Yeske Buie Live Big® Digest – March Madness Edition

Yeske Buie Live Big® Digest – March Madness Edition

I don’t know if you follow college basketball, but March Madness has become a big deal around the Yeske Buie offices, with unorthodox bracket strategies being the norm. Elissa, for example, chooses teams based on which mascot she believes could defeat the other.  Bella, the official chihuahua of the Virginia office, chooses teams based on whether the mascot is a cat, a dog, or a human; favoring dogs first, and then anything playing against a cat, and then humans (non-scary humans first). If you too are caught up in the madness, we’d love to hear about any unique approach you may have used in completing your brackets.  And have a great weekend!

The Yeske Buie Team

Elissa named Chair-Elect of FFP!
At the most recent board meeting, Elissa was named Chair-Elect of the Foundation for Financial Planning, where she as served on the board for the past two years. The Foundation is dedicated to helping people take control of their financial lives by connecting the financial planning community with people in need.  The Foundation makes grants that support pro bono advice, financial life skills education and outreach activities, with particular emphasis is on projects serving the military and school-age children. Beneficiaries of programs funded by grants from the Foundation include Wounded Warriors, Boys &Girls Clubs of America and United Way.

Client Appreciation Events
We’ll be holding an open house in the Vienna office on March 23 from 4:00 PM to 6:30 PM.  Wine, beer, soft drinks and the chance to meet staff from both offices will be on offer.

Mark your calendar for the San Francisco Open House, which will be held on Wednesday, October 12.

Required Minimum IRA Distributions
Just another reminder that if you’re subject to required minimum IRA distributions, you can expect to receive your payout by the end of July.

DFA Adapts to the Disaster
As you know, Dimensional Fund Advisors is heavily represented in your account because they do such a good job of “slicing and dicing” the market, thus giving us very precise building blocks from which to assemble a diversified portfolio. All of this slicing and dicing, however, can be impacted in the short run when dramatic events like those unfolding in Japan hit world markets.

Below is a brief summary from DFA’s Jay Totten, explaining how the company’s Investment Committee has reacted in the face of this calamity.  When building portfolios intended to provide focused exposure to small cap or value stocks, sudden, discontinuous changes in a specific market can skew the results in undesirable ways in the absence of timely adjustments.

“Dimensional’s Investment Committee has met and is monitoring the situation in Japan for potential impact on the portfolios we manage.  Aside from the calamitous human tragedy, one of our primary concerns is the impact of the earthquake on the functioning of the local markets.  So far, this has not been an issue; the Tokyo Stock Exchange has remained open and settlement has been uninterrupted.
Given the recent volatility in global markets since the earthquake hit off of the coast of Japan, we have reset our market cap and book-to-market breaks as well as country weight targets.  We reset size/value/country weight breaks at least monthly, and more often, if necessary.  This type of dramatic event that has impacted global capital markets exemplifies an event that would cause us to reset our breaks mid-month.  If we did not reset the size break, for example, we would inadvertently enlarge our small-cap buy range in Japan as we would be using a higher size break than warranted.  Similarly, BtM (value) breaks would be too low, causing more securities to be eligible in the value range than warranted.”