Blog

Welcome to our Blog! At Baron Silver Stevens, we feel it is important to empower our clients with information that can positively affect their lives.

Throughout our Blog, you will find interesting articles, updates on our firm, and practical financial planning tips.

Paradigm shifts (and how to keep up)

Paradigm shifts (and how to keep up)
Life has changed; how do we adapt without losing sight of what we want to achieve? As you’ve heard us say before, no one knows how the future will play out, but we should still look ahead and think through the consequences of what’s happening. (More about this kind of second-order thinking ahead.) We believe that our society and our economy are experiencing a massive paradigm shift. We will never go back to the world we had before COVID-19, and the lens that we used to evaluate ideas, markets, economies, and personal choices over the last decade may not be sufficient for the next decade. Here are just a few things that we see changing as a result of what’s going on now: Social Support: 36.5 million Americans have become unemployed in two months, and the effects are rippling through families, communities, and the economy.1 The government has responded with trillions of
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Staying Grounded During COVID-19 Market Fluctuations

Staying Grounded During COVID-19 Market Fluctuations
We are living in a strange time. No matter how you slice it, dealing with a pandemic is difficult. People are working remotely, staying home, and trying to navigate this new normal. There have been quite a few pandemics in our history. From smallpox to measles to cholera and so many others, market fluctuations are inevitable when it comes to the fallout of a pandemic. Falling into the trap of hysteria is easy to do while watching the news and reading friends’ opinions on social media. However, history has taught us that for every seemingly long economic recession has come an even longer economic expansion. In fact, while the average length of an economic recession is 15 months, the average length of an economic expansion is 48 months. So, what can we take away from this information? How should we ease our fears and concerns during this time of uncertainty?
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Pandemics and stock markets (lessons from the 1918 Spanish Flu)

Pandemics and stock markets (lessons from the 1918 Spanish Flu)
The pandemic is here and we’ve found ourselves in bear country without enough toilet paper. When markets fall as rapidly as they have over the last few weeks and the country is going into lockdown, it’s reasonable to be worried about a situation that seems unprecedented. But let’s not panic. Because we’ve been here before. The last outbreak to achieve pandemic status was the H1N1 Swine flu, which hit U.S. soil in April 2009.1 You might hardly remember it because markets were on a tear after bottoming out in March 2009 and the outbreak barely registered on investors. But, some say that COVID-19 is nothing like recent epidemics.  So let’s take a look at one of history’s worst pandemics: The 1918 Spanish Flu. Nearly one-third of the world’s population contracted the disease and more than 50 million died in just 15 months.2 Despite the human toll, the Dow actually rose during the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic. Chart source:
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Are new retirement advice rules good or bad for investors?

Are new retirement advice rules good or bad for investors?
In recent years you may have seen headlines about new retirement advice rules for the financial services industry. Like many of us, you might have questions: What's a fiduciary? What do the new rules say? What does it all mean for investors? We break it all down for you in this infographic. Financial Lesson: Rules May Change. Our Commitment to You Does Not. We believe every American has the right to honest financial advice that puts them first. As professionals, we’re dedicated to helping our clients navigate their financial lives with objectivity, compassion, and the highest standard of ethics. We're happy to see more investors benefit from the client-centric rules we have embraced since we opened for business. Right now, we're working to incorporate the new regulations into our practice and you may see some changes as we adapt. If we need to make changes to your portfolios to comply
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How Long Will $1 Million Last in Retirement?

How Long Will $1 Million Last in Retirement?
$1 Million used to be the ultimate retirement portfolio benchmark for successful Americans. Being a millionaire brought status as well as the peace of mind of knowing that you could look forward to a comfortable retirement lifestyle with all the trimmings. Is that still true? We ran a series of hypothetical calculations to illustrate how long an average American retiree could expect their million-dollar portfolio to last in each state. Click here to take a look... However, these hypothetical examples leave out a lot of critical details that will impact your own retirement timeline. Here are a few: The expenditures used in the calculation are just averages. Depending on where you live and the lifestyle you lead, you could spend more or less than your state's average. That's why getting a personal retirement income analysis is so important. The expenses used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics to construct an
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Passing Along Your Hard-Earned Money Wisdom

Passing Along Your Hard-Earned Money Wisdom
Jump-Start the Money Talk with these Engaging Conversation Starters: Click here to read our newsletter with four thought-provoking conversation starters you can use to jump start the money talk with young people of almost any age. These can open up an ongoing dialogue about some of the most important financial lessons to share with your children and grandchildren. Kids learn their money values from you. Have the hard conversations with them. Money conversations can be hard. Have them anyway. If you really want your children to have good financial habits in the future, you can't afford to not talk to them about money now. While it's best to start when children are young, remember, it's never too late to get the conversation started. Even if your children are going off to college or having children of their own, there are still important money lessons to share, from shopping for loans
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6 Steps to Weathering a Recession

6 Steps to Weathering a Recession
How to Potentially Survive & Thrive in a Recession Economic expansions never last forever. Eventually, they'll be followed by a recession. It's inevitable. And it's a natural part of the economic cycle. While we never know when the next recession will hit—or how long it'll last—history shows that, on average, recessions don't typically last as long as booms. We also know that, no matter when they hit, recessions will stir up anxiety and fear. And that'll trigger panic and rash decisions, which can lead to big losses. So, resist the panic trap that can come with recessions. If you can keep a level head, and follow these six steps, you'll be empowered to weather any recession—and any personal financial hardships you may face outside of recessions. Remember, recessions are normal. A lot of unknowns come with recessions. And that can make it easy to get anxious and lose sight of
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5 Critical Facts You Need to Know About Bear Markets

5 Critical Facts You Need to Know About Bear Markets
Bear Markets Are Inevitable. Here's How To Keep Your Cool. Bear markets come and go. They are a natural part of the market cycle. But we never know when they'll happen or what exactly will trigger them. While we can't predict when or why bear markets happen, what we do know is that bear markets commonly make people emotional and irrational. They can even breed a crowd mentality that causes paranoia and panic. Want my advice? Stop watching what others are doing. Focus on your own needs, portfolio, and risk tolerance. It's nearly impossible to know what other investors are thinking and doing in real time, just like it's impossible to know what the "bottom" is in a bear market. So, try to keep a level head and long-term view. And try to stay realistic. Remember, all bear markets eventually pass! You'll never get to enjoy a market upswing if you
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Harness The Power of Your Money Mindset

Harness The Power of Your Money Mindset
Money is much more than a medium of exchange for goods and services. Money reflects our personal values and the hard work we put into earning it. How we treat money, save it and spend it, is a reflection of our internal beliefs — our money mindset. When it comes to money, we all have strongly held beliefs, whether or not we realize it. Many of these beliefs grew out of childhood and come from lessons we learned from our families or picked up through life experiences. Want to learn more about how your unconscious money beliefs can affect your finances? Click here for access to the full newsletter! Your Mindset is the Key to Financial Health What does the word "money" bring to mind? Are the associations positive or negative? Beliefs about money are complicated. It's a symbol of one's self: respect, love, freedom, control, power, worth, and much more
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Could You Use a Personal CFO?

Could You Use a Personal CFO?
We get it, life gets crazy and many of our clients don’t have time to focus on their own personal financial situation. That’s why we wanted to share the term “Personal CFO” with you. It’s a service we provide to help you manage all the details and people involved in your financial life, so you can make the best decisions for yourself and live your life to the fullest. A Personal CFO is like a Chief Financial Officer for a business, except it’s for you and your lifestyle. No matter how you have built your wealth, you likely have a team of professionals that you rely on for expert advice. From attorneys to accountants, it can be difficult to coordinate these individuals and keep them on the same page in terms of your particular financial goals. That’s where a Personal CFO comes into play. Here are the three main areas we
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