In Perspectives

With the first half of 2016 officially behind us, mid-year always seems like a good time to look back and take stock.  Following years of relative calm and unusually low volatility, the past twelve months have brought no less than three significant selloffs in U.S. equities:  one in August on uncertainty about falling oil prices and China’s weakening economy, another in January as China continued to raise red flags, and most recently the sharp market reaction to the surprise outcome of the Brexit referendum vote just a couple of weeks ago.  A quick glance at a 5-year S&P 500 chart immediately draws your eye to the choppiness that we’ve experienced recently and how it contrasts against the virtually uninterrupted gains of 2013, 2014, and the first half of 2015.

Nevertheless, while each of these declines were marked by short, sharp downturns (to give the most recent example, the Dow fell over 600 points in one day in reaction to the Brexit vote on June 24), in each case the market also recovered ground fairly quickly.  In fact, the S&P 500 closed the twelve months ending June 30, 2016 in positive territory year-over-year – no doubt surprising some investors by how resilient the market has been.  Underlying strength in the U.S. economy as evidenced by labor market and consumer data has undoubtedly played a part in this.

As the U.S. stock market has gone on to hit new record highs in recent days, barely two weeks after the Brexit vote roiled the markets, this seems to be a good time to remind our readers why we so often advocate for a “stay the course” mentality in the face of uncertainty or negative headlines.   No investment advisor has a crystal ball that can consistently predict the short-term movement of the markets, but we know from experience that long-term strategy is the key to success as an investor.

Much of my day-to-day is spent on the ongoing implementation of Legacy Trust’s investment strategy, which involves monitoring the capital markets to identify opportunities and risks, evaluating specific strategies, reviewing results, and implementing changes.  I love this work, but I never forget that it is meaningless if it exists in a vacuum.  It is the client’s Investment Policy Statement that lays out the strategic plan for each of these puzzle pieces to fit into.  At Legacy Trust we believe that the initial discovery conversations and the process of developing unique Policies for each family or institution are among the most important services we can provide for our clients.

If a client’s strategic investment plan has been carefully laid out up front during a period of relative calm, it makes navigating periods of uncertainty much easier.  Although the unnerving feeling of watching red numbers flash by on CNBC never completely goes away, it is tempered by the reminder that growth investments are long-term by their nature and that any near-term needs have been planned for in advance through more stable reserve investments such as fixed income and cash equivalents.

If you would like to speak to someone at Legacy Trust about your strategic investment plan, don’t hesitate to contact us.  We would love the opportunity to work with you!

Legacy Trust and Your Right to Financial Privacy

At Legacy Trust we have established policies and practices that respect the financial privacy of all individuals who use our trust company. We believe it is critical to comply with the laws and regulations designed to secure your financial privacy. Your relationship with us as our client is very important to us, and we want you to understand our policies and practices about handling your information.

This Policy applies to you – This Policy applies to our relationships with individual clients who inquire about or obtain products or services from us for personal, family and household purposes.

Strict security measures – We take the security of information very seriously. We have established security standards and procedures to prevent access to client information. We maintain physical, electronic and procedural safeguards to guard client information.

Limited employee access – We have established procedures to limit employee access to information to only those employees with a business reason for accessing such information. We educate our employees about the importance of confidentiality and client privacy. We take appropriate disciplinary measures to enforce employee responsibilities regarding client information.

Why we collect information – We collect information about you to:

  • accurately identify you;
  • protect and administer your records, accounts and funds;
  • help us design or improve our products and services;
  • understand your financial needs;
  • save you time when you apply for new products and services; offer you quality products and services; and comply with certain laws and regulations;

We collect information – We collect and maintain your personal information so that we can provide investment management and other services to you. The types and categories of information that we collect and maintain about you include:

  • Information we receive from you to open an account or provide investment advice or other services to you (such as your home address, social security number, telephone, financial information and investment objectives).
  • Information that we generate to service your account or from our transactions with you (such as account statements and other financial information).
  • Information on your transactions with nonaffiliated third parties.

We have established procedures so that the financial information we collect is accurate, current and complete. We are committed to work with you to promptly correct any inaccurate information.

Our selective sharing of information – In order for us to provide investment management and other services to you, we do disclose your personal information in very limited instances, which include:

  • Disclosures to nonaffiliated companies as permitted by law, including those who help us service your account (such as providing account information to brokers and custodians).
  • Other limited disclosures as permitted by law, for example, required reports to government entities.

We do not share your information with third parties for marketing purposes. We do not sell your information.

Former clients – If you end your relationship with us, we will continue to adhere to the privacy policies and practices described in this notice.


Important Information About Procedures For Opening A New Account

To help the government fight the funding of terrorism and money laundering activities, Federal law requires all financial institutions to obtain, verify and record information that identifies each person who opens an account.

What this means for you: When you open an account, we will ask for your name, address, date of birth and other information that will allow us to identify you. We may also ask to see your driver’s license or other identifying documents.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause; however, federal law prohibits us from waiving these requirements.

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