The Financial Truths in Grandma’s Wisdom

Our 2 Cents – Episode #122

The Financial Truths in Grandma’s Wisdom

You’ve probably heard these expressions and idioms at some point in your life, perhaps from a wise Grandmother even, but today we’re looking at them through a financial lens. But before we do that, we’re diving into a bit of a “smorgasbord” of current events in the investing world.

    1. Smorgasbord
      • What to make of the recent CPI and inflation data
      • What this could mean for the possibility of a recession
      • FTX imploded and the CEO was arrested and charged
      • Why what happened has been called “unsophisticated” and “old-fashioned embezzlement”
    2. The Financial Truths in Grandma’s Wisdom:
      • “When it rains, it pours”
      • “You never know”
      • “A bad apple spoils the whole barrel”
      • “I heard it straight from the horse’s mouth”
      • “If your friends all jumped off a bridge, would you do it too?”
    3. Getting to Know Steve and Gabriel:
      • Are you for or against permanent Daylight Saving Time?
      • What is your favorite season of the year?

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Podcast Transcript

Announcer: You are listening to Our 2 Cents with the team from SGL Financial, building wealth for life. Steve Lewit is the President of SGL Financial and Gabriel Lewit is the CEO. They’re here to discuss all the latest in financial news, trends, strategies, and more.

Gabriel Lewit: Hey everybody, welcome to Our 2 Cents. It’s Gabriel here and Steven coming to you from the conference room studio extraordinaire. Hah. And Steve is …

Steve Lewit: Steven. I like Steven.

Gabriel Lewit: Steven.

Steve Lewit: Steven.

Gabriel Lewit: Papa.

Steve Lewit: Papa Steven.

Gabriel Lewit: Is struggling with his ear volume today.

Steve Lewit: Well, you know what the good news is? I’m struggling with my ear volume but-

Gabriel Lewit: Well, he was blaming that my microphone was too loud, and I was saying it was his headphones that were too loud and we couldn’t resolve it, but we finally resolved it.

Steve Lewit: We did. We did.

Gabriel Lewit: We did.

Steve Lewit: We can both hear fine now.

Gabriel Lewit: I think we’re good to go.

Steve Lewit: And we hope you folks can hear us fine too.

Gabriel Lewit: We do. We hope you hear us loud and very clear.

Steve Lewit: Because that’s the whole purpose of doing this.

Gabriel Lewit: It is, indeed.

Steve Lewit: Yep. Yep.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, we’ve got a good smorgasbord lined up for you today.

Steve Lewit: Smorgasbord. Boy, I haven’t used that word in a long time, smorgasbord.

Gabriel Lewit: Smorgasbord. Well, we have a variety of phrases. I’m going to get to those today. So I thought starting off with a smorgasbord phrase for you would be a good lead in.

But yeah, hope you’re doing well and gearing up for the holidays coming up. By the time you get this in a week, it’ll be Christmas basically and New Year’s … The next year is coming up a week after that. So hopefully you’ve got some fun plans lined up. Some R&R, some parties, some good times.

Steve Lewit: Are you all shopped out?

Gabriel Lewit: I have not shopped yet, but I never do.

Steve Lewit: You don’t?

Gabriel Lewit: No. We’re also doing a Secret Santa here in the office, which I have not yet shopped for either.

Steve Lewit: I haven’t either, either.

Gabriel Lewit: So, we’ve got to get our groove on.

Steve Lewit: We better get our shopping shoes on.

Gabriel Lewit: All right, so what’s in the smorgasbord that we’ve got arrayed for you here today? Well, quite a few things, but we’re going to start off with some good news. Believe it or not, there is good news.

Steve Lewit: There is.

Gabriel Lewit: That’s out there. A little blue sky on the gray horizon of Chicago’s gray weather.

Steve Lewit: Surprise news.

Gabriel Lewit: Which is inflation is down a little bit from the last measured report.

Steve Lewit: 7.1%.

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah. So they measure inflation figures in year-over-year figures. So it is, well, it’s up from where its long-term average was, but it’s trending downwards, which is good, meaning inflation is starting to subside a little bit. Not where we want it to be yet. But again, it’s a good sign on the horizon. The stock market, when the number got announced, bumped up about 2.5% in a day.

Steve Lewit: It did. Yes.

Gabriel Lewit: And that is a good sign and it kind of echoes one of my thoughts is that the market is waiting for more and more positive inflation news and hopefully that’ll start to give us some positive momentum in the equity markets.

Steve Lewit: Assuming that the unemployment and the other statistics stay where they are. Unfortunately, there are still a lot of smart people that say we might have a recession coming, but then again, there are a lot of smart people that say, we won’t. So we’ll find out who was smart and who wasn’t.

Gabriel Lewit: I feel like I hear more, there will be a recession versus there won’t be commentary out there.

Steve Lewit: Seems to be.

Gabriel Lewit: And you might be hearing that too.

Steve Lewit: Seems to be.

Gabriel Lewit: But that doesn’t necessarily even mean people automatically think that that means the market’s going to go down again next year. It could, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that because there have been recessions where the market goes up.

Steve Lewit: Which is really strange, but it’s true.

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah, exactly.

Steve Lewit: Yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: So that’s our quick hit there. First entrée on the smorgasbord for today is a quick little update on inflation. Now the next smorgasbord, I’m going to keep saying it as many times as I can.

Steve Lewit: You like that word.

Gabriel Lewit: Is …

Steve Lewit: We have to find out what smorgas means.

Gabriel Lewit: I don’t know, but there’s news out there. You might have been following it, you might have heard of it, of a company called FTX, okay, that imploded, I guess would be the accurate term for it about two to three weeks ago when they basically found out that there was not nearly as many assets in the company as was reported. And then the thing quickly collapsed.

So why am I bringing this up? Well, this is a good story that we can learn some lessons from about investment safety, investment practices, and a number of other things around it, as well as just being semi interesting, I think. But the founder, Sam Bankman-Fried, you might have seen his face plastered all over, he’s been in a lot of news lately, finally got arrested yesterday. That’s the newest development in the story.

Steve Lewit: In the Bahamas.

Gabriel Lewit: In the Bahamas. So …

Steve Lewit: He was having a good time.

Gabriel Lewit: He thought he was going to maybe escape some justice, but no, he got arrested. So what happened here, if you’re not familiar with the story? Well, FTX was a crypto exchange and owned many, many other subsidiary companies and had a lot of venture capital funds. Now the first red flag was they were organized and ran from The Bahamas.

Steve Lewit: From his luxury …

Gabriel Lewit: Apartment.

Steve Lewit: Apartment.

Gabriel Lewit: In the Bahamas.

Steve Lewit: In the Bahamas.

Gabriel Lewit: Now, why would a company open up shop regulated in The Bahamas? Well, of course, folks, they chose The Bahamas versus the US because there is less regulation. So as you look for investment firms out there, make sure US bound is one of the key criteria that we would always suggest.

Well, what also happened is that he claimed that there was many safeguard procedures in place that were not actually in place. And so his successor CEO that’s overseeing the bankruptcy proceedings basically was on TV yesterday saying this was the classic unsophisticated example of a very large embezzlement scheme.

Steve Lewit: Yeah, it was not very creative this. Basically, he took the money and spent it.

Gabriel Lewit: He took the … If you again aren’t familiar, what he did was he took customers money, he effectively gave it to his sister company, which then proceeded to make highly speculative leverage bets and loss said money. And then when customers learned that there might be concerns about the balance sheet and attempted to pull out the money, the money was no longer there to be pulled out.

Steve Lewit: Yes, that is it.

Gabriel Lewit: And the house of cards collapsed.

Steve Lewit: It did. Okay. It did. And he’s facing 115 years in prison.

Gabriel Lewit: As he should.

Steve Lewit: As he well should.

Gabriel Lewit: Because he’s lost investors billions of dollars.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. It’s like another Bernie Madoff scheme that is …

Gabriel Lewit: But way less even sophisticated.

Steve Lewit: No sophistication at all. The guy just … It’s kind of strange.

Gabriel Lewit: It’s almost comically idiotic.

Steve Lewit: Right.

Gabriel Lewit: How he thought he would get away with it and not get caught.

Steve Lewit: Yeah, exactly. Set up a place in The Bahamas, you take the money in, you pass it on, you don’t have … What did he expect to happen?

Gabriel Lewit: Well, I was reading one article that was interesting is that he actually thought that he could make so many successful trades that he would leverage up everybody else’s money, make a lot of money for himself under the purported goal of doing good for the world, and then certainly have all the funds originally there. But the problem is, of course, when you’re making speculative leverage crypto based bets is that’s a terribly stupid strategy to do with other people’s money. And he lost it all and lost it on people that didn’t think that that’s what they were doing with his money.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. I think to your point, so if you’re going to go into something that is of smaller nature, that is newer, especially in the crypto world, it’s like, okay, you got to take a closer look at that and say, “Well, where are they holding my money?”

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah.

Steve Lewit: “Where are my bitcoins? Where’s my Ethereum? Where is it?” Because it’s got to be someplace.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, the story is interesting because it gets even, I mean, I guess they thought they were being clever. They were loaning themselves money from one company to the other and then claiming that they had that value in fake tokens that they had created themselves and reported on the other company’s balance sheet to try to fool investors. “Hey, look, we have $4 billion of this fake token that we just put on paper, but we really took all the 4 billion and spent it.”

Steve Lewit: Spent it. Exactly, yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: So yeah, quite a crazy world out there. And what this is really spurring is calls for cryptocurrency, not that it wasn’t already spurred, but it’s re-spurring conversations about making it be more regulated, which is also interesting because part of the initial idea of crypto was to be deregulated. But certainly you’re seeing some of the risks of deregulated assets and why regulation isn’t arguably a bad thing. It’s designed to be a safety mechanism for investors.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. And I would say it’s more not crypto being regulated, but the-

Gabriel Lewit: Companies.

Steve Lewit: The companies.

Gabriel Lewit: The companies, yeah.

Steve Lewit: The operations of it, the procedures that they’re following, the safety of it. Crypto as a currency is not regulated.

Gabriel Lewit: It is not. And there are many different things that fall under crypto, which we will not get into here today.

Steve Lewit: Not today, no.

Gabriel Lewit: But it’s just an interesting news story. And so certainly some lessons to take from there. Pay attention to where your company that you’re investing is located. Make sure that they’re long established, solidified. Just be careful out there. Let’s be careful out there.

Steve Lewit: Yes.

Gabriel Lewit: Yes. All right. Well that was our second smorgasbord item.

Steve Lewit: Well said.

Gabriel Lewit: And our third of the day, speaking of …

Steve Lewit: Third smorgasbord.

Gabriel Lewit: Smorgasbord is with the holidays coming up, you might be spending time with family. And so the topic of this segment is learning from grandmamma’s wisdom, grandmom’s wisdom, or …

Steve Lewit: I’m not sure I learned anything from my grandmamma’s wisdom.

Gabriel Lewit: So, what do we mean here?

Steve Lewit: My grandma didn’t have much wisdom.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, let’s say you’re at the holiday party and you’ve heard over the years some key …

Steve Lewit: You know what my grandma did-

Gabriel Lewit: … wise phrases of wisdom.

Steve Lewit: All my grandma did, and I remember this Gabriel, is I would go to Grandma Rose’s house and I would sit down on the couch, which had these plastic stuff all over it. And then on the arms, which didn’t have the plastic on it, they had doilies.

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah.

Steve Lewit: And if I knocked the doily off the arm, she would go crazy.

Gabriel Lewit: So the wisdom you learned was …

Steve Lewit: Do not knock the doily.

Gabriel Lewit: Do not spill on the couch.

Steve Lewit: And don’t knock the doily.

Gabriel Lewit: Well now these phrases, maybe you’ve never heard them from one of your family members. Maybe you did in fact hear from grandma or grandpa, but let’s run through these schmortgage board of phrases here and see what they relate to from a financial perspective of course is how we always put our spin on these things.

First one, which seems applicable a little bit today, because it’s drizzly, but you’ve all heard this before, when it rains, it pours.

Steve Lewit: Yes. Yeah. So that’s one of those. So all these phrases, folks, are phrases that we use and we have no idea where they came from. I love looking up the … I didn’t look up the roots on these things. Just one of them I did.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, technically when it rains, it doesn’t always pour.

Steve Lewit: That’s correct.

Gabriel Lewit: It sometimes sprinkles. But more often than not, when it rains, it pours. So what does that really mean? It means when things go bad, they tend to go very bad and that can sometimes feel how it is investing in the market.

Steve Lewit: Or when things go good, they could go very good. I mean, it could pour positive too.

Gabriel Lewit: When it shines, it shines brightly.

Steve Lewit: No, like …

Gabriel Lewit: You can’t have when it rains, it pours be a positive thing.

Steve Lewit: Sure, you can. Look, if you’re at the casino and you went 10 hands in a row, you say when it rains, it pours.

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah. Okay. Good luck with that one. I’ll let you do that.

Steve Lewit: Okay.

Gabriel Lewit: See if you can make that happen into a thing. But yeah, so what does that mean? I mean, keep an eye on the bad news and try to put things into context. And Murphy’s law isn’t always a thing when things go bad, they always go really bad. But we think there’s possibly some blue clouds on the horizon for next year.

Steve Lewit: Yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: I think.

Steve Lewit: Yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: Now there could come a secondary storm below those blue clouds away, but there seems to be some blue clouds on the horizon.

Steve Lewit: Well, part of this is so you have a bad experience, Gabriel. And then you say, “Oh, I had a bad experience.” Then you had another one, and the bad compounds the bad. So the second experience if it were by itself, wouldn’t feel as bad. Because you had the first experience it feels worse. So if you have a few in a row, that’s why it pours. It feels that way.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, that’s what people have felt about this year. You had rapid inflation, you had stock market declines, you had wars. It’s felt like it’s rained, it poured. It didn’t just rain this year, it poured.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. Each one by itself, it was like, all right, I got to handle that. But when you put them all together, it is a storm.

Gabriel Lewit: Absolutely. Well, let’s see. What’s our next nugget of wisdom here? Well, it’s funny. I know somebody in my family that says this. When you ask them something and they say, “Well, you never know.”

Steve Lewit: Yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: You know, never know. Well, do you never know or can you know? What does this mean for finances?

Steve Lewit: Well, the fact is you never know. You never know the future.

Gabriel Lewit: Is my mom going to come for Thanksgiving next year or Christmas?

Steve Lewit: I don’t know. You never know.

Gabriel Lewit: I’m joking, mom, if you’re listening to this show, but of course I love having you here. Any holiday you can come. But what does this mean? Well, sometimes in retirement planning you can know. And in fact there’s ways of building things where I would say with the market, what’s the market going to do next year, dad?

Steve Lewit: Well, you never know. Maybe it’ll go up and maybe it’ll go down.

Gabriel Lewit: So that might be a good use for you never know.

Steve Lewit: But I’ll tell you this. Over 10 years it’s going to go up.

Gabriel Lewit: You never know. I mean, look at the 2000s, right?

Steve Lewit: Oh, that’s true.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, so yeah, most likely, the question for you is, a planning for your retirement, is do you want to have a “you never know” or do you want to have “I do know” base retirement-

Steve Lewit: Or a high probability.

Gabriel Lewit: Or I’m pretty sure I know retirement.

Steve Lewit: I’m pretty sure I know retirement.

Gabriel Lewit: And we’re speaking metaphorically here. But you can build plans that have a very high degree of confidence, a very guaranteed level of confidence if you use guaranteed options. Or you can be more uncertain based on market performance, which is one of those things you’d never really, really know.

Now, to your point, the longer you give it in the market, the more you know that it’ll likely go up.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. Imagine if you’re working with a financial advisor, Gabriel, and you look at the plan and you say to the advisor, “Well, you think this is going to work out, my plan that you just gave me?” And the advisor says, “Well, you never know.” Or it’s like, “No, that’s not what I want to hear.”

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah. So how do you build a market-based portfolio to be more you know than you don’t know? It’s diversification, risk reduction, a number of other techniques we won’t get into, but you can turn that you never know into something positive.

Steve Lewit: Definitely.

Gabriel Lewit: All right, what’s our next phrase du jour here? I haven’t heard this one in a while, but I’m going to spit it out here. A bad apple spoils the whole barrel.

Steve Lewit: That’s an old one.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, I will also say the one that I experienced frequently is the moldy blackberry will spoil the rest of the blackberries in the pint. Have you heard that one?

Steve Lewit: This one is not a real one. You just made that up. Nobody ever says that.

Gabriel Lewit: Don’t you hate when you buy it thinking it looks great, you open up the blackberry pint and lo and behold, underneath the first level of blackberries are like four moldy blackberries.

Steve Lewit: I do that. That happens to me with strawberries.

Gabriel Lewit: You know?

Steve Lewit: Yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: Then you got mold spores on everything, spoils the whole pint.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. Darn.

Gabriel Lewit: I digress.

Steve Lewit: Darn.

Gabriel Lewit: But a bad apple spoils the whole barrel. Well, what does this mean about your investments pops?

Steve Lewit: All right, so I have a portfolio. I’ve got 50 stocks in my portfolio and I have a couple of bad apples in there. Does that ruin the entire portfolio? You never know.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, actually I was going to change our metaphor mid-example. What if you have a basket or a barrel of apples and you only have three apples? The rotten one is more likely to spoil the other two. If you have a basket of a hundred apples and one of them is rotten, it might spoil the few right next to it, but the other 95 will be unspoiled. What is this speaking to in my financial language? Diversification.

Steve Lewit: Well said.

Gabriel Lewit: Diversification.

Steve Lewit: That’s great. I like that. Okay.

Gabriel Lewit: We can apply that concept. If you have a hundred stocks and three of them aren’t doing well or one’s not doing well, it’ll have less than the fact if you have three stocks and one of them is spoiled and underperforming. So less risk means more apples, more diversification in your portfolio.

Did you ever have a relative that said that phrase? I don’t think I’ve ever heard it in real life, actually.

Steve Lewit: I’ve heard that in the strangest context when someone was talking about their kids, they have five kids, and …

Gabriel Lewit: They hate all their kids because one of them was bad?

Steve Lewit: One of them was bad, and they laid blame on that kid for spoiling all the other kids, the other four kids.

Gabriel Lewit: I feel bad for the other kids.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. Imagine that. Well, there’s always one bad apple spoiling the whole one.

Gabriel Lewit: Or when globalizing, when you say, I wish all my children did blah, blah, blah, but it might just be one of them.

Steve Lewit: Right. Yeah, exactly.

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah, I’m guilty of that when sometimes if I get really frustrated, I wish my kids would just behave. And usually it’s my Audrey daughter that’s misbehaving.

Steve Lewit: Oh, she’s so sweet.

Gabriel Lewit: She’s very sweet, but she has her moments. She has her moments.

Steve Lewit: She’s strong willed.

Gabriel Lewit: She’s very strong willed.

Steve Lewit: I have no idea where she got that from.

Gabriel Lewit: No clue.

Steve Lewit: No clue.

Gabriel Lewit: Gosh. Good question.

Steve Lewit: Yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: Okay. This one I have heard in real life. I heard it straight from the old horse’s mouth.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. Isn’t that a weird expression?

Gabriel Lewit: This is the one you looked up, right?

Steve Lewit: This is the one I looked up.

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah. Where did it come from?

Steve Lewit: All right, so this thank you Katie computer. I was going to say computer.

Gabriel Lewit: Computer Katie?

Steve Lewit: Director Katie.

Gabriel Lewit: Producer Katie.

Steve Lewit: Producer Katie. She’s a robot. Computer Katie.

Gabriel Lewit: Computer Katie.

Steve Lewit: Sorry about that. Yeah, so we looked it up. So when they were doing horse betting, if you placed, and when people said, “Why’d you bet on that horse?” They said, “I got it from the horse’s mouth,” like the horse told them to bet on them.

Gabriel Lewit: Got it. The horse felt very confident about his …

Steve Lewit: Yeah. So we got talking-

Gabriel Lewit: … skills that day.

Steve Lewit: So, we have human beings believing in talking horses.

Gabriel Lewit: That sounds cool. I do miss the horse race track right around here now. It’s too bad. As long as it turns into the Bear stadium, I’ll be okay with it. Don’t bring up a sore spot there, pops.

Steve Lewit: Oh, I’m sorry. I’m sorry.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, I actually technically brought it up, so I’m just giving you a hard time. Okay, so what does this mean? Well, sometimes if you don’t know something about something you hold, it’s good to get the information about it straight directly from the old horse’s mouth. So what do you do? You call up. A lot of our clients don’t even know, when they come to us, they don’t even know what they have.

Steve Lewit: It’s amazing. Yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: Oh, I got this something, something. I think it’s an old something and it’s invested in something and it’s worth about 100,000.

Steve Lewit: Right.

Gabriel Lewit: All right. Let’s unpack that. Right. And so sometimes, what do we do? I had a client that came to me. They had a life insurance policy that they were putting a sizable amount of premiums into. This is an example that just jumped to the top of my head. 29,000 a year end, which is a very good chunk of savings. And they said, “Well, it’s supposed to be for future retirement income.” Well, we called up the company and we did-

Steve Lewit: The horse.

Gabriel Lewit: The horse. The horse. Okay. And the horse’s mouth told us, “We’re going to send you an inforce illustration of how this thing will perform.” Well, we received said inforce illustration on life insurance policy. This thing had up the 29,000 being put into it. $14,000 a year was the cost of insurance, which kept increasing every year to the point where this thing was costing them $40,000, $50,000 a year of insurance for a $2 million death benefit which is an obnoxious …

Steve Lewit: That’s called ouch.

Gabriel Lewit: Amount of insurance. And what this did was it made the future cash value tank. And this is a very poor policy. Now, sometimes we call variable annuity companies and the client said, “I don’t think there’s any fees there.” And we hear directly from the horse’s mouth, “Oh, there’s an M&E fee.”

Steve Lewit: Yeah. If you prod the horse enough.

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah. They don’t even tell you got to prod the horse to spit it out.

Steve Lewit: You going to kick it.

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah. You get and find out there’s three and 3.5% fees in your variable annuity.

Steve Lewit: Right.

Gabriel Lewit: Okay. This happens all the time. So it’s really important to know what you have and don’t just assume. You want to get that directly from the old horse’s mouth.

Steve Lewit: That is right. So don’t assume that the person that you’re talking to is giving you the straight scoop because the person you’re talking to about something else is not the horse’s mouth. No, the problem there, Gabriel, is you can’t call a mutual fund.

Gabriel Lewit: You get a prospectus.

Steve Lewit: You can get a prospectus though. And that’s hard reading though. So you can’t always get to the horse’s mouth. But there are other ways I’m going to say …

Gabriel Lewit: Sometimes the horse is locked in the stable.

Steve Lewit: Well, I was going to say what we were talking about earlier. There are other ways to skin the cat.

Gabriel Lewit: We were talking about phrases that we don’t like that we weren’t even going to bring up. Skin the cat is a terrible one. I actually looked that up the other day where it came from and it’s not pretty, as the name implies. And the other one was to kill two birds with one stone.

Steve Lewit: It starts violence.

Gabriel Lewit: Who wants to go killing poor birdies?

Steve Lewit: Yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah. I was at the pet store the other day and they got rid of … They used to have dogs and cats there. Now they don’t. They just have birds, but they were so cute, the birds.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. I’ve always wanted a parrot.

Gabriel Lewit: They get annoying after a while.

Steve Lewit: Yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: They really do. They squawk and talk a lot.

Steve Lewit: Well, I wrote an article. I actually saw a video of this woman that actually talks to … I mean, she has a conversation with the parrot. It’s weird.

Gabriel Lewit: And interesting.

Steve Lewit: She goes into another room. She looks at a picture. This is very important folks for your money. She looks at a picture in another room in a closed room. And then the parrot will say what she sees on the picture. Now you go figure that.

Gabriel Lewit: That’s crazy.

Steve Lewit: That is crazy.

Gabriel Lewit: I like it though.

Steve Lewit: Yeah, I like it too.

Gabriel Lewit: All right, our last phrase on the smorgasbord of phrases here today is if your friends all jumped off a bridge, would you do it too? I guess that’s still somewhat … But you’ve heard that one. I’ve heard that one a million times in my life.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. My mother used to say something like that to me when I told … Like I said, “All my friends are playing football.”

Gabriel Lewit: “I’m headed out to the party, and there’s going to be some beer there.”

Steve Lewit: Yeah. “Well if they all jumped off of a bridge, would you follow them too?”

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah. Well, what is this speaking to? It’s actually investing, it’s called herd mentality. What does it mean? It means FOMO. You don’t want to be fear of missing out. You want to do what others are doing. But sometimes it’s important to ask yourself the question. The phrase of course is if you saw 10 of your friends randomly, I guess jumping off a bridge, you probably wouldn’t just do it without knowing why. Even though it’s a bit of a morbid phrase. And same with your investing. If randos out there are doing buying X, Y, or Z just because, doesn’t mean you should do it.

Steve Lewit: Well, look at Bitcoin. The crowd mentality, the herd mentality on Bitcoin got so strong. We had people coming in, very modest means and very little money, “Should I invest in Bitcoin? I’m missing the whole boat here. Everybody’s investing in Bitcoin.” And then look what happened.

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah, yeah. It’s a interesting thought out there, why people invest in what they invest in. And a lot of times you find out is because they’re doing it because other people are.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. Well, the market is driven on that.

Gabriel Lewit: It is a little bit. Yeah, that’s true.

Steve Lewit: On that emotion of, “Well, they’re getting in. I should get in, otherwise I’m going to miss it.”

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah, but you want to be cautious there. You definitely do.

All right. So any other phrases that you’ve got there, Mr. Lewit?

Steve Lewit: You know, I was just thinking of if I had any favorite ones. I use the phrase skin the cat, but I always apologize. Say, “Look, I’m sorry to say this so violently, but we could skin the cat.”

Gabriel Lewit: I just thought, I don’t know where, I didn’t think of this till this moment. You don’t look a gift horse in the mouth. Did you look that one up?

Steve Lewit: What’s a gift horse? Oh, someone gives you a horse, I guess.

Gabriel Lewit: I don’t know. Isn’t that a phrase?

Steve Lewit: And it’s a horrible horse.

Gabriel Lewit: Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.

Steve Lewit: Yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: Is it going to bite you?

Steve Lewit: No. It probably have bad teeth or something like that.

Gabriel Lewit: Bad breath.

Steve Lewit: Well, the horse’s breath is not great, but they might have bad teeth.

Gabriel Lewit: You know this from, you were up close and personal.

Steve Lewit: Up close and personal to a horse.

Gabriel Lewit: How do you know this? I mean, I assume it’s not great, but you sounded very-

Steve Lewit: Because my daughter rode horses for a … Your sister rode horses for a long time.

Gabriel Lewit: Oh yeah, that’s right. I forgot about that.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. Yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: That’s a horse of a different color.

Steve Lewit: Yes.

Gabriel Lewit: Sorry guys.

Steve Lewit: She got her exercise and-

Gabriel Lewit: We’re getting close to the holidays. I guess I’m losing my focus here on this.

Steve Lewit: She got her exercise and sports in at the same time.

Gabriel Lewit: There you go.

Steve Lewit: Killed two birds with one stone.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, that was a new one. Right.

All right. Well, with our time left, I’m going to switch a 180 here. I don’t have enough time to do our last topic justice. So I’m going to switch gears and do a get to know you Steve. I always got a couple backups of these just in case.

Guys, with the holidays coming up, Mr. Lewit here, the question is, what’s your favorite holiday of the entire year? I feel like I might have asked this before on a prior show, but I don’t know.

Steve Lewit: Yeah, you did. My favorite holiday hands down, unequivocally, no arguments, not a doubt in my mind is Thanksgiving. I love Thanksgiving.

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah, we did talk about this. Okay, I’m going to switch it up then.

Steve Lewit: Okay.

Gabriel Lewit: I’m going to switch it up.

Steve Lewit: I was going to give my Thanksgiving speech.

Gabriel Lewit: So it’s very dark these days because we’re in daylight savings time.

Steve Lewit: Not next year.

Gabriel Lewit: So, my question for you is, are you pro daylight savings time or anti daylight … permanent daylight savings time? It’s been bandied about in the legislature.

Steve Lewit: It’s been passed.

Gabriel Lewit: What?

Steve Lewit: They passed the law.

Gabriel Lewit: When?

Steve Lewit: A few months ago. Next year there is no daylight savings time.

Gabriel Lewit: I don’t think they passed it. I think they proposed it.

Steve Lewit: No, they passed it. Katie-

Gabriel Lewit: No. I don’t think you’re correct there.

Steve Lewit: I do think I’m correct because I hate daylight savings time.

Gabriel Lewit: I don’t think they did.

Steve Lewit: Well, you want to put a little bit on it, a little bet or something like that?

Gabriel Lewit: Remains, here, remains stalled in Congress.

Steve Lewit: No. So I read an article that said it was passed.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, that was in March, the US Senate unanimously passed, but it doesn’t mean that it’s fully passed.

Steve Lewit: Oh, maybe I misread. I thought it was fully passed.

Gabriel Lewit: All right, so you owe me. You can say it, I was right.

Steve Lewit: Well, it’s worse than that. I’ve been giving out this information at client meetings, at seminars. I’ve been disseminating incorrect information.

Gabriel Lewit: So you are pro not permanent, or no, you’re pro. I always forget which is which.

Steve Lewit: I don’t want to get dark at 4:30. It’s ridiculous.

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah, yeah.

Steve Lewit: You know what the argument is-

Gabriel Lewit: I’m with you on that one.

Steve Lewit: You know what the argument is on the other side? Statistically, more children get hurt or killed if they have to get up, travel to school in the dark.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, they also say it is more dangerous for kids walk into school in the dark in the morning, and they also say there’s some mental health benefits supposedly about natural circadian rhythms or something, something, something. I don’t know.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. And I’m not buying that one.

Gabriel Lewit: I still prefer it. So I guess we’re all half unhealthy. If it’s halfway, I’d rather just be fully unhealthy and have sunlight.

Steve Lewit: Yep.

Gabriel Lewit: Okay. Well, let’s see here. How about what do you prefer more winter, fall, summer or spring, of all the four seasons?

Steve Lewit: Spring and fall.

Gabriel Lewit: You can’t pick two.

Steve Lewit: I love the changing season.

Gabriel Lewit: You can’t pick two. You have to pick just one.

Steve Lewit: Just one?

Gabriel Lewit: Just one. If you had to live in a permanent season, which season would it be?

Steve Lewit: Spring.

Gabriel Lewit: Really?

Steve Lewit: Yeah. Maybe fall.

Gabriel Lewit: Permanent spring.

Steve Lewit: Maybe fall.

Gabriel Lewit: Permanent fall.

Steve Lewit: Maybe spring-fall.

Gabriel Lewit: You’re stranded on an island that you can choose one season forever.

Steve Lewit: Oh, I choose spring.

Gabriel Lewit: Spring.

Steve Lewit: Yeah. I like things coming alive.

Gabriel Lewit: Okay.

Steve Lewit: Yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: Cool.

Steve Lewit: I like fall for a different reason. But spring, if I had to pick one, I would choose life. How’s that for an approach?

Gabriel Lewit: There you go.

Steve Lewit: That’s my message today, folks, choose life.

Gabriel Lewit: All right. All right. Good to know.

Steve Lewit: What about you?

Gabriel Lewit: Me?

Steve Lewit: Yeah, you.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, do I get a how hot of a summer?

Steve Lewit: No, no, no.

Gabriel Lewit: Do I get Chicago summer or Florida summer?

Steve Lewit: No, I didn’t get like what temperature or anything like this. Which one would you prefer?

Gabriel Lewit: I choose a San Diego summer.

Steve Lewit: Why don’t you take Anita too, huh?

Gabriel Lewit: I guess I would pick a nice warm fall.

Steve Lewit: I could see that. Yeah.

Gabriel Lewit: Yeah.

Steve Lewit: I like those days too.

Gabriel Lewit: I feel like fall has warmer days than spring does on average, but still not as hot as summer. So I would go with fall.

Steve Lewit: All right.

Gabriel Lewit: There you go.

Steve Lewit: Interesting. Okay. What else you got?

Gabriel Lewit: That was it. That was our smorgasbord for today.

Steve Lewit: We’re done?

Gabriel Lewit: Well, yeah.

Steve Lewit: Oh.

Gabriel Lewit: That’s it. But folks, we’re not done with our shows for you. We’ve got more coming next week and that might be our final one before we may take a break over the Christmas and New Year’s holidays that are coming up. But of course if you have any questions, we’re here working any time other than the holidays themselves. Give us a call 847-499-3330 or go to Click the Contact button, send us your questions. You can also email us any point in time. We are here for you to take concepts and crazy metaphors and make them simple and easy and understandable.

Steve Lewit: We are a smorgasbord of services for you.

Gabriel Lewit: Indeed.

Steve Lewit: Indeed.

Gabriel Lewit: Well, take care and we’ll talk to you next time.

Steve Lewit: Stay well everybody.

Announcer: Thanks for listening to Our 2 Cents with Steve and Gabriel Lewit. For any questions about your finances, give SGL a call at 847-499-3330 or visit us on the web at and be sure to subscribe to join us on next week’s episode.

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