News & Info

Firm Newsletter

Houston Asset Management awarded our 6th Annual Scholarship in May. The recipient is Dylan Mowrey. Among his many accomplishments, he was Valedictorian of Mayde Creek High School in Katy, TX. He will be attending the University of Texas at Austin McCombs School of Business. Our third scholarship winner, Maryanna “Mariel” Braun is now interning with us for the summer. It is a delight for all of us at HAM to have the privilege of working with such great examples of the next generation.
 
In April, Chris Brown attended a peer to peer practice management discussion in Sana Barbara, CA. During the meeting, advisors from across the country shared processes they have implemented to enhance client services.
 
Bob Frater, Rich Welsh and Chris Brown attended the SagePoint Leaders Summit in May which was held in Carlsbad, CA. During the conference, they received firm and industry updates and collaborated with peers.
 
On May 21st, Rich Welsh and seven members of the Houston Wing of the Commemorative Air Force, (CAF), hosted two field trips. Eighty fifth grade students and their teachers from Katy ISD elementary schools gathered at the hanger based at West Houston Airport. Airpower during WWII was discussed along with hands-on presentation with aircraft of that era that are on display. There were great questions from the students as well as teachers.
 
In July, Chris will be attending a meeting at JPMorgan headquarters in New York, NY. At this meeting, Chris will meet with JPMorgan’s economists, global strategists and fund managers.
 
Celebrating anniversaries in July at HAM are 19 years for Richard Hollis and 1 year for Blake Kelting. August anniversaries include 15 years for Mary Silva and 4 years for Becky Burns. Congratulations to all.
 
 
In March, Richard Hollis and Chris Brown attended the Dimensional Fund Advisors two-day seminar in Austin. Dimensional was founded on work by Eugene Fama, winner of the most recent Nobel Prize for Economics.
 
Chris Brown and Blake Kelting participated in the Texas A&M Financial Planning Program event held in March. HAM was a Gold Sponsor for the networking dinner in which students had the opportunity to interact with alumni in the industry. On the following day, Chris and Blake joined in discussions with professors and university faculty to assist in providing direction for the new Financial Planning program.
 
Richard Hollis, Rich Welsh and Chris Brown attended a meeting in April at the Federal Reserve Bank. During the meeting, they heard from a global market strategist who holds dual citizenship (US and Russia). She provided personal insight into the ongoing negotiations concerning Ukraine.
 
Bob Frater will be going to the Loring Ward National Education Conference in Monterey, California in June.
 
We had 33 scholarship applicants this year. The scholarship committee will be meeting in May to choose the 6th Annual HAMCF Scholarship recipient. Our third scholarship winner, Maryanna Braun, will intern with us this summer.
 
Lastly, congratulations to Michelle ‘Shelly’ Hilliard on her 2nd anniversary, and Bob Frater on his 31st anniversary with HAM.
 
 
In late February, Rich Welsh, CFP®, Richard Hollis and Chris Brown, CFP® attended AssetMark Advisory Board Meeting and Gold Forum in California. During that event, they had the opportunity to participate in panel discussions with leading investment strategists from across the nation. In addition, they heard from several leading chief investment officers, chief economist and a few CEOs from prominent investment companies.
 
In early May, Bob Frater, CFP® will attend the Financial Planning Association’s Retreat in Florida. This is an annual gathering of CFP® practitioners in the nation to gain knowledge of new techniques, strategies and technology used in the Financial Planning Profession.
 
Rich Welsh is also helping put together an Aviation Open House at West Houston Airport which will be held April 12th and 13th. It is open to the public and will feature WWII Aircraft including a B-17 Bomber and several fighter and trainer aircraft of that era. Visit their website for more information: www.houstonwing.org.
 
Houston Asset Management Charitable Foundation expects to award another scholarship this spring to a Houston area high school senior. The application window for the scholarship will close on March 31st. For more information on this scholarship, please visit the News & Info page on our website. If you would like to contribute to this 501(c)(3) charitable foundation, please call us at 713-629-1534.
 
Congratulations to Houston Asset Management staff members celebrating anniversaries in April:
  • 15-Years: Harry Montgomery and Michele Frnka
  • 3-Years: Bob Hampton, Rich Welsh, Jacque Turner and Evelin Valenzuela
  • 1-Year: Emily Kerne
 
During November and December, Richard Hollis attended an American Funds due diligence conference in Los Angeles, a Blackrock ETF University meeting in Houston and an Eaton Vance meeting presented by one of their fixed income portfolio managers.
 
In December, Chris Brown attended the Houston “Investment Mastery” which featured 15 strategist and economist leading investment companies during six hours of panel discussions.
 
Congratulations to Michele Frnka on passing her FINRA Series 63 exam. Also, congratulations and best wishes to our receptionist, Linda Ludwick with her recent marriage to Richard Burgess. Lastly, congratulations to Shannon Ruiz on her 5th anniversary, and Karen Lampe on her 7th anniversary with HAM.
 
The Houston Chronicle interviewed Bob Frater about our annual "Cost of Loving Index", which tracks the prices of nine common Valentine gifts. Here are some highlights for the 2014 “Cost of Loving Index” by Houston Asset Management:
 
  • Costs for five of the nine popular gifts traced in the “Cost of Loving Index” were unchanged.
  • Premier: Two tickets to the first-run movie increased in price 4.7% to $22.
  • Unmentionable: The price of a silk designer nightie remained the same at $68.
  • For the sweet tooth: A beautiful heart-shaped box of Godiva chocolates is the same at $100.
  • Lovely delivery: A dozen long-stemmed red roses delivered to your sweetie will cost $129.07; that’s more than double the cost in 1990 of $65.
  • Skip the appetizer: A candlelight dinner at an elegant restaurant costs 6.4% more this year.
  • Sweet smell: The highest priced item on the index is one ounce of Chanel No. 5 perfume at $325- the same as last year which was a 14% increase from 2012.
  • Pop a cork: A bottle of Simi California chardonnay dropped 10.56% this year to $23.12.