History Has Steered Folks to Environmental, Social and Governance Investing.
In this Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article from July 15th, Tom Saler explores socially responsible investing (SRI) and breaks down some recent high-profile examples.
Read July article.

 

New Firm Targets Socially Responsible Investors.
In this article from January 9th, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporter Kathleen Gallagher explores Greg Wait's launch of a new company that combines socially responsible investing and online investment advice.
Read January article.

 

Investment Trends, with insights by Greg Wait. In the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's October 17th article, Kathleen Gallagher and Greg Wait discuss the recent rise of environmental, social and governance, or ESG investing. Greg provides insight into how reduced risk and improved returns are causing money managers to include ESG investing in their portfolios. Read October article.

 

Responsible Investing: Creating Financial and Non-Financial Value by Greg Wait. Do investors sacrifice returns in pursuit of their goal of advocating for a better world in which to live?
Learn more.

 

Ten-Year History of Investment Manager Performance by Greg Wait. As part of our process, we have conducted investment manager research and due diligence resulting in manager or fund recommendations to our clients. Here are our findings.

 

The month of September, 2013 marked the 10-year anniversary of Falcons Rock serving our clients and building relationships. We are grateful for all the years of friendship, loyalty, and support, and look forward to our next decade!

 

Investment Trends, with insights by Greg Wait. In the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's July 20th article, Kathleen Gallagher and Greg Wait discuss the rising U.S. Treasury rates and using duration as a measure of risk. Greg's comments relate to whether we'll be "looking back on this short-term increase in yields as the warning shot for the much-anticipated longer-term rise in interest rates." Read July article.

 

Dec 9, 2012, Journal Sentinel's Kathleen Gallagher interviewed Greg Wait on current Investment Trends. Read the full article: "Low-quality stocks continue to provide strong returns."

 

We've Grown! Meet our new investment consultant: Tony Sebranek.

 

Investment Trends column of Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel shows Top-Down investment strategies are achieving positive results.
Read article on Top-Down Investing

 

Additional articles in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel featuring Falcons Rock:
One is a fascinating story about a Mequon drug development company, which has a few of our clients as private investors.
Read article about our angel investors

 

Another features us in the Market Trends column: Strategy targets uncertain economy - and how Falcons Rock confronts specter of slow growth.
Read how we help clients get ready

 

There is a great deal of debate in the investment industry regarding active vs. passive (indexing) investment management.  We researched this topic and the results might be surprising to you.  Please see our research paper on this subject...more

 

We have experienced interesting situations with our clients. To update you on our firm’s activities, check out examples of recent work we have done for our clients...more

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US SIF Member 2017

Institutional Investors

 

Institutional clients of Falcons Rock Investment Counsel may include:

  1. Qualified Retirement Plans
  2. Trusts
  3. Foundations
  4. Endowments and
  5. Charitable Organizations

The Investment Committees of these entities have a fiduciary duty to prudently invest assets for the benefit of others. Guidelines for trustees have been developed over the years via two pieces of legislation:

  • Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) enacted in 1974
  • Uniform Prudent Investor Act (UPIA) Restatement (Third) of Trusts introduced in 1992.

In 1994, the National Conference of Commissioners on State Laws approved a model state statute incorporating the principals of the UPIA, and most states have now enacted some version of the Prudent Investor Rule.

It is now recognized that the process used to make investment decisions leads to fiduciary protection for trustees. The determination of prudence centers on fiduciary conduct, not portfolio performance.

The Uniform Code of Fiduciary Conducts broadly suggests:

  1. Have written investment policies and document investment decision making process.
  2. Diversify assets with regard to specific risk/return objectives of participants and beneficiaries.
  3. Use "product experts" to help make investment decisions. Delegation is permitted, encouraged, and in some cases, required.
  4. Control investment expenses and ensure "best execution" of investment transactions.
  5. Monitor activities of all money managers and service providers.
  6. Avoid all conflicts of interest.

The variety of institutional investors advised by Falcons Rock dictate a continuity of process, with special consideration given to each unique situation, as highlighted in the following examples:

  • Defined Benefit Pension Plan analysis will require a review of participant demographics and actuarial valuation.
  • 401(k) plan analysis will require a broad analysis of service provider capabilities/investment restrictions.
  • Foundation or Endowment Fund will require an analysis of donor requirements, securities restrictions, and political issues.

Specific investment consulting services available include:

Retirement Plan Service Provider Searches

  • 401(k)/Defined Contribution Plans
  • Defined Benefit Pension Plans

Fiduciary Benchmarking Review - 401(k)/DC Plans

  • Review of plan costs and fee breakdown
  • Review of investment structure
  • Investment performance measurement
  • Review of relative plan complexity
  • Review of administrative services provided
  • Review of participant success measures

Fiduciary Investment Compliance Review

In accordance with the Uniform Code of Fiduciary Conduct

  • Review of plan or trust documents, and Summary Plan Description
  • Review of Investment Policy Statement (IPS)
  • Review of procedures for selecting "prudent experts"
  • Review control procedures
  • Review of costs and fees
  • Review of Section 404(c) status for defined contribution plans
  • Review actuarial funding status for defined benefit plans

Analysis of Current Position

  • Evaluate existing Investment Policy Statements
  • Structural analysis of current investment holdings and "back-test" calculation of portfolio returns
  • Review of participant demographics and actuarial valuation (if defined benefit plan), cash flows, client investment goals, income requirements, return expectations, and risk tolerance
  • Evaluate special considerations, such as securities restrictions, donor requirements, custodian mandates, political/family issues

Design Optimal Portfolio

  • Propose optimal asset allocation strategies based on capital markets projections
    and client objectives
  • Address strategic and tactical investment strategies
  • Advise on investment alternatives and modern portfolio concepts
  • Propose optimal investment menu for participant-directed plans

Formalize Investment Policy

  • Prepare written Investment Policy Statement (IPS)
  • Outline investment objectives, investment guidelines, securities guidelines
    and procedures for selecting and monitoring money managers
  • Establish expectations of risk and return of the portfolio
    and performance measurement standards for money managers
  • Guidelines of fiduciary requirements under ERISA and the
    Uniform Prudent Investor Act Rules

Implementation

  • Search for money managers based on IPS guidelines
  • Alternative money manager structures proposed
  • Money manager fees and account minimums negotiated
  • Custody services secured
  • Coordinate and supervise implementation of the IPS

Ongoing Supervision

  • Comprehensive quarterly reports to include performance measurement and comparative analysis of overall portfolio and money managers, as outlined in the IPS
  • Personal presentation of reports to investment committee
  • Discussion and documentation of changing plan parameters, tactical asset allocation strategies, and portfolio rebalancing
  • Execution of appropriate changes

For more specific questions on services or how we've assisted institutional investors, contact us directly - by phone (262) 240-0919 or online (Contact Form).