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Odyssey Update (COVID-19)

| March 18, 2020

Your well-being is of foremost importance, and our team hopes you and your family are taking all necessary precautions to remain safe.

The outbreak of COVID-19 is rapidly changing, creating a significant challenge for U.S. public health departments, schools, community organizations, and the public.  As we enter a 4th week of extreme market volatility we thought it would be helpful to share some info on plans for our office, a bit of market perspective, and some other items that may be of interest.


Some of us are working from home implementing our sustainability plan, but we continue to be available to you to discuss whatever financial planning or investment related guidance you need. We are available for introductions too – for those you know that are not as comfortable or confident in their financial situation.

One change – we ask that meetings for the foreseeable future are hosted by phone or by using the website GoToMeeting. GoToMeeting is an internet website that allows us to connect via computer so we can share our screen for you to see updated reports, plans, graphs, etc. We can also use it for video conferencing if that is of interest to you (your computer must have a video camera for this to work).


We do not expect volatility to dissipate in the short-term, but our guidance remains consistent to what we’ve communicated before. Your plan and portfolio are well prepared for environments like we are facing. Once the health crisis has passed, we fully expect an economic and stock market recovery. Remember, most of you have an allocation of fixed income funds (bonds, not stocks) that make up 10% to 60% of your portfolio. Those funds have produced positive returns during this time of crisis, as expected.


For those of you who are interested (and have the time), we are providing you with a link to an informative video from Dimensional Fund Advisors, titled “Perspective on Recent Market Volatility.” It does run 37 minutes, but the insights they provide are very helpful and may open your eyes to the depth and expertise Dimensional brings to the table. There is a reason we’ve partnered with them since 2003.


Develop a plan of action with your family or a neighbor to stay in touch and keep each other informed. Know how to consult your healthcare provider, get food, and other personal needs if you are staying home, and identify who can care for you. And if you are an older adult and/or have chronic medical conditions, please stay home.


If you’re wondering what you can do to help others who may need it or what to do if you’re stuck at home (with kids), our State Senator John Albers shared this today. 

  1. Pick up food at great local restaurants and leave a generous tip
  2. Offer to watch neighbors' kids so they can work
  3. Buy from our local stores
  4. Spring cleaning & donations
  5. Gather canned food and dry goods for charities
  6. Make donations to those in need
  7. Enjoy some great family time
  8. Put down all phones and electronics
  9. Play board games and build puzzles with family and friends
  10. Smile, be kind, and remember this will pass!


Bad guys will take advantage of any situation if they can, so please be on the lookout for emails that claim to be from the CDC or other government entities. Don’t open attachments to emails or click on links you don't recognize. And don’t provide anyone personal information over the phone. The Federal Trade Commission has more information on scams here:

LASTLY - Please do not hesitate to contact us for help.  We are your Odyssey family and we are here for you. Together, we will get through this. If you need anything - give us a call.