Founder of "The Contrarian", a premium research service, featuring the "Bet The Farm" Portfolio. Actively investing since 1995, I have soared like an eagle, and been unmercifully humbled by the markets. Achieved positive returns in 2008, and turned an account with $60,310 on 1/1/2009 into an account with $3,177,937 on 11/30/2009. My best years have been 1995-2003, 2008-2012, and 2016-????. My worst years were 2013-2015. I believe inflation is coming, and we are at an inflection point in the markets.
Twenty year career as an investment analyst, investor, portfolio manager, consultant, and writer. Founder of Koldus Contrarian Investments, Ltd, which was incorporated in the spring of 2009. Dyed in the wool contrarian investor, who has learned, the hard way, that a good contrarian is only contrarian 20% of the time, but being right at key inflection points is the key to meaningful wealth creation in the markets. I believe we are near a meaningful inflection point, perhaps the biggest one yet, for the third time in the past 15 years.
Historically, I have had huge wins and impressive losses based on a concentrated, contrarian strategy. Trying to keep the good while filtering out the bad.
Seeking to run an all weather portfolio with minimal volatility and index overlays to capture my strategic and tactical recommendations along with a concentrated best ideas portfolio, which is my bread and butter, but the volatility only makes it suitable for a small piece of an investor's overall portfolio. The following are a couple of my favorite investment quotes.
"Life and investing are long ballgames." Julian Robertson
"A diamond is a chunk of coal that is made good under pressure."
"Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world." Albert Einstein
I’ve been on top of the world, and the world has been on top of me. I have learned to enjoy the perspective from each view, and use opportunities to persistently acquire knowledge, and enjoy the company of those around me, especially loved ones, family, and friends.
At heart, I am a market historian with an unrivaled passion for the capital markets. I have had a long history and specialization with concentrated positions and options trading. Made money in 2008 with a net long portfolio, deploying capital in some of the market's darkest hours into long positions including purchases of American Express, Atlas Energy, Crosstex, First Industrial Real Estate, General Growth Properties, Genworth, Macquarie Infrastructure, Ruth Chris Steakhouse, and Vornado near their lows. Shorting, hedging, and option strategies also helped me in 2007 and 2009, and these are skills that I have developed ever since I started trading heavily in 1996.I enjoy reading, accumulating knowledge, and putting this knowledge to work in the active capital markets, learning lessons along the way.To this day, I continue to learn, and some of these learning lessons have been excruciatingly difficult ones, especially over the past several years, as I made mistakes allocating capital, including a sizable portion of my own capital (I always invest alongside my clients), to commodity related stocks. While all commodity related stocks have struggled since April of 2011, coal companies, which attracted me due to their extremely cheap valuations, and out-of-favor status (I am a strong believer in behavioral finance alongside fundamentals and technicals) have been the worst investing mistake of my career. The focus on the commodity arena has been the biggest mistake of my investment career thus far, yet in its aftermath, I see tremendous opportunity, even larger in scope than the fortuitous 2008/2009 environment.The capital that I accumulated and the confidence gained in navigating the treacherous investment waters of 2008 gave me the confidence to launch my own investment firm in the spring of 2009, right before the ultimate lows in the stock market. At the time I was working as a senior analyst at one of the largest RIA's in the country, and I felt strongly that the market environment was the best time since 1974/1975 to start an investment firm.
Prior to starting my firm, I was a senior analyst for three different firms over approximately 10 years (Charles Schwab, Redwood, Oxford), moving up in responsibility and scope at each stop along my journey. Since I was a paperboy, I have always had an interest in the investment markets. I love researching and finding opportunities. I am a Chartered Financial Analyst, CFA, as well as a Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst, CAIA. After starting in the teaching program at Ball State University, I switched to a career in finance when I turned a small student loan into a substantial amount of capital. I graduated summa cum laude with a degree in finance from Ball State.
Full disclosure, I am not currently a registered investment advisor, though I did serve in this capacity from 2009-2014, while owning Koldus Contrarian Investments, Ltd. Additionally, I held various securities licenses from 2000-2014, without a single complaint filed, and I continue to hold industry designations. At the end of 2014, I voluntarily let my state registration expire, as I transitioned the business to a different structure. Prior to this, I had passed, and held, various securities exams and licenses, including the Series 7, Series 63, and Series 65 exams, in addition to others, alongside my CFA and CAIA designations. Unfortunately, I did not file the proper paperwork to withdraw my state registration, and I did not disclose a personal arrangement, and subsequent civil case, between myself and a former close personal friend and client, that was initiated in 2011. I was unaware that I was required to disclose these items, and my securities attorney, at the time, did not advise me to do so. Previously, I had managed a portfolio for this gentleman, and we had taken an investment of approximately $7 million in 2009, and grown it to over $25 million at the beginning of 2012. After a difficult year of performance, an employee of the firm I owned, and friend, resigned in early 2013, and took the aforementioned client to a competing firm. As a result of not filing the proper paperwork, I agreed to a settlement, with a potential $2500 fine in the future, depending on if I choose to reapply to be a non-exempt advisor.
As Head of Global Investment Research for Alhambra Investment Partners, Jeff spearheads the investment research efforts while providing close contact to Alhambra’s client base.
Jeff joined Atlantic Capital Management, Inc., in Buffalo, NY, as an intern while completing studies at Canisius College. After graduating in 1996 with a Bachelor’s degree in Finance, Jeff took over the operations of that firm while adding to the portfolio management and stock research process.
In 2000, Jeff moved to West Palm Beach to join Tom Nolan with Atlantic Capital Management of Florida, Inc. During the early part of the 2000′s he began to develop the research capability that ACM is known for. As part of the portfolio management team, Jeff was an integral part in growing ACM and building the comprehensive research/management services, and then turning that investment research into outstanding investment performance.
As part of that research effort, Jeff authored and published numerous in-depth investment reports that ran contrary to established opinion. In the nearly year and a half run-up to the panic in 2008, Jeff analyzed and reported on the deteriorating state of the economy and markets. In early 2009, while conventional wisdom focused on near-perpetual gloom, his next series of reports provided insight into the formative ending process of the economic contraction and a comprehensive review of factors that were leading to the market’s resurrection.
In 2012, after the merger between ACM and Alhambra Investment Partners, Jeff came on board Alhambra as Head of Global Investment Research.
Currently, Jeff is published nationally at RealClearMarkets, ZeroHedge, Minyanville and Yahoo!Finance.
Jeff holds a FINRA Series 65 Investment Advisor License.
Adam has over twenty five years’ experience in capital markets and investment management, in a career that has involved proprietary trading desks, commodity trading advisors, sovereign wealth funds and private offices. During this time he has had trading book P&L responsibility, in addition to setting up and managing offices of regulated global financial entities in the UAE.
John Thomas graduated with a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry with honors and a minor in mathematics from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) in 1974. He moved to Tokyo, Japan where he was employed by a medium-sized Japanese securities house. Thomas became fluent in Japanese and was trained as a domestic Japanese research analyst and money manager. In 1977 Thomas became the Tokyo correspondent for The Economist magazine and the Financial Times of London. Thomas traveled extensively throughout Asia, interviewing premiers, presidents and prime ministers, writing on macroeconomic trends, and producing countless features about individual companies. Thomas witnessed China’s cultural revolution and was one of the first American correspondents to enter China prior to the U.S. normalization of relations. Thomas authored several books about the Japanese financial system still in use by business schools today. In 1983 Thomas joined a top US investment bank in New York with the mandate to develop an international equity business for the firm. In 1985 he moved to London, England to establish a presence in Japanese equity derivatives for the firm. In 1989 Thomas was appointed a director of one of the big three Swiss Banks with a mandate to design sophisticated hedging strategies for the bank’s considerable holdings of Japanese equity warrants and convertible bonds. With the invasion of Kuwait by Iraq, Thomas was drafted by the US Marine Corp to serve as a pilot. In 1990 Thomas became a pioneer in the nascent hedge fund industry by founding the first dedicated Japanese hedge fund. The firm managed segregated accounts for a variety of government agencies, banks, and high net worth individuals in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. After a decade of spectacular absolute and relative performance he sold his firm in 1999 and retired to manage his personal investments in the oil and gas industry. Seeing incredible opportunities in the marketplace and yearning for the adrenaline and satisfaction offered by active management, Thomas launched a new hedge fund in 2007. In his free time Thomas is a commercial aircraft pilot, long distance hiker and mountain climber, wine collector and avid photographer.
Perhaps more than any other time in the last six decades, the fate of markets is inextricably intertwined with the ebb and flow of geopolitics. From the ECB's attempts to use the central bank's balance sheet to influence political outcomes across the eurozone to Saudi Arabia's efforts to transform the kingdom's influence over crude prices into an instrument of foreign policy, it's become increasingly clear that one simply cannot fully comprehend market movements without a thorough understanding of concurrent political outcomes. Drawing on extensive experience in both politics and finance, Heisenberg will help demystify a world in which investors can no longer hope to conceptualize markets as existing in anything that even approximates a vacuum. "I am the one who knocks."
I run a model fund at Ken Kam's Marketocracy, where they do capital management using the best member mutual fund track records with extensive tabulations of alpha, beta, R-squared, and many other fund management evaluations. Marketocracy Capital Management offers SMA (Separately Managed Accounts) through FOLIOfn Institutional ($100,000 minimum accounts) set up to track the top 15 or so long-term track records (many 12 years plus) of the 30000 or so active members that run models at their site. My fund is one of those top models available for SMAs. My SMA investment fund now has a first year performance with double digit alpha. You can see the fund's performance chart at marketocracy.com (the Turtle Fund - symbol BPMF) and there is one in my profile over at TalkMarkets.
My fund methodology is high diversification, usually running around 40-60 stocks from many different sectors. I rarely weight any position much over 5%. I began at Marketocracy developing an analysis method I've labeled The Fractal Base Flow Model. I've been experimenting with variations of my basic methodology with 4 other funds and a 5th where I try new things. With my first and main model fund BPMF (Bruce Pile's Mutual Fund) I did my basic method for the first 7 years or so with an alpha over 30, then strayed a little into other analysis methods that did not work as well. For the SMA, I am using the methods proven to work well.
Marketocracy is a new way of investing that solves a lot of the problems in the industry today. When investors nowadays survey their options, they are perplexed by the mish mash of risk and fees. In mutual funds, you have regulated safety where managers must diversify with less than 10% of your money in any one name in the top of your weightings scheme, making for at least around 20 stocks at any one time. The SEC also prohibits the risk of leverage and investing in dangerous derivatives, etc. But this safety is typically viewed as a tradeoff with performance vs hedge funds, where all the dangerous stuff is allowed. But the sad result of all this danger is that most hedge funds fail. The average life of a hedge fund that makes it past the first year is just 5 years. More than two thirds of all hedge funds that ever existed are now dead. There is the fund of funds option, but the high turnover means that even they must select an all new portfolio of funds about every 5 years. This makes selecting proven long-term performers virtually impossible. A fund of hedge funds will typically not only charge the high hedge fund fees of 1%-4% management fee plus 15%-25% of your returns, but will also charge fees for running the fund of funds. They pile complication upon complication and charge you for it. "Oh, and the hedge fund industry as a whole hasn’t produced alpha/added value to simple portfolios for years, since its assets under management ballooned." [FTalphaville] With typical leverage, that has grown over 15 years from around 20% to over 40% now, you get 40%more risk than mutual fund rules with no significant added performance, just more costs. And because that added leverage risk is so often concentrated in the same areas by all the large funds, inducing systemic risk, when those bets go wrong they can go very wrong. With all the above, an investor must live with the risk of having just one fund manager, or picker of rotating funds in a fund of funds. Imagine a place where you could go to sign up for an account where you could review track records and styles and risk levels of not just one guy, but up to 15 or so, and check on your account signup form how you want to spread your money among these guys. And imagine that all these managers have had to compile top ranked hedge fund performance levels for up to 15 years under the safety level of SEC rules for mutual funds. And imagine you could get all this at roughly cost of a mutual fund. It would be like opening an account and checking the names of Peter Lynch, Warren Buffett, and all your favorite hedge fund managers to gang tackle your investment objectives. And as in any team sport, if one guy hits a cold streak, the others will carry him. No dependence on one manager. Well there is such a place - Marketocracy Capital Management. Here, thousands of people from all walks of life, from retired and active fund managers to ordinary individual investors, compete online with virtual funds. If your track record qualifies, you can open a GIPS account for real money tracking of your model fund and have client accounts track your model. My fund is one of those, ticker BPMF. FOLIOfn Institutional can open a client SMA where you can pick and choose from the best of the best long-term performers. To look into this: Phone: 1-877-462-4180 email: email@example.com web: marketocracy.com
Douglas Adams specializes in macro-economic research and turning theory into practical portfolio applications for clients over the past seventeen years. Mr. Adams recently formed Charybdis Investments International based in High Falls, New York where he is the managing director of a fee-only investment advisory practice with clients throughout the United States. As an author, Mr. Adams has commented widely on a diverse array of topics from Brexit to monetary policy to forex to labor productivity and wage growth. He holds an undergraduate degree from the University of California, a master’s degree from the University of Washington and an MBA in finance from Syracuse University.
I am a former investment advisor and owner of several businesses, and consequently everything related to business - including investing, macro-economics, and emerging products and services come under my research and interests radar.
The most interesting and important to me are the entertainment industry, commodities, BRICs, and the impact of loose money policies on businesses and investors.
These days I invest only for myself, while continuing to write on a variety of financial and economic topics.
Daniel is currently the manager of Avaring Capital Advisors, LLC, a registered investment advisor that oversees one hedge fund. His primary focus is on finding businesses that are trading at a significant discount to their intrinsic value by employing a combination of Benjamin Graham's investment philosophy and a contrarian approach to the market and the securities therein.
I'm an investment professional with more than 15 years of trading experience.
My current and upcoming articles will contain a short synopsis of overall market developments on a weekly basis. Particular focus is on VIX-related instruments.
Jennifer's areas of expertise include energy trends —their economic and geopolitical implications—and resource sustainability issues. Other interests include shale oil and natural gas, climate change, green and efficient infrastructure, China, India, and the energy-water nexus.
Her work has been published in various academic, policy and business publications such as Far Eastern Economic Review, Economist Intelligence Unit’s Executive Briefing, Journal of Structured Finance, Lloyd's List, D CEO, Energy Trends Insider, Financial Sense, and many others. She has been interviewed for numerous radio broadcasts and news stories, and presented her work at various conferences. From Dec 2010 to April 2013, she was the CEO/President of a global affairs organization focused on cutting edge trends. She organized and moderated panels on global gas, energy security, energy infrastructure finance, and urban development.
She has a master's degree from London School of Economics, and bachelor's in finance/marketing. She is principal of Concept Elemental, a strategic communications consultancy focusing on knowledge work, and includes over fifteen years of financial services industry work. She works with a top University, "translating" cutting edge research as well.
Physical and financial commodity trader and Portfolio manager specializing in natural gas and petroleum commodities with 29 years of extensive and varied experience under a broad range of market conditions.
A proven track record of success employing a very methodical and disciplined trading style.
Skilled in both granular supply/demand analysis as well as the art of technical analysis.
Founding member of proprietary energy derivatives trading desk at Morgan Stanley, head energy trader at Chase Manhattan Bank, natural gas portfolio manager at Perennial Capital. Founding partner 4 Corners Global Trading, LLC
Specialties: Natural gas trading, Petroleum trading, derivatives, risk management, commodity futures, options expert, Technical analysis, fundamental analysis
Chad Gassaway is an active investor focused on technical and quantitative analysis. His investment strategy is based on managing investment risk while maximizing potential profits.
Chad graduated with a Bachelors degree from the University of Kentucky. Chad started his career in finance as a Financial Advisor at Edward Jones Investments. Chad then worked as a Financial Advisor for MetLife Securities prior to acting as the Vice President of Investments at JP Morgan-Chase in Lexington, Kentucky. Currently, he serves as a portfolio manager at Grace Trading.
Chad holds the designation of a Chartered Market Technician and is a member of the Market Technicians Association. His work has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg Brief Technical Newsletter, Yahoo Finance, Seeking Alpha, and Investing.com.
Ron Patterson is a retired Computer Engineer. He spent five years in Saudi Arabia working for Saudi ARAMCO. He has followed the peak oil story since 2000. Ron started blogging on peak oil in 2013. His web site, PeakOilBarrel.com is one of the most followed blogs on the subject.
Ron's interest are geology, biology, paleontology, and ecology. His hobbies are blogging and kayak sailing.
AtonRa Partners is an independent equity research and asset management company. Our approach is based on a deep knowledge and understanding of market dynamics and focuses on adding value to clients' portfolios via thoroughly checked proprietary information and data sources. We cherish a "speak our mind" approach in our reports (accessible at http://www.atonra.ch). We are also part of Euro IRP ("European Independent Research Providers", see http://www.euroirp.com/members/).
"One of the best ways to do well in this business is to go to areas that have been unexploited by research capability and work them for all you can." -Julian Robertson Managing partner of the Schildpad & De Haas partnerships. Seeking Alpha PRO contributor since the library's inception in 2013. A special selection of investment ideas is available through the Exclusive Research service.
James A. Kostohryz has accumulated over twenty years of experience investing and trading virtually every asset class across the globe.
Kostohryz started his investment career as an analyst at one of the US's largest asset management firms covering sectors as diverse as emerging markets, banking, energy, construction, real estate, metals and mining. Later, Kostohryz became Chief Global Strategist and Head of International Investments for a major investment bank. Kostohryz currently manages his own investment firm, specializing in proprietary trading and institutional portfolio management advisory.
Born in Mexico, Kostohryz grew up between south Texas and Colombia, has lived and worked in nine different countries, and has traveled extensively in more than 50 others. Kostohryz actively pursues various intellectual interests and is currently writing a book about the impact of culture on economic development. He is a former NCAA and world-class decathlete and has stayed active in a variety of sports.
Kostohryz graduated with honors from both Stanford University and Harvard Law School.
You can receive custom delivery of all of Mr. Kostohryz's published work on Seeking Alpha, The Street, and other media, as well as exclusive material, by following the link below. It is absolutely free:
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When connecting, be sure to identify yourself as a Seeking Alpha reader.
Awarded a 2015 & 2016 "Top 50 Financial Blogger" by TipRanks.com
- Ranked #44 out of 4,408 bloggers (#106 out of 8,174 overall experts) as of 8/18/15
- Ranked #37 out of 5,383 bloggers (#107 out of 9,507 overall experts) as of 8/18/16
Favorite Long-term Speculative Companies:
TVIA, COGT, BH
I have over five years of experience in covering financial markets. I am interested in commodities, emerging markets, media & entertainment and technology.
As an investor, I always employ the top-down approach. My objective is to share my insights and investing ideas and also learn from other accomplished investors here.
I spend most of my time reading through annual reports looking for a small-cap stock to feature in my monthly edition of "The Conservative Investor Digest." That is where you can find my best work, and that is where I focus my research. You can become a subscriber here: https://gumroad.com/l/HmqJx
I run the long-term investing website "The Conservative Income Investor" which can be found at: www.theconservativeincomeinvestor.com
Richard Zeits is an Oil & Gas industry analyst and consultant. His background includes fourteen years as Energy industry-focused investment banker, portfolio manager and senior investment analyst with bulge bracket firms in New York. Zeits Energy Analytics use elaborate proprietary analytics and data bases to provide in-depth industry research, market intelligence, and forecasting.
Blending a fresh perspective, twenty-five years of experience working with world-class brands including Sony and Frito-Lay, and a talent for inspiring audiences, Denise Lee Yohn is a popular speaker and leading authority on building and positioning exceptional brands.
Denise initially cultivated her brand-building approaches through several high-level positions in advertising and client-side marketing. She served as lead strategist at advertising agencies for Burger King and Land Rover and as the marketing leader and analyst for Jack in the Box restaurants and Spiegel catalogs. Denise went on to head Sony Electronic Inc.’s first ever brand office, where she was the vice president/general manager of brand and strategy and garnered major corporate awards.
An influential writer, Denise enjoys challenging readers to think differently about brand-building. She regularly contributes to Harvard Business Review and Forbes and is the writer of the popular monthly column Brand New Perspectives to QSR Magazine.
In 2008 she launched her blog, brand as business bites™, which the Marketing Executives Networking Group (MENG) named as one of the top 20 marketing blogs. Denise also penned the best-selling book What Great Brands Do: The Seven Brand-Building Principles that Separate the Best from the Rest (Jossey-Bass).
With her expertise and personal approach, Denise delivers an array of inspirational workshops, presentations, and keynote addresses to business leaders in all industries. When she’s not writing or speaking, she serves as the brand director for TEDx San Diego and sits on the board of directors for a branch of the YMCA.
Juan Carlos Zuleta is an economist. He holds a master's degree in Agricultural and Applied Economics from the University of Minnesota and did Ph.D. studies in Economics at the New School for Social Research. Since 1992 he has published a number of articles on the economics of lithium. Due to his contributions to EV World.Com, Industrial Minerals and Seeking Alpha.Com during the period 2008-2009, Juan Carlos was invited to participate as a speaker at both the inaugural Lithium Supply & Markets Conference (LS&M) held in January 2009 in Santiago, Chile as well as the second LS&M Conference held in January 2010 in Las Vegas, USA.
Hale Stewart spent 5 years as a bond broker in the late 1990s before returning to law school in the early 2000s. He is currently a tax lawyer in Houston, Texas. He has an LLM from the Thomas Jefferson School of Law in domestic and international taxation where he graduated Magna Cum Laude and is also a Chartered Asset Manager, Chartered Wealth Manager and Chartered Trust and Estate Planner from the American Academy of Financial Management. He is the author of the book US Captive Insurance Law. You can read him daily at the XE.com currency blog (http://community.xe.com/blog/xe-market-analysis).
I'm an investor and a Chartered Business Valuator (CBV). I have been investing since I was a teenager. I love my work. I manage a private investment company and I specialize in business valuation.
I'm a huge skeptic by nature. If you had to put me in an investment category, I would fall under "contrarian/value" investor. It's not an investment style that I picked but one that reflects my personality.
Regarding my articles, I think to present my ideas present in a neutral light, without any hype or promotion, which is a rare thing these days.
Please note that any articles or comments on Seeking Alpha are not linked to my work, and the opinions or content mentioned are mine personally.
We have over 60 years of investment analysis experience. We have published investment research from the perspective of the buy side and the sell side. Our work has been used by institutions managing over $1 trillion in aggregate. We have published reports from both the long and short perspective and have worked with the largest short selling mutual fund in the world. We are long term value investors. It is our belief that, contrary to popular opinion, most individual investors and patient professional investors have the best opportunity since the beginning of our investment career to beat institutional and mutual fund managers in terms of risk adjusted performance. The "Information Arbitrage" advantage institutional investors have had is mostly eliminated, while the individual investor still can maintain an edge with "Time Arbitrage". Our goal is to provide institutional quality buy side articles that educate and stimulate investors in the hope of improving their returns. We also are willing to mentor young analysis who wish to improve their analytical skills.
At Valuentum, we think the best opportunities arise from a complete understanding of all investing disciplines in order to identify the most attractive stocks at any given time. Valuentum therefore analyzes each stock across a wide spectrum of philosophies, from deep value through momentum investing. We think companies that are attractive from a number of investment perspectives--whether it be growth, value, momentum, etc.--have the greatest probability of capital appreciation and relative outperformance. The more investors that are interested in the stock for reasons based on their respective investment mandates, the more likely it will move higher.
Please read our Disclaimer that applies to all articles published on Seeking Alpha: http://www.valuentum.com/categories/20110613
Follow us on Twitter: @Valuentum
Ben Strubel is the President and Portfolio Manager of Strubel Investment Management, LLC ("SIM") a registered investment advisor. Strubel Investment Management provides separate account management services for clients and also publishes The Value Investor's Edge Newsletter. Ben Strubel is a Graduate of Drexel University with a Master of Business Administration in Investment Management. After graduation Ben founded SIM. Prior to founding SIM Ben worked for several years in the Information Technology field at a Fortune 1000 company. Ben has a unique three pronged approach to investing. First, seek to lower costs as much as possible by avoiding high fee mutual funds and tax inefficient strategies. Second, diversify client funds across multiple uncorrelated asset classes. Third, maintain a value investing focus. Ben selects individual securities for the equity portion of client portfolios and focuses on buying companies with excellent fundamentals that have fallen out of favor with the market.