Episode 69: Interest Rates Are Rising....Does That Mean You Should Adjust Your Bond Allocation?

Episode #69: Interest Rates Are Rising….Does That Mean You Should Adjust Your Bond Allocation?

The Federal Reserve recently announced that they are going to maintain very low short-term interest rates for bonds over the next couple of years. On the other hand, long-term interest rates seem to be rising in recent weeks. We dedicated this week’s episode to reviewing how a savvy investor may respond to these developments. Throughout the episode, we discuss how bonds work, the risks associated with bonds, interest rates, why bonds are a crucial element of a healthy portfolio, and more. Stay tuned until the end of the episode, where Grant talks about why having non-US-denominated bonds could be beneficial to you.Continue reading

Episode 69: Interest Rates Are Rising....Does That Mean You Should Adjust Your Bond Allocation?

Episode #68: Dissecting the New Stimulus Checks & Recovery Legislation: The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021

The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 was signed into law on March 11 to help the United States recover from the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. This new legislation includes direct financial payments, extended unemployment benefits, expanded child tax credit, and numerous other provisions. Throughout this episode, Grant reviews several key provisions of the American Rescue Plan Act and what they mean for individuals and businesses.Continue reading

The Economy Is Not The Stock Market

The Economy Is Not The Stock Market

So here we are….in the middle of a global pandemic.  Unemployment in the US is hovering around 15%.  Businesses are struggling to remain viable.  Hundreds of thousands of families…probably millions …are concerned they won’t be able to make their mortgage payments.

Yet, the stock market is closing in on all time highs set earlier this year.

How is that possible?  What gives?

The party line answers sound something like:

  • “Stocks prices reflect future earnings, not present earnings”
  • “COVID-19 is temporary, and our economy will return as soon as it passes”
  • “The market is just being manipulated by the Fed.  All that cash is pumping up the market”

All these are reasonable responses.  But they circumvent a very important concept that many of us seem to be forgetting recently:

The economy is not the stock market, and the stock market is not the economy.

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2020 Reader Survey

For anyone who’s followed the blog for a while, you’ve probably noticed that we’ve made a few tweaks over the years.  Frequency of posts, topics covered, and types of content (blog posts vs. webinars vs. podcasts) have all evolved quite a bit.

This past year we’ve gotten into the habit of offering monthly webinars, launched a podcast, and have continued to grow the financial planning firm at a pretty rapid pace.

All this has required a sizable investment of time and dollars.  I’ve been very happy about all the positive feedback we’ve gotten, and continue to be humbled by your interest and readership.

To make sure we stay focused on producing the right “stuff”, I’d like to ask you for your feedback on what we’re putting out.  If there’s anything you think we can be doing better, I’d love to know about it.

Thanks in advance for your time and feedback!

**Editor’s note: I’m trying a new widget for this survey.  It should work on any desktop/tablet/mobile phone, but if you have any issues please let us know.

State of the Blog 2018

2018 State of the Blog

As I look up at my calendar and see that we’re already in February, I’ve come to a surprising realization: Above the Canopy is almost two years old!

Unlike most birthday parties for 2 year olds, I thought it’d be a good idea to nix the pizza, birthday cake, and screaming children in favor of a new tradition: an annual “state of the blog” post.  Above the Canopy has come quite a long way in its short life, and I’d like to take this opportunity to touch base with you, the readership, on the state of the blog.


The State of the Blog

The state of the blog is strong!  Overall I feel pretty good about Above the Canopy.  Especially considering the challenges of balancing new content with the needs of a small business.  As you may know, I spend most of my waking hours building & managing my financial planning business, Three Oaks Capital Management.  And as it turns out, growing a small business is a massive job.  Between that and family life I’m not quite able to give Above the Canopy the attention that I’d really like to.

Nevertheless, there’s a lot that I’d like to do with Above the Canopy.  And despite the demands on my time, readership is is growing at a strong clip.  Over 7,000 visitors found the site last month, which is over a 100% increase from January of 2017.

On the year, we had 47,446 visitors to the site vs. 12,925 in 2016.  (Keep in mind that the blog launched in April of 2016 though, so it was a short year).  As far as posting went, I managed to publish 30 times in 2017 vs. 38 in 2016.  Not as frequently as I’d like but hey, I’m learning as I go here.


Looking Ahead

There are several things I’d like to improve on the site in 2018 and beyond.  I’ll cover them below by listing each individual objective.  My hope is that communicating them will give you some insight into where the blog is headed (and give me a little more pressure to get them done!).  And as always, I’d love some feedback on what you enjoy about the blog, what you don’t, and what you’d like to see in the future.  Feel free to share in the comments.

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