Investment Philosophy

Our Purposeful Investment Philosophy

Over the past 25 years, we have developed and refined a consistent, strategic investment philosophy supported by a significant body of academic research. We believe that a widely diversified portfolio of investments tailored to each client’s unique risk tolerance level and financial goals is key to financial success. A study conducted by an independent research firm found that the average return of the S&P 500 for the 20-year period ending December 31, 2017 was 7.2% per year, yet the average equity investor earned only 5.3%.* Why? Most individual investors gravitate toward the next “hot” investment and let emotions rule their portfolio. The goal of our approach is to take the emotion out of investing in order to capture market returns while minimizing volatility.

* Source: Quantitative Analysis of Investor Behavior: 2018 QAIB Report” DALBAR, Inc., 2018.

Diligence, Discipline & Diversification

Many investors believe that managing their investments actively is more likely to lead to success, but when they make their own investment decisions, they may not even be fully aware of how emotional their investing strategies are. This emotional or undisciplined approach to investing has consequences. Over the long term, individuals who try to manage their investments actively are less likely to be successful than those who buy and hold their investments. They want to buy into the market when it is going up, and will sell when it is coming down.

Our investment program is a fee-based, highly diversified, low-cost, passive investment strategy, using primarily the mutual funds of Dimensional Fund Advisors, based on an investment philosophy derived from decades of academic research in financial and market theory. We believe that by investing in a variety of asset classes, using a disciplined approach, the program will provide a reasonable return over the long term while managing risk, which will ultimately result in a sustainable investment strategy. This program's goal is to help clients achieve their financial goals by overcoming the pitfalls of emotional investing, such as trying to time the markets and chase hot funds and asset classes. Instead we implement a disciplined and well-diversified portfolio that benefits from random asset class movements. There are four main elements to the program: Customization, Risk Management, Market Returns, and Account Aggregation. For more information about each of these core concepts we invite you to read more about our approach in our Investment Philosophy brochure.

The Story Behind Forum

Forum Financial Management, LP serves a variety of affluent clients including individuals, business owners, corporate and medical professionals, and their families. We define wealth management as helping clients establish and implement strategies that will help them achieve their financial goals.

We believe successful, intelligent clients need
independent, experienced advice to achieve their financial goals.

Long-Standing Reputation

The partners of Forum have been recognized nationally within the financial planning industry for their leadership as well as for their impact on their communities. Our advisors regularly support, through their time and donations, charitable organizations in our local communities including Climb to Safety, DuPage PADS, Lurie Children's Foundation, Special Olympics Illinois, and Tails for Life.

Forum's History

Several of the Forum partners founded the Terra Financial Companies Ltd., and Terra Securities Corporation, a nationally recognized broker/dealer firm, more than 25 years ago. During this time the partners developed a core investment philosophy that diversified portfolios tailored to a client’s risk tolerance level enable clients to achieve their goals while reducing overall portfolio volatility. The very successful investment advisory firm was sold to GE in 1998, and ultimately spun off as part of Genworth Financial Services several years later. The majority of our current partners were affiliated with Terra prior to the sale, and continued to be affiliated with Genworth while doing business as Forum Financial Management, LP. Our strong growth combined with the desire to establish a totally independent and fee-based firm led to the establishment of Forum Financial Management, LP as an independent Registered Investment Advisor.

Read more about our approach