Hello. I’m Michael Evans for Cogent Strategic Wealth. Are you sitting at home right now rather than in your office? Are you wondering about your job, your kids, your elderly parents, maybe your clients? Are you just trying to sneak in a workout before dinner with the family? Or whatever you’re doing. In this video, you’re going to know how you can better prepare yourself to protect your family and your family’s financial future. You’re going to have a plan that you can use with some practical ideas, and hopefully you’ll feel a lot more confident and relaxed about your family’s financial future when it’s over. I hope this short video will be a good investment of your time, your effort, and your energy to watch it. With these challenging times, you have to have a whole new way of thinking in order to survive and thrive. Maybe this story will help put in perspective what can happen when you use a concept called evidence-based decision-making to rise above the chaos of the crisis you may be in. Let me share a story with you of how this all came about.

What to Do When You Are Faced With a Financial Crisis?

Imagine, you and your spouse have two young children, and you have one on the way. You just moved into a new house, and you’re pouring yourself into what promises to be a very rewarding career for you, but it’s going to require a lot of hard work and a lot of stress for you to endure through. Then one day, the rug gets pulled out from under you. A safe bond fund you held in your reserve account, just the money that you have as emergency cash on the side gets cut nearly in half. Hundreds of thousands of dollars gone like that, and years of building wealth are just wiped away. This was your reserve fund, remember, to help you survive anything that was going to come your family’s way, and just like a coronavirus, attack your financial future.

That story I just told, that actually happened to me and my family when we had our own shutdown. The virus that attacked us though wasn’t COVID-19 like it is now, but a deceitful bond fund manager. Because of their actions, it took me seven long years, as a plaintiff of a federal lawsuit, to recover most of what the manager had taken unjustly from me and my family and the other investors in the fund.

When your financial life goes into chaos, what do you do?

Well, what I realized then was that even though I planned out every aspect of my professional career, I had not put that same effort into securing my family’s financial life in the same way. From that day on, I promised myself and my family one important thing, that I would never allow this to happen to me or to them ever again.

I immediately set out to create a plan to seek out the best insights and principles the world of finance and behavioral economics had to offer. I went through so many peer-reviewed academic studies. I read so many books and met with so many professionals to make sure that I found the financial theory that offered to investors like me, the highest probability of success. It was then that I discovered evidence-based investing. The evidence was overwhelming to me and to the industry that the active managers that were out there were playing a loser’s game. By that I mean individual investors couldn’t overcome basic benchmarks of small asset classes and how to outperform. The professionals, the money managers who had the best educations and the largest amount of resources, they could not beat the market either. The evidence was overwhelming that the surest way to win the game of active management was to refuse to even play.

The winning strategy, it turns out, is to embrace evidence-based investing, to rely on studies and insights from the decades past and what they have taught us. Here’s what we learned, that you need to develop a financial plan that adopts evidence-based investing strategy in order to have the best chances of achieving your family’s financial goals now and throughout any chaos that you may face. You get to decide on adopting an evidence-based investing strategy. Fortunately, the evidence is overwhelming on your side to do this.

What steps did I take myself to secure my family’s financial life?

Let me tell you the steps that you need to take also then to have that same success. The first is, define your most important financial goals. Sit down and really review what’s important to you and what you want to work for. Commit them to an evidence-based investing philosophy. Invest all of your financial assets using those principles.

Then take that financial plan and wrap it with a tax risk management and estate plan to ensure that it comes to fruition. We even created a charitable plan for a lifetime of giving to the community members and causes that mean the most to us. From the decades of academic research and peer-reviewed studies, you, like me, can put the odds on your side of achieving all that is most important to you. We have seen, though, on the other side, how not following these principles can be costly.

I myself have encountered numerous investors who have left their emotions get the best of them, especially in times of chaos like we’re in right now. They continually reacted to current events in Dow headlines, and always in the wrong way and at the worst of times. Well, I want something different for you.

Since 2010, my team and myself at Cogent Strategic Wealth, have worked with high-achieving professionals, just like you, mapping out a plan and taking the necessary steps to make their financial goals a reality. Reaching your family’s most important goals requires a plan too. A plan that aligns your investments and finances with your unique situation and the goals that you have set forth for your family. You then get to build and safeguard that plan with evidence-based investing principles, the same principles that we use every day for our families, and all of our clients to see us through the chaos.

COVID-19 wasn’t the chaos that struck my family more than 20 years ago, but it is the virus attacking the market today and putting in jeopardy your family’s financial survival. Now, it’s time for action. What are you going to do to secure your family’s financial future? My team and I at Cogent can help you, and we’re here for you.

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