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In This Issue
President's Message
September Ethics Program
Pro Bono
Happy Anniversary
Six things you should know about... "The Cloud"
An Interview: Helping people take control of their lives
The Other Half of the World
AIFA Program
FPA/NEO
Board of Directors
President:
Mark McCandless, CFP, CPA

President Elect:
Molly Balunek, CFP

Treasurer:
Patrick Hanratty, CFP, CPA/PFS

Secretary:
Kevin Kroskey, CFP

Trustees:
Mary Farrell, CFP
Mario Gigante, CFP, CPA, AIFA
Ken Paull, CFP
Pamela Sandy, CFPzzr

Chairman
Bill Russo, CFP
Upcoming Program Dates

June/July/August 2010
No programming held


September 16, 2010
ETHICS
Topic:  "Speaking of Ethics"
Speaker: 
Parick Kuhse
Place:  Lockkeepers
Rockside Rd.
Valley View, OH

Patrick Kuhse

Patrick Kuhse's personal journey, from successful stockbroker with a loving family and home in the suburbs of San Diego, to the jungles of Costa Rica as an international fugitive, to incarceration in two countries and back again.  After spending four years in prison, he now devotes himself to speaking to audiences worldwide about the importance of ethical behavior. 

October 18, 2010
FPA/NEO Symposium
Place:  LaCenter
7:30 a.m. - 5  p.m.

Speakers include:

Nick Murray
Premier speaker and author of ten books and CD program for financial services professionals

Blaine F. Aikin, AIFA, CFA, CFP
President & CEO
fi360

Bob Clark
Editor-at-Large
Investment Advisor Magazine

Ryan Leggio
Morningstar, Inc.

Matt Lynch
President
Capital Analysts

Mark Ballenger, JD
Attorney for the Ohio Dept. of Commerce/Division of Securities

For more information or to register online
click here


November 18, 2010
The State of the Profession
Panel event
Panelists:  TBA
Place:  Lockkeepers
2 - 6 p.m.
 
Thanks to Our Sponsors
Gold Sponsor:
Charles Schwab Institutional

Silver Sponsors:
American Funds

Direxion Funds

Fidelity Institutional Wealth Services

Franklin Templeton Investments

Long Term Care Financial Partners

Ohio Tuition Trust

Prudential Annuities

SS&G Financial Services

Tri-C Corporate College

The Other Half of the World
by Bob Veres E-Column

I've been reading through one of the best investment research reports I've ever seen, which makes me wonder if most client portfolios aren't living in the past.  The report was created by FPA/NEO member, Margie Carpenter, who some of you may remember as one of my key assistants when I was editor of MorningstarAdvisor.com.  Ms. Carpenter points out that what we call the Asian emerging markets (defined with some precision in the report, but you probably know who they are) make up half the world's population, made up 40% of the world's economic growth over the last 20 years, and are projected to make up 60% of the world's total economic growth over the next five.   


Now here's the kicker.  Because none of these economies are represented in the MSCI/BARRA EAFE index (which only includes developed countries), and because they are inexplicably underrepresented in the emerging markets indices, most client portfolios have 5% or less exposure.    That's right; chances are your clients are about 5% exposed to economies that make up half the world's population, that are expected to constitute at least half the world's overall economic growth over the next five years and (the report notes) already makes up 21% of the world's overall market cap.  


What to do?  There are a lot of different ways to approach this issue, and different options--different funds and ETFs, different indices, different potential weightings, and the report examines many of them in considerable detail.  I became a lot smarter about economies that I've never paid much attention to before.  The report includes a spreadsheet that highlights a variety of recommended investment options, gives them scores and rankings based on costs, turnover and volatility (as well, of course, as performance), and notes over- and under-weighting issues. 


Unfortunately, I can't just GIVE you this report as part of the overall Inside Information service; it was completed as part of a fairly significant contract project.  But I DID manage to convince Ms. Carpenter to make the full package of analysis available at a reasonable price ($499.95), and then convinced her to offer a $50 discount to Inside Information readers.  If you're interested, you can go to the Inside Information web site click here to go to the Inside Information web site,
and either click on the link toward the middle of the right side of the page, or click on the "tools" part of the navigation bar along the top.  As you finish your order, put the coupon code: "B232" in the coupon code field, to get the $50 discount, and you should be able to have the report sent to you immediately after the order.  (If, for some reason, it does NOT immediately come back to you via e-mail, please let me know.) 


I'm now scouting for other products/services/analyses that I think might significantly enhance our ability to invest and harvest the opportunities that are out there, and plan to highlight them and negotiate discounts where I can.   As always, thanks for listening.  And have a great week.  Best,  Bob Veres  Inside Information 


Join Our Mailing List
FPA/NEO September 2010 Newsletter

President's Message

by Mark McCandless, CFP, CPA


"Time to Act!"

With the arrival of September and the beginning of the fall season, many people turn their attention to football at the pro, college and high school levels. Washington seems to already be in the spirit as the political footballs are being tossed with renewed enthusiasm. The problem is that the issues facing us as Americans and as financial planners can no longer be "punted" to the next generation.  Major issues such as our budget deficit, the national debt, Social Security and Medicare must be addressed now. We can no longer talk about leaving a massive debt to our grandchildren. There are no more timeouts. These problems will not wait that long.

As financial planners there are two ways we can deal with these issues. First, we can help our clients plan for the potential effects the "solutions" to these problems may have on them (i.e. cutting social benefits, increasing taxes, etc.) through our pro-active advice. To help you in this regard, our Chapter has provided programs addressing the areas estate planning, income tax planning, insurance and investment advice as well as discussions with experienced local practitioners to help you improve the quality of service and value you bring to your clients. We will offer more of these types of programs and we will also explore the impact of financial reform on your business as well as on our clients' lives in the upcoming year.

Second we can try to become a part of the solution. How? Get involved in our Chapter, particularly in the Governmental Relations effort. You can be involved in our committee as we attempt to contact legislators to help them understand financial planning. Now we have a major issue that has progressed to the point where individual members can have a voice. Sec 919C of the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill provides for the following study: 

 

In general (a) The Comptroller General of the United States shall conduct a study to evaluate-

(1) the effectiveness of State and Federal regulations to protect investors and other consumers from individuals who hold themselves out as financial planners through the use of misleading titles, designations, or marketing materials;

(2) current State and Federal oversight structure and regulations for financial planners; and

(3) legal or regulatory gaps in the regulation of financial planners and other individuals who provide or offer to provide financial planning services to consumers.

(b) CONSIDERATIONS.-In conducting the study required under subsection (a), the Comptroller General shall consider-

(1) the role of financial planners in providing advice regarding the management of financial resources, including investment planning, income tax planning, education planning, retirement planning, estate planning, and risk management;

 

It is important for us to make comments to the Comptroller General about the fiduciary standard and how it relates to the issues addressed above.  Since this bill has only recently passed and there is time before their study is complete, our Governmental Relations committee will strategize about the best way for you to get your voice heard. In addition, at our November "State of the Profession" meeting, one our panelists will be Dave Barry, who handles government relations for FPA National. He will provide insights about financial reform as well as how we as a group can have a positive impact on decisions made in Washington.

We have many positive things happening in our Chapter as you will see from the other articles in this month's newsletter. I hope you will take the time to review the articles and take advantage of the opportunities presented. While we sometimes feel we have been "sacked" by the politicians and "penalized" by their actions, the game is not over. As we enter the 4th quarter, we can still call our own plays and make our own decisions. They may change the rules during a timeout, but every time we take the field (or in our case perhaps, turn on our computer) we have a chance to make a positive difference in the lives of our clients and in the effectiveness of our profession.

I hope you all have a great month and I promise this is the last time I will use a football analogy in my President's letter!

September 16th FPA/NEO
Program to feature Patrick Kuhse's
"Ethics" presentation - 2 CE

Sponsor:  CoreFocal


Date:   Thursday, September 16, 2010
Place:  Lockkeepers
Time:   8:00 - 11:00 a.m.
Cost:    $75 FPA Members / $100 Non-members
             Click here to register online
Topic:  "Ethics"

Speaker:  Patrick Kuhse

Patrick Kuhse


Invited back by popular demand, Patrick Kuhse will again present 2 hour Ethics CE for CFPs. 


Upbeat, outgoing, cheerful and modest, Patrick Kuhse would not appear to be a man with a horrible and horribly painful past. 


This will be one ethics program you will not forget.  Join us on September 16th for this riveting presentation.


Thanks to our September sponsor:  CoreFocal

(Article below written by James T. Guzowski, CFP, CPA of CoreFocal)

Pro Bono - Three exciting ways to participate

Junior Achievement


School is starting up again and so is our initiative with Junior Achievement.  We all understand the importance of financial literacy, and especially with kids.  Volunteering to teach through JA is an easy way for us as financial planners to make a lasting and important impact in our community.  We are currently seeking volunteers to participate in the JA program in one of our local schools.


The time commitment to teach the 5-week program:  About 1.5 hours per week for 5 weeks, plus one hour orientation.   If you are not sure you can commit to that much time, no problem.  We can help pair you with another FPA volunteer to split the classes.   

 

If you are interested, or would like more information, contact fellow FPA member and acting JA liaison, Adrienne Love:  Adrienne_Love@KeyBank.com  or call Adrienne at 440.995-2119.

 

Akron Beacon Journal Call-in

 

We are planning another round of free call-in's with the Akron Beacon Journal.  As part of our Financial Planning Week's events, the FPANEO will be teaming up with the ABJ and Credit Counseling to offer two call-ins:  Wednesday, October 13 from 6pm-8pm and Saturday, October 16 from 10am-1pm.   They will both be held at the Journal's headquarters. 

 

As a wrap up to the event last year, Betty Lyn Fisher, the reporter for the ABJ's financial column, wrote a detailed article that highlighted each of the FPA members who volunteered.  If you want to join us as a volunteer for this year, better act fast.  There are a limited number of slots available.  Call or email Adrienne Love at 440.995-2119, Adrienne_Love@KeyBank.com.

 

Movie Night Encore

 

Did you come out and see the free showing of the movie, IOUSA, during Financial Planning Week last year?  If not, you missed out on one of the most impactful public events the FPANEO has ever hosted.  The review of our country's current financial debt crisis was well told and eye-opening.  There's been quite a demand to offer the movie again.  So, we're gong to do it this October, but this time, with two showings: Cedar Lee on the east side, and Capital Theater on the west.   Invite your office associates and clients.  It's a great event to invite prospects to.  Bring your friends and family-it's free!  Keep a watch out for a notice on the exact dates, but it will be sometime during the first week of October.

 

Mary W. Farrell, CFP
Happy Anniversary

29 Years
Robert A. Valente, CFP, AEP

28 Years
William R. Hawke, CFP

27 Years
J. Michael Faehner, CFP
Ashok Shendure, MS, MBA, CFP, CEBS
Harlan G. Storey, CFP, J.D., AIFA

26 Years
Stanley Oda, CFP
Thomas G. Sheiman, CFP
Charles J. Randazzo

25 Years

Yeshwaht K. Tamaskar
Joseph P. Yesko, CFP

26 Years

Roger R. Rachel, CFP

21 Years

Donald W. James CFP, CPA/PFS

17 Years
Randy Carver
Daniel F. Miltner, CFP

16 Years

Jess W. Hurst, II, CFP

15 Years
Theodore s. Dumas

13 Years
Vicki a. Kline, CFP, CPA, PFS
Larry F. Mihevic, CFP

10 Years
Walter E. Moore, CFP
David M. Taucher,
Joseph E. Recchia, CPA, CFP

9 Years
Michael V. Sergi, Jr., CFP, CRPC

8 Years
Mark A. Mihalik, CFP
Emily N. Shacklett, CPA, PFS
Johathan D. Torrens, CFP

6 Years
Ann M. Iglai, CFP, CRPC
Timothy P. Marcinek
Michael C. Brady, CFP
Randall L. Bliss, CFP

5 Years
Matthew S. Olver, CFP
Linda M. Olejko, CFP
Richard S. Martin, CFP
Nathan R. Gist, CFP
Patrick T. Hanratty, CPA, PFS
Keven P. Prather
Michael J. Nedreski, RFC

4 Years
Bonnie L. Cook Villari, CFP

3 Years
Lisa Cochran, CFP

Michael F. Cleary, CFP
Kristen L. Moran, CLU
Daniel L. Bonder, CFP


2 Years
Douglas B. Robinson, CFP
Randall K. Young, CFP
Matthew R. Loger, CPF
Michael Monfort
Daniel J. Lauletta, CFP, ChFC, CLU, LUTCF


1 Year
Stephen Reagh
Debra L. Boerger, CFP
Paul M. Scudiere, CFP
Karen Bordonaro
James F. Henyey, CFP
Marianne Grega, CFP

Six things you should know about...."The Cloud"


What is it?

Over the last several years, the availability of fast, low-cost broadband, combined with significantly reduced storage costs, has made it easier and more economical to have access to larger and more powerful applications and services via the Internet.  As a result, developers and software providers have responded by making available infrastructure, software applications and even workflow processes available via the Internet.  Simply put, "The Cloud" is accessing computer infrastructure and/or software applications by connecting directly to the Internet via a web browser (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, etc.).  Access can be from a PC or laptop computer or from a mobile phone or other tablet device.

What are its characteristics?

 In general, cloud computing customers do not own the physical infrastructure.  This avoids a sometimes significant capital expenditure by allowing the user to more or less pay "rent" for the usage of the infrastructure and/or software.  Providers will either charge based on consumption (storage, bandwidth), or a subscription (per company, per user, or per module) basis, or a combination of both.  Maintenance of the infrastructure and software is the responsibility of the provider.  Users can generally terminate the contract at any time (thereby avoiding up-front investment risk and uncertainty) and the services are often covered by "service level agreements" ("SLAs") that outline performance guarantees, costs and financial penalties for service shortfalls.

 What's out there, in The Cloud?

 There are two basic components to The Cloud:  "infrastructure as a service," and "software as a service," otherwise referred to as "SaaS." 

Infrastructure as a service is the availability, usually for a monthly charge, of raw computing power and/or storage from a third party.  It is also known as a "hosted server."  Basically, your server is owned and maintained by a third party, and is located not in the computer room at your office, but at an offsite location.  All users connect directly via the Internet.

Software as a service, or "SaaS" is an application hosted on a remote server and accessed through the Internet.  More on SaaS, below.      

 What are the key benefits of The Cloud?

 Agility for users improves by being able to rapidly and inexpensively move to newly-available technological resources.

Device and location independence enables users to access systems or software using a web browser regardless of their location or what device they are using (e.g., PC, laptop, mobile phone, tablet device). As infrastructure is off-site (provided by a third-party) and accessed via the Internet.  Users can connect from anywhere.

Security is often as good as or better than under traditional systems, in part because providers are able to devote resources to solving security issues that many customers cannot afford. 

Cost, whereby capital expenditures are converted to operational expenditures.  Put another way, fixed costs are now variable costs, which will rise and fall based on usage, number of employees, etc.

Maintenance - cloud computing applications are easier to maintain, since they don't have to be installed on each user's computer. They are easier to support and to improve since the changes reach the end users instantly.

 What exactly is "software as a service" (SaaS)?

 SaaS, sometimes referred to as "software on demand," is software that is deployed over the Internet. With SaaS, a provider licenses an application to customers as a service on demand, through a subscription or a "pay-as-you-go" model. 

Business professionals generally associate the term SaaS with business software, and as a possibly lower-cost way for businesses to use software as needed rather than license all devices with all applications.

What are some examples of SaaS applications or web sites?

       Investment management and reporting software (AdventOnDemand, Schwab PortfolioServices)

       Tax software (Ultra Tax, ProSystem fx, FastTax)

       On-line payroll providers (Paychex, ADP)

       Customer relationship management software (Salesforce.com, Siebel)

       Internet email providers (Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo Mail, AOL)

       Web site hosting services (GoDaddy, Google)

       On-line meeting/presentations (GoToMeeting, WebEx)

 Furthermore, Google is making a significant investment in a suite of web-based applications (Gmail, Google Talk, Google Calendar, Google Docs and Google Sites) under the moniker "Google Apps" that permit a user to have access to all the applications, and also permits for on-line collaboration on documents and spreadsheets for a modest monthly fee.  Furthermore, third-party developers are creating various applications to run on the Google Apps platform, and are available much like purchasing applications for an Iphone or Blackberry device.

At CoreFocal we utilize SaaS in providing income tax preparation, accounting and accounts payable processing services for our clients. As an example, our tax preparation service provided to CPAs, investment advisors and wealth managers enables us to prepare tax returns on their behalf without the need for us to visit their office to perform our work or pick up their tax files. Our SaaS also provides us and our clients a secure document management and workflow system so that not only is the process "green" but all users know the exact status of every tax return at any time. Also, because the CoreFocal system is Internet-based all users can work wherever and whenever they like.

About the author:  James T. Guzowski, CFP, CPA is a co-owner of CoreFocal, a domestic outsource provider of professional business services, including individual and business income tax compliance, accounting and accounts payable processing.  To learn more about CoreFocal services and how CoreFocal utilizes cloud computing contact us at 440.348.9200 or visit us at http://www.corefocal.





AIFA Program
Robert Morris University
Pittsburgh, PA

Event Details

Start Time:

Tuesday, September 21, 2010 at 8:00 AM

 

End Time:

Thursday, September 23, 2010 at 3:30 PM

 

 

 

 

Accredited Investment Fiduciary Analyst™ Program at Robert Morris University

The AIFA program is 3-days in length and focuses on the process of conducting fiduciary assessments. It addresses new audit requirements under the Pension Protection Act of 2006 and enables those who attain the AIFA designation to conduct assessments leading to Certifications against Global Fiduciary Standards of Excellence. Instructors teach participants the four steps that comprise the standard, the practices, and criteria necessary to fulfill each step, and the assessment techniques to verify conformity to the standard.

For more details or to register, email carl@fi360.com
or call him @ fi360:  412-221-0292, Ext 228. 



Click here for more information about the AIFA classroom program, including:

 

  • An in-depth course description and program agenda

 

  • Curriculum overview and learning objectives

 

  • Fi360's faculty members and bios

 

  • AIFA designation information

 

  • Continuing Education details

 


Any person who attends an AIFA program must be a graduate from an AIFA (prior to May of 2006), AIF, or AFIM program. For those wishing to obtain the AIFA designation, students must meet certain educational and/or work experience requirements. Please check your eligibility to become an AIFA designee against the
Prerequisite Matrix.


Upon registration you will receive the following in your registration package:

 

  • Pre-program reading requirements that need to be completed prior to the start of the program. The pre-work will adequately prepare participants for a successful program experience, the quiz that will take place on day two, and the final exam.

 

  • Relevant pre-reading and course materials: Prudent Practices handbooks for Investment Stewards, Investment Advisors, and Investment Managers; Self-Assessments of Fiduciary Excellence (SAFE) questionnaires for Investment Stewards, Investment Advisors, and Investment Managers; Legal Memoranda; and the fiduciary reference card and placemat.

 

  • Course details such as program agenda, directions to the training facility, and a directory of nearby hotels

 

  • Information pertaining to the methodology for passing the course.

 



Tuition for the AIFA classroom program includes the following products and services (group rates are available):

 

  • A comprehensive desk reference manual that contains the AIFA course curriculum and pertinent readings.

 

  • Prudent Practices for Investment Fiduciaries handbook series, associated Self-Assessments of Fiduciary Excellence, Consultant-Assessments of Fiduciary Excellence, and Legal Memoranda.

 

  • Complimentary 180 day access to the Platinum Toolkit - Student Version..

 

  • A customized fi360 padfolio with Analyst notepad tailored to assist in your SAFE and CAFE assessments.

 

  • Related industry texts

 

  • Fiduciary placemat that includes The Periodic Table of Global Fiduciary Practices, Assessment Levels, and the Management of Investment Decisions reference guide.

 

  • Fiduciary Key Concepts Reference Card

 

  • Lunch

 

  • Embroidered satchel

 

 

Sincerely,

Carl

 

Carl J. Becker

Fiduciary 360

 

Abele Office Park
10 Emerson Lane, Suite 801-3
Bridgeville, PA 15017

412.221.0292 ext228

fax: 412.221.3993
www.fi360.com