Are you looking for a new portfolio manager? You’ve come to the right place. If you’re interested in having Bespoke put its research to work for your account, please email us or give us a call at 914-315-1248.
Along with our exceptional service, Bespoke Investment Group prides itself on its research abilities, original analysis and intuitive thinking. Our unique ability to analyze financial markets in ways unlike traditional Wall Street firms is what helps us stay ahead of the investment community. There is no amount of commentary that on its own accurately represents the Bespoke advantage to money management. However, we hope the following snapshot acts as an introduction to our firm and is the first step in what becomes a long-term, rewarding relationship.
Here at Bespoke, we believe strongly that an investment portfolio should be customized based on each client’s risk profile and objectives. Approaching money management in any other way cannot insure that each portfolio is receiving the attention that it needs and deserves. Your future financial and lifestyle goals are at stake.
Our Philosophy: Client Centered
What sets Bespoke apart from other money management firms is the amount of personal attention and customization our clients receive. Every client comes to us with a unique financial blueprint, and our job is to take that blueprint and build a portfolio that maximizes the ability to achieve long-term financial goals. Each account is managed independently from every other account depending on these long-term financial goals. Too many money managers out there treat their clients as simply a piece of the overall management pie, lumping accounts together to make their lives easier at the expense of the individual clients. We treat each client differently based on their specific goals and needs. We believe there is simply no other way to do it.
When you form a relationship with Bespoke, our number one goal is to know you. Before one dime of your money is invested, we work closely with you to produce an investment strategy based upon a detailed assessment of your unique investment objectives and current financial situation. This is accomplished through as many conversations or meetings as needed between you and Bespoke’s two co-founders, Paul Hickey and Justin Walters. As the primary portfolio managers of your account, Mr. Hickey and Mr. Walters will know your portfolio from top to bottom, and they will be accessible to you at all times throughout the relationship as your circumstances change.
We cannot stress enough how important communication is between portfolio managers and clients. Without communication, it is difficult for advisors to gain the full trust of their clients. Trust is of utmost importance to Bespoke, and our team takes every step to ensure that you are comfortable with your account at all times.
Building Your Account: Client Objectives
Once you make the decision to allow Bespoke to manage your portfolio, your account objectives need to be determined. Bespoke works closely with you to develop a long-term investment plan based on multiple criteria. Your account will need to be managed based on your specific situation. Depending on age, total assets, risk profile, and many other inputs, we develop a plan that everyone involved is comfortable with.
Some clients wish to take a more aggressive approach and invest mostly in growth stocks. Other clients need to be more risk averse and invest in stocks that are less volatile yet pay nice dividends. Some clients want to invest only in Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs).
For clients with a longer time horizon or little need to generate short-term income, we seek to maximize returns using an active growth oriented strategy that invests mostly in growth stocks. Using this approach, we’ll take on long-term positions as well as make short-term trades. The fee structure for this Long-Term Growth strategy is typically between 1% and 1.25% of client assets per year.
For clients looking for growth and income, we seek a blend of investments through dividend paying stocks and other income producing strategies. You have worked hard to accumulate your wealth, and now you are looking to have your wealth work for you. The fee structure for this Conservative Growth strategy is typically between 1% and 1.25% of client assets per year.
Bespoke also offers an all-ETF asset allocation strategy that invests in stocks, bonds, commodities, real estate, and currencies. This strategy eliminates company-related risk and is for investors looking to take a more hands-off approach with less turnover in the portfolio. The fee structure for our all-ETF asset allocation strategy is typically between 0.75% and 1% of client assets per year.
Stocks or ETFs: Our Strategies
If you choose a strategy that is focused mainly on equities, what will your portfolio look like? How many holdings will the account typically have? What is the typical holding period for positions?
Long-Term Growth Strategy:
Our Long-Term Growth strategy will typically be 80% strategic holdings and 20% tactical holdings. Strategic holdings represent your core growth stock positions that are typically held for three to twelve months. There will typically be eight to twelve strategic stocks in the portfolio at one time that each represent between 5% and 10% of the portfolio’s total value. The 20% tactical portion of the account represents our short-term trade positions. There are trading opportunities in both bull and bear markets, and we make sure there is ample room in the portfolio to take advantage of these opportunities. Tactical positions will typically be held anywhere from one to thirty days.
Conservative Growth Strategy:
The Conservative Growth Strategy will typically be 90% strategic holdings and 10% tactical holdings. Typical strategic holdings will be held for six to twelve months and longer in order to take advantage of dividend payments. Holdings in this account are less likely to rise as much in value as holdings in our Long-Term Growth strategy, but they are also more stable and generate more income. While 20% of the Long-Term Growth strategy is allocated to short-term trading opportunities, just 10% is allocated to it in Conservative Growth accounts.
Remember, each account is managed differently, and the above strategies simply act as guidelines for our clients to choose from.
All-ETF Asset Allocation Strategy:
Along with our Long-Term Growth and Conservative Growth Strategies, we also offer an All-ETF Asset Allocation strategy for investors seeking broad diversification across all asset classes. Clients that choose our all-ETF style will be invested in both domestic and international equities, emerging markets, fixed income, commodities, currencies and real estate. Based on our research models, we formulate weightings into each of these assets and rebalance regularly to keep the weightings inline. Asset allocation and regular portfolio rebalancing are important ingredients to achieving consistent long-term returns, and clients get just that with this strategy. For a long term investor looking for strategic diversification and low turnover, our all-ETF strategy is right for you.
Security Selection: Decision Factors
You’ve opened your account and worked with our management team to choose the best long-term strategy for your portfolio. Now what? How does Bespoke choose the securities to make you the most money while keeping risk parameters balanced?
Bespoke is widely respected in the financial community for its top-notch research. Our treasure trove of financial data is used to formulate both long-term and short-term investment opportunities on an ongoing basis.
At Bespoke, we use a three-tiered process when selecting the securities for your account. For each tier, we use fundamental, technical, and sentiment analysis to determine which direction the investment process should take. This is a dynamic process that takes place on an ongoing basis.
The first tier represents our view of the overall market. This helps answer the question of how invested we want the account to be at any given time. Using our three decision factors for each tier (fundamentals, technicals, sentiment), we determine our equity versus cash weighting and how aggressive we want to be with the stock positions.
Taking our overall market view, we move to the second tier to determine which sectors or styles we want to overweight or underweight. Based on the current market environment, we assess growth versus value, small cap versus large cap, cyclical versus non-cyclicals. To do this we revert back to our three decision factors: fundamentals, technicals, and sentiment.
Finally, based on our current sector/style view, we find the best individual stocks or ETFs in these areas. These stocks are again chosen based on fundamentals, technicals, and sentiment indicators. What we’re ultimately doing on a continual basis is finding the best stocks in the areas of the market that we believe have the highest chance of appreciating in the current market environment.
One last thing…
Investors typically focus only on when to buy a security and not when to sell it. This can be disastrous when the market turns against you. At Bespoke, we place just as much emphasis on when to sell a stock as when to buy it. We aren’t afraid to take profits if a stock has moved too far too fast, and we aren’t afraid to sell a stock if the trade does not work out. One of the ways we insure against underperformance during market downturns is to set stop limits on every position no matter how much we like the stock or ETF. If a stock falls by a certain amount (usually 10% or more), we exit the position. Too often we’ve seen a loss of 10% turn into 20%, and then 20% into 40%. If the trade goes against us, we accept that it has not worked and move on to a different trade.