My Annual "No Prediction For the New Year" Letter - 2023 Edition

So, one year is set aside for the history books while a new year begins. Like lemmings to the sea, Wall Street firms are once again publishing, distributing and rushing towards every cable TV camera that will have them to prognosticate where financial markets are heading.

Want to know how well they predicted last year? In a word, terribly.

Earlier this year, the Wall Street Journal published a list of those predictions much to the embarrassment of those large, well know, golf tournament-sponsoring conglomerates. I won't reprint the list here. I'm competitive, but not cruel.

At Iowa Wealth Management, we don't make market predictions at new years' time or any other time of year. The reason is simple: we are Investment Advisors, Financial Planners and long-time market participants. What we are not is psychics, fortune tellers or carnival barkers. Plus, we don't like to look stupid... even if it gets us on TV.

What we wish for our clients to know is they should expect, once again, that things will get a little weird this year. Financial history tells us that what we didn't expect affects our returns the most in the short term (say one year). It's the unknown that throws us for a loop, and like most years, we expect that will be so in 2023.

So, let's start this year as we start every year... prepared for the unknown. To us, that means a focus on the longer-term prospects of the highest quality equities filtered for an adequate and sustainable level of dividend income. We are after all investors, not speculators.

This focus, which we adhere to as part of our Prudent Investor process, served us well in 2022, despite some awful returns in broader markets.

As Investment Advisors, we care about things like asset quality, diversification, providing adequate cash flow for your needs and maintaining a current understanding of your needs. Those are professional responsibilities that have guided three generations of my family in the service of our clients.

It is not my prediction, but my promise, that they will continue to be so in 2023.