The Direction Of Interest Rates Is One Of The Biggest Investment Debates Right Now

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The Direction Of Interest Rates Is One Of The Biggest Investment Debates Right Now (Morgan Stanley)

One of the biggest investment debates for the second half of the year is where interest rates are headed. Bernanke’s initial comments sent the rate on both the 10-year and the five-year higher. Now Morgan Stanley writes that “rates will not back up that much more in the near term.”

“We think the Fed will remain accommodative for another year. There is just no reason to not believe Bernanke. While smart people who are “in the know” disagree on Bernanke’s likely replacement, there is a reasonable school of thought that Janet Yellen will be the next Chairperson. Given she may be prone to wanting to keep rates lower for longer, shorting government bonds in the near term could be dangerous even if bonds “have to” back up in a more strategic time frame. Our best guess is bond yields oscillate around today’s level for the next few months.”

Two-Thirds Of Financial Advisor Industry Will Move To Asset-Based Feed In 2015 (Investment News)

67% of of financial advisor industry compensation is expected to be fee-based by 2015, according to the 2013 Cogent Advisor Brandscape, cited by Investment News. This is up from 59% now, and from 55% in 2007. 

Wirehouses and broker-dealers are quickly adapting to the fee-based trend. Actively managed mutual funds will likely be hit the hardest. Advisors are increasingly focused on lowering costs, and a rise in the use of ETFs is coming at the expense of more expensive mutual funds.

Our Biggest Clients Haven’t Unloaded This Much Stock Since 2008 (Bank of America)

Bank of America’s latest data showed that stock selling on the part of institutional clients over the past four weeks is at a record high. “Net sales by this group were the largest since March, and the sixth-largest in our data history (since 2008),” writes BAML strategist Savita Subramanian in a note to clients. “And on a four-week week average basis, outflows by institutional clients are the largest in our data history.”

Sales of stock by BAML institutional clients

Advisors Should Help Their Clients’ Children Become Financially Responsible (The Wall Street Journal)

Heather L. Locus of Illinois-based Balasa Dinverno Foltz LLC writes that one of her clients biggest concerns is the financial welfare of their children and grandchildren. In a new Wall Street Journal column she writes that one of the best things advisors can do is help teach their children to be “financially financially responsible and independent.”

“For teenagers and those in their early 20s whose parents have largely taken care of their finances, we can teach them the difference between financial wants and needs, and the true mechanics of credit cards. Even if they are still in high school and have a part-time job, we can help them understand the value of saving for retirement early by setting up an IRA. For even older children, we can go over basic investment principles, staying out of debt, budgeting, and important things to consider when discussing marriage, such as how much debt a spouse could bring into the picture and whether or not a prenuptial agreement is a good choice.”

Here’s The 46-Page White Paper Steve Cohen Gave To SAC Employees Yesterday Explaining Why He Didn’t Do Anything Wrong (Business Insider)

The SEC recently charged SAC Capital’s Steve Cohen with failing to supervise his employees and ignoring red flags about their alleged insider trading activities. It is seeking to ban him from the industry. In a white paper released to employees Steven Cohen’s lawyers argue that he was too busy to notice and that he wasn’t even at his desk when the alleged insider trading of Aug 26, 2008 took place. 

“There were no “red flags” suggesting that Mr. Martoma had improper information,” the paper said. It also goes on to argue that Cohen “has gone to great length to deter insider trading and to establish an appropriate compliance culture.”

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