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A Better Way…

Kirk SpanoAccording to Warren Buffett, the top 2 investing rules are…

Rule No. 1: Never lose money. Rule No. 2: Never forget rule No. 1.  

The most important aspect of financial planning is having an investment approach that protects you from large permanent losses and still gives you an opportunity to make money over the long-term.  I founded Bluemound Asset Management after seeing that most of the sales driven financial industry comes up lacking.

My name is Kirk Spano. I am visible and easy to follow in the media. Please take some time to read about the advice I have given. Then, if you are ready to find a better way to secure your lifestyle and create a legacy, contact me so that we can talk about what is important to you.

MarketWatch  Fox Business  WisBusiness.com  Seeking Alpha      Scutify

Avoiding the Next Crash & Investing in the Next Boom

In January 2012 I told people on MarketWatch not to miss the upside coming in American stocks, especially energy stocks, most of which doubled and tripled within two-and-a-half years. By June of 2014, again on MarketWatch, I told people to sell their oil and gas stocks, most of which were cut in half by December 2014.

Click for your Special Report

Today, I am telling people that the next few years are lining up for some very negative events in parts of the world that will effect your portfolio. In my special report “The Two Most Important Trades You’ll Ever Make — Avoiding the Next Crash & Investing in the Next Boom” I discuss how to protect yourself and how to preserve your lifestyle. 

Request your free report today.

The Developing New Prosperity

Special Letter: December 2011

The Developing New Prosperity

While headlines like the one above are generally met with retorts about America’s demise, this letter hopefully makes people understand that the United States is in the beginning stages of a new boom, not a final collapse.  As I discussed on MarketWatch.com in the article that won me a columnist slot with them, America is in the very early stages of a technolution in energy that will not only provide jobs for the millenial generation but also pay for the baby boomer’s retirement.  On top of energy, food production and export is becoming an increasingly strong strategic industry.

Energy Is The Key to Every Economy

Since the industrial revolution, cheap energy has been at the heart of America’s economic development.  And since the 1950s, having energy has been the core factor in the United States dominance of the world economy.  Going forward, energy, will continue to be at the heart of the American economy and its continued place as the most important economy on earth for decades.

Nations that are energy rich have stronger currencies, and generally higher standards of living.  This relationship is easy enough to understand by experience.  If your money is worth more, you can buy more, hence you live better.  If you have a relatively low cost of energy, the core ingredient in virtually everything in moden life from production of goods to transportation to the temperature of your home, everything else tends to fall into place.  A strong currency is one of the three main things that keeps inflation low (resources and high productivity being the other two).

A recent Goldman Sachs report projected that the United States would be a net energy exporter by 2017.  While precision isn’t important to us here, the accuracy of the trend is.  What we have seen via Energy Information Agency (EIA) numbers is that oil imports from the middle east have plunged the past four years, oil production in the United States has surged (even with the slow down in the Gulf which is now picking up again), natural gas production is ramping up, coal production and export is robust, solar netted billions in exports the past few years and is about to make another technological jump, wind is reaching physical peaks and broad energy efficiency is helping the U.S. maintain demand levels. 

On net, supply of energy in the U.S. is rising faster than the demand.  Globally that is not true.  The U.S. is very early in developing an energy export economy.  Think about the opulance that has been built in the middle east selling the United States energy.  Now imagine the wealth that can be generated for the United States selling our energy to Europe, Japan, China and developing nations.  It is massive.  

Food Is Pretty Important Too

While not America’s largest export, as it trails both chemical and transportation exports (folks, we are still a top 3 exporter in the world), agriculture is a major and growing component of American exports.  At $122 billion in 2010, food and agriculture exports are growing at a low double digit percentage as the world keeps creating more mouths to feed.  The United States combination of arable land, water, agricultural technology and low population make for a potent mix for the development of further exports and generation of domestic wealth.

Balance

Americans as a group have been fairly pessimistic of late.  That is understandable.  The period from 2001 to 2008 was terrible for America, and the past few years the hoped for rebound has been slow to materialize. 

The facts are however that things are slowly getting better.  Jobless claims have been falling recently.  This may be attributable to the fact that exports are rising.  Regardless, the broader economic trough, in my opinion, has been made.  We may skip along in a near sideways way for a few more years, but folks ought to be working towards participating in the coming boom, because it is coming.

As trends play out over the coming decades, so long as we protect the environment and make certain that the wealth generated by energy and food exports are not hoarded by only a few, America is on track to do very well going forward.  All we have to do is work hard (which will require learning appropriate skills) and control cheating through appropriate regulation, and America will have a postive social evolution, not the collapse that fear sellers drone on and on about.

Investors

Investors need to resist the urge to be pessimistic.  They must also be patient and resist the urge to bury their portfolios in low growth, low return investments because they are afraid of volatility.  Volatility works in both directions.  Portfolios that have been built for the coming positive future, like ours have been, need to stay the course.  Those who do not have portfolios leveraged to a stablizing dollar brought about by energy and agriculture strength in America need to do so.

Your Positive on the Future of America Advisor,

Kirk Spano

 

This letter contains forward looking statements that may not come true.  Past performance does not guarantee future results.  This letter is intended for informational purposes only, and reflects only my thoughts and opinions in general, and do not constitute individual advice.  Opinions expressed may change without prior notice.

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Investment Programs

All of our investment programs provide a level of service and expertise rarely found within the retail financial industry. Our programs also are at the low-end of the fee scale relative to the financial industry. All of our investment management and consulting services have access to our founder and nationally recognized advisor Kirk Spano.

 Punch Card Stocks

Based on Warren Buffett’s idea that if there was a limit to how many companies we invest in, that our investments would be less risky and perform better. Learn more…

Retirement Income Options

A flexible income strategy designed to handle any interest rate environment and provide enough growth for a long life.  Learn more…

Resource Opportunity

Scarcity for resources and looming inflation require that any portfolio have exposure to hard assets and companies that provide resources for our lives. Read more…

Investment Coaching

A flat-fee program for self-directed investors who would like a well regarded professional to consult with and learn from. Very limited space.  Learn more…

Tactical ETF Allocator

A unique diversified low cost exchange traded fund (ETF) strategy for dealing with an uncertain global economy. Learn more…

Mutual Fund Allocator

A low cost flat-fee program for traditional investors who want a better way to manage a mutual fund portfolio without new commissions.  Learn more…

401(k) Monitor

Fund selection, contribution strategy and ongoing asset allocation recommendations for your at-work retirement plan.  Retire Sooner…

Annuity Rescue

A chance to reduce annuity expenses, increase net returns and avoid the nasty surprise awaiting most annuity owners.  Learn to get more

Kirk’s Recent Quarterly Letters

Dealing With Today’s Volatility

“I don’t really care about volatility.” Warren Buffett

Asset Returns vs InvestorsI put off publishing this letter for about two weeks, as over the past month, stock market volatility has increased quite a bit. While we are not seeing the wild swings of 2011, we are seeing a significant reaction to the overdue realization that the enduring slow global growth I have talked about multiple times and the end of quantitative easing by the Federal Reserve are both real. 

Buffett’s quote above is meant to convey a message that emotions should not be a part of our investing process. He goes onto discuss how volatility gives us opportunities to buy great companies at good prices.

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Freedom to Unite and Invest in Tomorrow

UpWhen I was a kid I dreamed about being an astronaut, a baseball player, a rock star and the President. As I hit my teen years and I hadn’t done much musically, I dropped the Mick Jagger aspirations and focused on baseball. By senior year of high school I knew that baseball was fun, but that I wasn’t an elite player so I had to drop the Robin Yount dream too. 

When I got to college, I focused on having a good time and taking courses that might help me when I grew up. For awhile I thought I’d be a lawyer, but a great uncle gave me some guidance…

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The Great Retrenching Continues…

Total DebtIn September of 2008 I had coffee with a group of executives from local manufacturers, it was just after the financial crash had started. One company president in the group — a particularly political sort — asked me how long the economic slowdown would last? I said “until the middle of the next decade sometime.” He laughed at me.

Fast forward to today. What we know now is that the economy still has not recovered in real terms and that it will be a few more years until it does. The United States is just about in the middle of a demographic depression that can not be fixed with legislation or easy money. We must wait until household formation and spending by the very large millennial/ echo boom generation ramps up. Last year was the first year since 2008 that we saw an uptick in the birth rate, so that is a positive, however, it is only a baby step.

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2014 Another Crossroads 

S&P 5002013 proved to be a profitable year for investors. The S&P 500 rose 29% and set new record highs. Global balanced indexes, more representative of most people’s portfolios, also did very well by returning about 20% despite a tough year in China which lost 9%.

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Volatility, Opportunity and the Next Crisis

Secular Bulls and BearsOver the past several years, I have discussed the monumental demographic changes that not only America is dealing with, but also that Europe, China and Japan are dealing with. The cumulative impact of national and personal debts, de-leveraging from the bubbles of the 2000s and the four largest economies in the world having aging populations has created global demand destruction that is not likely to end soon.  

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