Diversify, financially and in your goals
By Greg Garvan
So here we are, post Labor Day. A time to acknowledge that the income gap has accelerated in the past few years, and there is little on the horizon to say it will get better. It’s still clear that for long term asset growth, diversification is likely the best way to “succeed”—though the markers of success are moderating, as compared to what we got used to over the past few decades. This summer, it was bond markets that have been rattled, because (no surprise!) the government is realizing that interest rates must increase; seeing the general growth of the economy, slow though it may be, interest rates are likely to increase sooner rather than later. One area in which we diversify our clients’ assets in the lending market is community investing, or the lending of money to small businesses unable to get loans through traditional means. While the financial returns have been hurt by the interest rate confusion, we do expect that community loans will continue to have strong social impact. With financial returns slowing and at times stagnating, SRI’s triple bottom line becomes all the more important: gaining social and environmental benefits in your local community (or communities in need elsewhere) represent returns that augment today’s modest financial returns. Sooooo, as we move into the fall, we are grateful that diversification—both in our financial investments, and among our financial, social, and environmental goals—is still the best approach, and we are working to strengthen our community investments.
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