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Are You In Awe of Your Advisor’s Sharp Saw? 11.19.2021

According to a 2021 survey conducted by The Harris Poll, about 26% of Americans say their most trusted source for financial advice is a financial advisor, representing an 18% increase from 2020.

With a direct correlation to the shakeup and uncertainties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the highly unsettled nature of the U.S. economy, financial markets, and politics still existing today, it comes as little surprise to see this increasing trust and confidence in the counsel of financial advisors.

Conversely, it is also interesting to note that the most trusted source of financial advice known as “Yourself” experienced a 33% drop (!) from 30% in 2020 to 20% in 2021.

Ask virtually any financial advisor: The data presented above supports the anecdotal evidence – during periods of high volatility and uncertainty, people tend to become uncertain and trust themselves less when it comes to their finances and investing. Conversely, in periods of low volatility, rising markets, and higher (perceived) certainty, people become overconfident. Or, illustrated differently:

Managing emotions

Why do investors feel smarter and more confident when the markets are rising, and dumber and less confident when the markets are declining? One word: emotions. At Towerpoint Wealth, we believe that one of the central qualities of a skilled financial advisor is the ability to help their clients remain objective, avoid overconfidence, or, on the flip side, depression and hopelessness.

There are more than 275,000 licensed professionals in the United States right now that have “Financial Advisor” (or some derivation thereof) on their business card, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. And as is true of many professions, there are a myriad of makes, models, specializations, and niches that these advisors fall into. Additionally, these 275K financial advisors represent a varying cross-section of experience, planning, knowledge, and service.

A core philosophy here at Towerpoint Wealth has always been to focus on and place energy into the professional growth and development of our advisors. Our clients deserve and expect us to not only stay sharp in regards to current economic, financial, and investment trends and developments, but also to consistently be “sharpening our professional saws” in the areas of practice management, behavioral finance, client service, and leadership.

To that end, our President, Joseph Eschleman, our Partner, Wealth Advisor, Jonathan LaTurner, and our Director of Research and Analytics, Nathan Billigmeier, traveled to Music City last week for a three-day Investments Forum, hosted by Dynasty Financial Partners. The venue, the lineup of talent, and the level of content were truly amazing, and the TPW colleagues spent an enriching and enjoyable three days sharpening their professional saws at the conference.

The highlights included:

Click the thumbnail below to see the full agenda of speakers, activities, and content that, in addition to some Music City fun during the evenings, kept Joseph, Jonathan, and Nathan moving for three days!!

Steve Case

Photo boxes, clockwise from upper left: 1.) Jim Nantz 2.) Joseph, Nathan, Jonathan at Loser’s Bar and Grill in Nashville 3.) Howard Marks, Daymond John, Liz Ann Sonders

New Towerpoint Wealth White Paper

After focusing on the topic in our 11.9.2021 edition of Trending Today, our Director of Tax and Financial Planning, Steve Pitchford, authored and published the below white paper, focusing on THREE key ideas to potentially reduce the tax “sting” associated with IRA and other tax-deferred retirement account required minimum distributions (RMDs).

Click here to download and read this brand-new report!

Video of the Week

Our President, Joseph Eschleman, CIMA®, was the featured guest on Laurel Sagen and Shasta Escalante’s Heart 2 Biz podcast earlier this month.

Heart 2 Biz is a weekly podcast focused on local Sacramento professionals and entrepreneurs who “pour their hearts into their businesses.” Focused on finding out not only how people are building and running their businesses, but how they are doing so with integrity and heart.

Click below to watch the podcast, and to hear Joseph’s story of how the permanent Pennsylvania-to-California cross-country adventure he took in 1999 helped to shape his heart and him as a person; and, how his evolution from employee to business owner and entrepreneur has molded his character and overall outlook on life. It’s a great (and crazy!) story with plenty of interesting twists and turns, confirming what virtually every Towerpoint Wealth client already knows to be true – that the energy Joseph pours into his client partnerships and into Towerpoint Wealth has a foundation based on both integrity and on heart!

What’s Happening at TPW?

The ladies of Towerpoint Wealth (our Client Service Specialist, Michelle Venezia, and our Director of Operations, Lori Heppner) enjoyed a nice lunch together earlier this week at Il Fornaio in downtown Sacramento, right here on Capitol Mall!

In Denver this past Sunday with two friends, our President, Joseph Eschleman, enjoyed watching his favorite football team, thePhiladelphia Eagles, dismantle the hometown Broncos30-13!

A happy moment for our Director of Tax and Financial Planning, Steve Pitchford, our Director of Operations, Lori Heppner, and our Director of Research and Analytics, Nathan Billigmeier.

Charts of the Week

Rivian (Nasdaq: RIVN), the newly-public electric vehicle automaker (backed by Amazon) hit a market capitalization of $100 billion earlier this week – and they haven’t (yet) delivered a single vehicle! This is the largest U.S. IPO since 2014, when Alibaba went public, and makes the company bigger than both GM and Ford.

In the eyes of many investors and market pundits, this further cements the idea that traditional automobiles and automobile manufacturers are going the way of the dodo:

Quote of the Week

Excellent philosophy from IBM’s long-time chairman and CEO,Thomas J. Watson

Cartoon of the Week

In the spirit of what we discussed above about investor (over) confidence, the below cartoon thoughtfully illustrates one of Warren Buffett’s famous quotes:

“You need to divorce your mind from the crowd.”

Trending Today

As the 24/7 news cycle churns, twists, and turns, a number of trending and notable events have occurred over the past few weeks:

As always, we sincerely value our relationships and partnerships with each of you, as well as your trust and confidence in us here at Towerpoint Wealth. We encourage you to reach out to us at any time ( with any questions, concerns, or needs you may have. The world continues to be an extremely unsettled and complicated place, and we are here to help you properly plan for and make sense of it.

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Follow us on any of these platforms you use, and then message us with your favorite charity, and we will happily donate $10 to it!

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2021 Dynasty Financial Partners Investments Forum in NASHVILLE 11.17.2021

In addition to the venue (Music City!), the lineup of talent and the level of content was truly amazing at this year’s Dynasty Financial Partners Investments Forum. Our President, Joseph Eschleman, CIMA®, Partner, Wealth Advisor, Jonathan LaTurner, and Director of Research and Analytics, Nathan Billigmeier, all spent an enriching and enjoyable three days “sharpening their professional saws” at the conference.

The highlights included:

Click below to see the full agenda of speakers, activities, and content that, in addition to some Music City fun during the evenings, kept Joseph, Jonathan, and Nathan moving for three days!!

2021 Dynasty Financial Partners Investments Forum Schedule of Events

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ESG, Sustainable, and Responsible Investing – A Conversation 04.19.2021

ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance), sustainable, and responsible investing have evolved from a peripheral and misunderstood investment concept to a mainstream philosophy that now includes more than 500 sustainability-focused index funds amounting to more than $250 billion of U.S. investment assets. As more and more retail investors begin to understand and recognize their ability to have their investments and portfolio mirror their personal values, ESG and sustainable investing is no longer a “trend,” and instead can now be classified as a full-blown movement.

ESG Investing | ESG, Sustainable, and Responsible Investing

At Towerpoint Wealth, we embrace our responsibility to continually refine and improve how we serve our clients, and have cultivated a comprehensive firmwide ESG and sustainable investing initiative that has expanded in lockstep with the expansion of sustainable and responsible investing. At the forefront of this initiative is our partnership with Ethic Investments, a technology-driven asset manager that powers the creation of sustainable investment portfolios, building ESG-customized separately managed accounts (SMAs) for Towerpoint Wealth clients that are optimized to 1.) track the market, 2.) align with our clients’ strategic investment allocations, and 3.) align with a specific set of sustainability and ESG criteria.

Click HERE to review Towerpoint Wealth’s sustainability pillars, and click below to watch a succinct 15 minute conversation between our President, Joseph Eschleman, and Ethic co-founder Jay Lipman, as they discuss:

  • What is ESG, sustainable, and responsible investing
  • Why demand for ESG, sustainable, and responsible investing has exploded over just the past 18 months
  • Why returns and growth no longer need to be sacrificed when utilizing and implementing an ESG and sustainable investment philosophy
  • Why utilizing a customized SMA is a much more effective way to develop and implement a inclusionary and exclusionary ESG-focused portfolio, as opposed to an ESG ETF or open-end mutual fund
  • How the pandemic and COVID-19 accelerated the growth and focus on ESG investing
  • What the future of ESG, sustainable, and responsible investing looks like 

Click HERE to request our free white paper on sustainable investing, or to begin a conversation with us about how to align your portfolio with your personal values.

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Steve Pitchford’s ESG / Sustainable Investing Whitepaper Published on

The comprehensive whitepaper focusing on ESG and sustainable investing, recently written by our Director of Tax and Financial Planning, Steve Pitchford, was published within’s ESG channel on December 17. Steve’s report provides a detailed analysis of the myriad of considerations associated with aligning your portfolio with your personal values and investing with a conscience, and a discussion of the plethora of responsible investing products currently available.

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Beat the Fire and Ash with Towerpoint’s Cash

With a heavy heart almost three years ago, we recognized the vicious wildfires tearing through both Napa and Santa Rosa. Today, with massive wildfires burning throughout Napa, Sonoma, Lake, Solano, and Yolo counties, we feel compelled to do so again.

As we mentioned in that newsletter, fortunately tough times do not last, but tough people do. And as dedicated and tireless relief and rescue crews work to contain and extinguish these devastating fires, we look to a rare bright spot during this time of destruction, symbolizing resilience, literally from the ground up as it rises from the ashes – the California fire poppy.

All of this begs the question – what can we do to help? The answer – stand with us and please give if you are able.

Towerpoint Wealth is committed to directly helping those in need during these fires, and we are pleased to offer a 100% match, up to a total of $15,000, of any charitable donations made by you to any of the following three fire-relief organizations:

  • California Wildfire Relief Fund
  • Solano Disaster Relief Fund
  • 2020 Napa County Wildfires Fund

Please simply email us your donation receipt at, and we will promptly email you our matching donation receipt within 48 hours.

* IMPORTANT NOTE: Please also remember that the recently-passed CARES Act created a one-year tax-deductible charitable deduction of $300 for the 90% of taxpayers who claim the standard deduction in 2020!

A New Addition to the Towerpoint Wealth Family

We are pleased and excited to welcome Matt Regan, CPA, MBT, to the Towerpoint Wealth family!

Armed with his Masters of Business Taxation from USC and eight years of experience as Tax Manager at Richardson Kontogouris Emerson LLP, Matt comes to us from KLS Professional Advisors (a division of Boston Private), where he was practicing as an Associate Director and Wealth Advisor to a diverse set of higher net worth individuals and families.

Matt specializes in working with attorneys, helping them manage the unique aspects of proper coordination all of their financial affairs. We look forward to having him utilize his tax consulting and wealth management skills and experience to help his own and other clients of Towerpoint Wealth save money on their income taxes, manage the downside risk of their portfolios, and properly plan for a comfortable retirement.

Please click HERE to read more about Matt, and please reach out (916-405-9164) to say hello, congratulate him, and help us with a warm “welcome aboard!”

TPW Service Highlight – Customized Responsible ESG Investing

Are you aware you are able to align your portfolio with your personal values, without compromising your ability to have a diversified portfolio positioned to earn competitive returns? Many investors are not. Responsible investing, also known as ESG investing (Environmental, Social, and Governance) has exploded in popularity and importance over the past ten years (see the Graph of the Week below), and has quickly become an area of specialization at Towerpoint Wealth.

Screening to either avoid or advance ownership of specific companies, based on a myriad of different sustainability issues and criteria, is a central objective of ESG investing:

Environmental issues range from climate change, clean water, animal welfare, and deforestation. Social issues can include racial justice, education, poverty, democracy, and women’s rights. Governance issues encompass worker treatment, corporate ethics, and corporate diversity and inclusion. Click the Ethic Sustainability Pillars story found below for a deeper understanding of the various ESG issues that Towerpoint Wealth can specifically screen for, to help you avoid or advance your investment in equities consistent with these issues.

Time to do an ESG “healthcheck” on your portfolio? We welcome an invitation to sit side-by-side with you to conduct a deep-dive sustainability analysis of your portfolio, where we will x-ray your investments to evaluate what is considered “clean,” what is considered “dirty,” and how to make intelligent and tax-efficient ESG improvements. Click HERE to find out more, or click on our What’s In a Name? A Guide to Responsible Investing educational white paper found below.

Graph of the Week

As discussed above, responsible / ESG investing is no longer just a trend, but a full-blown movement. According to Pensions & Investments, the value of global assets applying environmental, social, and governance data to drive investment decisions has almost doubled over four years, and more than tripled over eight years, to $40.5 trillion (!) in 2020. Sustainable fund flows just in the U.S. have been extremely strong as well:

As always, we sincerely value our relationships and partnerships with each of you, as well as your trust and confidence in us here at Towerpoint Wealth. We encourage you to reach out to us at any time (916-405-9140, with any questions, concerns, or needs you may have. The world continues to be an extremely complicated place, and we are here to help you properly plan for and make sense of it.

– Nathan, Raquel, Steve, Joseph, Lori, Jonathan, and Matt

Sacramento Wealth Financial Planner Towerpoint Wealth Team