Finances in black and white

 For George Foley, chief investment officer of Dillon Capital Management, being a fiduciary leaves no room for equivocation.

“You are either a fiduciary or you are not,” he said, adding that if the new U.S. Department of Labor rules accomplish anything, helping consumers better understand the difference between advisors and brokers, as it relates to services provided, would be the biggest benefit.

The Department of Labor’s recently implemented rule requires financial services professionals—including insurance vendors and stockbrokers—to act as “fiduciaries,” when handling retirement accounts, meaning that they must put client needs before commissions or company interests.

Foley added that by not selling products, they offer complete transparency and eliminate all conflicts of interest, acting as a true fiduciary. This includes making their 401(k) service model easy to understand in a sea of confusing disclosures.

“Nobody can be more transparent than we are,” Foley said. “This is important because it allows us to confidently propose our services and invest without conflict.”

foley1Foley, whose firm runs completely on fees instead of sales commissions, offers clients several strategy options for short and long-term investing based on 5- to 10-year cycles. His disciplined approach involves building a strong foundation, identifying the appropriate risk level based on a client’s time horizon; low risk for older clients that focus on income, and higher risk for younger investors who need to build wealth and have more time to invest. “The decisions we make are designed to provide clients solid long-term returns with a minimum amount of volatility. These portfolio models invest in mutual funds and etf’s and we add liquid hedges to lessen market declines.”

As long-term healthcare costs increase an average of six to nine percent this year, the advice of some advisors goes beyond the conventional buy-and-hold wealth-building strategy, and crosses into long-term retirement planning strategies.

After 30 years in the industry, Foley gives retirees some sage advice — “stay invested, don’t retreat into short-term investments any sooner than necessary.”

People who’ve been through major market corrections and have endured losses tend to be more conservative today. Some try to do it themselves but realize they don’t have the time to do it properly. “Most of our new clients fit this description and usually tried to invest in stocks, “he says.

“After establishing an efficient risk-based foundation, we’ll offer three distinct equity strategies across the risk spectrum, from a low volatility global dividend portfolio to a growth opportunities portfolio.” Foley said, yet he encourages every client to use one of their diversified, strategic portfolio models that mix active, passive and hedge vehicles.

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