Cincinnati Weather

“Nice weather today!” “Think it will rain?” Go anywhere in Cincinnati and you’ll hear comments about the weather. Much like our bills and bank accounts, weather is always top of mind. So we were wondering… could Cincinnati weather have anything to do with how we think about our money? Well, let’s take a closer look…

Did you know that our weather makes Cincinnati a great place to live? It’s a beautiful city, in part because we get about 44 inches of rain and 15 inches of snow a year. Plenty of moisture for plants, green hills, and fresh water, and just enough of the fluffy stuff for an occasional sledding day. We have slightly fewer sunny days (176 compared to the U.S. average of 205), but our clouds earn Cincinnati a BestPlaces Comfort Index of 7.2 out of 10, making the Queen City one of the most pleasant places to live in Ohio. (Source: bestplaces.net

But what does weather have to do with money matters? Well, it teaches us a few things…for example:

Always be prepared. With weather, we prepare for the day with an umbrella, light sweater, or snow boots. With money, we prepare for trends in interest rates, rising or falling prices, or simply having enough change in our pocket for whatever our day has in store.

Put safety first. Under threat of hail, we park under cover instead of in the driveway, and when forced to drive through flood water, go slow and go only one vehicle at a time. With money, we save for the proverbial rainy days to build a financial foundation to get us through emergencies.

Appreciate life. As the great social thinker John Ruskin once said, “sunshine is delicious, rain is refreshing, wind braces us up, snow is exhilarating; there is really no such thing as bad weather, only different kinds of good weather. Whether about weather or money, we are optimistic.

Take advantage of the difference between the weather and climate. Weather is what is happening today: sun, rain, snow, wind, calm, cloudy. Climate is the long-term pattern of weather recorded over a 30-year period of time. Our relationship with money is no different: how much we have in the bank can change daily, and financial security is how well we managed our money over time.

We may have many different financial weather days as savings grow and wane, and investments follow the traditional peaks and valleys of gains and losses. Think about your financial life like we think about weather: be prepared for the unexpected and always put your own safety and the safety of those you love first. Now, let’s go out there and enjoy the day!

Avoiding Downturns

October leaves rippleThe recent stock market gyrations in October dampened more than a few investors’ enthusiasm for a never-ending bull market. October has a reputation for being a scary month for investors. Black Tuesday was in October 1929 and Black Monday of 1987 was also in October. These memories often override the facts though. According to Bloomberg, October’s Dow was positive in 15 out of the last 20 years. But there are lessons in all of this madness for small business owners for never having an “October surprise”.

  1. Never take your customers or clients for granted. Stay in touch, even when things are going smoothly. Demonstrate how important they are to you so when they have a problem they turn to you, and not to your competitors.
  2. Never assume that you know how your customers are doing. Make a phone call and ask whether they have any concerns or headwinds and, if so, what you can do to make things better.
  3. Never put all your eggs in one basket. If your livelihood depends on income from one or two really large customers or clients, make an extra effort to seek out new business on a steady basis.
  4. Never assume that just because your business is doing well that it always will.

As a trusted financial support team, we are always on the lookout for unusual fluctuations and trends for our customers and communicate what we see so that clients can choose to respond. And we don’t just do this in October, but throughout the calendar year.

Cincinnati – City of Inclusion

What does Cincinnati have in common with Des Moines, Detroit, Greenville, Madison, Minneapolis, Portland, Providence, San Francisco, Spokane, and Washington DC?

The answer is: we are the 11 metro areas to improve on each of the core measures under growth, prosperity, and inclusion according to the Brookings Institution’s Metro Monitor report (2016). In other major metro areas, growth remained uneven in terms of wage growth and racial disparity.

fountain squareIn fact, the report notes that only Cincinnati and Greenville (SC) stood out for their “consistent progress in narrowing racial economic disparities.”

Cincinnati has a $132 billion economy and has surpassed Columbus as Ohio’s largest economy, and is the fastest-growing in the Midwest, according to Cincinnati.com. Median wages are up and the poverty rate is down. And we believe that it’s a tribute to the people, culture, and values of Cincinnati that its “inclusion” measures are rated as above average.

We love Cincinnati and are not surprised with the report. The “City of Love” has made important strides since the racial riots of 2001. (See our January 5, 2017 blog “Brawls of Cincinnati”)

Pat yourself on the back, and if you’d like to know more, see the full Brookings Institute report here.