The Investment Implications of the Midterms

“The results of the U.S. midterm elections were largely in line with expectations,

with one important wrinkle. Although, as anticipated, the Democrats took the

House of Representatives and the Republicans held the Senate, the Republicans

increased their majority in the Senate and this, from a political perspective,

appears to validate the President’s strategy of taking a hard line on immigration

and trade.” Click here to read the full article.

Source: JP Morgan

Staff Spotlight - Elizabeth Stemper, Principal

Elizabeth is a principal and consultant at Innovest Portfolio Solutions. She manages the relationships between service providers and plan sponsors, as well as provides ongoing vendor management for Innovest’s clients. Elizabeth is also a member of Innovest’s Retirement Plan Practice Group, a specialized team that identifies best practices and implements process improvements to maximize efficiencies for our retirement plan clients. At Innovest Elizabeth provides consulting services to committees, boards, and individuals. She also leads many special projects for our retirement plan clients including request for proposals for clients, evaluating and benchmarking plans and their service providers. 

She holds an Accredited Investment Fiduciary (AIF®) designation from the University of Pittsburgh, Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business. Elizabeth has also earned the Qualified Plan Financial Consultant designation from ASPPA, a designation which demonstrates her expertise advising and supporting qualified retirement plans.  

Prior to joining Innovest, Elizabeth was a CPA at Deloitte, formerly Touche Ross. Additionally, she spent 12 years in real estate investment management with JMB Institutional Reality Corp., and subsequently Heitman Financial. She was a portfolio manager responsible for coordinating financing, leasing, marketing and property management for each property in three commingled private equity funds. She graduated from the University of Iowa with a Bachelor of Business Administration majoring in accounting.

Elizabeth, her husband and three sons spent more than four years living in Tokyo, Japan. As a result, they developed a love of travel. Elizabeth also enjoys spending time with her family, cooking, and outdoor activities.

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Christine Hudek
Health Care and Retirement

Over the last 20 years, healthcare costs have skyrocketed, outpacing the Consumer Price Index by 70 percent. According to the Employee Benefit Research Institute, to have a 90 percent chance of having enough savings to cover medical bills, a man would need $131,000 and the woman would need $147,000. How is the average American supposed to combat these increasing costs? Senior analysis T.J Berge believes that the answer may be combining an employee sponsored retirement plan with a High Deductible Health Plan. Click here to get more information about retirement savings.

Source: Innovest

National Retirement Security Week

According to Employee Benefit Research Institute, only two-thirds of U.S. workers are saving for retirement. The first National Retirement Savings Week (NRSW) occurred in 2006 when two Senators introduced the resolution establishing National Save for Retirement Week. The goal is that this week will spark a national conversation about the importance of saving for retirement. The National Association of Government Defined Contribution Administrators encourages business to provide resources and educate their employees on saving for retirement. For additional information, visit NAGDA’s official NRSW website.

Rocky Mountain Benefit Plans Conference

Innovest is excited to announce that registration for the Rocky Mountain Benefit Plans Conference is now open. This full day conference will help you improve the management of your benefit plans and your participants’ outcomes. Speakers from Innovest, EKS&H now part of Plante Moran and Alvarez & Marsal Tax will present on the following topics:

  • Retirement Plan Fees 2.0: Leveling, Lawsuits & Lessons Learned

  • Cybersecurity

  • Hunting for Missing Participants

  • The Outlook for the Economy and the Financial Markets

  • Non-qualified Plans

  • Breaking Bad Enrollment Habits

In addition, conference attendance qualifies you for 8 CPE credits. If you want to learn more about the conference, or register, please click here.

InnovestChristine Hudek
Protecting Employee Benefit Plans With Cyber Insurance

As technology advances, the field of cybersecurity continues to develop and improve. Despite this, cyberattacks are becoming far more frequent and costly. Laura Fischer, partner at Spencer Fane LLP, provides a description on preemptive actions that can be taken to combat cyberattacks. Fischer points out that “cyberattacks have managed to invade all walks of life, and employee benefit plans are no exception.” Employee benefit plans are at great risk due to the extensive personal information that they contain such as personal health information, social security numbers, dates of birth, compensation metrics, and level of benefits. However, cyber insurance plans add a much needed layer of protection that can help prevent breaches and make them less detrimental when they occur. Click here to read more about how you can help protect your employee benefit plans with cyber insurance.

Source: Law360

Reporting Rock Star

Innovest is proud to announce that one of our interns, Cos Braswell, is the winner of the Innovest Quarterly Reporting Rock Star award! Cos prepared several difficult reports and was always willing to jump in and help others. He also continuously asked for more reports even with his busy schedule. Congratulations, Cos!

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InnovestChristine Hudek
Rebalancing

Routinely rebalancing a diversified investment portfolio plays an essential role in helping investors achieve their investment objectives. Instead of using a buy-and-hold strategy, Chris Meyer, Innovest Vice President, advises periodic rebalancing to ensure that a portfolio’s expected return and volatility characteristics stay on target. Click here to read the article on page 3.

Source: Innovest

Urban Peak

Urban Peak, a Denver based nonprofit, works to provide services to Denver’s homeless youth. Their goal is to equip young adults with the skills to overcome difficult challenges and become self-sufficient.  Urban Peak provides overnight shelter, employment programs, a drop-in day center, street outreach, educational and employment services and supportive housing. In 2016, Urban Peak served 1,814 youth, with many moving on to have stable lives. On Monday, October 22nd, Urban Peak is hosting its annual fundraiser, “Plates for the Peak”. Come enjoy specialty drinks, fabulous food, music and a silent auction to support Urban Peak! Tickets are available for purchase online.

Families of Character

The Denver based nonprofit, Families of Character, works to equip parents to build clarity, unity and joy in their households. Families of Character is particularly important to Innovest because Richard Todd, the CEO and co-founder of Innovest, is the former Chairman of the organization.

In a world of conflicting messages, Families of Character enables parents to raise virtuous families. In their first-ever parenting conference, Intent to Thrive, Families of Character will cover everything from teaching kindness to the perils of navigating technology. The conference will be held at the University of Denver on October 26th. Tickets can be purchased here.

Trump has a 75% Chance of Winning the Trade War

The United States and China have a trade war that could escalate if the United States puts more tariffs on import goods from China. “However, the U.S. could still win, but the victory may take a longer period of time to achieve and it may be more painful, economically and politically”. Although it may seem that the U.S. has the advantage of winning, China has yet to show signs of retreat despite the recent meltdown of its stock market. Click here to learn more.

Source: Yahoo! Finance