your investments.” In 50 plus years of asking that question, how many times the subject has produced that?

Chuck: I’m going to guess zero.

Ed: Zero. “As a matter of fact, not only zero, but a negative. How dare you ask me that question?” When I go to a doctor for open heart surgery do I say, “Doc, how many toenails have you removed? No, I want to know how many of this procedure have you done?” If they say, “Oh, two or three a month,” I think I’ll go elsewhere. I may go to the Cleveland clinic or Mayo or somewhere, but the point is, you’re going to consider the source. If you are an investment advisor, let’s see how you’ve done. Now, I’m forgetting about the Goldman Sachs’s of the world, all the New York hotshots that are telling you, they’re going to make you a zillion dollars, but the fee is going to be pretty substantial, but that’s for another day.

Chuck: Right.

Ed: Let’s talk about another class and I am not sure where to put these in ranking them one, two, or three, so I’m looking to you to respond. The farmer, the investment, the entrepreneur, if you will, the venture capitalist/private equity. How do you feel about those rankings, the farmer, the entrepreneur, and the venture capitalist?

Chuck: It’s interesting because they’re all three really entrepreneurs in their own ways, but culturally, they come at that in with a very different mindsets, I think. The fascinating thing about the farmers who are in our practices, we see an awful lot of these folks. It is incredible for people who come across as very modest and sometimes having an effect of not really talking about money all that much or whatever, the amount of cash, the amount of the amount of debt that has to get incurred by these folks just in their day-to-day operation, the amount of capital that’s involved in farming makes that a pretty intense business that involves a lot of personal risk that these folks are undertaking. My sense is that, the fact that there’s so much risk involved in the farming itself, causes them in every other field of life to be extremely risk adverse. They come across as incredibly conservative, only cash, no debt. You’ll hear that kind of talk from these farmers, but when you look at their total picture here, what they’re really placing at risk in order to engage in their farm operations themselves, they are quite often and this happens cyclically. It’ll be highly leveraged and have an awful lot of capital invested in this one business, right?

Ed: Yes. I view those folks as being the greatest risk takers of all.

Chuck: It’s not just their capital they put at risk, but it’s also a dangerous business to be in.

Ed: You got government subsidies, you got competition, world competition, not next door, and you’ve got to purchase price of the land, financing it, the rate of return, the equipment, the depreciation investment credit, knowing a little bit about tax, knowing a little bit about what kind of weed killer did you put down. It goes on, and on, and on. I’m thinking about that as an investment. I am sorry, I’d love to know more about farming, but I don’t have the intellectual satisfaction or background to understand farming. Those folks that I’ve worked with that are farmers are the most amazing group of individuals I’ve ever known. Every day is risk. Every minute is risk. “Well, the crops are pretty bad.” Then, South America is putting– Oh, my gosh, John Deere, a piece of equipment is $250,000. How many months of the year it goes on, and on, and on? I can’t get my arms around it.

Chuck: Right. Just their input costs alone, what they incur in the Fall, it’s pretty astonishing. This is actually a great group of people, the three you’ve listed, where all three of them are kind of enigmas in a way wherein one way, you could say that they’re very risk-averse, but in other way they’re taking large risks. Farmers are one of those entrepreneurs, in many ways, like the farmers. They’ll incur a great deal. I think here, much more consciously take a lot of risk in terms of setting up and growing their own business. We’ll typically be fairly comfortable with the risk associated with that, but then everything else risk is off the table.

Ed: Yes. Let’s talk about an entrepreneur, the individual, Peter that comes up with a widget. Here it requires some capital, but it’s not a computer program and require some capital to make these widgets. That person I’ve found there’s inside and outside debt. There’s inside that they’re guaranteeing, by the way, that’s required to capitalize the business organization, and to hire the right people, the market. I mean it goes on and on. We say farmers are difficult, but that’s one or two farmers, and you can focus on it, but the entrepreneur, you have competition, you have government regulations, you have human resource. It goes on and on and on. Those folks do not have debt outside the business. They have debt inside the business, but not outside. Outside, what do they have?

Chuck: Cash.

Ed: It’s amazing. Joe, you’ve got X thousands of dollars in cash.

Chuck: Or millions, sometimes.

Ed: Yes. I’ve seen the millions and you see the millions, “What are you doing with that kind of cash?” “Well, why do you ask me that question?”

Chuck: I might need it.

Ed: Might need it, but–

Chuck: If I have a bad year, I’m going to need that.

Ed: “Yes, but your business is earning a million dollars a month. What do you need this cash for?” “Well, I never know. That’s right. I never know.” You don’t pursue that. They’ve create jobs. They’ve created value. In the qualitative sense, they’ve created value. In the quantitative sense, they’re the kind of people that have made the company great.

Chuck: They are, typically, the very last person to know that they’ve become successful.

Ed: Oh, they deny it. “Oh, no. Pete has much more than I have. This is pretty successful.” “Well, Ed, What do you think about– How do I compare?” “You know top 1% of what?”

Chuck: Of everyone.

Ed: Of everyone. Right. Then we have the venture capitalists, the private equity folks, now, there the design is, “I want to make money on other people’s money.”

Chuck: Right. This one, you’re almost flipping it around in my mind where these folks are taking a lot of risk, at least, superficially, but a lot of that risk is really being undertaken with other people’s investments and not their own. Meaning, in a way they obviously have some some personal stake in these private equity vehicles that they establish, but to a large extent, they’ve insulated themselves from the risk associated with that, by bringing in other investors and by of all the people who are investing in these ventures, they’re the first to get paid. Right?

Ed: Well, I’ve seen some that have the other approach. “I’m going to give you Mr. Investor 10% return on your investment, then we’ll share on the upside 80/20. You get 80%, I get 20%.” I will tell you of all the groups would rather not be, would be a venture capital or private equity guy or girl, they learned to sleep standing up.

Chuck: They work very hard, I do know.

Ed: They don’t. The number of marriages have gone south with those folks, and then they can, hopefully, have a carried interest, they get a capital gain treatment on their carried interest, which is the subject of political maneuvering, every session, but they have enough background information and some folks from Wall Street that preserve that. Most it’s ordinary income, and so wait a minute. You learn how to sleep standing up and you’re responding to the pressures of the investors that are saying, “Hey, what are you doing for me lately? What’s the internal rate of return. I’m measuring that against the S&P 500.” That’s a very difficult area. You really have to know a lot about not only taxes and business, but each business that you are involved in. I’m not sure I would want to be a private equity guy, and what I would like to be is a corporate executive job.

Chuck: Yes.

Ed: That’s my favorite pastime.

Chuck: We’ve now entered the phase of the podcast where Ed makes some additional enemies.

Ed: I can’t. Not possible. That is not possible to make any more enemies.

Chuck: Right.

Ed: They’re all been made.

Chuck: Here we go, we’ve got the corporate executives who think that they’re taking high risk, but are not.

Ed: That’s right. The goal of the investment advisor is a percentage on other people’s right. Irrespective if you gain or lose, but the role of a corporate executive is to get to the top, get to be the honcho. Now, I’m not talking about the corporate executive who has started the company.

Chuck: That’s an entrepreneur.

Ed: That guy or that girl, and make it very clear, I’m talking about ladies now, because we’re seeing more and more of that which is terrific, doing a great job, and realizing that this is not the easiest way to raise a family. spending full-time running a company, that’s from both male and female point of view. In any event, so the idea is to get to the top and then you are the epitome of success. You walk on water even in the summertime, not just in the winter. You surround yourself, not certain by design. It’s just the way it works. It’s a creative. You don’t think this is going to happen, as you stay with the company, you go up the line and you finally get to be at the top. You make sure you are involved in the selection of directors process. The director that comes aboard is beholden to you and each director’s making a lot of money and with no risk, by the way, the hourly rates, probably north of $900 an hour. Everyone makes sure that you know you’re the greatest thing since slice bread. The directors hire an outside consultant and guess what? Fashioning year compensation package, W2, restricted stock, ESOPs, 401k, long-term incentive, short-term incentive. It goes on and on. Look at the proxy statement.

Chuck: Well, the directors hire an outside consultant recommended by you.

Ed: Oh, yes. Yes, yes.

Chuck: Right. That’s how the process starts.

Ed: The real interesting feature of corporate compensation, you don’t measure it, your performance vis-à-vis another company in the same industry. It’s measured by an external force, an external guideline. If we were to measure your performance, your return on invested capital by the company that’s the same sector as yours, result could be quite different. You got a bonus if you outperform Black Acre, or Newco, or Oldco. It’s an interesting way of looking at it, but you avoid comparisons that are to the benefit of this stockholders, but I’m over the top on this, Chuck.

Chuck: No, no, there’s accuracy there. This really is a group that incurs the least risk of all, but I meant what I said earlier that I think that in their own minds they believe that they are in an incredibly high risk profession and are making difficult decisions all the time. This is part of the credo.

Ed: They’re risking their job. Now, Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, they make a gazillion dollars because that’s what the market will bear.

Chuck: There’s individual performance involved there that is measured on an individual basis. I just think there’s always this issue when you’re talking about a corporate executive where they are given credit and claim credit for the overall performance of the company, but I’d say it’s neither art nor science. It’s a little bit of mysticism going through the process of determining how much of that you can really attribute to an individual member of the executive team.

Ed: You’re right. What impact could an executive have on multiple millions or perhaps billions of dollars on how it’s deployed? You’re deploying capital to various sectors based upon rates of return. You’re not going to put money in there with your sub that makes widgets when we turn it and that’s good. It is an interesting opportunity and very difficult to get to the top and it’s not measured by realistic performance. When you look at the whole host of benefits, look at the proxy statement, the annual report, the number of pages that are devoted to compensation of the executives.

Chuck: Oh, yes.

Ed: It’s incredible.

Chuck: Oh, yes. It can be an interesting read too.

Ed: How much time do you have?

Chuck: Right.

Ed: Versus the balance sheet of let’s say, the absence of a proxy statement, a close out business, there’s no proxy statement. I’m looking at how much cash is being produced. What’s the return on invested capital? How much cash? I want to take the cash out of the business. Let’s talk about that for a second. I’ve seen any number of situations were folks leave too much cash in the business.

Chuck: Yes, that happens a lot.

Ed: “Why you doing that? If you take it out and invest it otherwise, you’re insulating yourself from creditor claims.” Yet they don’t necessary do that. I don’t understand why. Do you have any view on that, Chuck?

Chuck: Well, only the obvious which is that if it’s a corporation that hasn’t elected to be an S Corp, it can be difficult to get cash out of the business without incurring a taxable transaction as part of that, but most of these closely-held businesses are pass-throughs of some type or another. There are either an S Corp or they’re a partnership or something, where there’s really nothing preventing that cash from coming out. Even with the C Corp, you can loan it out subject to certain restrictions, right?

Ed: Well, yes, but I want to make sure I understand what you mean by C Corp and S Corp. It is a corporation in Illinois, Nevada, Wyoming, Delaware, a corporation that has elected under the Internal Revenue Code to be taxed as if it didn’t exist with some exceptions. The pass-through entity organization would be a partnership, a limited partnership, but in the case of a corporation that has elected to be taxed under subchapter as for the Internal Revenue Code, the profits are deemed to be distributed to the shareholders even if not distributed.

Chuck: Right. There, why leave them in the business? You’ve already paid tax on them, so you might as well take them out. You can always put them back in if they’re needed.

Ed: You could take a distribution in the form of a debt instrument. Issued on a long-term debt instrument and then give the notes or the debt instrument along to kids and give them source of income by way the interest which is deductible, or put them in trust to do a certain things with them. The imagination, I find a stumbling block. When you start talking about distributions of promissory notes to reduce previously taxed income, et cetera, it’s a blank stare.

Chuck: Well, as soon as you say the word promissory note, that sounds an awful lot like a loan, and so there’s an automatic level of resistance to that conversation, I found. I’ve had some very odd reactions to that discussion at times where people have raised issues about, “Well, gee, if I take the money out in the form of a promissory note out of this company, then that’s going to hurt the capital structure of the company, and I’m not going to be able to get a loan from a bank anymore.” “Well, what?” It doesn’t work that way in real life. I’ve heard all kinds of strange objections to that particular strategy and I think that it just comes down to, if it’s a person who has an aversion to debt, in general, even if it’s a loan they’re making to themselves, that gut reaction kicks in and they just can’t get over the hump with it.

Ed: The concept is, I always ask, “Well, what are your concerns? What are your fears?” With an open-ended question like that, you’d be surprised, but we’re both surprised at the nature of the reactions. Concerns about, “Well, anybody can identify it. It’s not tangible. It’s not quantifiable. It’s just I don’t feel good about doing that.” “Well, that’s great. The issue that I’ve uncovered is you stop thinking that other people want to think the way you think because you don’t have skin in the game, you didn’t start the company. Shut up and go play with your textbooks.” That’s what I think clients think that, but they don’t say it because I’ll say, “Well, fine. You’re right. Right.” The message today is that, how do you place yourself on the continuum of risk and reward? What other people are telling you or suggesting, it’s so what? It’s, “How do you feel about risk and reward? Do you do need to diversify it? Do you need to have your hand held?” It’s what are you about, and that’s a good thing. All we’re doing today is trying to identify the parameters of what’s going on. Don’t try to be someone that you’re not.

Chuck: It’s a good exercise to go through that self-analysis about where you are on this continuum and then making sure that your behavior is consistent with where you actually exist on this continuum. I know a guy, for instance, who spent years and years talking about how he’s very risk-averse, afraid to get into the stock market, doesn’t want to take any chances because he thinks the market is going to incur correction any minute now. He had all this cash sitting on the sidelines, over and over, and again, had this conversation with this gentleman who’s telling me that he’s holding cash on the sidelines because he thinks that the market is volatile and he doesn’t want to put something in and then suddenly have correction occur. Then one day out of the blue, he’s all excited because he’s decided that he’s going to invest some of this cash in, of all things, Bitcoin.

Chuck: Look, we could probably have an entire podcast about Bitcoin and the reasons why that seems like an illogical way to invest, but for this particular person, my point for this discussion is that he’s just so inconsistent with what he had stated his philosophy to have been. I don’t see that turning out with anything other than regrets.

Ed: The buy and hold, good stocks, good bonds, bottom line, again, I’m being redundant, what is your investment DNA? Don’t try to be something that you’re not and don’t let envy govern your life. You got to do what you feel comfortable about. You need an investment advisor. That’s great. Just make sure you know what the costs are. If you need a friend, get a dog. I keep saying that about my dog, Jack. Jack has really done very well with all of this.

Chuck: Jack’s done great. I can’t think of how many estate plans Jack’s been written in.

Ed: Yes. What would jack think? We haven’t gotten to the issue. We’re only talking about the accumulation prices and the DNA and the continuum. We’ve talked about before the distribution process and that’s for another 10 podcasts, is every day I’m learning something. I thought the old dog, new tricks, quite the contrary. The old dog really does learn new tricks.

Chuck: Oh, yes. Every day.

Ed: Okay. Thanks, Jack. Nice visit. We’ll go from there.

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