On our Blog, you will find investment insights, financial planning tips and Company announcements. Here’s the latest:
October 18, 2019 – Blog Post
– Are you thinking of retiring? Wondering what to do with the savings you have in your retirement plan at work? We can help you avoid potentially costly mistakes.
August 16, 2019 – Blog Post
– Does watching the financial news bring clarity? Might it be better to change the channel?
August 5, 2019 – Blog Post
– Like bettors at the casino, market speculators hope to get lucky. Why the first group is more realistic.
July 3, 2019 – Blog Post
– Robots and stock traders were left pointing fingers at each other last week, according to a post on the ZeroHedge.com website. Another example of market irrationality.
June 19, 2019 – Blog Post
– For the fourth year in a row, we have been named one of the top financial advisors in Omaha by AdvisoryHQ, an unbiased third-party research organization.
April 15, 2019 – Blog Post
– Amy Byrne has been promoted to Client Care Officer of America First Investment Advisors.
April 1, 2019 – Blog Post
– Trustees of the Omaha School Employees’ Retirement System have taught everyone a lesson in how to be a bad investor.
March 19, 2019 – Blog Post
– This month marks the 25th anniversary of America First Investment Advisors. We thank our clients for making this possible.
March 12, 2019 – Blog Post
– Asking the right question can save billions. Don’t expect Wall Street to jeopardize their fees by asking it.
February 12, 2019 – Blog Post
– We’re pleased to announce that Barry Dunaway is now Managing Director and Katerina Wiese is Vice President.
January 10, 2019 – Blog Post
– Should we fault management for buying stock at high prices early in 2018?
November 5, 2018 – Blog Post
– Buying stocks in order to get dividend yield can be dangerous. Here’s why.
October 31, 2018 – Blog Post
– Those words usually signal that someone is seeking to get you to try something different. It’s good to be skeptical when they are used to describe financial products.
October 17, 2018 – Blog Post
– Are you considering retirement and wondering what to do with your 401K or other retirement savings plan? We can help you consider your options and determine what is best for you.
September 21, 2018 – Blog Post
– Could it be that the crabgrass and dandelions in my backyard will make me the next Warren Buffett?
July 31, 2018 – Blog Post
– We are very happy to announce that we have added a new member to our team, Amy Byrne. Most recently with Westchester Capital Management, Amy has more than 30 years of experience in investment management.
July 6, 2018 – Blog Post
– Is is right to think your investments should be “hardworking”? We suggest fine-tuning your answer.
June 15, 2018 – Blog Post
– Some big companies are advertising “sort-of” apologies on TV. Couldn’t they have spared a lot of trouble by putting their customers first?
May 22, 2018 – Blog Post
– We weren’t one of the hotels, restaurants or retailers that were helped by the latest Berkshire Hathaway Annual Meeting in Omaha. Still, we did benefit.
March 15, 2018 – Blog Post
– Consensus opinion is worth following in many trades, but it often fails in investing.
February 28, 2018 – Blog Post
– A recent Wall Street Journal article shows one way the career-preserving forecaster hedges his bets. How do we use forecasts?
January 4, 2018 – Blog Post
-Is it a coincidence that the new movie about P.T. Barnum, inventor of the three-ring circus, has opened at a time when the trading public is crazy for Bitcoin and other crypto-curiosities?
September 15, 2017 – Blog Post
– When a company we own is the subject of a takeover offer, we’re faced with a decision: Should we sell our shares or hold them?
July 18, 2017 – Blog Post
– Wealthy investors are often pitched “alternative assets.” Are there real benefits to investors or do sponsors win at their expense?
June 6, 2017 – Blog Post
– Don’t think we’re going to sell you something when we ask to review your investments with you. Remember, we aren’t brokers.
April 28, 2017 – Blog Post
– A rule of thumb known as Price’s Law can help explain why some companies fail. It reminds us how important it is to understand the nature of the businesses in which we invest.
March 14, 2017 – Blog Post
– Congratulations to America’s newest citizen, our own Katerina Wiese. A native of the Czech Republic, she fulfilled the requirements for US citizenship and was part of a recent naturalization ceremony. Katerina has been with America First since 2008. In addition to providing client support and financial planning, Katerina is our Chief Compliance Officer.
February 22, 2017 – Blog Post
– We’re pleased to announce that Matt has been promoted to Chief Operating Officer. He will oversee all our critical back office systems while continuing to provide client support and financial planning.
February 7, 2017 – Blog Post
– Cash may yield next to nothing now, but it will be very valuable when the prices of good investments fall.
December 15, 2016 – Blog Post
– One way to learn about our Old School approach to working with clients is to study an example of what may be its exact opposite.
November 21, 2016 – Blog Post
– All of us at America First are owners of the firm. Does this benefit our clients?
November 11, 2016 – Blog Post
– Wall Street analysts seem to be experts, but their opinions are biased. We do our own work and answer questions that are most relevant to helping our clients build wealth.
October 26, 2016 – Blog Post
– You can live a full and happy life without predicting whether the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates. If you want to know what the market really expects, check out the FedWatch Tool.
August 23, 2016 – Blog Post
– Bond prices are being openly manipulated and interest rates are at levels unseen in 5,000 years. Doesn’t this call into question the popular idea that bonds are a good investment for conservative investors?
July 13, 2016 – Blog Post
– We usually can’t know what will cause market volatility or when it will occur. But we can know that market volatility from some source will occur. This is a very useful insight for investing.
May 27, 2016 – Blog Post
– America First is exclusively a Registered Investment Advisor. We act as a fiduciary, meaning your interests come first. Strange as it may seem, many who offer advice are not required to act in your best interests. They can steer clients toward products that pay themselves high commissions.
April 13, 2016 – Blog Post
– Required Minimum Distributions or “RMDs” can seem a confusing topic. Ads on the subject seem designed to scare readers into believing that a maze of penalties and tax blunders awaits those who enter into the intimidating world of RMDs. In this article, Eric answers some frequently asked questions and notes that in most instances, RMDs are not a big, bad problem.
April 5, 2016 – Blog Post
– There has been a lot of advertising recently by companies offering to help borrowers refinance their student loans. A new article by Michael Kitces has some good insights on the subject.
March 16, 2016 – Blog Post
– Economic policymakers are worried that you’ll lose respect for them if they don’t create inflation. We already don’t respect them, but we do think they will spark inflation.
February 11, 2016 – Blog Post
– We want to own shares of good, well-managed companies that sell at attractive prices. You might think that everyone wants this, but apparently not. Owners of European bank stocks must be looking for almost exactly the opposite. We can learn about good investments by examining bad ones.
January 27, 2016 – Blog Post
– You might think that company managements would be more willing to buy back shares when the price declines. No, that’s too rational. Most chief financial officers would rather pay high prices than low. That may make them comfortable – others are doing the same thing – but it’s not the way to help shareholders build wealth.
January 25, 2016 – Blog Post
– The beginning of 2016 has seen a sharp decline in global stock markets. Most headlines point to economic weakness in China and a plunge in oil prices to explain the fall. Experts sound pessimistic. Investors are concerned. Should they be invested in stocks? Should they hold more cash? Let’s look at how we make buy and sell decisions as markets fluctuate.
December 17, 2015 – Blog Post
– Imagine a parent today who wants to teach her kids the Old School virtue of saving. At current super-low interest rates, it will be a generation before a $100 deposit returns a single dollar on a bank savings account. “Save for a rainy day” is an expression that will make a comeback.
December 4, 2015 – Blog Post
– The Federal Reserve is now likely to raise short-term interest rates Dec. 16th. Observers say this will help the Fed’s “credibility.” A better question about credibility may be whether they can achieve their goals by manipulating interest rates. Why the Fed should put itself out of business.
December 2, 2015 – Press Release
– We’re celebrating our first year as an independent company! Highlights of the year include our move from Downtown to the Regency One Building, new branding and an overhaul of our website, and our well-received “Client Family Appreciation Event.” We’re also looking ahead to next year.
October 31, 2015 – Blog Post
– How do we determine that the price of a stock we are considering is attractive? In this final part of our series, we explain the two main approaches we use.
September 24, 2015 – Blog Post
– How do we evaluate the management of companies? We reject the common idea that a rising stock price indicates good management and a declining price a poor one. We look at everything from business strategy to acquisition history, accounting choices and stock ownership.
September 17, 2015 – Blog Post
“What Is a Good Business?” (Part One of a Three-Part Series)
– We have a three-part test for investing in a stock. In this post, we consider what makes a business a good one. There’s a little more to this than most people think.
September 1, 2015 – Blog Post
– When the markets needs a break from worrying about China, they worry instead that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates one-quarter of a percent. People in the real world won’t care about such a small increase, but those who have borrowed a lot to fund investments may. We doubt that policymakers will increase rates in the near future.
August 21, 2015 – Viewpoint newsletter
– Our August newsletter features our blog entry from August 6th. We also announce the top-to-bottom revamp of our website.
August 13, 2015 – Blog Post
– Have you noticed how often the forecast of a “market expert” seems based on nothing more than drawing a straight line between two points? Maybe “The Flintstones” can explain why.
August 6, 2015 – Blog Post
– The conventional wisdom is that bonds are safer than stocks. Investors are often urged to increase the percentage of bonds in their portfolios as they get older. Eric explains that this could be a terrible strategy today when interest rates are very low.
August 4, 2015 – Blog Post
– Here’s a game I like to play: How long can you watch business news network CNBC before hearing something absurd? A recent guest said that Amazon may be trading at a “crazy” price but that’s what you have to pay to participate. We beg to differ. Why this makes us “Old School.”
July 22, 2015 – Blog Post
– Shares of Apple fell today following their latest earnings report. This brought to mind an article we wrote about the company more than two years ago, and we are reprinting it here. The stock was popular but overpriced, in our view, and we chose not to own it. Gravity may finally have overcome market sentiment.
July 10, 2015 – Blog Post
– Have you reviewed the beneficiary information on your IRA and other retirement accounts lately? Your Last Will and Testament usually does NOT determine what happens to your retirement accounts. We’re happy to assist you in updating this important information.
July 9, 2015 – Blog Post
– We sold long-term holding ConAgra in 2011 when management showed they were willing to pay an irrational price for private-label food company Ralcorp. Poor performance drew the interest of Jana Partners, which recently disclosed ownership of more than 7% of shares outstanding. A new CEO at ConAgra looks to be much better for shareholders.
July 7, 2015 – Blog Post
– So you’ve left your old job behind. Now, every financial advertisement under the sun inundates you with offers to help roll over your old 401(k) into an IRA, but is that the right move? Matt explores some of the things you should consider.
June 1, 2015 – Email Announcement
– Our new address is 10050 Regency Circle Suite 515, Omaha, NE 68114. Our phone numbers have also changed. Our main number is now 401-991-3388.
March, 2015 – Viewpoint newsletter
– Fiction sells much better than non-fiction in the book trade. Barry observes that this is also true on Wall Street, where what is entertaining and promises high fees often gets more attention than what actually helps to build wealth.
– Our investment brochure provides a lot of information about our company, including the kind of clients we serve, how we invest, and the background and qualifications of our employees.