Resources

Low Vol Advantage Not What You’d Expect

ETF

One of the problems for the first formal asset pricing model developed by financial economists, the Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM), was that it predicted a positive relationship between risk and return. However, empirical studies have found the actual relationship to be flat, or even negative. Over the last 50 years, the most “defensive” stocks…

Choosing Between Roth & Traditional IRAs

ETF

Among the most important decisions investors make is their choice of location for assets within the various alternatives available for retirement (tax-advantaged) accounts. Allocating between a traditional IRA (a pretax, tax-deferred account) and a Roth IRA (a post-tax, tax-free account) can have a pronounced impact on retirement outcomes, given the $14 trillion in tax-advantaged retirement…

Is Your Attitude Toward Work Killing Your Retirement Dreams?

Do you have a generally positive or negative impression of the word “retirement”? I ask because it dovetails nicely with a series of questions (inspired by Rick Kahler) that I use to begin most speaking engagements. These questions are designed to incite self-awareness, offering us clues about how our life experiences have shaped the (often…

Mispricing Drives the Value Premium

There’s extensive literature documenting that value stocks (the stocks of companies with low prices relative to a valuation metric, such as earnings, book value, cash flow or sales) possess a strong, persistent and pervasive tendency to outperform growth stocks. While there’s no debate about the existence of the value premium, there’s a major debate about…

Costs Of Socially Responsible Investing

ETF

Socially responsible investing (SRI) aligns ethical and financial concerns for investors. SRI has gradually developed over time to include the consideration of firms’ environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance. Of note is that, while SRI has evolved, the original practice of negative screening for the stocks of companies involved in harmful or controversial activities (so-called…

Virtues Of Do It Yourself Bond Laddering

ETF

Bond ladders are frequently criticized in the financial media and even among some professional advisors (who, I would point out, are often able to use only bond mutual funds or ETFs). Earlier this week, we corrected some common misperceptions regarding individually tailored laddered municipal bond portfolios. Today we’ll move on to the many advantages of…

Reconsidering Corporate Bonds

ETF

A number of articles were written at the end of 2008 noting the fact that, for the prior 40-year period, stocks had not outperformed safer bonds. For the period 1969 through 2008, the S&P 500 Index returned 9%, and so did long-term (20-year) Treasury bonds. Results for large-cap growth and small-cap growth stocks were even…

Declining Or Rising Equity Strategy In Retirement?

ETF

Traditional retirement planning calls for gradually reducing an investor’s equity allocation and increasing the allocation to safe bonds. Perhaps the most well-known example of this concept is the adage that your stock allocation should be equal to 100 minus your age (or with now-longer life expectancies, 110 minus your age). The gradually declining equity (DE)…

New Factors That May Not Be

ETF

Portfolio-based risk factors are identified through diversified, zero-cost, long/short portfolios that may link stock returns to systematic risk. There is a substantial amount of evidence in the academic literature that some portfolio-based risk factors explain well the cross section of stock returns. Using a size factor and value factor in addition to the market factor,…

Value & Momentum A Powerful Combo

ETF

Two of the most powerful explanatory factors in finance are value and momentum. Research on both has been published for more than 20 years. However, it was not until recently that the two have been studied in combination and across markets. The study “Value and Momentum Everywhere” by Clifford Asness, Tobias Moskowitz and Lasse Pedersen,…

Value and Momentum Are a Powerful Combo

Two of the most powerful explanatory factors in finance are value and momentum. Research on both has been published for more than 20 years. However, it was not until recently that the two have been studied in combination and across markets. The study “Value and Momentum Everywhere” by Clifford Asness, Tobias Moskowitz and Lasse Pedersen,…

A Free Lunch for Investors

Huffington Post

Nobel laureate Milton Friedman is generally credited with stating, “There’s no such thing as a free lunch.” Actually, if you know what you are doing, you can get a free lunch in investing. Unfortunately, most investors get stuck with very expensive meals. Diversification is a free lunch Diversification is a free lunch. It basically refers…

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