DIA takes very seriously the fiduciary responsibility to act with good faith and integrity on your behalf. DIA has a strong sense of loyalty to your interests, and every action we take reflects that allegiance.
Based on the overwhelming results of extensive academic and market research, DIA subscribes to an investment philosophy which believes that active management will not add value to your investment portfolio. In fact, consensus from this research has proven that over time very few active managers are able to consistently beat their comparable benchmark. As a consequence, the use of active management results in under performing portfolios, which in turn fails to meet client expectations.
Many individuals entrust their investment assets or retirement savings with an advisor who provides the best “sales pitch” or fall prey to those advisors who unscrupulously portray in great detail how they have some type of divine investment insight which has eluded all the other existing advisory firms. Do not fall for this faulty line of reasoning.
Believe me, I wish I could shower all my prospective clients with fancy marketing material about how DIA can consistently provide “above market” returns for clients. This is just nonsense! The reality is the returns you will experience in the market are a direct reflection of your tolerance for risk and the asset classes in which you invest. This statement is not based on opinion; it is based on the findings of extensive academic and professional research. To have an advisor say the contrary or to think otherwise is just counterproductive, and worse yet, could prove detrimental in achieving your financial goals and/or the long term success of your retirement planning.
As a result, there are three primary objectives you should focus on as an investor/client when considering an investment strategy. One, have a good understanding of your risk tolerance. Two, understand your financial needs in retirement. Three, have a general understanding of how markets work.
DIA’s job as an investment advisor is: One, educate clients. Two, use reasonable assumptions about expected future market returns. Three, provide access to asset classes through low cost index/passively managed funds and ETF’s.
Ultimately, you want an advisor who provides prudent financial advice which meets your financial planning objectives while delivering this service in a fair and cost effective manner. This all sounds pretty simple in theory doesn’t it? Unfortunately, this task is poorly executed and rarely accomplished due to unreasonable client expectations caused by advisors who fail to inform their clients adequately.
In his book, The Intelligent Asset Allocator, William Bernstein does a wonderful job describing the different type of investors:
“There are two kinds of investors, be they large or small: those who don’t know where the market is headed, and those who don’t know that they don’t know…….Then again, there is actually a third type of investor – the investment professional, who indeed knows that he or she doesn’t know, but whose livelihood depends upon appearing to know.”
As someone considering an advisory firm, it is this third type of “investment professional” in which you want to avoid. DIA believes those advisors who expend precious time and energy trying to determine the next “game changing trend” or the next “exciting hot stock” are engaged in a needless waste of time. Instead, DIA focuses its efforts on developing broadly diversified portfolios with emphasis on low expense ratios, minimizing transactions/turnover, and tax efficiency. By paying close attention to those items in which DIA can control, clients can be assured they will receive their fair share of market returns.