Investment Insights

Latest Investment Insight - 04/21/17

A Macro View – Is the American Consumer Maxed Out?

Over the past couple of weeks, reports of consumer credit have started to pique investors’ interest, and not necessarily in a positive way. The Federal Reserve (Fed) reported in early April that consumers now hold over $1 trillion of debt in each of three key areas: auto loans, student debt, and credit-card debt.

Latest Investment Insight - 10/13/15

This quarter's Envestat Intersection continued our theme from last quarter on advisory practice growth, largely because of the questions our clients are asking us:

1. We are constantly hearing about the "robo" trend. Should we really be going downstream as a way to grow our practices?
2. If we don't want to go downstream, or if we want to try another growth strategy, should geographic expansion be on our list?
3. I'm making the shift from commission to fee business, but when will I finally achieve operating efficiencies or scale?
4. Does product selection actually play a role in our growth? 

This report is designed to help you answers those questions.


The domestic economic landscape remained on a slight uptrend in the third quarter of 2015, characterized by steady but unremarkable growth. The U.S. economy faced significant challenges from global economies and financial market distress. The Bureau of Labor Statistics raised its second estimate of second quarter 2015 gross domestic product (GDP) to +3.9%, above both the prior estimate of +3.7% and the first quarter’s +0.6% reading. The positive rebound, driven primarily by consumer spending, occurred despite a continued fall in energy prices. Employment was strong, with an average of about 221,000 jobs added each month. The unemployment rate declined to 5.1%.


In a “meh” market, look again at U.S. stocks
The first half of 2015 was remarkably uneventful for many markets, particularly U.S. stocks. This very meh-ness of the current U.S. equity market is one reason amongst several why investors might want to focus on U.S. stocks for the remainder of the year.


First issue of Envestat Intersection -- offering leading insights through the intersection of our data and human capital. This is part of Envestnet's deep commitment to empower advisors with better information to grow their business and better serve their clients.

In this edition, we analyzed the top decile advisors versus the overall advisor peer universe on their ability to outperform in five key growth areas.


Is this the Big One? What to do in a financial crisis
Events in Greece, China’s massive market sell-off, and the temporary shutdown of the NYSE remind us that change and crisis shift the narrative of what today holds and the future portends. Investors may at first want to run for the exit, but the wiser choice may be to stand calmly and let the storm pass.


When following the herd is risky, where is the safety?
Risk and safety. Safety and risk. In investing, as in life, balancing both is an ongoing challenge. We know intuitively that all of either one or the other rarely yields the results we want, but finding the right mix is easier said than done.