Ask A Financial Advisor – Q&A with Matt Robinson
Matt Robinson, Vice President – Infinex Financial Advisor with F&M Financial Services, Inc.
80 Cross Keys Road, Harrisonburg, VA 22801
Question: What is the most rewarding part of your work?
I enjoy being a problem solver for my clients. At the end of the day the client has an issue or problem, and they are looking to me for the solution. It is not an exact science but being able to customize each plan for every client is extremely exciting and rewarding.
Question: How can residents of the Shenandoah Valley area benefit from working with a financial advisor?
The Shenandoah Valley is filled with a diverse population of workers, families, and communities. We are growing at a very fast rate and becoming even more diverse. A financial advisor is well positioned to provide a level of advice and expertise in the form of finances that can greatly benefit the population.
Having a trusted name and person to go to is something more and more people are seeking. In this complex world of speed and efficiency it is easy to understand why people tend to neglect their finances and only focus on what they need to accomplish each day. Working with an advisor is a way to relieve some of that financial burden but more so a way to find a partner in your financial story. We want to walk along with you, not lead.
Question: How should I plan and prioritize my short-term vs. long-term financial goals?
Setting goals is perhaps one of the most important things you can do in mapping out a good plan. I tend to work on goals-based investing, and with that we determine your short-term, mid-term and long-term goals. How many goals do you have? Where should we place the most or least risk? In life you must make decisions that are short-term but also recognize that they may have long-term implications. I work to help my clients realize and implement this to give them the most confidence in their plan.
Question: Why is life insurance important for financial health?
As someone who has delivered a life insurance death check, I can tell you that it’s very important. Someone once told me that “life Insurance is the most selfless thing you’ll ever buy.” That still sticks with me to this day because of the statement’s simple truth. Most times the person that purchases the life coverage will never see a penny of the profit or benefit. They purchase it to help their loved ones in the unforeseen event of a premature death. Life insurance can be there to help keep kids in school, as well as pay off a home. It’s a powerful product!
Question: What should I consider when determining to invest in stocks vs. mutual funds?
Risk is number one. What are you willing to risk and what is your risk tolerance? Once that is decided it can be as simple as matching your goal and risk up with the proper investment vehicle. I have many clients that like individual stocks, and I have clients that love mutual funds. There is no perfect answer but in working with an advisor you will feel confident about the choice you make going forward.
Question: How should my wealth management strategy change in response to COVID-19?
COVID-19 has been a disruptor – not only in our personal and work life but also our financial life. The bad news is that COVID-19 happened, and the good news is that it won’t last forever. Making any drastic financial changes to a portfolio during times of such uncertainty can produce adverse results to your overall plan. If you don’t need the money immediately, or in the foreseeable future, the textbook says to stay invested.
Making some minor changes to sector exposure has been more of the playbook since COVID-19 became an issue. Simply put that means we have moved funds away from the decimated sectors like tourism, hospitality, restaurants, airlines, etc. Some sectors that have done well have been technology and consumer staples. Once again, you shouldn’t make large changes but instead calculated small changes to hopefully enhance your portfolio during these unusual times.
Question: How do index funds play a part in my investment strategy?
Index funds serve a purpose in the investing world. They generally have lower fees but with that comes a passive approach to investing. The opposite would be a more active approach to investing. Passive index investing is simply following along with a large index, and there is no deviation from the index. During the most recent bull market run, the indexes have shown tremendous growth in the last 10 years. Having a broad-based index apart of your portfolio can be a hedge against some more specified positions all aimed at the idea of diversification*.
*Diversification is a method of helping to manage risk. It does not assure a profit or the avoidance of loss.
Question: What do Virginia residents need to consider when determining where and when they should retire?
This is a million-dollar question! It’s unique to every person as to when and where to retire. Some people need millions of dollars and some need a few hundred thousand. Everyone will have a different situation, but it’s important to understand who you want to be in retirement.
- Do you want to travel?
- Do you want to help with kids and grandkids?
- Do you want a part time job or perhaps volunteer?
There are multiple factors at play with regards to Social Security and Health Insurance. You have to consider the cost of living in the town or city. Having a partner that shares your interests in retirement seems to be a growing trend. Sitting down with someone who sees different perspectives and can help you navigate the new waters of retirement can be such a great experience. It can give you the confidence to go forth into retirement and live the life you want!
Question: Where should I invest my funds in order to save for retirement?
The answer to this is similar to the stocks or mutual funds question. It will all depend on your risk tolerance and your retirement needs. The textbook says to be more aggressive when you are young and bring down your risk the closer you get to retirement. Being an educated investor will help you make better decisions and feel like you are on the correct pathway to a fantastic retirement.
Investment and insurance products and services are offered through INFINEX INVESTMENTS, INC. Member FINRA/SIPC. F&M Financial Services, Inc. is a nonbank subsidiary of F&M Bank. Infinex is not affiliated with either entity.
Securities and Insurance Products:
Not Guaranteed by the Bank | Not FDIC Insured | Not a Deposit | Not Insured by Any Federal Government Agency | May Lose Value Including Loss of Principal