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  • Each managed strategy is called a sleeve strategy and is tracked in our system as a separate account.
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The Axxcess Platform Integrates with many existing technologies to create efficiency across your practice.

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Work on a per account, segment of client, or a fully integrated basis. Enhancing your business does not require you change everything you are doing all at once.

Risk-on, but turning more defensive

Nuveen’s 2019 Outlook, published in early December, told investors to expect a tougher climb. Since then, we’ve experienced a selloff in stocks and other risk assets followed by a strong recovery in the first quarter. That might have been even a tougher climb than we envisioned, but the sort of volatility and uncertainty that investors experienced over the past few months is, unfortunately, pretty typical in the late stages of economic and market cycles. And it’s a reminder of why we encourage our clients to remain invested through times of volatility. Even so, we think we’re in for a challenging environment for the rest of 2019.

Nuveen’s Global Investment Committee (GIC) met in March to discuss key questions that drive the investment decisions we are making for our clients: What’s changed since the end of last year? Does the shift in global monetary policy create more opportunities or more risks? And, most important, how are we preparing our clients’ portfolios for the environment to come?

Here’s where we came out: We think that while some things have changed around the margins, our macro fundamental views remain largely consistent with what we said a few months ago: Global economic growth has downshifted in the U.S., Europe and China, but we are not forecasting an imminent recession. Indeed, we think it is more likely than not that the global economy will start to recover later this year. Likewise, monetary policy has grown more accommodative. At some point, easy policy may start to cause inflation problems, but for now we think the Federal Reserve and other central banks seem to be promoting a “good enough” economic backdrop to support financial markets.

Global economic growth is slowing. Monetary policy and the political backdrop are growing less certain. And volatility may rise. The rest of 2019 presents challenges, yet we believe the markets offer many opportunities. And we continue to find a variety of investment ideas for our clients.

So, how are we investing in this sort of environment? Overall, Nuveen’s GIC believes that we remain in a risk-on world. The economic, market and credit cycle is long in the tooth, but it isn’t over quite yet. But there is an important caveat to our view: We find it highly improbable that the pace of gains we saw in the first quarter across many asset classes will persist in the coming months.

This leads us to our main investment theme we are considering across portfolios: the need to remain risk-on to meet our clients’ long-term objectives, while also seeking to find more defensive opportunities. This equates to favoring reasonably priced growth in equities, different credit sectors in fixed income, tactical positioning in our alternatives strategies and other ideas you’ll read about in the following sections.

Above all, we think 2019 will continue to be an environment where selectivity remains critical. For example, we generally favor equity and fixed income opportunities in emerging markets, but also believe the idiosyncratic nature of those markets means investors need to look carefully, conduct the right research and diligently scrutinize risk and reward tradeoffs — themes that hold true across all investment areas the GIC covers. And if that sounds like an argument for active management, it is. In all of our investment approaches, we think research, risk management and nimbleness will be the difference-maker this year.

This week UC Berkeley released a paper suggesting it could produce a two armed collaborative robot for just $5,000, a dramatic drop from the $25,000 price point of Baxter, the cobot that Rethink Robotics introduced in 2012. If Berkeley is able to scale its robot successfully, then the cost of industrial robots has been dropping at an annual rate of 20% per year. ARK’s previous forecast was that industrial robot costs would decline to roughly $11,000 by 2025, boosting their sales at a 31% compound annual growth rate from 380,000 units in 2017 to 3.4 million units. UC Berkeley’s work suggests that ARK may need to be more aggressive in modeling the cost trajectory of industrial robots.   Among the potential reasons for the accelerated decline in industrial robot costs are 3D printing and artificial intelligence (AI), the latter perhaps more important. Prototyping with 3D printing and AI has enabled design iterations at a rapid pace, but AI’s impact on motion control probably has been more responsible for the dramatic decline in costs. Most robots are “over manufactured” for their actual use cases, for good reason: traditional programming is inflexible, placing more constraints on and adding more requirements to the manufacturing process.  Incorporating AI into motion control, manufacturers can build robots with fewer sensors and unnecessary capabilities (like weight lifting), optimizing their functionality.   This cost decline is comparable to that in computing during the shift from mainframes to PCs, which led to the democratization of computing. Few people are anticipating the unit growth in and proliferation of robots likely to take place during the next five to ten years.

Louis Navellier’s latest Market Outlook for Advisors

January 14, 2019|by Catherine Wood, ARK Invest CEO|DigitalHealthIndustrialTags:big ideasDisruptive Innovation

History is replete with examples of businesses and consumers ignoring or dismissing big ideas, particularly those associated with disruptive innovation. In 1876, for example, when Alexander Graham Bell was granted the official patent for the telephone, many businesses dismissed it as irrelevant or insignificant. Famously, Western Union took a pass on buying the patent.1Likewise, many considered the automobile just a curiosity or a fad. In 1899, The Literary Digest magazine summarized the prevailing response in this way: “The ordinary ‘horseless carriage’ is at present a luxury for the wealthy; and although its price will probably fall in the future, it will never, of course, come into as common use as the bicycle.”2

Despite its potential, innovation typically needs time and maturity before gaining mass market adoption. Consequently, with a focus on benchmarks, sectors, and short-term performance, traditional investment managers often minimize or misunderstand its potential.

Through an open research process that cuts across sectors, industries, and markets, ARK seeks to identify innovation platforms with dramatic cost declines, strong price elasticity of demand, and convergence which spawns further innovation.3 Today, we believe that artificial intelligence, energy storage, robotics, genome sequencing, and blockchain technology are the innovation platforms leading the global economy into what could be the most transformative period in history.

ARK Invest Big Ideas 2019 Innovation Impact

While we expect each of these innovation platforms to create multiple trillions in market capitalization, the deflationary boom that they are creating, particularly as they converge, is throwing off the meaning of certain economic signals, importantly the yield curve. Today, equity markets fear the impact of a “bearish flattening”, but we believe that a “bullish flattening” is underway as technologically-enabled innovation platforms and productivity gains evolve into a “deflationary boom” the likes of which we have not seen since the late 1800s.  During the 50 years ended 1929, the yield curve was inverted more than half of the time as the disruptive innovation platforms of that day – the automobile (internal combustion engine), telephone, and electricity – unleashed periods of extraordinary real growth at low rates of inflation. The steepest inversions occurred during periods of the most rapid growth in real GDP. We would not be surprised to see this seeming “disconnect” during the next few years, but investors will have to extend their time horizons and their understanding of economic history to understand the economic impact of these profound technological breakthroughs.

To illustrate the impact of innovation and excite investors about the opportunities, each year we publish “Big Ideas”, a selection of our original research highlighting the technological breakthroughs we believe will advance significantly over the coming year. Thanks to the five foundational innovation platforms, we believe these technologies are ready for prime time.


1. Deep Learning –
Is it a larger opportunity than the Internet?

2. Digital Wallets –
Could they spell the end of traditional banks?

3. Cryptocurrencies –
Are we witnessing the rise of an alternative financial system?

4. Battery Cost Tipping Point –
Could EVs become cheaper than comparable gas-powered cars?

5. Autonomous Taxi Networks –
Will they become the most valuable investment opportunity in public equity markets?

6. Next Generation DNA Sequencing –
Could it unlock the code to life, disease, and death?

7. CRISPR For Human Therapeutics –
Will health care become cheaper and curative?

8. Collaborative Robots –
Will robots be your next co-worker?

9. 3D Printing for End-Use Parts –
Will manufacturing ever be the same?

To read our research report and understand how we modeled our estimates, we invite you to download Big Ideas 2019!

As always, we hope you enjoy, question, and share your thoughts with us!


ARK’s statements are not an endorsement of any company or a recommendation to buy, sell or hold any security. For a list of all purchases and sales made by ARK for client accounts during the past year that could be considered by the SEC as recommendations, click here. It should not be assumed that recommendations made in the future will be profitable or will equal the performance of the securities in this list. For full disclosures, click here.


El Segundo, Calif. (January 11, 2019) – Griffin Capital Company, LLC (“Griffin Capital”), a leading private investment firm and one of the nation’s premier alternative investment advisors, today announced the achievement of several significant milestones in 2018. The company raised and issued $1.6 billion* of investor capital in 2018, an increase of 10 percent over 2017. The company has raised $11.6 billion in investor equity capital inflows to its investment programs and funds since January 2012.

The company’s Institutional Access® interval funds made up the majority of the investor inflows for the year at $1.1 billion, of which $1.0 billion was raised for the Griffin Institutional Access Real Estate Fund. Griffin Institutional Access Real Estate fund also grew its assets under management to $2.8 billion as of December 31, 2018.

“We are extremely proud to have brought to market timely investment opportunities exhibiting strong performance, which resonates with investors,” said Mark Goldberg, CEO of Griffin Capital Securities. “As a firm, we are keenly focused on delivering investors superior risk-adjusted returns with less correlation and lower volatility relative to the traded markets.”

The company also announced in previous releases two significant milestones about its flagship REIT, Griffin Capital Essential Asset® REIT (“GCEAR”).

In December 2018, GCEAR and Griffin Capital Essential Asset REIT II, Inc. (“GCEAR II”) entered into a definitive agreement to merge in an all-stock transaction, creating a $4.75 billion, self-managed REIT, which generates significant benefits for shareholders, including substantial cost savings, increased operating efficiencies, and immediate accretion to earnings and cash flow. The merger will combine two highly complementary portfolios with similar construction and investment mandates, significantly increasing the size, scale, and diversification of the combined company.

In August 2018, GCEAR announced the execution of a $250 million purchase agreement for Perpetual Preferred Shares. The first tranche of the Series A Preferred Shares were purchased in their entirety by SHBNPP Global Professional Investment Type Private Real Estate Trust No. 13 (H), a trust sponsored by Hana Financial Investment, the sole bookrunner. The lead investor in the trust is NH Investment & Securities and Shinhan BNP Paribas Asset Management is the trust asset manager. “To issue a perpetual preferred share offering acquired in its entirety by Korean investors is groundbreaking and followed over two years of relationship building,” commented Kevin A. Shields, Chairman and CEO of Griffin Capital Company.

Mr. Shields, reflecting on 2018, added, “I could not be more pleased with our achievements in 2018. We have been guided by the same investment philosophy for more than 20 years: delivering significant value to our clients by maintaining a consistent focus on capital preservation and durable income through all market environments. We at Griffin Capital are excited about our prospects in 2019, and will maintain our steadfast commitment to innovation, discipline, foresight, and teamwork that brought us here today. We will continue to passionately pursue positive results for investors with the capital they entrust with us.”

About Griffin Capital Company, LLC

Griffin Capital Company, LLC (“Griffin Capital”) is a leading alternative investment asset manager. Founded in 1995, Griffin Capital has owned, managed, sponsored or co-sponsored approximately $16.8 billion in assets. The privately held firm is led by a seasoned team of senior executives with more than two decades of investment and real estate experience and who collectively have executed more than 650 transactions valued at over $22 billion.

Griffin Capital’s alternative investment solutions include three groups of complementary products: non-listed real estate investment trusts (REITs), interval funds in the company’s Institutional Access fund family and Delaware Statutory Trusts (DSTs). The firm’s investment strategies include diversified core real estate and global corporate credit securities, as well as direct real estate ownership in sector-specific portfolios focused on net leased essential office and industrial assets, clinical healthcare properties, grocery-anchored shopping centers and multifamily real estate assets. These solutions include: Griffin-American Healthcare REIT IV, Griffin Capital Essential Asset REIT II, Griffin Institutional Access Credit Fund, Griffin Institutional Access Real Estate Fund, Griffin Institutional Property Exchange DSTs and Phillips Edison Grocery Center REIT III. Griffin Capital Securities, LLC, Member FINRA/SIPC, is the dealer manager for non-traded programs sponsored by Griffin Capital Company, LLC and the exclusive wholesale marketing agent for the Company’s interval funds.

Additional information is available at

*Includes equity from Distribution Reinvestment Plan (DRP)

Good Afternoon,

Last week we made another allocation shift to further reduce our equity exposure from 50% to 20%, putting the strategy in its most defensive posture.  Cash and bonds (currently a short-duration U.S. Treasury ETF) now constitute 80% of the portfolio.  Previously, we reduced equity from 65% to 50% in October.


Our objective is not to forecast the short-term moves of the stock market, which we feel is a fool’s errand.  Rather, we aim to identify whether broad financial conditions are supportive of stock investing and adjust portfolio exposures accordingly to help navigate long market cycles.  To that end, we monitor a broad range of data that in combination have historically proven to be reliable indicators.


Our allocation shift in October was primarily driven by worsening changes in credit markets.  A simple interpretation is that market price changes reflected a reduction in liquidity and participants’ willingness to bear risk.  Our recent shift was informed by worsening trends across equity, credit and other macro data.


Driven by a small group of technology stocks, the market has delivered above average performance for quite some time. A pullback should not come as a big surprise.  However, markets tend to work in cycles and have a history of reverting to averages.  For many investors, it’s easy to let emotions influence decisions in ways that can be counterproductive.   With this in mind, DRIV Core is designed to offer a data-focused foundation to navigate times like these.


We will continue to monitor key data.  When market and financial conditions improve, we will look to increase our exposure to stocks and take advantage of future opportunities.


Sales Notes:

DRIV Core may be a fit for several different client situations.  Specific client details should be discussed.


  1. Timid investors – Not sure when to get in or out of the market?  Tired of making ill-timed decisions?  Don’t let emotions rule the day.   DRIV Core can offer data-driven allocation guidance over the course of long-term market cycles.


  1. Stock investors who have downside sensitivities – Need stock market returns to help grow your portfolio but can’t handle the downside?  DRIV Core seeks to participate in the stock market during bull markets and limit exposure during bear markets.


  1. Balanced investors who want a managed allocation – Do you think your 60/40 portfolio should hold the same percentage of stocks at all times?  Age and risk tolerance are important, but so are market conditions.  DRIV Core can be used to improve upon static allocations.


  1. Tactical piece of a larger pie – Do you have a large portfolio of stocks and bonds.  Consider adding a tactical allocation sleeve in the “middle” of the portfolio to help make your portfolio more adaptable to market cycles.  Example: 40% stocks, 20% DRIV Core, 40% bonds.


Additional Notes:

·         Our DRIV Core strategy returned approximately -4.70% for 2018, exceeding our Morningstar Tactical Category peer group which lost -7.88%.

·         In January 2018 we held an allocation of 65% equity and 35% bonds.  At that time, 20% of the equity was invested in developed international stocks, a top performer in 2017.  We reduced international in July.

·         In October 2018 we shifted stocks down from 65% to 50% and further reduced international exposure.

·         As of January 2, 2019 we hold 20% equity and 80% bonds.  Among stocks, we favor large caps with a slight tilt toward value.  In the bond portion of the portfolio, we currently favor short-duration Treasuries.


Please feel free to contact us anytime at 312-429-0880, or visit our website.

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