Security, Securities and More.

Asset management clients of Financial Planning Associates, Inc. please note that your 3rd quarter preliminary reports have been posted to your secure folder. Our clients lost some value during the quarter, typically 5% to 7%. Because securities have been “on sale” we have been purchasing assets in those accounts where it is appropriate. In the longer term we believe this will increase our clients’ annualized returns. (Happily, the first few days in the fourth quarter have seen the capital markets rebounding.)

Investment Category Representative ETF
2015,Q3
2015, YTD
iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology (IBB)
-18.00
0.01
iShares MSCI Emerging Markets (EEM)
-17.20
-15.95
Vanguard Healthcare (VHT)
-12.23
-1.55
WisdomTree Emerging Markets Local Debt (ELD)
-9.31
-13.50
Vanguard Global ex-US Real Estate (VNQI)
-8.08
-3.60
iShares Russell 1000 (IWB)
-7.54
-5.33
iShares Gold Trust (IAU)
-4.60
-5.77
SPDR DB Intl Govt Infl-Protected Bond (WIP)
-4.37
-8.62
PowerShares International Corporate Bond (PICB)
-1.45
-8.30
iShares TIPS Bond (TIP)
-0.58
-0.90
Vanguard REIT Index (VNQ)
-0.50
-5.23
iShares Core US Aggregate Bond (AGG)
1.59
1.00
US Inflation (IA SBBI)
-0.06
1.56

The following companies – Target, JP Morgan Chase, Anthem, T-Mobile, Scottrade – have something in common. Each has experienced a data breach, exposing their customers’ data to possible fraudulent intent. As an adviser associated with Charles Schwab we use strong passwords and a multi-factor authentication strategy when accessing and interacting with our clients’ account data. The same strong authentication strategy is now available to our clients as they access their Schwab accounts through the Schwab Alliance website. All you need to do is phone Schwab Alliance at 800-515-2157 to request your security token. There is no cost to you. This somewhat tedious strategy should not be required too much longer since biometric authentication will likely become common during the coming months and years.


And speaking of data security, did you know that companies are tracking your activities and your internet interactions to compile your profile? Likely, they know more about you than you think. The TED Talk below will tell you more. It’s pretty interesting, and perhaps a bit frightening.


And, just FYI here are a few links to recently published information that I find interesting and perhaps useful.

The strongest weapon to shift geopolitical balances isn’t nukes or missiles, it’s technology.

China Rolls Out the ‘World’s First Driverless Bus’

5 Reasons to Switch Medicare Part D Plans

Teamsters Benefit Plan to Slash Retirement Payouts


Some of our clients own shares of the KBS Strategic Opportunities REIT, which has been a good performer. We recently discovered that my office missed some accounting data which should have been included in the performance results in prior quarters. As a result we have been reporting a slightly lower return than our clients have actually experienced. We have corrected our mistake in this quarter’s reports.


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