Lee Munson Discusses Millennial Generation Spending Habits on Fox Business

October 6th, 2016 by

Lee Munson, CIO of Portfolio Wealth Advisors, appeared on Fox Business Monday, October 3rd, 2016:

“When the producers of Fox Business asked me what I wanted to talk about earlier that day, I was pretty clear – let’s talk about what the Cabela buyout has to do with the big picture. I always like to talk about the big picture of market minutia. Let’s really get down to what is going on.

“Bass Pro Shops is buying for a reason. They understand the largest generation in the history of America, 81 million of  millennials, are entering their peak spending cycle. So spending on pure unfiltered location retail is the makes sense. Have you seen the incredible stores they have build? They know you have to entertain people – when you have little kids and need to burn some time you want to see a show – even when shopping for a fishing pole. DOES MACY’S entertain or delight?”


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EpiPen Using a Legal Loophole to Price Gouge on This Life-saving Drug–Lee Munson on Fox Business

August 25th, 2016 by

Lee Munson EpiPen

Watch Lee Munson at 3:42 when Fox host Charles Payne brings Lee in to begin his commentary about the business side of the story.

Complete segment here:  http://bit.ly/2bl4HmI 

Lee points out that every corporation should have the right to competitively price their products. It can cost up to $3 billion to create a patented drug, companies have a short time before cheap generic knockoffs can be sold and take away profitability.

But this isn’t competition, this is using a legal loophole to make this product for a buck and then charge $700 for it.

Lee says, “They’ve got to make money, but pricing a product at $700 which only costs $1 to make is ridiculous. Do not invest in companies in which the profit and the future earnings are based on a loophole that is lobbied for in the Washington DC beltway. Investors need to really think ‘How is this company really making money?’ before they invest.”


Parents and lawmakers are upset about MYLAN LABS INC (MYL) 400% EpiPen price hike since 2007–most recently a huge price spike in July which has made the life-saving EpiPen nearly unaffordable. Meanwhile, Mylan Labs CEO Heather Bresch has received a 670% increase in pay during her tenure at the company. Stock prices have been dropping as investors bail due to negative publicity.

PicMonkey Collage Mylan Labs

According to Robyn O’Brien, “the Erin Brockovich of food,” who appeared in the first half of the Fox segment, parents, lawmakers, school nurses are extremely upset by the unaffordable price of EpiPen—which now sells for $700 as of the end of July.

Robyn founded Allergy Kids Foundation to raise awareness a decade ago when her fourth son had an allergic reaction to food, and she was formerly a financial analyst herself. She points out that parents have to buy multiple EpiPens so they are available in case of emergency at home, school and car. EpiPens have an added economic disadvantage due to their short, year-long shelf life when they have to be replaced.

Children can die because they don’t have access to this lifesaving device.


Lee Munson, is Co-founder and Chief Investment Officer of Portfolio Wealth Advisors in Albuquerque, New Mexico and is also a father. He agrees with Fox host Charles Payne who says, “I’m a big-time capitalist, but this is not is not capitalism as I know it or preach it.”

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Portfolio Wealth Advisors Makes the “Top” List in Albuquerque, New Mexico

July 21st, 2016 by

The Business Journal in Albuquerque, New Mexico—called Albuquerque Business First–expanded their list of the largest private companies this year, and we’re proud to announce that we were number 76, which is not bad, considering that the Top 50 did a combined $7 billion in revenue!

The latest “Largest Private Companies” list ranked New Mexico companies by revenue, using the number of full-time employees as the secondary factor.

See the full story here:  http://www.bizjournals.com/albuquerque/news/2016/07/15/new-mexicos-50-private-companies-made-7-billion-in.html

Lee Munson, Co-founder and Chief Investment Officer of Portfolio Wealth Advisors, had this to say about the designation:

“We are delighted that Albuquerque Business First has recognized our hard work and growth over the past 8 years. While I started Portfolio Wealth Management by myself, it took a great staff and an excellent business partner, Tracy Ann Miller, to make it a top-ranked company here in New Mexico.

“Going forward, Portfolio Wealth Advisors will continue to grow revenues by serving clients and helping them reach their goals. Not every business should have a desire to grow into infinity. Like any great boutique investment management firm, size can be a burden. While we are not yet near that capacity, our vision has always been to provide the highest level of service and performance. You can’t do that by scaling into the sky. We look forward to many more years serving investors.”

Lee Munson

Lee Munson, is Co-founder and Chief Investment Officer of Portfolio Wealth Advisors in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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Tracy Ann Miller

Tracy Ann Miller, CFP®, is CEO and Chief Portfolio Officer for Portfolio Wealth Advisors (formerly Red River Advisors) in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Follow Tracy Ann Miller on Twitter:  @TRACYbreaking  https://twitter.com/TRACYbreaking

The Oklahoman Features Tracy Ann Miller

July 7th, 2016 by

Tracy Ann Miller appeared in The Oklahoman last week (newsok.com) discussing retirement issues.


According to the Federal Reserve, the average soon-to-be retiree has a total nest egg of just $14,500. A whopping 30% of households had no retirement savings at all!

“The most important thing is for people to look at what they have to work with and what their expenses are,” said Tracy Ann Miller. “Very seldom do I see people who are saving too much. Mostly, people should look at what they have, how much money is in the bank, do they have a home or other assets. All can be used to fund income when the paycheck goes away. Then you need to look at what you’d like to spend. Then look at bare bones of what you’ll need.”

The IRS allows for “catch-up” contributions to your savings plan that are higher than conventional levels. People 50 or older can deposit an extra $6,000 per year into a 401(k). IRAs allow an additional $1,000.

Tracy Ann Miller Retirement specialist

“You have to save and you have to be moderate in your expectations. But if you can, save and invest on a moderate level,” Tracy said. “Have a moderate return and look at things that are more risk averse. Don’t go for the big kill.”

Other points made in the article as well. For instance, it’s important to assess how much you can expect to spend on health care in retirement, as well as your options in terms of long-term care (nursing home and in-home care.)

Estate planning is critical. It’s also advisable to try to pay off your mortgage—or downsize your home—and rid yourself of other debts like credit cards.

Read the full story here:  Tracy Ann Miller in The Oklahoman June 28, 2016


Tracy Ann Miller, CFP® is CEO and Chief Portfolio Officer for Portfolio Wealth Advisors (formerly Red River Advisors) in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Follow Tracy on Twitter:  @TRACYbreaking

The Brexit Vote Was About Immigration, Not Economics

June 27th, 2016 by

Lee M.

Lee Munson was published on Forbes.com again last Friday. His article starts with this quote:

“Why can’t we be honest about what is going on today? This was a populist vote to throw immigrants out of the UK. It was a referendum asking the British if they felt better off than 15 years ago. On top of that, 99% of Wall Street and their London counterparts thought leaving the EU was never going to happen.”

Here’s the full story: http://bit.ly/295bvCI

Lee makes the following points:
1. A year ago, nobody on Wall Street thought a reality TV star/property developer could get the Republican nomination. The UK has done what many in the U.S. want to do by voting for Trump: kick the bums out, build a wall, close the ports, and bully other countries into trade deals that will only favor them.
2. So because of Brexit, the S&P 500 has given up the gains for the year so far. That’s just volatility, especially when you consider it’s up over 12% from the lows this year.
3. UK politicians will spend the next two years figuring out how not to trash their economy because some xenophobes voted with their hearts and forgot about their stock portfolios. At least the population doesn’t get to vote on the 50-plus trade agreements that will need to be ratified.
4. Keep in mind that the UK never used the Euro.
5. My advice: If you have extra cash to invest into a globally-diversified stock and bond portfolio, go ahead and add a little, especially the international side.
6. If you are fully invested, don’t do anything. There is not enough volatility in price from the February 11th low to make rebalancing worthwhile.
7. If you actually pick stocks, you already know what to do. (NOTE: The S&P is not really a bargain right now.)
8. Brexit doesn’t matter.


^SPX data by YCharts

GDP: Can’t Trade It!

June 2nd, 2016 by

Lee Munson, co-founder and chief investment officer of Portfolio Wealth Advisors, investigates GDP.


A lot of investors think the GDP—Gross Domestic Product–will tell them how well the stock market is going to perform in the future. For instance, the lower the GDP, the stock market will do worse; the higher the GDP, the stock market will do better.

In fact, Lee discovered that NO, a lower or higher GDP doesn’t give us any information about what the stock market is going to do in future!

Lee Munson’s friends at Dimensional got their spreadsheets out and examined and compared 68 years’ worth of data. For each quarter since 1948, they compared the GDP to the S&P 500’s performance. Guess what, there was virtually no relationship.

So let’s all STOP using the GDP as any type of indicator—it gives us no information about what the stock market is going to do going forward.

Watch the video here for more information:


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Lee Munson

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Social Security Made SIMPLE: Free seminar Friday, May 20th, 2016

May 16th, 2016 by

Social Security Made SIMPLE, a free seminar by Certified Financial Planner and national financial expert Lee Munson, CFA, CFP®

Lee Munson


Join us at 12:00 p.m. Noon on Friday, May 20th, at the Erna Fergusson Library, 3700 San Mateo NE, Albuquerque, New Mexico. The seminar is FREE to the public.

Learn how the new Social Security laws affect your benefits. Learn basics, advanced strategies, and how to avoid mistakes – all in plain English.

To register, or for additional information, call 505-884-3445; or email SeminarNM@PortfolioLLC.com.

It’s The Stores, Not The Consumer

May 16th, 2016 by

Ashley Webster (@AshWebsterFBN) filled in for Liz Clayman (@LizClaman) to interview Lee Munson, Founder and Chief Investment Officer of Portfolio Wealth Advisors on Fox Business Network’s hit show Countdown To The Closing Bell. We asked Munson his thoughts right after the interview.

Munson Apple

“It’s Friday the 13th and the only boogeyman is the absurd thesis that the U.S. consumer is dead. We just saw 400,000 people line up to buy a Tesla that won’t be ready for a few years. Not sure that is how a dead consumer acts. Just keep in mind it’s the stores that stink, not the consumer. Go into a Macy’s or Old Navy and look at the mess. I would rather buy online using Amazon Prime and return stuff for free. What we need to look at is where the growth is. Online shopping or e-commerce is growing faster than brick and mortar stores. Those that can walk and chew gum at the same time are going to win. If you are an investor, it means capitalism is alive and well and working out the weak players and rewarding those that can monetize consumers needs.”

When asked about the news topic of the day, the market capitalization of Google overtaking Apple, Munson fired off.

“It’s irrelevant. We buy stuff on our phones. Both those companies make those phone and control the market. So, Google has done a better job convincing investors they will make a lot of money doing this. Apple has only made people nervous by using share buy-backs versus spending on new product development.”

If you would like more information on how Lee Munson can help you spend more time on the mountain, contact him at Lee@PortfolioLLC.com or 505-301-7399.

Watch the video: https://www.facebook.com/LizClaman/videos/974208825981103/

The Albuquerque Business Journal Interviews Lee Munson

May 9th, 2016 by

Lee Munson

Lee Munson was interviewed in the May 6th edition of Albuquerque Business First. He attributes his success as co-founder and chief investment officer of Portfolio Wealth Advisors to always being himself, and putting forth all the effort required to “not only be an expert in your industry, but an industry expert.”

Lee spent a good part of the 1990’s and 2000’s on Wall Street, and still remains embedded in the stock market. He often appears on Fox Business and in Forbes.

He sees New Mexico and his life “on the mountain” as giving him every bit as much opportunity as New York did, and he encourages everyone living in the state to ignore any naysayers and realize the great business opportunities that exist. Portfolio Wealth Advisors is growing and successful, and he lists many other successful businesses in the interview as well. (Link below.)

Lee wakes up each day and tells himself to just, “Be Lee.” He recommends that everyone be true to themselves.

”See the goal with perfect clarity and achieve it through higher standards. Put 100 percent into everything you do, career, family, skiing, whatever. If you are an A-type, be true to that even in your sleep. This energy doesn’t stop, it gets better with age.”

Read the full article here:



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How We Improve on Index Funds

April 5th, 2016 by

Using DFA (Dimensional Fund Advisors) funds allows us specific advantages over other index funds. Early on, investors used indexes to track managers’ performance on a risk-adjusted basis. Years later, many indexes have been licensed to fund providers allowing investors to gain diversified exposure to an asset class. However, if the index fund is not a precise representation of the asset class, it may not be worth the cost required to track them. Unfortunately, the huge inflows into index funds have changed the dynamics of indexes. Remember that indexes are now investment vehicles, not simply a long list of stocks to reference relative performance. There are three major issues that the growth of index funds has created.

Investor with growth chart of profits.

First, there are potentially higher costs in reconstitution of index funds. Since a commercial index rebalances once or twice per year, an index fund manager must buy and sell securities at a specific time. When a stock is dropped from an index it tends to have selling pressure, and stocks added to an index see price increases. So, the manager must buy and sell stocks on a particular date that everyone else on the planet knows about ahead of time. Needless to say, this is disadvantageous. Our goal is to gain exposure to a particular asset class, not mimic a commercial index that holds a stale allocation.

Second, style drift occurs between the reconstitution dates. Since prices change constantly, we want a fund provider that will update and keep the basket of stocks consistent with the objective. Remember our objective is to gain exposure to an asset class, not an arbitrary list of stocks that changes infrequently. By constraining the ability to keep the list of stocks fresh and reflective of the asset class, an index fund manager may reduce the expected return relative to the intended asset class. For example, if we hold a long list of value stocks and one company increases in price it may have a lower expected return. By having stale and infrequent reconstitution, the index fund may hold stocks that don’t match the intended asset class.

Third, concentration risk can derail an otherwise solid plan. Commercial index fund managers may be susceptible to concentration risk when one sector dominates the market capitalization of an asset class. For example, during the dot.com boom big tech stocks bubbled to huge valuations. If you were an index manager charged with tracking the market capitalization on an index, you could be forced to concentrate the portfolio in very few names in one sector. We seek to have a strategy that considers the risk of single securities, sectors and countries relative to the market. This addresses unnecessary concentration risk.

The bottom line is our objective to obtain exposure to specific asset classes while remaining diversified and keeping costs down. Avoiding the costs of reconstitution on specific dates, style drift that occurs in between distant reconstitution dates, and reducing concentration risks by implementing risk management rules will help us achieve our two objectives.

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