As we enter into 2021, we asked Matt Dattilio, Senior Portfolio Manager, what he is telling clients about the year ahead and the overall investment landscape.
What are you telling clients at the beginning of the new year?
There isn’t anything magical about January or July at Mascoma Wealth Management. Our focus doesn’t change with the calendar. We want to help our clients keep perspective on their long-term goals. We are a goals-based investment operation, and we work with clients and encourage them to continue to follow the plan that we put in place, making modifications as needed.
What is the one mistake that you wish investors would stop making?
A lot of the best days come after some of the worst days, so we really don’t want clients trying to time the market. Investing is not an all or nothing proposition. Part of your portfolio is invested in holdings that are lower risk and don’t fluctuate like what you have in equities. The portion that is in equities, we don’t need immediate access to it, and indeed often we have no intention on touching it for at least 5 years, and oftentimes more than 20 or 30. So when the market fluctuates, you are prepared to weather the highs and the lows. We talk about this approach with each and every client at length.
What type of relationship does MWM have with its clients? Is it proactive/reactive, etc.?
The most important aspect of the relationship between advisor and client is that is mutual. The advisor and the client have an equal amount of responsibility to each other. We make sure the client’s investments are tailored to meet their needs and goals. The client’s financial plan is always evolving and changing. When clients keep us apprised of the changes happening in their lives, we are much more successful at creating short- and long-term goals that work for them. When we are really sharing information back and forth on an ongoing basis, we can more easily meet expectations all around.
What is a trend in the investment world that people are talking about a lot these days?
Technology. That’s due to a few things. Through the first 3 quarters of last year, it was the only place driving significant return. The subset of that is artificial intelligence and robotics, which are driving a lot of interest right now. There’s a belief in the industry that AI and robotics are going to drive technological advancements moving forward, including health care, the automotive field, and many other industries. Those companies that are taking advantage of next gen technologies will continue to trickle into other industries. We also feel like there is a strong likelihood for significant growth in socially responsible investments. At MWM, we help clients with Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) investing all the time. As a certified B Corporation pledged to “use business as a force for good,” that feels like an obvious place for us to have knowledge and be able to discuss pros and cons fluently with our clients.
Care to make a prediction about 2021?
We will see much more reversion to the mean; returns will be more broadly distributed and not as concentrated in certain sectors.
Outside of the financial world, the Patriots will draft a quarterback in the first round of the 2021 draft.
I’m more confident in the first than the second!