cbs news

Why it doesn’t pay to chase fund performance

CBS News

One of the most important investment decisions you make is in determining your asset allocation, or how you choose to divide your assets between risky and safe investments. Another key decision concerns which strategy to use when selecting the funds to implement your asset allocation plan. Should you be a buy-and-hold investor? Or should you…

Here’s the latest failing grade for active funds

CBS News

No one has a clear crystal ball allowing them to accurately forecast the future. So, it’s a good thing that predicting the results of Standard & Poor’s twice-yearly active-versus-passive scorecard doesn’t seem to require one. It’s a pretty safe bet that the results in each new scorecard — officially called the S&P Indices Versus Active…

Investing habits: The good and the bad

CBS News

Choosing good investments is a necessary condition for successful investing. But it’s also important to engage in good behavior once those investments have been selected. The most recent issue of AQR Capital Management’s quarterly newsletter for clients provides great insight into both the bad behaviors investors tend to engage in, as well as positive practices…

Markets keep defying experts and the news

CBS News

On Aug. 25, the S&P 500 index closed above 2,000 for the first time — finishing at 2,000.24. It had taken the index more than 16 years to double from its first close above 1,000 on Feb. 2, 1998, when it finished at 1,001.27. That 16-year span is more than five times as long as…

Index investing still wins in emerging markets

CBS News

A regular reader sent me the following email: “If you get the chance, I would appreciate you including a piece about whether the Franklin Templeton Developing Markets (TEDMX) fund adds value. Its manager, Mark Mobius, is always quoted as the guru and pioneer of emerging markets investing. Does he do any better than a passive…

Don’t-miss reads for investors

CBS News

It’s not too late to make some summer reading recommendations, and a quick review of my bookcase turned up some titles I think would be valuable for any investor. These books cover topics ranging from a detailed explanation of how the markets really work to the basic benefits of financial planning and some of the…

Actively managed funds flop in Europe, too

CBS News

For more than a decade now, Standard & Poor’s has been contributing to the debate over active versus passive investing by producing its S&P Indices Versus Active Funds, or SPIVA, scorecards. These twice-yearly scorecards evaluate the evidence concerning the performance of actively managed funds relative to their benchmarks. They show, year after year, that fewer…

Avoid this mistake about global diversification

CBS News

Don’t get stuck in your own backyard. Investors should consider building globally diversified equity portfolios that avoid the persistent and worldwide phenomenon of home-country bias. That’s when you allocate a greater weight to your home-country stocks than their percentage of total global market capitalization. Among the reasons investors around the world exhibit this bias is…

Will retiring boomers spark a stock bust?

CBS News

As if equity investors didn’t already have enough to worry about, one of the new concerns getting a lot of attention recently is that the baby boomer cohort — now starting to retire — will fund their retirement by selling equities. The “conventional wisdom” is that this supposed sell-off will result in a stock market…

Just ignore market and economic forecasts

CBS News

Stocks are about to plunge! Before you panic, this isn’t my forecast and it wasn’t made today. That was the warning from Wells Fargo strategist Gina Martin Adams on September 20, 2013. The S&P 500 index had closed the prior day at 1,726, and Adams was predicting a significant downturn in the market. Specifically, she forecast that the…

The real risk of rising interest rates

CBS News

More than three years ago, the bond “king,” PIMCO’s Bill Gross, announced that the world’s biggest bond fund had reduced its U.S. government-related debt holdings from 22 percent in December 2010 to just 12 percent in January 2011, at that time its lowest level in two years. Shortly thereafter, PIMCO announced it had entirely eliminated…

Did you sell in May?

CBS News

One of the more persistent investment myths is that it is a winning strategy to sell stocks in May and then wait to buy back into the market around November. The oft-repeated catch phrase is, “Sell in May and go away.” Well, this year if you sold your stocks in May, you would probably have…

Is there such a thing as smart beta?

CBS News

“Smart Beta” is a term that is cropping up more lately in professional investment management circles. It is essentially a way that professional investors tweak index funds in hopes of achieving higher returns than funds that simply mimic an index. In April, none other than Goldman Sachs Asset Management acquired a firm that specializes in…

What’s the best incentive scheme for fund managers?

CBS News

Here’s an argument hedge fund marketers make to tout hedge funds’ superiority over mutual funds. They point out that unlike mutual fund managers, who are paid solely based on assets under management, hedge fund managers also receive incentive compensation. The typical hedge fund compensation scheme is 2/20, or 2 percent of assets under management plus…

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