Stocks: Should You Go Small or Large?

Small-cap stocks appeal to some investors because of their potential for strong growth. Still, not everyone can stomach their potentially higher volatility. Are they right for you, and if they are, how can you best add them to your portfolio?

First, some background. Small-cap stocks typically include companies with market capitalizations of $250 million to $2 billion, while mid-cap stocks range from $2 billion to $10 billion, and large-cap stocks have market capitalizations of greater than $10 billion. To review, the market capitalization of a company is its stock price times the number of shares it has outstanding.

Smaller-cap stocks typically have greater growth potential than larger-cap stocks. This is because smaller companies are generally more nimble than larger companies, so decisions about new products and services and adjustments when problems arise can be made and implemented quickly. This flexibility often helps smaller companies perform well.

But that is not always the case. According to conventional wisdom, small-cap stocks can perform better than larger-cap stocks (a) when markets have been down and are improving and (b) when interest rates are rising. At other times in the market cycle, larger-cap stocks may perform better. For example, when markets are declining, investors may prefer the security of well-known names and shun small-cap stocks in favor of large-cap stocks.

You probably know, however, that it is wise to avoid trying to time the market. Instead, we recommend choosing an appropriate asset allocation for your risk tolerance and financial goals and sticking with it over time. You may want to ensure your distribution includes some allocation to small-cap stocks, perhaps through a small-cap mutual fund, so you have adequate diversification among a number of small-cap companies.

We can help you decide if small-cap stocks are right for your financial goals and, if so, in what allocation. Please reach out if you have any questions or would like to consider adding these investments to your portfolio.

Investing an Inheritance: What You Need to Know

An inheritance may be expected, or it may be a complete surprise. Either way, when we receive one, we worry that others do not: What should I do with the inheritance?

When it comes to investing in a windfall like an inheritance, there are many options. Spend it on a sports car? Donate it to charity? Invest it? And if the latter, how?

Let’s focus on the investing options. The steps for this are relatively simple.

First, determine appropriate asset allocation. Such an allocation should take into account the fact that no one knows how the market is going to perform.

Ideally, your assets should be divided among different types of investments based on your financial goals and appetite for risk. This is a mix of stocks, bonds, and other investments.

Next, you would invest the inheritance based on that mix of assets. You could do this all at once, which gets your money working more quickly and does not leave you too conservatively invested in cash for a period of time. Or you could use an approach called dollar-cost averaging, which involves investing the inheritance a little at a time. With this approach, you can take on less risk by slowly investing small chunks at a time rather than throwing it in all at once.

Regardless of which approach you choose (other than the sports car), we can help you determine the appropriate asset allocation.

Please reach out if you have received an inheritance or expect one in the future and would like assistance with this investment.