The challenge ahead after Sandy’s destructive wrath

Hurricane Sandy wreaked havoc on the east coast last week. We got to see some of the damage first hand as we are located in the New Jersey Shore area. There were massive power outages, downed trees, and gas shortages. Beckerman Institutional is fully operational and luckily we have functioning power and internet service.

However, many of our neighbors in low lying areas such as Seaside Heights, Atlantic City, Point Pleasant, and Long Beach Island were not so lucky. In some spots there was devastating wind and water damage. In the aftermath there were millions of people that were without power, although the utilities workers are doing a wonderful and relentless job at restoring power. Our hearts go out to all of those who have been impacted.

As a courtesy FEMA (the Federal Emergency Management Agency) is offering different kinds of disaster assistance for those who have suffered losses during the storm.  Please refer to their  website for information on their programs including disaster recovery aid, small business loans, and response and recovery services.

Many homeowners may feel that they are unable to recoup damage from their property insurance policy because of their hurricane deductibles. However, because the storm was not technically classified as a hurricane, the insurers may not be able to enforce these deductibles.

When making charitable contributions for Hurricane Sandy, please be sure to research and contact organizations on your own accord. Legitimate charities generally will not actively solicit for donations immediately after a tragedy. There have been numerous instances of fraud during past crisis periods such as 911 and Hurricane Irene.

Do not provide any of your personal information such as credit card numbers to unsolicited third parties. If you are dealing with a new contractor do not pay in full for services up front. Ask for proof from the contractor that subcontractors have been paid.

There will be a rebuilding effort going forward and some companies will benefit from that. Investors may want to consider investing in companies such as Lowes (LOW) and Home Depot (HD). As Americans, we have often supported our friends and neighbors during their time of need. Please think about simple things that you can do such as lending a gas can or a generator to those without power. For those of you who were affected by the storm, we wish you a quick return to normalcy.

Certain investments discussed are held in client accounts as of October 31. These investments may or may not be currently held in client accounts. The reader should not assume that any investments identified were or will be profitable or that any investment recommendations or investment decisions we make in the future will be profitable.

Certain investments discussed in this presentation are for illustrative purposes only and there is no assurance that the adviser will make any investments with the same or similar characteristics as any investments presented. The investments are presented for discussion purposes only and are not a reliable indicator of the performance or investment profile of any composite or client account. Further, the reader should not assume that any investments identified were or will be profitable or that any investment recommendations or investment decisions made by model managers in the future will be profitable.

Certain information contained in this presentation is based upon forward-looking statements, information and opinions, including descriptions of anticipated market changes and expectations of future activity. The manager believes that such statements, information and opinions are based upon reasonable estimates and assumptions. However, forward-looking statements, information and opinions are inherently uncertain and actual events or results may differ materially from those reflected in the forward-looking statements. Therefore, undue reliance should not be placed on such forward-looking statements, information and opinions.