I'm the guilty conscience of all the world's overconfident stock tip subscription bloggers, financial advisors, hobbyists, and market pundits. In a rare moment of honest self-reflection, I admit that the following popular activities add no long term value compared to index funds: Paying for stock tip subscriptions. Obsessing about dividends or dividend streaks. Scrounging income by selling options. Forecasting interest rates, commodity prices, and stock market returns. Paying an advisor 1% of assets under management to create a portfolio of mutual funds. Following consensus superstitions such as support levels and resistance. Believing that valuation graphs identify undervalued stocks. Thinking that beating the S&P 500 for several years predicts future outperformance. Laboriously building a portfolio that's like an existing no-effort ETF but without the benefit of diversification.
Just an old farm boy who bought his first stock in 1970. Been a student of the markets and investing ever since. Over the years I have owned and managed several businesses before retiring for health reasons three years ago. MS from the University of Akron.
Zugzwang (German for "compulsion to move") is a situation found in chess wherein one player is put at a disadvantage because they must make a move when they would prefer to pass and not to move. The fact that the player is compelled to move means that his position will become significantly weaker. A player is said to be "in zugzwang" when any possible move will worsen his position.
Ian Bezek worked for 3 years as an analyst at a New York-based hedge fund. He's currently living in Mexico, pursuing some entrepreneurial opportunities.
Feel free to contact him regarding investments, writing, or speaking opportunities.
Mr. Barac is the founder and Managing Member of the General Partner, Barac Capital Management, LLC. Prior to founding the General Partner, Mr. Barac held a variety of roles in institutional securities research and trading.
Mr. Barac graduated from Trinity University (San Antonio, Texas) in 1989 and received a Master’s in Business Administration degree from Southern Methodist University (Dallas, Texas) in 1998. During his graduate studies, Mr. Barac’s broad-based business studies included a focus on international business which included an internship with Bank Boston’s media and telecommunications lending group in Buenos Aires, Argentina and an international exchange semester at the E.S.A.D.E. Business School in Barcelona, Spain.
Following his graduate studies, Mr. Barac went to work for Moody’s Investors Services in New York, New York in 1998 and transferred to their London, England offices in 1999. At Moody’s, Mr. Barac became a Senior Credit Officer/Vice-President and lead analyst with responsibility for the credit ratings of a multi-billion dollar portfolio of high-profile European leveraged finance companies. As an expert in leveraged finance and corporate credit risk analysis, Mr. Barac was a regular speaker for Moody’s and was regularly quoted by major financial publications (e.g. the Wall Street Journal Europe, Financial Times, New York Times, Bloomberg News, and The Times of London).
From 2005 to 2007, Mr. Barac worked at Schroders Investment Management, an investment management firm with assets under management in excess of $200 billion, headquartered in London, England. At Schroder’s, Mr. Barac was responsible for identifying profitable fixed-income trade ideas from within a portfolio of European high-yield and investment grade corporate bond issuers. Mr. Barac’s work at Schroder’s earned him selection for the company’s elite merit-based Business Leadership Program.
Mr. Barac continued his work in corporate securities analysis with Barclay’s Capital (also in London, England) where he worked as a Director in their Principal Strategies Group from 2007 to 2008. At Barclays, Mr. Barac was a proprietary analyst and trader responsible for investing a portion of Barclay’s capital through a combination of bonds, stocks, and fixed-income derivatives (credit default swaps).
Following his return from London to Austin, Texas in 2008, Mr. Barac founded, established, and now actively manages the Barac Value Fund, L.P.
My name is Mark B. Spiegel and I'm the Managing Member of Stanphyl Capital Management LLC. I can be reached at: mark (at) stanphylcap (dot) com. My Twitter feed is @markbspiegel