Author - Sheaff Briefs Editor

Taking the elevator down | option overlay for returns | Sheaff Brock

Option Premiums Can Provide Additive Returns During the Elevator Ride

“Stocks often take the elevator down and the stairs up,” Sheaff Brock Managing Director Dave Gilreath comments, referring to the strong rallies following the stagnant markets in 2004–2005, 2011–2012, and 2015–2016. “The stock market often takes a breather before rallying up to a higher plateau,” Gilreath adds. With the Dow Jones “stuck” for the past year-and-a-half, he observes, it’s not unreasonable to anticipate another “stair-climbing” period. In an earlier First Trust Monday Morning Outlook report, Chief Economist Brian S. Wesbury, [...]

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Does Your Stock Position Have a Customized Protection Shield?

Wealth created by holding a single stock over time is a fairly common finding. In fact, as the Sheaff Brock investment team has been traveling to lecture at Financial Planning Association meetings around the country, advisors have continually mentioned the challenge they face helping clients who own a concentrated position in a single stock. Concentrated positions that comprise more than a quarter to a third of your entire portfolio holdings often happen as part of a benefits package for a [...]

Sheaff Brock Refresher Course on Preferred Stock

Preferred Stock 101+

(Quick Preferred Stock “cheat sheet” coaching session for those “in the know,” but who could use a little reminder before investing): Companies raise capital by either borrowing money or by selling ownership. To accomplish that goal, they issue either debt or equity securities. As an alternative, by issuing preferred stock, a company combines the characteristics of both debt and equity. There are some advantages to a company that issues preferred securities: Issuing preferred stock as opposed to bonds keeps the [...]

two puppies | the difference between SPX and SPY | Sheaff Brock

SPY and SPX—What’s the Diff and Does the Difference Matter?

In a rather cryptic and historical intro to the subject of options, Yahoo Finance states: “When it comes to the battle of SPY versus SPX, the first may have more volume, but the second has more value.” Size comparison: The SPDR S&P 500 (NYSE symbol SPY) is, in fact, the most widely traded contract on option exchanges. The SPX S&P 500 index options have far lower trading volume, but each contract is ten times the size of a SPY. Underlying security: Underlying the [...]

Actively Sailing Showing Active Management of Portfolios | Sheaff Brock Investment Advisors

Staying Active with Preferreds

The Sheaff Brock Preferred Income portfolio is an actively managed strategy, and there are reasons why. With the two-part goal of generating income while preserving capital, Senior Portfolio Manager JR Humphreys utilizes both institutional and retail preferred shares. No question as to which side of the ongoing debate about the merits and shortcomings of active vs. passive management is exemplified in the Preferred Income portfolio. So, what is the distinction between active management and a passive approach? Passive investors buy an [...]

purple duck in a sea of yellow ducks show customized financial planning solutions | Sheaff Brock

Are You Mr. A or Ms. B.? — Customized Financial Planning Solutions

There are six steps to the financial planning process, the CFP Board explains: Establishing and defining the client-planner relationship Gathering client data, including goals Analyzing and evaluating the client’s current financial status Developing and presenting recommendations and/or alternatives Implementing the recommendations Monitoring the recommendations For any client, financial planning is about a whole lot more than investment selection. But if you happen to be a “Mr. A” or a “Ms. B,” your advisor may need to seek out unique, customized [...]

REIT Investing and the New Tax Law | Sheaff Brock

New Tax Law May Favor REIT Investors

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is set to deliver significant tax savings over the next decade, which might well help an already healthy economy, says JR Humphreys, portfolio manager of the Sheaff Brock Real Estate Income & Growth strategy. Here’s why, Humphreys continues: One of the central features of the tax bill is a 20% deduction on pass-through income. By law, REITs must distribute at least 90% of their income. And, since the REITs themselves do not pay tax [...]

Two Faces to Show Upside Volatility and Downside Volatility | Sheaff Brock

The Two Faces of Volatility

“Remember that there are two varieties of volatility. Downside volatility is the type to avoid, not generally upside volatility,” Craig Israelsen writes in Financial Planning magazine. Far from doing everything possible to avoid volatility, we should all want portfolios that have higher levels of upside volatility, Israelson asserts. Traditionally, one advantage of building a broadly diversified portfolio is reduced volatility of returns. When higher standard deviation results in impressive upside performance, that is hardly something to be upset about, he observes. The [...]

Talking with investment advisor about option strategies | Sheaff Brock

Are You and Your Advisor Talking About Options Strategies?

The study results represented good news for the Options Industry Council. The OIC had commissioned global research and consulting firm Cerulli Associates to find out how much interest and involvement there is among financial advisors when it came to including options in client portfolios. The report, published a year and a half ago, highlighted three important developments: One third of financial advisors were already using options in 20% of their client portfolios. Advisors expected to increase the use of options [...]

Risk and Volatility | Lesson from Warren Buffett | Sheaff Brock

The Lesson Warren Buffett Says Hasn’t Been Taught in Business School

“Risk is not the same as volatility, but that lesson has not customarily been taught in business schools,” Warren Buffett observes. “Volatility is far from synonymous with risk.” In a 2015 letter to shareholders, the Berkshire Hathaway CEO wrote about the difference between risk and volatility. Many investors, he observes, “conflate these concepts, costing themselves money.” Yes, stock prices will always be far more volatile than cash-equivalents, Buffett concedes, but over the long term, currency-denominated instruments are far riskier than [...]