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The Best States for Raising a Family

The Best States for Raising a Family

A family of Volunteers.

Clients with families are, naturally, keen on saving money and making the wisest investment decisions possible. But where they live is perhaps just as important to their financial wellbeing. New York and Hawaii, for example, are the most expensive states for families, according to a new ranking by The site ranked all 50 states based on median income, state parental leave policies, food costs, housing costs and childcare costs. Hawaii is the least family-friendly, for having the highest costs for both food and housing. Tennessee was rated the best, with its second-lowest childcare costs in the nation and low housing and food costs.

The Robo Debate Goes Mainstream

All the news that's fit to ... wait, wrong newspaper.

As automated investing services grow, so does the conversation surrounding its impact on the wealth management industry. That debate made it to the front page of Friday’s Washington Post, which cited studies touting the rapid growth of robos as well as advisors dismissing it as a passing fad, and continued on in comment sections and social media. “Bring on the robos,” wrote Ritha Khemani in a letter to the editor that the Post published Sunday. “Robo-advisers or models are used by human investment advisers anyway, so the consumer might as well benefit with lower fees and fewer intermediary [sic]… So robo-advisers will be introduced and the industry will change, no matter what the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors says. Will it come fast enough to help people like me: senior citizens with relatively small investments?”

Two Sectors Most Affected by Interest Rates

It's not if, but when. | Copyright Mario Tama, Getty Images

While the conventional wisdom out there is that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates before the end of the year, BlackRock Chief Investment Strategist Russ Koesterich has a different view on, stating that a decelerating economy, emerging market risk and low inflation expectations means that a December rate hike is far from a sure-thing. Instead, he looks at the second quarter of 2016 (the first quarter of a year is traditionally weak for the economy). Typically, an rate increase gives an initial boost to stocks, but there are some segments that would benefit from a delay, includging small caps and emerging markets. Small caps historically are strongest when short-term rates are falling, while large-cap stocks outperform small caps 65 percent of the time in a rising-rate environment. For emerging markets, rising rates are troublesome because the cost to borrow in dollars goes up, pulling dollars back to the United States. Dating back to 1988, the MSCI EM Index underperformed the S&P 500 75 percent of the time when Fed rates were rising.

Westward Expansion

The Cardan team.

Four former Merrill Lynch advisors launched a $700 million independent advisory firm with the help of Dynasty Financial Partners on Monday. Denver-based Cardan Capital Partners marks the first partner firm Dynasty has helped launch in Colorado. Founding partners Ross Fox, Matthew Papazian, Marti Awad and Sarah Keys work with corporate executives, professionals, business owners and entrepreneurs, mostly based in Denver, Vail and Aspen areas.

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