Al entered the financial services industry in 1985. Early in his career, Al had the good fortune to witness one of the most significant events in market history – Black Monday on October 19th, 1987. He comments: “The events of 1987 taught us two lessons that are as applicable today as they were then. The first is that in good times, many investors have a tendency to forget their tolerance for risk. Those who over-extend themselves, or are too aggressive, inevitably get hurt. The second is that in down markets, investors who “stick to the plan” and don’t sell in panic avoid locking in losses. Ultimately, these disciplined investors perform better because they don’t miss out on the inevitable upswing in the market”.
Al believes that the foundation of every long-term investment program should be a comprehensive financial and retirement plan – the old adage “fail to plan - plan to fail”. Most of Al’s clients juggle a successful business or practice with their personal lives and rarely have the time to sit down and plan. A written plan not only provides clients with the foundation to achieve their financial goals, it directly guides the investment process by quantifying such factors as investment time frame, risk tolerance and rate-of-return requirements.
Experience shows that successful investment programs have much in common with successful businesses – those that perform well over the long term tend to be well structured, strategically focused and generate a significant amount of cash flow. Investors should, in addition, employ similar investment strategies to those used by organizations in the business of managing money – such as pension plans and foundations. That means a focus on discipline, diversification and “risk adjusted” rates of return. As a result, “Asset Allocation” and portfolio construction are an integral part of Al’s Investment Process – with client portfolios experiencing diversification on a number of different levels; by asset class, investment mandate, style and geography.
Finally, Al understands that each Investor is unique and deserves the benefit of a truly customized investment program – congruent with their risk tolerance and time constraints. And, as investors accumulate and grow their portfolios, they should benefit from a greater choice of investment options and more cost-effective portfolio structures. To that end, client portfolios are advised using RBC Dominion Securities’ Advisor Account or our Private Investment Management Service, which eliminate commissions and other transaction costs for the simplicity of a competitive, asset-based fee.