Archived Newsletter Articles

Should Investors Sell After a “Correction”?

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Stock prices in markets around the world fluctuated dramatically for the week ended August 27. On Monday, August 24, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1,089 points—a larger loss than the “Flash Crash” in May 2010—before rallying to close down 588. Prices fell further on Tuesday before recovering sharply on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Although…

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The Wisdom of Yogi Berra

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September 22, 2015 marked the passing of baseball legend Yogi Berra at the ripe young age of 90. The Hall of Fame catcher was also well-known for a lifetime of malapropisms, many of which we have quoted in the pages of this newsletter over the years. Beneath the surface, his quotes often contained simple, easily…

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The Myths of Bonds

150 150 Mia

Bonds have a place in just about every portfolio. At Northstar, we prefer to buy bond mutual funds rather than individual bonds for many reasons, but they serve the same purpose: To lessen the high volatility associated with equity investing. Unfortunately, many bond investors have different goals in mind, and those goals are often based…

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Giving Back

150 150 Mia

Sometimes we just need to give something back. No, I’m not talking about the stock market as of late, however, I can certainly see it there too. I’m talking about doing something to make the world just a little bit better. As some of you know, our son was diagnosed with a serious mental illness…

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The Patience Principle

150 150 Mia

Global markets are providing investors a rough ride at the moment, as the focus turns to China’s economic outlook. But while falling markets can be worrisome, maintaining a longer term perspective makes the volatility easier to handle. A typical response to unsettling markets is an emotional one. We quit risky assets when prices are down…

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What To Do With a Stinky 401(k)

150 150 Mia

An employer-sponsored retirement plan, such as a 401(k), can offer many benefits to help you build retirement savings. Standard plans offer: Convenient, routine contributions through payroll deduction. Once you set it up, it just happens each paycheck. No bill to budget for and pay. This makes it more likely you will continue to make contributions…

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Estate Planning for Unwed Couples

150 150 Mia

As more and more long-term couples delay marriage or choose not to marry, estate planning becomes more complicated. That’s since in addition to a great party and the fattiest cake known to man, marriage offers a range of end-of-life benefits not given to couples who choose to remain unwed. A quick review of some documents…

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Greece is the Word

150 150 Mia

In recent weeks, the world’s markets and media financial pages have focused intensely on the standoff between debt-laden Greece and its international lenders over the conditions of any further bailout. For investors everywhere, both of the large institutional kind and individual participants, the story has been fast-paced and difficult to keep up with. More importantly,…

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401(k) Loans: Pros and Cons

150 150 Mia

You’re looking for a quick source of money, either to pay down debt or for emergency cash needs. At first glance, your 401(k) account might look like a tempting source for a short-term loan. To be sure, borrowing against your 401(k) has advantages over many other type of loans. Loan rates tend to be low,…

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Retirement Investment Myths

150 150 Mia

As with most other complicated topics, retirement investing comes with a set of overly simplified, generally accepted rules, many of which are wrong at best, disastrous to your portfolio at worst. Adapted from a recent ThinkAdvisor article (and expanded upon), here are some of the more common (and erroneous) beliefs about retirement investing: You have…

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T.D. Ameritrade AdvisorClient Mobile App

150 150 Mia

If you have a T.D. Ameritrade account managed by Northstar and an iPhone, you now have the ability to view your real-time account balance, positions and transaction history on your phone. Other convenient features include: Remote check deposit (take a picture of the front and back of the check with your phone and it will…

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Tax Planning: Low-Basis Assets

150 150 Mia

In converting new clients’ investments to low-cost, highly diversified portfolios, we usually need to liquidate some or all of the clients’ existing assets, which often times results in realization of capital gains. In plain English, sometimes setting up a new account leads to a big tax bill. While tax minimization is an important goal in…

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