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You Need to be Aware of Your Biases

Some recent research has shown that investors left to their own accord, may cost themselves as much as 3% annually in investment returns. This is what Tim Richards of The Psy-Fi Blog refers to as “The Human Factor” in this month’s brief video blog. This supports something I have personally said on numerous occasions: “Investment behavior is overwhelmingly the biggest determinant of investor success.” And, this further demonstrates why having a sound financial plan serving as the blueprint for an ongoing, non-emotional investment process is so vitally important.

I’m confident you will find this video very informative, and as always, feel free to share it with any friends or family.

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An Investor’s Biggest Enemy

Benjamin Graham, Warren Buffett’s teacher, emphasized over and over again that an investor’s biggest enemy can be seen by simply looking in the mirror. In other words - ourselves. Because of this, the predominant role we play as a financial advisor (coach) is to serve as a buffer between our clients’ dangerous emotions of fear and greed and their temptation to give in to such emotions. Evidence clearly shows that most do-it-yourself investors, attempting to go it alone, end up with poor financial results over time. But there are certain concrete steps all investors can take to help protect us from ourselves. This brief, 3-minute video outlines what some of these all-important, yet practical steps are. As always, feel free to share this video with any friends or loved ones.

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Managing Investment Risk in Retirement

For years now, we here at ISI have highly recommended that for the purpose of planning withdrawals of retirement funds, generally speaking, it should be limited to approximately 3% annually of one’s portfolio. Additionally, I have never been a proponent of automatically adjusting one’s portfolio based upon age. Instead, I have always urged clients to have one’s specific goals and financial plan be the driver of how investments should be allocated. This brief, 3-minute video discusses both of these very important issues, and I’m confident you’ll find it of interest.

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Wise Financial Advice During Retirement Can Never Be Emphasized Enough

As you're nearing retirement, and ultimately transition into retirement, there are many vital and complex variables that will have a tremendous impact on your future financial security. It can become an overwhelming maze that's continually changing in the areas of sound investing, tax laws and opportunities, estate planning, Social Security, Medicare, and many other aspects of dynamic financial planning. This is where a qualified, experienced financial planner and team can be invaluable to you and your family when facing all of these very important decisions. This brief, 3-minute video highlights just how important this can be.

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Are Investors Reluctant to Realize Their Losses?

Confirmation bias is the tendency to give more weight to evidence that confirms our beliefs, regardless of whether the information is true or not, than to evidence that contradicts our beliefs. This behavioral bias, coupled with our inherent propensity toward over confidence and optimism, can lead to poor investment decisions, high costs, missed opportunities and substantial volatility in an actively managed portfolio. Pay special attention to this brief video as it’s most definitely filled with time-tested wisdom.

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Which Risk Factors are the Most Important?

In the world of investing, financial science and academic evidence have shown that building a portfolio that includes a tilt toward certain “factors,” such as smaller company stocks and value stocks, not only has increased long-term returns historically, but also can increase future expected returns.

In this brief, informative 3-minute video, you’ll learn more about why this can be so important.

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Availability bias — a mental shortcut that can wreck your investments

There’s a whole range of behavioral biases that human beings are prone to that cause us to make poor investment decisions. One very common one is referred to as “availability bias.” Two of the most common types of availability biases are primacy and recency. They can tempt and lure us into making decisions based on the first thing we think of, or the last thing we heard. Examples might include: Did your first investment experience end poorly? Was the last stock that a talking head on CNBC recommended a tremendous success? Making decisions based on these types of biases is risky business when it comes to investing. In the following video, this bias is further discussed in a most practical way that will hopefully help you become a better investor.

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On the Air

newsradio-WHP-webTim Decker hosts the weekly radio show “Financial Freedom” on WHP 580 AM Harrisburg every Saturday at 10:00 am Eastern.

He brings his extensive knowledge and over 28 years of experience to the discussion of current financial and wealth management topics. Each show also includes a Q&A session when Tim provides straightforward, unbiased answers to questions from callers. This is the program that represents your best interests, not Wall Street's.

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The Sleep-Well-at-Night Investor

The-Sleep-Well-At-Night-Investor

ISI Financial Group helps clients take all necessary steps to properly develop and implement a holistic financial plan using evidence-based, time-tested strategies centered around financial science. In his book, “The Sleep-Well-At-Night Investor,” Tim Decker shows readers how misinformation from the mutual fund industry has created widespread harm amongst investors. The book also discusses the temptation to think of investing like gambling, and the tragedy of gambling away savings and security under the guise of investing.

Buy the Book!