Retirement Talk Podcast Episode

94. Volatility in 2022 Market Update

March 4, 2022
What Volatility Can We Expect in the Market for 2022?

Special Guest, CFA, Portfolio Manager David Wagner of Aptus Advisors, joins us on today’s episode to discuss the various factors contributing to market volatility in 2022. As a portfolio manager David is constantly studying the market, understanding the impact it has on investors. Should we expect a recession? What will bring down inflation? David will share his expertise on these topics and more during our show. 

The market has been in a tailspin and a lot of factors are playing into this. From a geopolitical standpoint, there’s a lot of uncertainty so we are seeing some bearish trajectories. But this may be a buying opportunity according to David. 

The Russian invasion of Ukraine could really impact Americans’ wallets when it comes to energy and consumer spending, but only time will tell. We are still expecting rate hikes despite this conflict and David assumes this won’t change. The Fed tends to avoid uncertainty when possible. On the other hand, David sees inflation as mostly a supply problem and something that can be addressed. In the short term, if we see some supply chain relief, we could see prices come down. In the long term, productivity will drive inflation down. 

David doesn’t think investors should be worried about a recession in the near future. The economy, which is the basis of the market, is doing very well. If you are getting closer to retirement these events may seem daunting, but having a strong and diversified plan can protect your future. 

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Timestamps (show notes):

1:53 – What’s a portfolio manager?

4:31 – What should you expect from a geopolitical standpoint?

7:19 – Will volatility settle down or will consumer prices increase?

12:11 – Does the FOMC raise interest rates?

14:54 – Will inflation last the decade?

22:23 – What would have to happen to put us in a recession?

26:26 – Should we worry about stag inflation?

31:32 – What should people do now?

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Ron Stutts: Welcome to Retirement Talk, the Redefining Wealth Show, your source for financial information specifically for pre-retirees and retirees. We are here each and every week to help you better navigate during these economic times. We’re here to discuss thoughts and ideas in the field of finance and retirement, as well as discuss trending topics that could impact your bottom line. We will break it all down.

These discussions can help you make better informed decisions so you can make better financial choices and live the lifestyle you imagined for retirement. Laura Stover is a registered financial consultant and CEO of LS Wealth Management, as well as founder and owner of LS Tax, a consulting firm. She’s been featured in Forbes, CNBC, and The Wall Street Journal. I’m Ron Stutts. Our topic for today is volatility 2022 market update.

Now here’s your host, Laura Stover along with special guest hosts for this episode, CFA portfolio manager David Wagner of Aptus Advisors.

Laura Stover: Hello, hello, David Wagner. Welcome to the Retirement Talk Podcast. Thank you. You are a rockstar, and we’ve timed this out perfect to have you with us this week. I want to tell our audience a little bit about who you are, because I want them to understand, boy, you’re a rockstar. You are a portfolio manager. You’re not a financial advisor. I mean, advisor, a portfolio manager, you make very big decisions. You’re a certified fund analyst. You’re with Aptus Advisors.

You do a lot of the research and the fundamental analysis and the technology. Tell us just a little bit, what’s a portfolio manager?

David Wagner: It’s been a dream of mine ever since probably high school to be a portfolio manager, so I’m very fortunate to be in this position. For a portfolio manager, kind of walking through a day-to-day what I do, my background is in equity selection. It’s valuing stocks and really determining whether we should buy them into the portfolio, or in fact, if we already own them, sell them out of the portfolio.

Outside of that, I head market updates, market commentary, both domestically and internationally, and also head the economic side here at Aptus. We kind of wear a lot of hats as a small company, but I really focus on stock picking and what’s going on in the market on a daily basis and a lot of the economic data behind driving the market over longer periods of time.

Laura Stover: You’re very in tune to a lot of things that the average person probably doesn’t pay attention to, and you’re a CFA. You’re a regular guest on CNBC, Bloomberg, Barons, The Wall Street Journal. David, thank you again very much for being a part of the podcast here today. Well, I was going to lead the show off this week talking about the White House announced they thought it was inevitable that Russia was going to invade Ukraine. Well, this is airing now a few days past the horrific events.

If we get past, and it’s hard to get past and we’re not going to have a political discussion about it, but people want to know this is going to play out. I think the first thing on everybody’s heart and mind and wondering what’s going to happen because America’s seen a lot this year. We’ve just come out of the greatest bull market of all times in the year of ’21. Yeah, we had a lot of Fed spending to prop things up. Spend, spend, spend. January began very bumpy. Let’s talk about the energy.

I know you don’t have a crystal ball. Research is probably still coming out every day. A lot of the headline news is changing and it’s ultimately going to depend on how much this might or might not escalate. From an energy perspective and from a portfolio perspective regarding the geopolitical side of this, let’s address it first because people are concerned. The market has been in a tailspin really before the invasion. And then obviously Thursday, the day of, it was very volatile.

Then Friday, we saw an uptick. What should people expect just on the geopolitical front, do you think?

David Wagner: This is one of the hardest things that a portfolio manager has to do. It has to take in data from around the world and really try to prognosticate what’s going to happen in the market. On Thursday, we know that Russia invaded Ukraine. And if you would’ve told me that and asked me if the market was going to be up or down that day, I would’ve said, “Oh, definitely, definitely down.” But in fact, we know that the market was up close to 2% on that type of day.

You really got to take this in stride because obviously this is still a very fluid situation, an ongoing situation. But one thing that we have to do as PMs, we have to take this data and take a step back and to see how it’s going to affect the market, not just in the short-term, but in the long-term. Typically, during geopolitical events, much like what we’re seeing here right now, many market participants tend to be very, very bearish. That’s very understandable given the level of uncertainty.

Will Russia move past Ukraine and go into Poland? There are so many unknowns. Yes, the market is actually in a correction right now and investor sentiment is very bearish given everything going along the lines from the geopolitical stand point. This type of bearishness that we’re seeing right here right now in this market is at the same level of bearishness that we saw in March of 2009 at the bottom of the financial crisis, and then in March in 2020 during the COVID crisis.

But when you really get to see peak bearishness in the market from its participants, it actually tends to be a buying opportunity. Yes. I mean, myself included here, I think many investors were definitely shellshocked on the day that Russia officially invaded Ukraine. Like I told you, the market was up that day. But Laura, when you really look at previous battles and how they affected the market and how it reacted to them, it has actually paid to buy the invasion, historically speaking.

I looked at some data going back to, let’s say, Gulf of Tonkin in ’64 for Vietnam, the US intervention in the Gulf War in ’91. Let’s just say Afghanistan in 2001, Iraq in 2003, and 2014, most recently, Russia’s occupation of crime media. All but one of these events were actually amazing buying opportunities in the market. The outlier was the Afghanistan War in 2001, but that market fell after that, which was more driven from the dot come bubble itself, not the Afghanistan War.

When you aggregate a lot of this data that I was looking at, on average the S&P 500 was up about 2% a month after the original let’s say invasion itself. It was up probably about 13% over the next 12 months. Yes, these opportunities, though it feels very bearish right now, actually tend to be some type of buying opportunity.

Laura Stover: Right. With that stated, that’s good news. But should Russia ultimately they’re like… I hope it doesn’t happen, but if they’re in power and government’s changing Ukraine, do you expect some of the volatility we’re seeing? I think it probably depends and if their ambitions move into bring… If we’re bringing more countries into this, if things escalate beyond Ukraine, that probably changes the scenario completely.

But if that doesn’t happen, do you think this will settle down, or will it affect gas prices? What might people expect in the days, weeks, and months ahead in your view?

David Wagner: Your synopsis here hits the nail on the head, Laura. Because I think the two big things that I continue to ask myself now that we know that Russia has invaded Ukraine and that they’re probably going to put some type of puppet regime into place is actually somewhat irrelevant in my mind. You hit the nail on the head that, what are we looking at? If I had to ask myself two key questions moving forward, it’s really, does Russian and Ukrainian energy and commodity supplies get materially disrupted during this incursion?

And secondly, you’ve touched on it, does this conflict really spill beyond Ukraine? Let me answer those two questions. I think the first question definitely matters, because the longer commodity prices are elevated, the more lasting pressures will be put on consumer spending. And that’s what I think here domestically in the United States that a lot of the markets are looking at right now.

I think that this would increase the chances, I think, of the Fed to really make some type of policy mistake by removing the accommodative policy a little bit too quickly, because growth would be slowing here right now. Rising rates and slowing growth is really a concoction for volatility in the market, much like that we’ve been seeing.

Yeah, I’ll definitely be watching the headlines regarding the Russian energy exports, their grain exports, aluminum exports, Ukrainians’ grain exports for really any sign of sustained disruption that will structurally elevate commodity prices for a much longer period of time. I think if that happens, it’s just an incremental negative. But regarding that second question that I posed there, I think the implications are pretty clear.

If Putin attacks some NATO country, it will massively increase the chances of a major military conflict between NATO and Russia. I don’t think anyone would want that whatsoever, because that would be a very big bearish game changer to the market and I think would require some materially defensive positioning in portfolios. But the positive there is that, hey, that seems pretty unlikely at this time. But like I said, I think that first question is the most important one there, especially from an energy commodity complex.

Will this keep gas prices, especially for Americans here domestically, higher for longer than expected to a point where it can decrease their spending moving forward in the future?

Laura Stover: Yeah, and I guess the ultimate answer to that is time will tell on a lot of this, unfortunately. Now, I think really this was big news, but the big news that’s always looming. I think he’s been a little behind the eight ball for a while. He was proactive. I remember back when President Trump was in, rates were going up too quickly then, and that was probably true, and then we had the pandemic accelerate a lot more. People staying at home, the shutdowns. I.

F we transitioned then to where we are today, we have very high inflation right now, by the way, David. It was at 7.5%. I think since I documented that, we are actually bumping over nine now. We’re going to hit double digits it looks like. Not sure where it’s going to stop, but obviously a lot of the news headlines were in 40 year high inflation. That’s not good in the long run. It’s costing middle class people a lot of money and it affects them. It’s referred to when we’re doing a lot of our continuing education the silent killer.

It’s kind of like a heart attack. It’s that erosion of purchase power. If you find yourself in a position you’re scared from all this volatility, well, look at the silent killer with the tear gas and things, so to speak, because it erodes what you can purchase. If you had a sizable paycheck, I mean, you need to take like 9% off. If you had a million dollars or a thousand dollars, let’s say, in 2021, you’re down to like $930 now with where the inflation was in just a year’s time. Mid March, FOMC meets.

Does he deter from raise and rates at all, or he just won’t go 50 basis points and it’ll be a little bump, more than likely 25, or does he retract all together?

David Wagner: Yeah. I think from our positioning, what we’re expecting, we’re expected about five rate hikes for this year. I think the market’s still pricing in about seven rate hikes. What we know about Jerome Powell from the lessons that he learned in 2016 and 2018 is that messaging has to be clear and concise from the Fed. We know that the market itself hates uncertainty. When you get uncertainty from the Fed, it creates volatility in the market.

I do you think that Fed Chairman Powell will stick to his tune and try just to do a 25 basis point rate hike. I mean, the market hasn’t seen a rate hike of 50 basis points since May of 2000 actually I think is really where it came from. I do think that he’s going to stick to his guns. The Fed tends to be very data driven on everything that they do.

I don’t think this Ukrainian conflict is going to throw them off the rocker into doing something more rash or quick or something different than what they have communicated to the market so far.

Laura Stover: Yeah, I think 2000-2001 when green span initially took us to the 0% almost, wasn’t it, back in those days. I remember that and thinking, “Oh wow! boy, those CDs aren’t looking so hot at the bank anymore.” It’s been how many years. No one ever anticipated it would be this many years at such a low interest rate. Let’s talk about the 1970s parallel. People like to reminisce a little bit about history, but the ’70s really were very similar times to some of the challenges that we find ourselves in right now.

A little research I did, the 1970s saw some of the highest inflation rates in the United States in recent history now. They ended up, I think, in the 20% range. I can remember my grandpa switching banks with CDs, like people do the stock market. Central bank policy during that timeframe had the abandonment of the gold window. They really looked at things from that Keynesian economic policy and the market psychology really all contributed to a whole decade of high inflation.

Inflation is really the stability, that inverse relationship between inflation and unemployment. We’re not really in that same situation. There’s factors that are driving inflation. But do you think it will last a whole decade? I think that’s the question I want to ask you. How long do you think academically would this… What will start to change it? I mean, obviously if he can raise rates, but that’s going to really be slowed down now with some of these other issues going on.

David Wagner: Yeah. I think inflation… I’d like to spend some time here. I think you hit the nail on the head calling this the silent killer to portfolios. Right now we haven’t seen inflation to this extent on a CPI basis since 1982 under the Volcker regime. But you’re definitely seeing a lot of parallels to the situation right now that we’re seeing from an inflation standpoint that mirrors a lot of the stuff that occurred in the 1970s. You mentioned Keynesians.

I think there’s a lot of Keynesians out there believing that quantitative easing and the stimulus that really hit the market is driving a lot of this inflation. I actually disagree with that actually to one extent. Let me start talking about inflation with the type of inflation that we’re really seeing right here currently. The cycle has been odd. Typically, business cycles are driven by durable goods and then financial crises. Durable goods are where you can build up unwanted inventories. With inventories high, firms cut production.

When firms cut production, you cut jobs. When you cut jobs, you cut income, and income declining really leads to the leverage players in the market suffering. If that cascades, then you’ve created yourself some type of financial crisis. That’s a typical recession, i.e., a financial contagion event. But that’s not what we’ve seen, I think, in the last two years. The contagion was obviously more health related versus financially related. Income was preserved through aggressive fiscal and monetary policy responses as the pandemic hit.

Services, which are usually stable, suffered the most, but that meant income really flowed into goods, into the durables. Really it actually overflowed into the goods. We overwhelmed the global supply chain as bottlenecks really developed, and that’s what skyrocketed inflation. So kind of to your question, what’s going to cause inflation to subside?

In my opinion, inflation right now is simply a supply side problem, not a demand problem, much like what those Keynesians believed due to the stimulus pumped into the market. Laura, I’ll tell you now, this is a hot take. It’s pretty unconventional to kind of what you hear on CNBC or Bloomberg, because they’re always saying, “Hey, demand has been a key part of inflation.” I would actually debunk that with some pretty quick facts.

If you look during the periods from Q4 2019 to Q4 2021, you saw GDP rise from say 19.2 trillion to 19.8 trillion during that period. That equates to an average annualized growth rate of GDP to about 1.4%. Hardly any rampant economic growth in my mind. Let’s move that a little bit further into this ostensibly overly supportive policy regime period and take a look at the personal consumption levels, the expenditures, during that same time period.

Well, they rose from like 13 trillion to 13.7 trillion, which equates to an average annualized growth rate of 1.8%. Again, very subpar performance from any historical standard. It’s not demand driving inflation. That’s what those numbers state right there. It’s all supply driven. Less supply drives up prices. I think the current market narrative for the COVID period is not one where demand is running gangbusters, fueled by excessive stimulus.

It’s a story where we just contracted GDP growth from its long-term trend as we hit huge COVID induced supply chain disruptions. What will slow inflation down to your other question? I think that there’s two things that could slow inflation down: one short-term and one long-term. On the short-term, much, like I said, supply chain easement, the economy needs to really see some relief in this area.

Then this allows really competition to drive pricing down, as companies will always try to garner more market share with some type of cheaper pricing, especially if they’re seeing their input costs come on down. That will drive the market more into some type of equilibrium in the short-term. But I think longer term, it’s all about productivity. Productivity will drive inflation down. And if you look at the numbers… I’m a big numbers guy. We said I was a PM at the beginning. I’m very analytical.

If you look at the numbers, as of last quarter, we have more GDP than pre-COVID. We’re just slightly ahead of it. Okay? But we’re doing that with four million less workers. Now, that is productivity at its finest. We’re becoming a more efficient economy. Productivity is a very big disinflationary force. It’s actually the biggest disinflationary force that you can have. I think what I hear from a bunch of different clients and from the market is people say that energy will really drive up inflation.

This is another hot take, Laura. I actually don’t believe that. I think commodity hikes are a tax on other consumptions, not inflation. You decrease spending elsewhere, thus net neutral. I think what I’d be more worried about from an inflationary standpoint is wage inflation. That’s the wild card, especially here in the near term. Then on this. Let me give my final opinion.

I do think we have more structural inflation right here, meaning that we have more sticky inflation due to wage increases and the step up in costs, something that our economy hasn’t probably seen in decades, but I don’t think this inflation is going to derail the market at all. Obviously you’re purchasing power right now relative to where it was is much less, but the consumer remains very, very strong. The average US household net worth has increased 30% from pre-COVID levels.

It’s actually increased by 135% over the last 10 years. That means that consumers can withstand higher and longer levels of inflation.

Laura Stover: You are a wealth of knowledge. That’s why I called you the rock star at the front end of the show.

Ron Stutts: You’re listening to the Retirement Talk Podcast with your host, Laura Dover. Get a copy of our How to Survive a Bear Market Guide. Email [email protected]. That’s [email protected]. Request your free copy. Now back to the show.

Laura Stover: You said the R word, David, when you were talking about inflation. I want to talk about… And I’ll tell you what the R word is in just a moment if you aren’t sure what I’m talking about. I also want to talk about stagflation, and then some content in terms of what people should be doing and what they can do. Now. The R word is recession. That’s several down quarters. Three down quarters, is it? Consecutive down quarters is a recession. I’m not the economist. You’re more in the economist, and a depression is like six conse…

I think the resignations are different. I mean the employment numbers are really just strange. It’s mostly because people have resigned their jobs. They like working from home. We have more entrepreneurs. We have more startup companies. Those things are all good. When we’re referring to the R word, I want to pick your brain on this a little, what would have to happen to put us in a recession?

I hear some poignant’s headline news kind of indicating we may see a recession now. What’s your thoughts? Are we on the tipping point? Could we go into a recession?

David Wagner: I think when you look out in the market, or pardon me, out into the news, there’s always people trying to call for some type of recession because they get highlighted. Obviously you become famous by calling for recession when you get it right. But most of the time they’re getting it wrong. I think one thing to really look at is, yes, the market is… People assimilate market volatility and a recession, and they’re not related by any means. The market and the economy are two different things. On the market side, the market on average on an annual year sees three 5% pullbacks and one 10% correction. That’s normal. That’s market volatility.

Laura Stover: That’s important emphasize.

David Wagner: Absolutely.

Laura Stover: One 10 correction, how long, at least once a year to every 15 months, right?

David Wagner: Once a year on average. Uh-huh (affirmative).

Laura Stover: And we were long overdue. Mm-hmm (affirmative).

David Wagner: Yes, but kind of back to my comments on how healthy the consumer is, the consumer drives GDP. 67% of GDP is derived from consumer spending. And like I told you, the consumer has never been this healthy. And as long as there’s some type of propensity for that consumer to spend the excess capital that they have, it’s very difficult for the market or the economy, pardon me, to enter some type of recession. I think a lot of people are calling right now for the Fed.

The Fed’s misstep could create some type of recession here, that they over hike. It ends up inhibiting growth because rate hikes are too high. But historically speaking, the Fed tends to hike rates when the economy is very healthy. And remember, there is a difference, like I just said, between the market and the economy. The market can be volatile, like we are seeing right now. The economy, on the other hand, has never been this strong. Hence, the data about the US household I continue to bring on up.

More families have unencumbered balance sheets and much higher liquid assets. Over longer periods of time, the market tends to lead… The economy, pardon me, tends to lead the market. The market just creates a nonlinear path to get there, which is the volatility we continue to speak about, which we probably should see a lot this year as we have already. But that’s why markets tend to outperform through an entire rate hiking cycle and most people don’t know that.

Markets outperform during rate hiking cycles because the Fed will only increase rates if the economy is healthy and can stand on its own two feet. The Fed sees through the market volatility, as they depend solely on a lot of this economic data that you just mentioned from GDP, the labor situation. Bottom line, from the R word, I don’t think investors should be worried here in the near term about that occurring because the economy, which is the basis of the market, is doing very, very well.

Laura Stover: So then high inflation, corporate warnings of supply chain issue, will this translate to stagflation? There are some similarities between the ’70s and today again. There are also some key differences, which I think might be part of the answer that you’re going to give here. But we first have to understand there’s two kinds of inflation that demand pull and the cost push.

And today, we have that demand pull, and you kind of spoke about this earlier, due to the low interest rates and the COVID relief efforts and all the money that was spent to keep things afloat for most Americans. It did incentivize workers to stay home longer, which from my viewpoint is why we have some supply chain shortages now. But what do you think about the stagflation worries? What is stagflation and what would cause it?

David Wagner: Yeah. Stagflation has basically two main components to it. It’s high inflation, high prolonged inflation, and the second one is high unemployment. Right now currently, yes, there is higher than average inflation right now, given all the reasons you’ve spoken about on this call so far. 7.5% year over year CPI. Core CPI, which takes out food and gas, is close to about a 6% handle. I don’t think that the market in its entirety, whether you’re an analyst or an economist, thinks that’s going to go away in the next few months.

I think we are getting closer to peak inflation. Yes, that is a worry in the short-term, but that’s only one aspect of stagflation. The other aspect is the labor environment itself. You have to have high unemployment. Actually there’s a third factor, it’s demand. You have to have low demand. But on the labor standpoint right now, I think we have a tighter labor market than what most people assume. Yes, we are still about four million jobs short of where we were pre-COVID.

Yes, you’ve had a lot of retirees get out of the market. Some people are afraid to come back to work, Laura, as you explained. But if you look at something called the JOLTS numbers, it’s basically your job opening numbers, how many jobs are available for people to go get? And that number is over 10 million right now. There’s plenty of opportunity for people to go get jobs, but we are becoming a very productive nation, like I mentioned.

We’re getting the same amount of GDP as we did pre-COVID with four million less workers right now. We’ve really kind of created a new regime of a labor environment right now because people are becoming more productive because they’ve started to finally see some type of wage inflation. They’re getting paid more so their output is better. Yes, we have higher inflation right now, which is a characteristic of stagflation. Number two, we don’t have high unemployment right now.

I think it’s a very tight labor cycle, and that’s what the Fed has started to really prognosticate. And that’s factor two. Factor three is you had to have low demand. We haven’t seen the demand flow through yet per the numbers that I’ve already given, but that’s because we’ve had supply chain issues. Once we fix the supply chain, I do think given the propensity for the US consumer to spend the capital that they have on their unencumbered balance sheet, that there will be demand.

Right now, if you’re keeping score at home, of the three factors, high inflation, low demand, and high unemployment, you’re only getting one out of three of those factors right now really pointing to some type of stagflation environment. Yes, it’s a worry, but I think a lot of the worries along the stagflation argument are very short-term in nature.

Laura Stover: A wealth of knowledge, my rock star go-to guy. When it comes to the really… We’re seeing something different every year. No year in the market is ever the same. You always have to refer to the past, which is not indicative of the future. The past really never replicates itself. It’s our only pattern to go by a little bit by looking in the rear view mirror to learn lessons from the past. Just for some of our listeners, some people have concerns about the volatility and the low interest rates and some of the uncertainty that we spoke about in today’s show.

I believe it’s important to point out, there are different kinds of spending captured by CPI and healthcare is definitely one of those inflationary issues. It’s costing us more. We all know that. If you’re right approaching retirement, five, 10 years prior to retirement, or maybe you’re retired, these things are going to be an essential part of your income plan. And that’s why I created the Redefining Wealth Process. It all boils down to understanding your income, the withdrawal rates.

We don’t want negative sequence of returns when the market is down and then pulling money out. That’s why it’s so important to have the diversification, the guarantee of income, and then a segmentation is really what we like. There’s many different ways to design income plans with flooring or goals-based, and that’s the type of thing if you have not had a conversation with your advisor about what that means.

If you haven’t implemented a tax plan on top of the healthcare, I mean, these are all things, because we’re living longer, we’re always going to have black swan events. We’re going to talk about tail hedges on next week’s show. I can probably be fairly assured most of our listeners, What’s that? Is it a type of bird?” No, these are tools that are available for your portfolios and it’s for the growth portion of your portfolios, so that you’re not losing too much capital. And that’s really the difference at the end of the day.

Again, if you have enjoyed today’s show, I want to thank our world class guest, David Wagner, CFA portfolio manager with Aptus Advisors. He provides a lot of the research. Any closing thoughts, David, on where I guess you’d want to people what they should do now?

David Wagner: I’d want to tune into that next episode on tail hedging 100%. I think it’s something that’s very important. To kind of give listeners a key into that, I don’t know who your guest is, but the best way to say what it is, you have insurance on your car. You have insurance on your homes. But when people look at their hard earned assets in their portfolios, they don’t have insurance on it. What a left tail risk hedge is, is basically just insurance on your portfolio as a whole. And that in its own is your nest egg for retirement.

Why wouldn’t you have some type of insurance where you pay a small, small premium for to make sure that when the market goes down, that you get to see some type of benefit out of it. I think that’s a very important…

Laura Stover: We’re not talking about annuities. We are talking about investment tools that maybe you’ve never heard about, but you really need to understand them to be successful. It doesn’t mean that that’s necessarily right for you, but that’s why you need a plan, a detailed plan, and it all starts there. You’ve been listening to the Retirement Talk Podcast with my guest, David Wagner. Thank you for joining us today.

And if you want the copy of the bear market report and how to deal with this volatility, please go to We’ll see you next week.

Ron Stutts: You’ve been listening to the Retirement Talk Podcast with Laura Stover. For a copy of How to Survive a Bear Market guide, email us at [email protected]. Request your free copy now. That’s [email protected] for our guide on How to Survive a Bear Market. Redefining Wealth is a registered trademark of LS Wealth Management. Take advantage of a complimentary plan. Know where you stand regardless of the market.

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174. What is an Annuity and When Is It A Smart Investment?

Today, Laura Stover, RFC® and Michael Wallin, CFP® discuss the importance of planning for retirement income and the role of annuities in retirement planning. They start by emphasizing the significance of having a solid plan in place, especially in the face of economic...

171. Are You Making These 5 Common Portfolio Mistakes?

171. Are You Making These 5 Common Portfolio Mistakes?

  Investors often underestimate the risk in their portfolio.  Today,  Laura Stover, RFC® and Michael Wallin, CFP® break down 5 common portfolio mistakes, as outlined by Christine Benz in Morningstar.  They are portfolio sprawl, when your assets often overlap and...

170. Retirement Risks

170. Retirement Risks

 Retirement planning involves mitigating risk and understanding the various risks that retirees face. Laura Stover and Michael Wallin break down these risks today, including reduced earnings capacity, visible spending constraint, heightened investment risk, unknown...

169. Do You Have a Cookie Cutter Portfolio?

169. Do You Have a Cookie Cutter Portfolio?

  In this episode, Laura Stover, RFC® and Michael Wallin, CFP®, discuss the concept of a cookie-cutter retirement portfolio and its implications for retirees. They start by addressing the recent news of the US being downgraded due to its high debt levels. They...