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Waddell & Reed president visits Great Bend
biz slt Waddell
Waddell & Reed Inc. President Derek Burke speaks at the annual shareholder appreciation dinner, Tuesday, Sept. 6, at the Great Bend Convention Center. - photo by Susan Thacker/Great Bend Tribune

This year’s keynote speaker at the Waddell & Reed shareholder appreciation dinner in Great Bend was company President Derek Burke.
At the dinner held Sept. 6 at the Great Bend Convention Center, Burke thanked shareholders for their business and talked about the Waddell & Reed financial advisors’ philosophy of looking at years, rather than quarters, when investing.
Overland Park-based Waddell & Reed Inc. was started in 1937, and is now a publicly traded company (NYSE: WDR), with offices in 49 states. Next year the company will celebrate its 80th anniversary.
“I want to thank you for your business and confidence in us,” Burke said.
“We’ve seen the good times and the bad times; you have to take the long-term perspective. Our whole investment philosophy is not based on the short term.”
District Manager Randy Bahe, who worked for Waddell & Reed in Great Bend before moving to the division office in Salina in 2013, also attended the dinner. Advisors were excited to welcome Burke, he said. “How many national companies would send their president to Great Bend, Kansas?”
Also speaking at the meeting and providing the mid-year outlook was Regional Director of Planning & Practice Development Michael Lobmeyer. He commented on factors that contribute to the volatile market and how to incorporate them into financial planning, but he stressed that investors with specific questions should consult their financial advisor.
“We’ve had a bumpy ride the first half of the year,” Lobmeyer said. Things to watch now that may affect the market are slow economic growth, interest rate uncertainty, oil prices and the looming presidential election.
Unsettled crude oil prices are expected for the remainder of the year, Lobmeyer said. “As oil goes, so goes the market.” A graph of oil prices and the value of the dollar over time shows they have historically gone up and down together, although past results are no guarantee of future results.
After the price of gasoline came down, many people used the savings to pay off credit card debt, he observed. Now that the savings has continued, consumer discretionary spending has increased.
As for the election, there are implications regardless of who wins. The next administration will need to address foreign and domestic issues, including economic issues. However, stock prices normally rise after any presidential election “because one uncertainty is settled.”
Other sectors that may offer investment potential through the end of the year include health care, including record keeping; technology; and real estate.