Shrinking Slices, More Options, And Saying No

Fifty-seven thousand, five hundred and twelve. That’s the number of global funds launched between January 2005 and 2013. Just to be clear, that is not the number of funds in existence over that period, it’s the number of brand new funds. This mind blowing number comes from an excellent new Morningstar study, The Rise and Fall…

My Investing Mentors

Everybody who ever invested a dime in the market had a mentor. And if they didn’t have one when they started, it probably didn’t take long before they went searching for help. Jesse Livermore said “there is nothing new on Wall Street,” and because there is nothing new, lessons learned 10, 20, and even 100…

One Thing We Can All Agree On

There are few things that active and passive investors agree upon, but you won’t find too many people on either side of the aisle who supports closet indexers. Pretty much everyone is in full agreement that mutual funds that look like their benchmark and charge high fees should disappear yesterday. If you are going to…

Separating Decisions

The amount of time between the scary events taking place in our country and all over the world seems to be narrowing at a rapid pace. The human tragedies that the world is experiencing are unthinkable and beyond sad to watch. But looking at the market’s response to crisis, we learn that no financial decisions,…

Long-Term, Really Long-Term, And What You Should Focus On

William Bernstein has an interesting stat on the really, really long-term returns of stocks, in his book Deep Risk. The second half of the twentieth century was extraordinarily kind to global investors, but the first was not. Brian Taylor of Global Financial Data Inc. notes that during the tragic half century between 1899 and 1949,…

Elevator Down, Elevator Up

If you’re reading this, you probably already know that the S&P 500 made a new all-time high today. The streak ended at 285 days, the longest stretch without a new high since the 2007 peak was taken out. What’s particularly interesting when looking at all of the previous highs is that they tend to happen all…

Bizarro World

The typical long/short equity strategy- the one that Alfred Winslow Jones used in the 1950s to put hedge funds on the map- goes long cheap stocks and short expensive ones. It’s fair to say that Jones would be shocked at the current market environment. Recently, Mondelez put in a bid to buy Hershey, which would bring…

The Market’s Response To Crisis

The most important thing long-term investors need to see today is the market’s response to crisis, courtesy of Dimensional Funds. The chart above should put the Brexit in perspective. Nobody knows yet what the implications will be, but I’m pretty confident that this is no more significant than any of the six events above. Now…

Simplexity

Nick Murray once said “if you want to suppress volatility, you will suppress returns.” This definitely applies to many investors who either try to time the market on their own, or turn to complex and often times dangerous strategies designed to deliver stock like returns with bond like risk. Such a strategy by definition, cannot…

Going Out On Top

Warren Buffett began his investment partnership in 1957 at 25 years old. He started with $105,100 and seven limited partners; his mother, sister, aunt, father-in-law, brother-in-law, college roommate and lawyer. He charged no management fee, took 25% percent of any gains beyond a cumulative 6%, and agreed to personally absorb a percentage of any losses….