As director of research at Portfolio123, I have long specialized in rules/factor-based equity investing strategies of the sort characterized as “Smart Alpha” in the July 2014 Journal of Portfolio Management. In addition, I formerly managed a high-yield fixed-income fund and conducted research involving quantitative asset allocation strategies such as are at the foundation of what today has come to be known as Robo Advising. I formerly edited the the Forbes Low Priced Stock Report, and served as an assistant research director at Value Line. I have long had a passion for investor education, which has resulted in my having conducted numerous seminars on stock selection and analysis, and the authoring of two books: Screening The Market and The Value Connection.
4/29/16 - Student loans paid off six months before I planned on them being paid off. Basically every paycheck minus living expenses since last Oct went towards them. Lower end luxury car amount of money at close to 7% interest. Now I will have more disposable income than I can spend each paycheck (because I've adjusted myself to live cheaply).
Maybe I'll return to writing at some point for fun. But probably more likely just update this profile whenever I hit a goal like this. And I've changed some things about the way I invest - more DCA into averages and less worrying about whatever pick I make when I get paid.
I've come to believe that the savings rate matters more than getting a percent or so above what's going on in the stock and bond markets (when that can even be done). Second is tax-efficiency.
So a lot of that stuff below no longer applies to the way I do things and it's a reminder to me to set a goal and stick with it like a pit bull. Next goal is enough money for a REAL down payment on a house. Or enough to buy a bunch of VTI or whatever if there's a big ol' dip before I'm ready to buy.
Whenever I updated this in summer of 2015:
I used to frequently write an instablog on my investments, but have realized I was doing things backwards and am currently focusing on paying down as much debt as humanly possible over the next couple of years (it can be done in a year and a half) and that's kind of boring to write or read about. "Oh yes! I scrounged another $10 over the last month by swapping out light bulbs to energy efficient ones and now am one week closer to paying off my student loans!" Bleah. I (still) work as a mental health nurse. I did not get my dream job of helping people to die - but I now have a job that's less violent, pays better, and that allows some autonomy for actually doing some people some good. My goal is to eventually replicate my income via dividends and then retire (so I can quit interacting with people that test my own sanity). I'm in my late 30's. I believe in value investing with high dividends/distributions. That said, my favorite investments are CEFs (not because these are particularly good investments, but because I can find out if they are trading at a good value) and preferred shares (as long as I can buy them below par and the company is making money or is demonstratively turning things around). I'm also implementing a long-term moving average strategy in my 401k and Roth accounts (and as an update, seems to work much better for my mentality for total returns - wax on/wax off). And I've been experimenting with leveraged trading funds with small amounts of money. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. The trick, I think, is to make sure that when it works it more than makes up for when it doesn't. I happily admit that I tend to take different ideas from different sources that I think make sense and mix them together. And if you bothered to read this far, you would be well served by reading the articles/comments of the these folks: http://seekingalpha.com/author/monty-spivak/articles (the high/yield with moderate risk articles are the biggest influence of the way I currently invest) http://seekingalpha.com/author/douglas-albo/articles (man has been touting the same line for years and it's starting to pay off - excellent cef analysis - I have read all of his articles twice and will be reading them again) http://seekingalpha.com/user/157675/comments (guy's has excellent long-term investment wisdom and keeps things in perspective) http://seekingalpha.com/author/tim-mcpartland/comments (I don't think he comments or writes much, but has the best free site on the internet) http://seekingalpha.com/article/921541-this-simple-trend-following-model-has-crushed-buy-and-hold (this article is the one that got me interested in trend/momentum following and led me to Mebane-Faber and a bunch of other stuff - personal best results so far in my short investing career have come from these type of strategies though you have to deal with a shrinking scrotum and sinking stomach at times)
I'm a retired semi-professional technician from the manufacturing side of industry. I've been extremely fortunate having started my investments right at the beginning of the bull market in the early 80's. At this point in my life I'm more concerned with drawdowns verse appreciation hence my investments are tilted conservatively. Still, I'm young enough to realize that I have a long retirement ahead of me and need equity exposure to allow me to outlive my assists. In these uncertain times both equity (moderately overvalued) and debt securities (highly overvalued) are problematic.