FPA of MN Newsletter – February 2015
President’s Message – February, 2015
With the New Year well underway, I wanted to take a few moments to preview a number of things I’m really excited for in 2015. While certainly far from an all-encompassing list, this provides a small “sampler platter” of the many fantastic events and initiatives for the year ahead:
- Monthly chapter meetings – The programs committee has put together another great line-up of speakers/topics for our monthly Chapter meetings, including Chris Farrell, Andy Biebl (tax planning), Jeff Scroggins (estate planning), Russell James (charitable giving), David Blanchett (from Morningstar), and Katherine Collins (behavioral finance). Visit the FPA of MN website for additional details.
- Career Day – Our annual Career Day is scheduled for Friday, February 27th at the Doubletree in St. Louis Park. The event will feature Keynote speaker Sabrina Lowell. If you are a student, a career changer, or an employer interested in potentially hiring a new employee (or several), this day is for you!
- Twin Cities Financial Planning Day – 2015 will be the 6th year of Twin Cities Financial Planning Day, a day in which FPA members provide workshops and one-on-one financial coaching free-of-charge for the public. The event has grown substantially each year, with 230 participants from the public in 2014! I’m excited to see how we can build on last year’s success. Look for more information this summer on a specific date for the event (typically a Saturday in October.)
- Golf Event – Our annual Golf Event will take place on Monday, August 3rd at Majestic Oaks Golf Club in Ham Lake. The “scramble” format gives even the less-than-stellar golfers among us (that would be me!) a relaxed and enjoyable way to spend a day on the links with friends and colleagues. A bocce ball tournament will be an option as well for the non-golfers among us. Start forming your teams today!
- Symposium (November 3rd and 4th) – After attracting 609 attendees at the 2014 Symposium, the Symposium committee is working to find ways to continue to enhance an already fantastic annual conference. This year’s Symposium will again include a number of dynamic speakers (including Michael Kitces) and great opportunities for networking. Mark your calendars!
- Chapter Guide program – After achieving great success in the inaugural year of the Chapter Guide program, which is designed to connect new members of FPA with our members, our programs, our volunteer opportunities, etc., the Chapter Guide program is back for year two. If you have an interest in participating as a Chapter Guide (low time commitment, high impact!) please contact Kathie Bortnem at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Again, this is certainly not an all-encompassing list. Stay tuned to the newsletter for an array of events and programs from FPA of Minnesota throughout what promises to be a very exciting year.
As always, feel free to let me or any of our Board members know of any questions, comments, or concerns that you have. We strive to “ask-listen-respond.”
FPA of Minnesota President, 2015
FPA Chapter Meeting Program Summary Jan 16, 2015
For the chapter’s first meeting of 2015 we were pleased to welcome Dr. Narayaneh Kocherlakota, the current president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis and Mark Lanterman, of Computer Forensic Services.
In our first hour Dr. Kocherlakota discussed aspects of the state of the economy, touching on domestic economic trends and forecasts. He covered relevant economic events, certain governmental policies, short-term prospects for 2015 growth and longer term projections. He discussed the results of the Fed’s monetary policy over the last several years using tools to keep inflation at or around 2% per year and promoting full employment. He pointed out that while unemployment has dropped to 5.6% in 2014, inflation has been lingering below the Fed Open Market Committee’s goal of 2% and asserted that there has been, in his opinion, insufficient stimulus to the economy. Noting that the “natural interest rate”, that is the rate preinflation, is under the desired rate of 2%, and thus should get attention. Going forward he recommended that the Fed take a more goal oriented approach to monetary policy and suggested that it was better to look at core inflation without including energy due to its volitility. He forecasts that it will take several years for core inflation to return to the goal level of 2% per year and that it was unlikely in the foreseeable future that the Fed would raise the goal for inflation beyond 2%.
In our second hour Mark Lanterman discussed our ethical responsibility as planners to ensure the safety of our clients’ confidential information. He described his previous roles in law enforcement and now as a computer forensic consultant and the challenges he faces every day in trying to recognize and access data sources, collecting and preserving the evidence and structuring his factual findings and testimony in cases in which he testifies. He discussed how deleted data is found and restored and how the analysis of meta data can be used to actually track down fraud. Using several domestic and international examples he demonstrated how the analysis of meta data was used to track down international bank fraud cybercriminals, and how data recovered from a seemingly destroyed computer hard drive led to the arrest of an embezzler. He covered the recent big box retailer credit card scams and how stolen credit card information has been marketed on the web. Mark went on to discuss how information is stored on PDAs (iPhones and other smart phones) including messages, photos and GPS coordinates, even when the “location services” is disabled. He had several suggestions for the safekeeping of data and how our clients can best keep their confidential information out of the hands of criminals and how we need to watch our accounts to avoid fraudulent charges.
FPA of MN Members Speak to the Finance Club of Minnesota State University, Mankato
On Wednesday, January 21st four members from the FPA of MN spoke to the Finance club of Minnesota State University, Mankato. Mike Branham, past FPA National President, and Derek Grant, Megan Olson and Nick Thunker represented the Career Development Committee of our chapter.
Approximately 40 finance majors from MSU – Mankato learned about the FPA and the financial planning profession. Resources provided by the FPA, such as FPA Mentor Match, chapter meetings, FPA NexGen and our local chapters Career Day, which will be held on February 27th, were discussed.
The FPA of MN and the Career Development Committee hope to strengthen the connection with the students at MSU-Mankato; to serve as a resource on an ongoing basis, to provide mentoring and a path to future employment in the profession.
The evening concluded with a panel discussion and pizza. Mike, Derek, Megan and Nick shared their career experiences with the students, which will be invaluable as they consider starting on the path to their own career in financial planning.
What is a Chapter Guide?
Perhaps I should first tell you what it is not. It is not a book that guides you through our Chapter.
It is a member who volunteers to help a new member during their first year of Membership. It is designed to help new members quickly and fully integrate into our Chapter. We need your help! Please consider volunteering to be a Chapter Guide. It is a one year commitment and a great way for you to have a real impact on our great Chapter!
Click here to see an example of our Welcome card to new members and an example of an email we provide to you each month to send to your assigned new members. We make it very easy for you!
Please call me or anyone on the New Member Committee to get started as a Chapter Guide. Thank you!
Director - Membership Committee
Reason to belong to FPA
Access to a local FPA chapter
A great reason to belong to FPA is to obtain access to local FPA chapter. In Minnesota we have an excellent Program Committee that allows us to have monthly chapter meetings that include real planning, not product oriented, topics. These programs always provide new information to the attendees. They can also make us better planners by challenging us to reexamine our existing assumptions and techniques.
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