A final thought for 2019...

Well, that was a whopper of a year. We'll dig into details in January.

As 2019 winds down, as you try to hide that uneaten fruitcake in the trash below the wrapping paper, I wanted to leave you with two thoughts. One business, and one personal.

Most people don't know it, but the original domain name for Amazon.com was Relentless.com. At One Day In July, we're driven by a mission, albeit one different from taking over the world. We think the deleterious trajectory of the financial industry is more serious than people realize, and we'll relentlessly try to stop it. Using academic research, software, math, kindness, clarity, and hard work, we're going to do everything possible to shift the balance of power back to you.

Lots of you are on board with this mission, and have given us a tailwind over the year. The referrals you sent, the comments you emailed, the anecdotes at meetings, and most significantly, the trust you place in us matter.

In many client meetings this year, people have mentioned that our country's culture seems to be getting meaner. I want to talk about that for a minute, and relate something from my experience. If someone is being nasty, I envision what he or she looked like in 3rd grade. It's difficult to be angry at a third grader, so I create a mental scene of that person playing on a playground, or deep into finger paint in art class. It reminds me that no one went down this path intentionally, from happy child to overburdened adult.

And one final thought, because I can't resist adding investment ornamentation to this. If someone is goading you, Buffett once pointed out that if you don't say anything, you preserve the option to respond later. Optionality has value in life as in finance. In social settings, usually people let things die and don't exercise the option.

Take a deep breath, before you put your lips to the blow gun.

Just kidding on that last line. Have a wonderful New Year.

Dan Cunningham

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