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How often we've heard, and used, the phrase 'time flies' without giving it much thought. The phrase paints a picture of time flying away from us almost whimsically, like a butterfly, naturally and unburdened. The term actually derives from the Latin, tempis fugit, and originally appeared in Virgil's Georgics - as fugit inreparabile tempus or "it escapes, irretrievable time." Fugit forms the root of our word fugitive, painting a different picture of the flight of time than our butterfly, irretrievably escaping like a thief.

The Labor Department’s new fiduciary rule is an implicit endorsement of the business model we follow in serving our clients everyday - to act in their best individual and unique interests. While lofty in its proposal, the ultimate DOL rule will fall short of sweeping change for the financial services industry, due primarily to the efforts of the lobbying and political weight of Wall Street, banks, and insurers. The new rule for now, is focused solely on retirement services like 401ks and IRAs.

The Federal Reserve continues to be the guiding light for stock and bond investors. This week Fed Chair Janet Yellen said in a speech “Given the risks to the outlook, I consider it appropriate for the committee to proceed cautiously in adjusting policy.” Following the last meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee on March 15-16, the Fed sharply reduced its projected path of interest-rate rises this year, forecasting a total increase of half a percentage point, down from the full percentage point increase they expected in December. “The major thing that’s changed between December and March that affects the baseline outlook is a slightly weaker projected pace of global growth,” she said. “Global developments pose ongoing risks,” she added, citing specifically the dangers posed by the economic slowdown in China and the collapse in the price of oil, according to reports in the WSJ.

Every four years about this time a popular question arises - 'if so-and-so is elected, how will the stock market react? It's a fair question because presidents set the tone for government policy for the coming four or eight years. These policies can be beneficial or harmful to various businesses and industries, directly impacting their profits and stock prices.

Persistence is defined as "continuing without change in function or structure." Webster's second definition of politics is "a person's opinions about the management of government." Persistence describes a purposeful struggle against shifting winds to hold a course, while politics and politicians seem more and more purposeful in going with the shifts.

We had some really bad weather this week in North Carolina (as did other places in the Southeast). Between tornadoes and severe thunderstorms and all that accompanies those events, it was probably enough to make you think more deeply than you're accustomed to about what's really important.

Today's Brief is inspired by Seth Godin's blog entitled How to talk about your project. We've taken the liberty of broadening Seth's focus from project to "life goals." Like Seth encourages his readers to look beyond marketing, we encourage you to think big picture, of purpose, life goals, and how you communicate them 'strategically, to yourself, your partners, your coaches and your investors (yes you have investors).'

Keep-PoundingFor those of you who are not inclined to pay close attention to sports headlines, the Super Bowl is this Sunday. It is the 50th Super Bowl to be played, and will find the Carolina Panthers facing the Denver Broncos in Santa Clara, California. Even if you care nothing for the game of football, it promises to be an event worth watching.

Evidence is mounting that the US economy is not immune to the contagion of the global economic slowdown. The Commerce Department announced today that the US economy expanded at an anemic (seasonally adjusted) 0.7% in the fourth quarter. This compares to advances of 2% in third quarter and 3.9% in second quarter of last year. Some argue that seasonal adjustments currently used by government statisticians do not reflect the evolving economy, but it's hard to see how the economy escapes the downdrafts of global slowing, an unprecedented drop in oil prices and a surging dollar.