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“Our #1 job is to formulate a plan, anchored in sound investment principles, that will help you navigate the storms as well as the calm.”
-Tony DiGiovanni, Chief Investment Officer

THE INDUSTRY

Today you could take the first step to finding a financial advisor. Hard work in your business has gotten you where you are today. You probably know a lot about the ins and outs of your field, but most schools do not teach financial planning even though numerous, important financial decisions have to be made in a lifetime. With inadequate information and training, these decisions can be overwhelming. It’s easy to go wrong.

White Pine embodies the highest possible professional standards due to its employees' extensive training, experience, and commitment to ongoing learning.

We offer tools, guidance, and expertise, so you can make well informed financial decisions. Ideally, once these decisions are made, you will achieve financial peace of mind and be able to turn your attention to all the other parts of your life.

YOUR PLAN

To get to your destination, it’s best to know where you are and have a plan to move forward. To begin, we take a close look at your current savings, income, and expenses. Next, we talk about your financial goals, taking your age, tolerance for risk, and the current investment landscape into consideration.

We run Monte Carlo simulations that test a thousand paths your portfolio might take. By adjusting the major levers of savings, spending, retirement date, and investment portfolio options, we work together to create a plan that meets your needs and maximizes the likelihood of the best possible outcomes.

Your financial picture may include charitable giving, estate planning, and the use of tax planning strategies such as Roth conversions. Each will be addressed and worked in to your overall plan.

YOUR PORTFOLIO

While you are taking care of the rest of your life, we will be focusing our attention, time, and resources on your financial well-being. Historically, equities have yielded the highest returns, though they come with higher volatility. Most White Pine client portfolios contain 35-40 holdings, with an average holding period of four to five years. Exchange traded funds or mutual funds often round out client portfolios.  

Our stock selection philosophy follows the lead of investment pioneers such as Warren Buffet, John Templeton, and Benjamin Graham. We analyze companies’ expected future cash flows, revenue growth, earnings power, competitive advantages, and management strength to determine their intrinsic value. When the market price of these companies is below that value, we buy.

WELL INFORMED

From knowing where you are when we first meet to figuring out where you would like to go, honest, open, and clear communication is vital to our relationship. Every quarter, a newsletter will update you on our current investing ideas. You will also get a call from us to check in with how things are going on your end. Every 12-18 months, we will do a financial review to ensure that your plan continues to meet your needs. At any time and for any reason, you are welcome to call or come in.

Financial stability is built on a solid plan, but a plan should not be set in stone. Changes in your circumstances or goals might necessitate alterations to your financial plan. We anticipate these natural evolutions of family situations, health, work, and priorities, and adjustments are made as needed. When life’s surprises occur, you will have confidence that the relationship we build together will support and guide you past any obstacles in the road.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you have further queries, do contact us...  

How does the set up process work?

Clients take part in a life planning process that helps us understand what return on life they desire for themselves as well as their families. The goal is to ensure that they can achieve their financial goals and objectives with customized financial strategies and plans based on their unique situation. We want to make sure that they can sleep better at night, knowing they are putting their financial resources to the best use to plan for the good times and to protect their families for when life happens. We then implement our created strategy in a way where you have peace of mind with your accounts and can take control of your financial future. We remain dedicated to you, continuously monitor your portfolio, and are always available to you via phone, email, and in person.

Are you a Fiduciary?

Yes we are and we take that very seriously. Above all else, our decisions are made with your best interests in mind. Our motivation to suggest a change or make any decision regarding a client account is based only on our belief that it will add value and enhance the net worth of the client for the long term. There are many articles out there describing the difference between a Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) and a broker/dealer. We are the former and not the latter.

How exactly are you paid?

Our only method of compensation is the annual fee that we charge on a quarterly basis. That annual fee is based on a percentage of total assets under management (AUM) and the asset mix of your portfolio; never to exceed 1%. We never accept any compensation for placing our clients in any specific investment decisions and there is never a circumstance where we will charge you anything else. This allows us to operate in a completely conflict-free manner and for you to know exactly what we are being paid. 

Where are my investments & money held?

Your securities are held in an account in your name at a major brokerage firm or financial institution of your choice. The majority of our clients choose to have their assets held at the brokerage firm of Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. The decision is up to you as our client. The most important thing is for your assets to be held by an independent third party with the proper insurances and protections so that they are always safe.

Will I be charged for trading?

Sometimes. The brokerage firm where you deposit your securities may charge a commission or transaction fee when securities are bought or sold. White Pine Investment Company does not share in any fees charged by brokerage firms that hold our clients’ securities. Most equity trades are free.  For everything else, the fees charged for transactions rarely exceed $25 to $50.

Is any of your advice limited in any way?

If a client chooses to retain us, they will be provided with a basic financial plan as well as ongoing investment management services to execute their plan. We will provide quarterly performance reports, ongoing telephone contact with updates and meetings on an as-needed basis. Also included is our availability to meet with other professionals for estate planning and insurance purposes. We wish to be with our clients every step of the way to help them navigate all of the important decisions that must be made in managing their assets responsibly and with efficiency.

How often will I receive written reports about my portfolio?

Each client receives a quarterly report detailing their portfolio’s performance along with our much anticipated quarterly newsletter. You will also be provided a Charles Schwab online login where you can check all of your accounts and performance metrics.  But, there is no limit to our communication together. Typically, we meet with our clients semi-annually in person and are in regular communication over the phone and through email. Each client is different and each plan is different so we want to make sure that we are always available to fit your needs. 

Where does your firm invest its own money?

It is pretty simple, we invest all of our money in the exact same places that we invest yours. In fact, we treat ourselves as clients and all pay the exact same fees as our clients. The only difference between our accounts and yours is in your favor. During times when it is beneficial for us to purchase or sell a security, priority in either direction goes to our clients.

Have you ever been disciplined by any government regulator?

NO. We are in good standing and have never had a negative review from any government regulating body or even from a client. 

Where can I find your firm's form ADV brochure so I can do my own research?

Just as we disclose every detail about our company to the SEC, we want to make sure that all of that information is disclosed to you; in simple and plain terms. You can find our filing below. 

Are taxes minimized whenever possible?

Yes. One of the characteristics of an individual equity portfolio is the ability to control taxable events more closely than through mutual funds. When we make decisions regarding whether or not to sell a security in your account, we always look at the tax consequences of such a move and try to take advantage of any offsetting losses, if possible. Whenever possible we take advantage of the lower tax rate granted to long-term capital gains rather than short-term gains which are taxed as ordinary income.

How would you describe your typical client?

Our client base is made up from a very wide range of people from various professions, education levels, life stages and ages; from single digits to triple digits. Most of our clients are comfortable with their finances, but not so wealthy that they can spend indiscriminately. They need a well-designed plan that will take their assets through their retirement years. Many are interested in generational issues and the education of their family members about financial basics. We encourage all family members to speak with us about their financial situation. What our clients have in common is the knowledge that we will always be thinking about their particular circumstance when creating their personalized financial plan.

Do you have a minimum account size?

Although not a hard-and-fast rule, the minimum new-account size at White Pine is $500,000. If your investment dollars total less than that, we would still be happy to talk with you and recommend you to an advisor who will have a cost structure and offering that is more favorable for you. Also, we welcome the opportunity to help children of our clients develop a savings and investing discipline.