The Latest Insights from SJS | SJS Investment Services
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Major money center investment experience, no matter where you live, where you work, or when you need it.

The Latest Insights from SJS

 

It’s a sunny Saturday afternoon. You’re in the mood to barbecue, so you hop in the car and head over to your friendly neighborhood butcher shop to get some meat to throw on the grill. Or, maybe it’s a weekday afternoon, and you’re headed off to an appointment with a dietitian who is going to evaluate your diet and its healthfulness – or not – to help you figure out …

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It’s that most wonderful time of year!  School buses are back on the roads, those long, hot summer days are getting cooler and shorter, and autumn is right around the corner. Some of you are experiencing the happy, and maybe bittersweet, occasion of a son or daughter (or grandson or granddaughter) who has recently graduated from college and is now leaving the nest. Maybe your new college grad is moving …

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Do you ever lie awake at night, and instead of counting sheep, find yourself pondering these questions? Is my money in the right place, with the right advisor? Am I getting the attention I deserve? Is my advisor always objective when making recommendations? Is my advisor a fiduciary? Well, let us attempt to give you some answers, so you can get back to those sheep! As an independent Registered Investment …

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It’s more than just “investing”!   We won’t blame you if you think that MarketPlus Investing® – our proprietary investment strategy designed to help you achieve your specific financial goals – is all about investing. After all, it’s right there in the name! Of course, the investing piece is important. We’re a Registered Investment Advisor – investing is what we do. But, we like to focus on the “Plus” in …

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Despite all the complicated rhetoric about business and finance and strategy and methods, by doing the basics as a finance chair or board of directors, you stand a good chance of creating an endowment that lasts many years –  perhaps forever. The fact is that responsible governance is less about the newest trends in leadership and investing, and more about being responsible and calm no matter what the markets are …

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In today’s always-on, information-at-your-fingertips world, we know you may want to check your portfolio on the go. Our new mobile app lets you do just that, and provides you with the same information you can find at your MySJS site. The free MySJS app is available for any Apple or Android device – just visit your App Store and search for “SJS Investment Services” to download. Your login credentials …

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Yogi Berra once said: “It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” We agree, Yogi! We’re living in a fascinating time where a massive shift in technology and demographics is reshaping nearly every industry, including ours. It’s difficult to remember what technology was like ten years ago, let alone imagining what technology may bring us five to ten years from now. While the reshaping of the future may …

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Remember this famous line?   Remember the old EF Hutton commercial? There’s a planeload of people and two businessmen are talking across the aisle. One of them casually says, “Well my broker is EF Hutton…,” and at that moment, everyone inside and outside of earshot leans into the conversation. The famous line, of course, was: “When EF Hutton talks, people listen.” Well, at SJS we have a saying, too. Ours is: “When our clients …

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The New Tax Law Adds Flexibility With all the talk of federal tax reform lately, you may have missed hearing about changes that expand the benefits available to investors who save for college using 529 savings plans. Prior to the signing of the new tax bill, 529 withdrawals were tax-free for any funds spent on qualified higher education – including tuition and room and board, as well as computer software …

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Your tax deduction may have just doubled.   With all the talk of federal tax reform lately, you may have missed a significant change concerning Ohio’s state income tax deductions.  Beginning on January 1, 2018, the state income tax deduction for contributions made to Ohio’s 529 plan doubled from $2,000 to $4,000 per beneficiary, per year. * Ohioans who save for college using Ohio’s 529 plan historically have been able …

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The start of a new year often means new retirement account contribution guidelines from the IRS, and 2018 is no exception. Periodically, the change in the cost-of-living index meets the statutory thresholds to trigger an IRS adjustment. Those who contribute to many common types of retirement plans, including 401(k) and 403(b) plans, may be able to contribute an additional $500 to their plans in 2018. However, IRA contribution and catch-up …

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Life is a journey, predictably full of the unexpected. We do our best to plan for the future we hope we will have, and then life events get in the way and throw us for a proverbial loop. We have all experienced some variation of the unexpected. Sometimes, the unexpected can result in a positive change, and we count our blessings. It can get more challenging when an event has …

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Maybe you’ve tried to talk with your kids or grandkids many times about financial responsibility. Or maybe you haven’t wanted to bring up the “taboo” subject of money. That’s okay. We can. And we can have the conversation on your behalf. Just call us to set up an appointment to talk finances and how money works. Every young person needs to know that money can be his or her friend… …

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MarketPlus Investing® Helps Investors Choose What’s Right for Them   With countless investment options available to you, with so much written about the state of the markets, the state of the economy and the state of the world, deciding how to invest your money—whether it be your own or an organization’s—keeps getting more complicated.  Smart investors do their homework, seek out people they can trust and find investment strategies that work …

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Do You Have Them?  Are You Raising Your Children to Have Them? I’ve been fortunate in my life. My work as the founder and CEO of SJS Investment Services puts me in front of so many fascinating people who are successful, many of them self-made. Each one has a story to tell, and I gladly listen. Because I’ve come to discover that within each story about “those humble beginnings” are the …

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Andrew Carnegie – steel tycoon, philanthropist, and one of the wealthiest businessmen of the 19th century – once commented about creating wealth: “Put all of your eggs in one basket. Then, watch that basket!” Does that advice surprise you? Well, prepare to be even more surprised – because we agree wholeheartedly. Many SJS clients have generated their wealth through concentrated bets that began as very small investments, perhaps sweat equity, …

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SJS Investment Services’ MarketPlus® Investing Helps Investors Avoid These Common and Costly Pitfalls  You’d think that anyone who wanted to be a highly successful investor could achieve that goal on his or her own, given all the access to financial information and the speed of information we enjoy today. After all, the Internet, television, radio, magazines—just about everywhere you turn—provide round-the-clock access to anyone who’s interested. 

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As a college student, I remember learning about the “three legged stool” as a metaphor for retirement security.  Each leg of the stool represented a different financial resource, and all three were needed to provide a solid foundation for retirement.  So what were these legs? Social Security Private Pensions Personal Savings and Investments In surveying the stool today, it seems as though the legs are in need of some shoring …

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Did you know that 70 percent of millionaire families lose their wealth by the second generation? That generation would be only the grandchildren of the breadwinner. And did you know that 90 percent of families lose their wealth by the third generation, the great-grandchildren? Those are scary statistics for people who have worked hard all their lives, built a business or other significant assets, and had dreams of that wealth …

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 How Do You Manage Those Investment Accounts?     One minute, they’re newborns. The next minute, they’re in grade school. And the minute after that, they’re lobbying for a car – either yours, or one to call their own. The fact is, kids grow up fast and, while you likely have received plenty of well-meaning parenting advice over the years, you probably have received less advice on how to manage those …

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… and Still Get a Good Night’s Sleep It’s probably one of life’s biggest transitions – that last day of regular work, that last paycheck, when you enter the ranks of the retired. In the midst of it all, it is completely natural to feel really uncomfortable about living off your accumulated assets. There’s no paycheck hitting the bank account every two weeks. Within the first few months after you …

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We have statistics! If only we had a crystal ball that could show us exactly how much money we would need to save for retirement. Or perhaps a longevity lens to gaze into the future and know how long we will live. Wouldn’t it be nice to know what’s in store? We could save, save, save – or spend like there’s no tomorrow, if in fact there wasn’t going to …

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Teamwork takes more than people. A team is only as good as the people on it. That’s how it often seems when you look at how much air time the press gives to the top college players at events like the NFL and NBA Drafts. Even in Hollywood, when casts are announced for upcoming movies, the star celebrity makes the news as if the other cast members don’t matter. We …

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“Worrying is like sitting in a rocking chair. It gives you something to do but it doesn’t get you anywhere.” – English Proverb You’ve no doubt heard the phrase: “Patience is a virtue,” and it can take extra effort to practice patience as an investor. With today’s advances in trading technology and the fast pace of news, we’ve seen daily swings of one percent or more in the market happen …

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Yes! And we can help you. It happens, time and time again. One of us will meet with a long-time client, and that client will learn about one of the many services SJS can provide and exclaim, “I didn’t know SJS could do that!” You likely know about MarketPlus Investing®, our science-based process of structuring investment vehicles and designing portfolios. You know we review your portfolio regularly, make rebalancing decisions …

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If I could ask Lionel Messi, Argentina’s star soccer player, one question, it would be this: ‘Why did you take the time to adjust your shoelaces before attempting your record-breaking free kick against the USA on June 21st? I’d ask it, but I think I might know his answer. Even though you might not know his name, I would argue that Messi is actually the most famous athlete in the …

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If you were to ask one hundred investors to describe or explain an annuity, you would likely get nearly one hundred different answers – some of them accurate, and others probably less so. “Annuities are among the most bought, least understood” financial products, says Tim Maurer, of CNBC. One of the most common questions I hear from clients is, “What is an annuity, and how does it work?” When it …

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Just the other morning, as I was getting dressed with a “business news” channel playing in the background, I heard the announcer say: “There are more sellers than buyers in the market today!” Instantly, I thought, “How misleading! It’s not as if there are orphan stocks out there looking for someone to buy them!” As someone who strives to help guide your financial future, I can’t help but tune into …

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Pattern Recognition MarketPlus Investing tames our emotions and replaces them with science and statistics, data and patterns. Gone are hot tips … no need for TV hype. Smart investing is long-term investing, based on real, measurable patterns from a huge body of data. Patterns exist! But only in the worldwide capture of information.

 

  Remember When   You may have heard the news – SJS Investment Services is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year! We thought it might be fun to take a look back to 1995, when SJS started. Do you “remember when”?

 

How are my assets protected from cyber attack? If I asked you the question: How have computers, mobile devices, and the Internet benefited you in your life, you probably would have no trouble answering. These tools have become such a part of everything we do, that we often take them all for granted. The fact is – technology has completely upended how we view the world, how we share information, how …

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We all hope for things, every day. We hope for good weather, we hope traffic flows smoothly, we hope our favorite contestant will be named the winner on the latest TV talent competition. Hope is a part of human nature – a feeling, an emotion we all experience.   But there are plenty of situations where hope just isn’t enough. Hope may be a lot of things, but it is …

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Why It’s Important to Stop and Enjoy Success   Ask just about anyone how they’re doing and you often hear them say, “Fine. Good. Great.” And usually one other word: “Busy.” Tim Kreider, who wrote a piece called “The Busy Trap” for he New York Times in 2012, highlighted our national obsession with being busy.   Most of us feel this way and admittedly, for all of us at SJS, …

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If You Know One Thing About Investing, Know This   You’ve worked hard your whole life; you have built your life’s savings, maybe from the sale of your company, through frugal living, or through some other means. You can’t leave that money in a bank. You want it to work for you and the people and causes you love. You want it to be there as you age. You need …

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The Five Biggest Regrets and How to Avoid Them   More than once in the many years since I started SJS, people have said to me, “Your life must be like a roller coaster ride. The markets are always going up, and then going down. It must be one wild ride.” Market fluctuations keep any investment firm on high alert, but the real ride for me in this business is …

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  What do bicycles and portfolios have in common? More than you might think. My 10-year-old son likes to tinker—to take things apart and put them back together, to see how they work. Not too long ago, we bought him a new bike, and the first thing he did was take it apart. But, after he was done taking it apart and putting it back together, there were three pieces …

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When’s the last time you updated your trust document? Or, maybe your life circumstances have you considering one for the first time. No matter your situation, the process of changing or setting up a trust might be unfamiliar to you. We understand. The whole process is just not top of mind until, one day, it is.   Trusts are vehicles designed to protect and transfer wealth, but if you’re like many people, you don’t …

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Managing Taxes through MarketPlus® Investing   You’ve heard Ben Franklin’s famous words, “In this world nothing can be said to be certain except death and taxes.” He uttered them way back in 1789, and for centuries, most of us have accepted his belief as inevitable and true. But maybe, just maybe, Ben was wrong about taxes. When it comes to investing, you can potentially avoid taxes, or at the very least postpone …

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Inflation has caught up with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), or maybe it’s the other way around. Recently, the IRS announced new guidelines for pension plan contributions to be made in 2015. Periodically, the change in the cost-of-living index meets the statutory thresholds to trigger an IRS adjustment. Some limits did not reach that threshold and therefore did not change, which is common.   The new rules are lengthy, so …

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The results of Financial Advisor magazine’s Top RIA Survey are in, and SJS Investment Services has been named to this prestigious list, based on assets under management.   Among the thousands of RIAs (Registered Investment Advisors) included on the list, SJS Investment Services, which is based in Sylvania, Ohio, and serves clients nationwide, received a ranking of 137 based on $1.303 billion in assets under management. That figure is as of 12/31/13. This recognition follows …

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