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market spotlight | quarterly review

The second quarter of the year can be called a lot of things, but boring isn’t one of them. The potential for a trade war between the United States and China heated up in April as China responded to the threat of U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports by warning of the same magnitude of tariffs on American exports. Favorable corporate earnings reports helped calm some of the global economic angst investors may have felt. The indexes listed here ended the month ahead of their March closing values — but only barely. The Global Dow (1.16%) and the Russell 2000 (0.81%) posted the largest monthly gains, followed by marginal upticks in the S&P 500 (0.27%), the Dow (0.25%), and the Nasdaq (0.04%).

Despite expanding trade tensions between the United States, China, Canada, Mexico, and the European Union, equities enjoyed a better month in May, riding surging energy stocks. For most of the month, oil prices hit multi-year highs before falling at the end of May. Robust first-quarter earnings reports also helped push stock markets higher. In fact, each of the indexes listed here posted strong end-of-month gains. The small caps of the Russell 2000 (5.95%) and the tech-heavy Nasdaq (5.32%) enjoyed the largest gains, followed by the S&P 500 (2.16%) and the Dow (1.05%). Of the indexes in this report, only the Global Dow lost value, falling 1.95% by the end of May.

did you know?

In a recent study of more than 25,000 mass affluent, millionaire and ultra-high-net-worth investors, the Spectrem Group sought to understand the investor characteristics and behaviors of these groups. With women now controlling a majority of assets in the U.S., the study devoted space to understanding the unique needs of wealthy female investors and revealed a need for financial advisors to provide valuable guidance. According to women responding to the study:

  • 21% said they are knowledgeable about financial products and investments.
  • 52% said they are fairly knowledgeable but still have a great deal to learn about financial products and investments.
  • 21% said they are not very knowledgeable about financial products and investments, but that they do understand some things about overall finances.
  • 5% said they are not at all knowledgeable about financial products and investments.

Source: Spectrem Group

bright ideas
The Power of Processes
Why Advisors Need Turnkey Solutions

The E-Myth: Why Most Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It is an enduring classic and should be a must-read for financial advisors. The book reveals the blind spots most small business owners (and financial advisors) share—they’re great technicians. Unfortunately, it’s often difficult for technicians to transform those talents into the entrepreneurial or management skills needed in running a business. The book’s author, Michael Gerber, believes it’s difficult to make that shift in mindset, from technician to entrepreneur, but it can be achieved through the power of processes.

Turnkey Solutions

Gerber states that you should look at every area of your business as a process and then develop a specific system for each of those processes. He says the key is developing processes so streamlined and efficient that anyone can run them. Once you have those systems in place, you’re no longer worrying about developing something new in your business, allowing you the time and energy to focus on your clients and prospects.

5 processes for financial advisors

Following these principles, at Beacon, we recommend that you consider five key process areas to help streamline your business:

1. Business development process. This process is broken into two parts. First, how do I get people interested in my business and having a conversation with me? You develop this process through newsletters, seminars, social media and similar marketing efforts. Second, is the process you have during each client meeting. You don’t want to reinvent the wheel each time; you want an efficient system that allows you to go from point A to point B in every single meeting with every single client.

2. Client onboarding process. Once you have a client onboard, you want to have an efficient process to get the client integrated into the system. One example is connecting with your client through LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter to communicate with them and comment on their various life events. For example, through your processes, you can develop tagging systems and could send all your clients that were World Cup fans an update and comment on the event.

3. Ongoing client process. This is how you communicate with your clients throughout the year. Are you speaking with them on the phone quarterly? Are you meeting with them face-to-face on an annual basis? However you decide, you will want to create this as a process across your clients.

4. Investment management process. An area to significantly improve scalability for advisors is to develop a process for delegating non-revenue producing responsibilities to a third party so you can focus on capturing new assets—one of the most potentially game-changing responsibilities being investment management. (For more on why outsourcing investment management is a $1 million question, check out our past newsletter on this topic.)

5. People process. This process deals with how you hire, manage and fire people. How do you onboard them? How do you pay them? As with the other topic areas, you want a system in place that takes the guessing out of running your business.

To learn more about how you can develop and implement these goals and more for your business, contact your wholesaler today!

beacon news

Be sure to visit Beacon’s News & Press page for the latest credibility pieces to share with your clients and prospects, and follow Beacon on LinkedIn for the latest updates as they happen.

Check out Chris Cook’s recent quote in The Wall Street Journal, as well as a podcast interview “How to Slash Your Retirement Risk” with Stacking Benjamins.




Beacon Capital Management, Inc. is an investment advisory firm registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Additional information about Beacon Capital Management is also available on the SEC’s website at under CRD number 120641. Beacon Capital Management only transacts business in states where it is properly registered, or excluded or exempted from registration requirements.

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