The focus of our fixed income strategy is to provide clients with a steady income stream while preserving capital, balancing portfolios, and managing overall risk. As an investment, bonds are riskier but pay a higher interest rate than money market funds, demand deposits or checkable deposits. Bonds are safer than stocks historically have provided a lower return (at less risk), because they have no potential for growth. There are many risks to be considered when investing in bonds including interest rate risk, inflation risk, credit risk, duration risk and reinvestment risk to name a few. We are risk averse in nature but will look at all categories of fixed income investing including Government, Corporate, Asset-backed, Federal Agency, High Yield, Municipal Bonds and International Bonds.
We also focus on tax considerations and specific client objectives. Our top-down macroeconomic outlook again serves as the strategic backdrop for the fixed income portfolio construction. Based on each client's customized asset allocation we may utilize a mix of individual securities, ETF's, low-fee mutual funds and cash equivalents to construct the fixed component of the overall portfolio. We measure the sustainable performance of fixed income portfolios against the client's objectives in preserving capital, reducing interest rate risk and maximizing after-tax returns. While performance may be viewed against a benchmark, consistently meeting our client's income needs is the primary focus.
The trait most common among successful investors is discipline. Disciplined investors use a set of proven rules that protect them and guide them through the ups and downs of the market. Forza's disciplined investment approach combines elements of top-down macroeconomic analysis and fundamental bottom-up company and security analysis. Our macroeconomic analysis -- which includes an assessment of factors such as GDP growth, interest rates, inflation, monetary policy and demographic trends -- serves to create a strategic backdrop for portfolio construction.
A portfolio is essentially the sum of your different investments. These investments will primarily consist of stocks, fixed income securities, mutual funds, ETFs and cash equivalents. Building a winning portfolio is dependent on a number of factors but will be designed according to each client's needs and goals.
Probably the most important step in building a portfolio is dividing assets among different types of investments -- asset allocation. Because these asset classes perform differently depending on macro conditions, a diversified allocation can keep a portfolio healthy in a wide range of economic situations.
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Click Here to view an article we wrote on the importance of Asset Allocation.
As part of the overall asset allocation we may utilize other alternative asset classes including Commodities, REITs and Currencies. We also may carry a short position in certain circumstances, however we will not employ leverage. In general we will utilize ETFs or mutual funds to get exposure to these other asset classes. One of the primary goals of investing in other asset classes is diversification to minimize correlation to the core of the investment portfolio.
Domestic Equities - At the core of each client's overall asset allocation will be a diversified equity portfolio of individual securities as constructed through our disciplined investment process. Forza follows an investment process for investing in the equity market based upon analytical tools and techniques developed and utilized from over 20 years of investment experience. We combine quantitative screens with hands-on fundamental research and overlay this with our top-down macroeconomic assessment to identify companies whose value may not be accurately reflected in the market. Our core style is growth-oriented but we also include value stocks that meet our criteria and we invest primarily based on the long-term outlook of the economy and financial markets. We look to find securities that we believe are mis-priced relative to our computed fair values. Since we are investors and not traders, our turnover is low and we prefer to own companies for the long-term.
Risk Control is paramount to maintaining a successful stock portfolio. We employ a number of risk control measures designed to mitigate risks including our sell discipline, sector and security concentration limits, and investing in liquid stocks. Our diversified equity portfolio will typically consist of 25-35 holdings. Maximum position size allowed for individual securities is 6%. Sectors are limited to 25% or 2x the benchmark weight, whichever is greater. Stocks are evaluated for sale or trimming for the following reasons:
Foreign Equities - We believe that foreign stocks play a key role in the overall asset allocation. Our goal is typically to invest in foreign markets with with the most attractive risk/reward profile. We also prefer markets with a low correlation to the US market as a means of diversifying market risk. Foreign exposure will occupy a lower percentage of the overall equity allocation, but we feel that the benefits of diversification are important to the portfolio. In general we will utilize foreign ETF's to get our international exposure. We may also utilize individual securities and ADRs which will be subject to our disciplined bottom-up fundamental analysis.
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123 Hamilton Ave, Westfield, NJ 07090 USA 908-344-9790 rcentrella@ForzaInvestment.com