Coronavirus Update

March 13, 2020

To keep you informed, we wanted to provide an update on Merit’s efforts to remain proactive and prudent regarding the developing Coronavirus situation. What actions is Merit taking regarding the supervision and monitoring of my investments?Our investment team is reviewing the markets constantly to provide your advisors with the most up-to-date information.  They continue to keep…

Merit Market Minute

March 11, 2020

After setting all-time high levels last month, stocks began to reverse course mid-February as coronavirus fears took hold.  Below please find our viewpoints, guidance and expectations.  A Moment to ReminisceEven typing the date “March 9th” brings back memories from when I typed a similar letter on March 9th, 2009, the low point for stock markets…

February 2020 Market and Strategy Update

February 28, 2020

After setting all-time high levels this month, stocks reversed course as coronavirus concerns begin to hit both economic and corporate earnings forecasts. The growing fears surrounding coronavirus added to an expanding recognition that global economic activity is slowing.  In some respects, equity markets seemed to defy gravity over the past several quarters, marching higher in…

How to Help Parents – and Yourself – Live Better at 80, 90 and Beyond

February 25, 2020
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They say we get wiser as we get older, but let’s face it: Many new uncertainties and challenges can crop up as people get deeper into their golden years. Changes in physical health and issues with memory can mean you—or your elderly parents—might require new types of never-before-needed assistance. With that in mind, here’s a…

When Money Isn’t Just Money

February 14, 2020
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By Joy Kirsch REPETITION-WORTHY ADVICE FOR WIDOWS Make sure your bills are paid so you can keep your good credit. (Don’t pay your husband’s bills from your part of the estate.) Get your financial documents in order. Know where your money is. Seek the help of trusted professionals. And, when it comes to major decisions,…

Investment Outlook 2020

January 27, 2020

IntroductionAt the end of each year, the Merit Investment Team reviews happenings from the past year, offers perspective on the year to come, and formulates the resulting potential strategy changes.  Both stock and bond markets marched forward in 2019, crushing many investor expectations.  The S&P 500 Index rose 31%, about three times the expected annual…

A Different Kind of Bucket List

January 16, 2020
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NAGGING QUESTIONS In the early days after losing a spouse, financial decisions can seem pretty far down on your list of concerns. Your days can be consumed by planning a funeral, attending to piles of paperwork, and – let’s be honest – holding yourself together while receiving the stream of well-intentioned friends and family members…

How Playing the Long Game Could Help Build Wealth and Success

January 15, 2020

Many extremely wealthy people have a much better handle than others on a key concept of success: the long game.The long game means having a concrete vision of your ideal future down the road—years or even decades from now—and taking specific, carefully considered action steps at every stage along the way to maximize your ability…

Charitable Giving, the Tax-Wise Way

December 3, 2019

Americans—especially the affluent—are some of the most charitable people in the world.* Chances are, you use some of your wealth to support favorite causes or organizations that are important to you. But those contributions may not be having as big an impact as they could—and it’s possible you’re missing out on some valuable charitable tax…

Four Ways the Super Rich Manage Their Wealth

November 5, 2019

The self-made Super Rich—people with a net worth of at least $500 million that they built through their own hard work—often possess a treasure trove of knowledge, insights and actionable strategies that the rest of us can adopt in our own lives to enhance our success.Here are four ways the Super Rich manage their wealth.…