Amelia Island Lures Big Leaguers

Amelia Island is now displaying big-league financial connections, to go with our heralded affiliations with sports, movies and automobiles.

CNBC's "Squawk Box" Live Interview, Steve Liesman, Amelia Island 5-20-2019
CNBC’s “Squawk Box”, Steve Liesman, Reporting From Amelia Island 5-20-2019

Editor’s note: Contributing columnist, Steve Nicklas, expresses his views and insight on various topics in Marketplace column.

–Steve’s Marketplace —

Amelia Island is now displaying big-league financial connections, to go with our heralded affiliations with sports, movies and automobiles.

An interview last week of a Federal Reserve Bank president by a prominent financial reporter is proof enough. The interview was televised from the serene setting outside the Amelia Island Plantation conference center.

In the interview, CNBC’s Steve Liesman questioned Raphael Bostic, who heads the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, about his outlook on the U.S. economy, interest rates, etc. In the corner of the televised screen, the words “Amelia Island, Fla.” (and other times “Fernandina Beach, FL”), stood out like a stately live oak.

Bostic had interesting comments regarding trade negotiations with China, business spending and sentiment, and how these issues could impact the economy:

  • “Suppose that the trade negotiations end up in a beneficial way for the U.S. economy, we might see a lot of the uncertainty go away, and this could trigger investment and heat up the economy quickly.”
  •         –“There are a lot of businesses that are standing on the sidelines just waiting to see how this resolves, and once that happens capital will be deployed in ways that should increase productivity and production.”
  •         –“My base case is that the U.S. economy will continue to perform in a very solid way with solid growth.”

Liesman is a straightforward veteran reporter who doesn’t mingle political feelings with his craft. His questions were direct, succinct. You don’t see that often these days. And, in response, Bostic was forthcoming and conversational (especially for a Federal Reserve official).

Steve Liesman (CNBC) Was On Air Live From Amelia Island At FEDSPEAK Conference May 20, 2019
Steve Liesman (CNBC) On Air Live From Amelia Island, FEDSPEAK Conference

 Amelia Island has welcomed many prominent people. Some have spoken here (Edwin Meese, former attorney general under Ronald Reagan; football coach and commentator Lou Holtz). Some have visited here (Michael Jackson, Faith Hill, Jay Leno, John Travolta, Demi Moore). Others celebrities live here (authors John Grisham, David Baldacci). And still others performed here (Faith Hill in a music video, Chris Evert on a tennis court).

 We’ve hosted the NFL owners’ meetings, a professional women’s tennis tournament televised on ESPN, a celebrity-ridden car event, the “Big Break” show on the Golf Channel. These have heightened the status and notoriety of our area, while offering people-watching episodes for residents.

 If we now become a hotbed of business/financial activity, it will only add to our blossoming reputation. While major companies have held events at our superb resorts, we have yet to bring in many top business/financial officials.

 This appears to be changing. It could be money in the bank for our storybook community. Let’s turn that page. ____________

Steve Nicklas Financial Advisor
Steve Nicklas, Financial Advisor

 Steve Nicklas is a financial advisor for a regional U.S. brokerage firm who lives and works on Amelia Island. He is also an award-winning columnist. His columns appear regularly in several newspapers in North Florida and South Georgia, and on his website: He has also published a book, “All About Money,” consisting of his favorite columns over the past 20 years. The book is available at local stores and on Amazon. He can be reached at 904-753-0236 or at [email protected].

Adult Ed Investing Classes

The “Investing in Today’s Financial Markets” adult-education class will be offered in June 2019 at the Nassau County Council on Aging in Fernandina Beach.

The four-week class has been offered at Florida State College in Yulee since 2001, and at area businesses and non-profit agencies. Local financial advisor Steve Nicklas teaches the class.

The class covers all aspects of the financial markets, including stocks, bonds, mutual funds, ETFs, annuities, insurance, etc., along with financial/retirement planning. Sessions will be held on Monday evenings from 5-6:30 p.m. (June 3, 10, 17 and 24). For additional information or to register, visit the Council on Aging website at or call 904-261-0701.