Resources

A Free Lunch for Investors

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 to the…

2016’s ‘Best City In The World’ Goes To…

Charleston, South Carolina.  According to Travel + Leisure magazine, “Charleston is a remarkably dynamic place, so it’s no surprise that it has achieved its highest ranking ever in our survey as the year’s best city in the world.” It’s the first time a U.S. city has received the top honor, but Charleston ranked No. 2 last year and…

Virtues of Do It Yourself Bond Laddering

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 owning…

The Top 10 Myths About 401(k) Plans

Regular pre-tax deductions toward a retirement plan balance figure into a lot of employees’ paychecks, but many people don’t fully understand how the fund they’re contributing to works. Tim Maurer debunks ten common myths about 401(k) plans. Find it on CNBC.com By clicking on any of the links above, you acknowledge that they are solely…

Digging Into The Profitability Premium

ETF

It has been well-documented that profitability is positively correlated with stock returns. Firms with higher profits earn higher returns. The profitability factor has also been shown to eliminate most of the well-known anomalies that can represent problems for the Fama-French four-factor model (i.e., returns that cannot be explained by exposure to the factors of beta,…

Meaningless Titles and Empty Promises in the Money Business

New York Times

I fear the clever marketing in the traditional financial services industry continues to confuse many people. They see the title “financial adviser,” “financial planner” or “financial” anything and expect to receive unbiased advice. This concern makes me think of the sketch above, which I shared many years ago in a different context. Some expectations of…

Bond Ladders Unfairly Demonized

ETF

I often hear criticisms from the financial media and some professional advisors about the use of bond ladders. Whenever the criticism comes from professional advisors, however, I’ve noticed it generally involves firms that use only bond mutual funds or ETFs instead of individual, tailored bond portfolios, whether in the form of a bond ladder or…

Consider Factors in Fixed Income

It’s been well-documented that, in equity investing, assets have earned premiums because they are exposed to the risks of a certain factor. Given that the literature provides us with a veritable factor “zoo” (there are more than 300), for investors to consider adding exposure to a factor, it should meet the following criteria: Persistent: It…

2016’s ‘Best City In The World’ Goes To…

Charleston, South Carolina. According to Travel + Leisure magazine, “Charleston is a remarkably dynamic place, so it’s no surprise that it has achieved its highest ranking ever in our survey as the year’s best city in the world.” It’s the first time a U.S. city has received the top honor, but Charleston ranked No. 2…

Mispricing Drives Value Premium

ETF

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…

When False Factors Are Exposed

The world of finance and asset pricing used to be fairly simple. At first, there was just the single-factor capital asset pricing model, with market risk (beta) as the sole factor to explain the differences in returns of diversified portfolios. Over time, the working model evolved into a still relatively simple four-factor model, adding value,…

Hope Deferred Makes the Heart Sick

“Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.” So reads a Solomonic proverb penned in the 10th century B.C. Consider with me, however, a contemporary application of this ancient wisdom, especially in the realm of personal finance. Hope Deferred “We’ve got to apologize, Tim,” said a financial planning client…

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