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Coach Pitch Baseball and Investing

 

I hope this letter finds you and your family well.  As for our family, we have been busy at the ballfields which has been fun.  Late nights, dirty uniforms, and lots of concession stands for supper!  I’m helping coach Ross and Reid’s team and have been reminded of some simple truths that apply to coach pitch baseball and long-term investment success.

1. Teams that are the most fundamentally sound usually win

You have to make the routine plays to have a chance to win.  When a soft ground-ball is hit to the pitcher, you have to make that play.  Giving the other team an extra out is a recipe for disaster.  When it comes to investing, the fundamentals are critical.  Have a plan. Save consistently. Be Patient.  Don’t let short term events derail long term goals.

2.  You have to eliminate unforced errors

Teaching a 7 year old how to properly run the bases can be a challenge.  A kid that runs when a fly ball is hit and is doubled up can be very costly for his team.  A kid batting out of order is an automatic out.  When it comes to investing, one mistake every ten years can be extremely costly.  It is staggering to look at the statistics.  A large percentage of investors sell during the “temporary” downturns and want to buy back after the rebound.  My #1 job is to educate you and keep you from making these costly mistakes.

 3. Simple > Complex

For a young kid, it is important to keep things simple. Otherwise, they are confused and play tight.  This is my son Reid’s first year of coach pitch.  In order for him to be able to execute, I have to give him very simple instructions.  Our industry does a terrible job of using jargon and complex products that no one understands.  I firmly believe that having a simple, clear plan that everyone understands gives us the best opportunity for long term investment success.

4. Stay focused

My son Ross plays 3rd base and I am constantly reminding him to focus on the batter.  Shenanigans in the dugout/planes flying above/parents yelling in the stands are all distractions that take his mind off of what is most important.  Similarly, investors are bombarded with so many things each day that are distractions from what is really important in a long-term strategy.  I am convinced that focusing on the things we can control while tuning out the “noise” yields the best results.

5. Teamwork is critical

In any sport, working together for a common goal is not only the most effective strategy but also the most rewarding.  One kid with the wrong approach can bring a whole team down and put a damper on their team’s ability to be successful.  Conversely, a kid with a great attitude that cheers his teammates on can be tremendously positive for a team. We take a team approach in our office and are thrilled that you have chosen us to be a part of your team.  We are excited to “cheer you on” in pursuit of the things that matter to you.

 

After unprecedented low volatility last year, volatility has returned in the first half of 2018.  I see volatility as not necessarily a bad thing.  Volatility is what allows patient, disciplined investors to be rewarded with premium returns over the long haul.  No matter the “inning” you are in, we look forward to our continued partnership in pursuit of your goals.

All the best to you and yours for the balance of 2018.