Category Archives: Investing

Universal Needs for Financial Management

Ed Van Deman
By Investing, Technology

As tireless advocates for the benefits of using sophisticated reporting systems for effective financial management, it was satisfying to see that our partners in India feel the same way. Below is an article Asset Vantage recently published in India. It demonstrates that the issues faced by investors for managing wealth are truly universal. Further, it illustrates how we share a common understanding of the issues that must be addressed. We are building on this common mission to deliver technology solutions that enable our clients to achieve success around the world. Here is their message to prospective clients:


Signs You Are Losing Control Of Your Family Assets

Would any of these signs make you sit up and re-look at your financial assets?

  • Dividends not received for a stock you hold
  • Sold stock and booked profits before realizing that a particular lot had not yet qualified for long-term tax treatment
  • A fixed-return investment generating zero annualized returns
  • Exposure to the same under-performing fund across multiple advisors
  • Excessive liquidity, pulling down your average returns

In all probability, these instances of financial inefficiency could be overlooked by your personal finance team on a routine basis because the data is fragmented and actionable insights are not available from manually created spreadsheets.

This raises the question: How do you regain control of your family assets?

The answer lies in tech-enabled automation of your financial data.

Automation using a financial software platform gives you convenient access to your consolidated portfolio, while maintaining data security and providing intuitive analytics. A multi-user system can provide your outside accountant and/or investment advisor with limited access to your investment data, allowing them to complete their tasks from their own offices and stay fully aligned. Simultaneously, the software tool automatically updates market information on valuations and corporate actions on a daily basis. This gives you a consolidated, near real-time view of multi-entity, multi-asset class data.

Consolidated reporting provides compounded returns categorized by asset class, advisor, sector, etc. Specific reports and analytics enable you, or your personal finance team, to spot anomalies and take immediate action. The system reconciles receivables (dividends, interest, rent) against bank receipts and automatically generates holding statements for individual accounts, by advisor, sector etc. These real-time reconciliation statements act as warning indicators for gaps between system-generated data and statements from banks and advisors.

The software monitors returns and generates investment analytics that reveal financial gaps, such as matured investments that have not been reinvested and are showing lower returns. It also displays tax management opportunities such as lot level unrealized short-term equity losses that can be sold to offset realized gains.

An integrated financial software platform is the best tool you can use to keep fully informed, with:

  • Anytime/anywhere access
  • Consolidated, real-time view of your assets
  • Reminders and alerts
  • Ability to track balances and liquidity
  • Insightful reports and analytics

Use technology to digitize your portfolio, stay in control and make smarter financial decisions.

Develop future investment professionals

Helping to Develop Future Investment Professionals

Monida Sieng
By Education, Investing

One of the ways Financial Navigator, Inc. gives back to the community is through its sponsorship of the Financial Navigator Student-Managed Investment Fund (a.k.a. the “Spartan Fund”) at San Jose State University (SJSU). Our goal is to help nurture future financial leaders by providing students in the Lucas College and Graduate School of Business with the opportunity to manage an investment fund using real money.

When I was a student at San Jose State, I was one of the original student co-founders. It has been personally satisfying for me to see the still-young Spartan Fund evolve over the past few semesters. In fact, it has outperformed the S&P 500 over the last two quarters.

One of the Fund’s faculty advisors, Nancie Fimbel Investment Fellow, Stoyu Ivanov, Ph.D., said,

“The Spartan Fund is unlike any class I have taught. It incorporates theory with real life experience. The sense of responsibility that comes from investing real money has provided a transformative learning experience for our students.”

Comments like this prove that FNI’s investment is having a real impact on these students’ education.

A recent stock pitch day was indicative of how seriously the students take their responsibility for making sound investments. Dressed in business attire, each student presented a case for investing in different companies, bringing with them hours of research and valuations. Having their methodology probed and their reasoning challenged by faculty and fellow students provided rigorous training that resulted in well-informed decision making.

The fruits of this labor were recently demonstrated. In early March, SJSU won the CFA Institute Investment Research Challenge for the Northern California region, out-performing teams from Stanford University, the University of California and other prestigious schools.

San Jose State University is becoming an increasingly attractive destination for students desiring a career in investment management and its Student Managed Investment Fund is playing an important role in helping students develop the skills needed for success. Financial Navigator is proud to have contributed to the growth and achievement of both SJSU and its students.

240 Market Indexes in our Portfolio Accounting Software

David Campbell
By Investing

Helping You Stay Connected to the Market

The days of reporting only on securities associated with the New York Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq are long over. So naturally, Financial Navigator keeps you up-to-date on your assets, tracking your investment portfolio no matter where they are in the world. To help do so, we continue to expand our portfolio accounting software connections to 240 different market indexes around the globe.

The major markets include:

  • NYSE / Amex
  • Barclays Capital
  • Cohen & Steers
  • Dow Jones
  • Hedge Fund Research, Inc.
  • Merrill Lynch
  • MSCI
  • NASDAQ
  • Russell U.S.
  • Russell MENA
  • Standard & Poor
  • Vanguard
  • Wilshire

Accounting for your Investment Portfolio

Need an index for your investment portfolio that isn’t on our list? Let us know. We are always adding to our accounting software offerings. Please email Manu Goyal at: mgoyal@finnav.com to tell us the investment portfolio index you would like to have included.

Financial Navigator Partners with ByAllAccounts

David Campbell

baa-partnershipFinancial Navigator and ByAllAccounts have formed a strategic partnership to deliver a complete solution for financial professionals serving high-net-worth clients.

ByAllAccounts provides intelligent data aggregation of account information for the financial industry’s most reputable technology vendors. This integration gives Financial Navigator users the ability to connect with thousands of new financial institutions and data sources with ease.

To learn more, click here to read the full press release.

GIPS from the Buy-Side

Ed Van Deman
By Education, Investing

portfolio-calculationWithin certain segments of the investment community there is broad awareness of the Global Investment Performance Standards (GIPS). That awareness, however, is most evident on the Sell-Side of the industry where investment advisors are anxious to gain a marketing advantage over their competitors.

Advisory firms are therefore working hard to gain certification as GIPS Compliant in order to obtain a “seal of approval” for the integrity of their performance calculations and reporting standards. Because this drive for certification by the Sell-Side is so visible, it has caused many investors on the Buy-Side to think that GIPS only impacts investment advisory firms. That view is mistaken.

We believe there are three important reasons for investors to take the time to learn about GIPS and to understand how it can help them:

Consistency

When investment managers follow GIPS, investors can be certain that returns are being calculated in a consistent manner across their portfolios. In addition, the calculation methodology is consistent from one period to the next.

Comparability

The information provided under GIPS allows investors to consider a variety of key factors when evaluating the experience, breadth and competitiveness of investment advisors, including: total firm assets, list of composites (discretionary portfolios that collectively represent a particular investment strategy or objective), number of portfolios in a composite, fee schedules and benchmarks. In addition, investors can compare the success of managers with similar strategies by reviewing the performance returns they have achieved, the consistency of their management and the volatility of their strategy.

Due Diligence

Investors can compare the policies and procedures of alternative investment advisors: How does each firm define what is included in GIPS assets? What is not reported via GIPS? How are assets valued? How are composites formulated? What areas are covered by the verification and performance examination?

To assist our clients’ understanding, we recently conducted an informative webinar that featured one of the country’s leading providers of GIPS verification services. You can find a recording of this webinar at our Navigator Resource Center.

As an investor, you may consider GIPS to be an issue that only affects investment advisory firms. Before you lock in this view, however, take the time to understand all the benefits that GIPS offers. You will be rewarded for your efforts.