The Flinchum File

Thoughtful Economic Analysis and Existential Opinions
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Welcome to The Flinchum File

I am an Accredited Investment Fiduciary at Bay Capital Advisors, an investment firm headquartered in Virginia Beach, VA. After retiring from Truist Bank, I started this firm to work more closely with a smaller number of clients, and it has been great! Our client load is about 25% of the national average.

Writing is not for the shy or the meek. It exposes a person’s mind and character. I hope you enjoy the view.

A Pox On R’s and D’s


I have voted for Republicans, and I have voted for Democrats, but I’ve never been as disgusted with both as I am right now. Imagine you’re attending the wake or memorial ceremony for your spouse.  As you’re sitting there, with your head bowed, when someone barges into the sanctuary and screams “it is all your … Continue reading A Pox On R’s and D’s

What, Me Worry ?


We’re living during interesting times.  We just learned that GDP growth during the second quarter was a sizzling 6.6% — even better than expected.  Corporate profits surged 9.2% — also much better than expected.  It’s not surprising that the stock markets keep setting new record highs.  What, me worry? The Grim Reaper called Covid still … Continue reading What, Me Worry ?

Socratic Conversation?


If the first casualty of military warfare is the truth, then the first casualty of partisan warfare is academic debate. Maybe, the Socratic approach won’t offend. . . ? Assuming Ronald Reagan was correct that America is that shiny city on the hill, does that mean non-Americans will want to be there ? If continued … Continue reading Socratic Conversation?

What’s the Point ??


Let’s say you have two neighbors.  Neighbor #1 picks up a baseball bat and hits neighbor #2, before handing the bat to the neighbor he just hit.  Neighbor #2 takes the bat and hits neighbor #1, before handing the bat back to neighbor #1.  As they continue to hit each other, do you think they … Continue reading What’s the Point ??

Old Theories Never Die . . .


Famed World War II General Douglas MacArthur said “Old soldiers never die.  They just fade away.”  The same can be said about old theories. In 1986, three professors named Brinson, Hood, & Beebower (BHB) published a research paper entitled “Determinants of Portfolio Performance.”  They showed 93.6% of a portfolio’s performance was determined by the asset … Continue reading Old Theories Never Die . . .

That Final Walk


One of my long-running complaints with the financial planning profession is that it has become too academic.  If planners spent less time memorizing IRS Code sections and more time looking into the eyes of their clients, it would be a better world. Estate planning is the most stark example – full of tax and probate … Continue reading That Final Walk

Just Economics?


 My Republican-friends like to blame everything on the mainstream media.  My Democratic friends like to blame everything on greedy, rich “fat-cats”.  They’re both wrong! My Republican-friends see the immigration problem as a bunch of lazy, disease-ridden derelicts trying to milk American generosity.  My Democratic friends see the immigration problem as a bunch of poor, miserable, … Continue reading Just Economics?

An Act of Love


It takes a certain emotional maturity to talk about one’s own death.  Part of my job as a financial advisor is to help clients reach that level of maturity or self-awareness.  Too often, “estate planning” ends with signing a bunch a documents.  That’s the easy part!  We also need to do “end-of-life planning”.  For years, … Continue reading An Act of Love

Not Good Enough


Sometimes, good news is not good enough!  That was the case with yesterday’s release of second quarter GDP growth, which was a whopping 6.5%.  That’s the highest in 35 years. The good news is that it improved from a very robust 6.3% during the first quarter.  Despite a 3.4% drop in GDP last year, we … Continue reading Not Good Enough

China is right!


Some years ago, I had the opportunity to tour China.  In Beijing, our hotel was close to the national headquarters of the Communist Party.  A short walk later, I stood mesmerized in front of their massive building.  While I confess to being 100% biased against the Chinese Communists, their headquarters building made my skin crawl.  … Continue reading China is right!

“Good Vibrations”


I love my wife, but she is a little weird.  She is fascinated with air vibrations.  She even has a word for it.  She calls it M-U-S-I-C.  Scientists call it mere air vibrations hitting your eardrum.  Of course, she says that’s the reason God made ears, so we could appreciate M-U-S-I-C? Recently, I attended a … Continue reading “Good Vibrations”

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