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The above proverb is of Russian origin and in English says, “Trust but Verify”. The way Americans are aware of this famous quote is from Ronald Reagan who said it during a speech at the signing of the INF Treaty on December 8, 1987. President Reagan was informed that the Russians liked to speak using proverbs by Suzanne Massie, a Russian Scholar who worked for the White House at that time. Never to feel outdone, Russian President Mikhail Gorbachev quoted Ralph Waldo Emerson, “The reward for a thing well done is to have done it”.

Although Reagan is most associated as the author of this quote, the ironic thing is that he was just trying to speak in a way and with respect that his adversary at that time would understand. Gorbachev in turn answered in a way to hold Reagan accountable for his words. The rest is history with the two men agreeing to end the cold war. Powerful change can be brought about when you have trust and accountability. The problem lies, we are not living in that world today. From our politicians, service providers, corporate executives, and academia we are being asked to trust but not allowed to verify. By having accepted that standard we are bearing the brunt of people in positions of authority abusing our trust and we are suffering the consequences. We are not being rewarded as mentioned in the Emerson quote.

The High Net Worth Advisory Group is built upon the foundation of trust and accountability. We may not be able to change the world like Reagan and Gorbachev, but we may help change yours and the family you love so deeply. We try to be a voice of calm and reason when the financial world stresses you out, educating each of you as to what risk and reward really means.

We expect the capital markets to continue to remain volatile and will likely do so for many years to come. The volatility is caused by the market calibrating the trust of political and corporate leadership. In a volatile world you will have volatile markets.  When asked, “when will these markets return to normal?”, I say, “when the world does”. We all know that may take a while. Separating the “noise from the news” is getting tougher as we struggle to separate fact from fiction. Reading multiple sources and combing through detailed factual analysis from those who have proven track records is a paramount to success. As we know many of you do not have the time to do this and rely on us to do it for you. You trust, we verify and report back to you. A winning combination.  “Doveryai, no Proveryai”.