Steven Bavaria writes about finance, economics and politics, drawing on his forty-five years experience in international banking, credit, investment, human resources/training, journalism and public service. Now retired from his "day job" on Wall Street, Bavaria lives mostly off his investments. His focus is largely on income-oriented stocks, bonds and mutual funds, as well as closed-end funds, ETFs and other IRA-suitable investments. His book "Too Greedy for Adam Smith: CEO Pay and the Demise of Capitalism" was just published and is available on Amazon and at independent retailers.
Bavaria began his career at the Bank of Boston, where he handled international credit workouts that included managing a fleet of ships, chasing a Vatican-owned bank in Switzerland, and leading the turnaround of troubled branches in Australia and Panama. He also ran the bank's human resources department, which is where he saw personally the beginnings of many of today's executive compensation excesses.
More recently he worked at Standard & Poor's, where he introduced ratings to the leveraged loan market. In between Bank of Boston and S&P he was Assoc. Commissioner of the Massachusetts Dept. of Mental Health, worked briefly for Citibank, and was a reporter for IDD Magazine. He also did a short stint at a smaller rating agency where he had to leave in a hurry after writing an article called "From Banker to Bookmaker" that was deemed a bit too candid in describing the conflicted role of major commercial and investment banks.
Bavaria graduated from Georgetown University and New England School of Law.
Who I Am: I'm a retired individual investor. I retired at the end of 2013 after a 35 year career as a professor and research scientist at a major research university. So -- a career as a researcher and an educator, which is what I hope to continue here. Virtually every good teacher I've ever known says some version of "I learn more from teaching than my students do." There's a lot of truth in that, enough that there's an underlying selfish motivation for my writing here as I continue to learn about investing.
My professional life involved multiple international projects and collaborations, so I traveled extensively over those 35 years. I plan to continue doing so in my retirement. One consequence is that I'm liable to disappear from the site for extended periods. How can you miss me if I don't go away?
My investing priorities are building and refining portfolios designed to provide income and capital growth: Income for my retirement needs, and capital growth for my estate. My investing interests are tax-advantaged income from a range of sources, portfolio strategies, information- and bio-technology, and momentum-based strategic allocation.
Why I Write for Seeking Alpha: I learned long ago that "writing is nature's way of letting you know how sloppy your thinking is." The line comes from a Guindon comic strip of many years ago, and could not be more true in my case. When I did research professionally, I learned that writing it up forces me to think about details I might otherwise overlook. It's how I spent my working career, so it comes more or less naturally to me. I consider it an essential part of doing any research. So, the writing I do here is as much for myself as for the reader. As I started to contribute articles here, they grew out of research for my personal investment portfolios. They're based on things I've uncovered that are of interest to me and may be of interest to others of like mind. My primary purposes in writing them are to help clarify my thinking and to get feedback from others who may have very different opinions. It's those thoughtful comments that make Seeking Alpha such an important resource.
I try to actively engage myself in the comment streams in my articles, contributing what I can and learning from others. As a research scientist I spent a career spanning four decades devoted to free exchange of information vetted by rigorous peer review. It's a concept I firmly believe in. I hope to bring that approach to my interactions and contributions on Seeking Alpha and welcome critical commentary on anything I may contribute here. I especially encourage and appreciate thoughtful comments from those who disagree with me (although I will ignore obvious trolls and encourage others to do so as well). So, go ahead, start a conversation in the comment threads. It's one of the best things about Seeking Alpha.
My Investment Philosophies and Strategies: I maintain two portfolios. My income portfolio is a taxable account. I try to keep it separate from the growth portfolio which is housed in a series of IRAs, traditional and Roth. My income focus is on tax-advantaged income. In 2016 I face minimum required withdrawals from my tax-deferred accounts, so tax efficiency is an important consideration. The IRAs I see as my estate and are focused on generational wealth building. That means the growth portfolios have a long-term horizon, well beyond what an investor of my age might be expected to maintain.
Who Is Left Banker? Ah yes, the name. When I first joined Seeking Alpha I had no intention of being anything but an occasional reader. I saw it as another research site. So, I just ported a name I've used on other sites. I spent some of the best times of my life living on the left bank of the Seine and am always thrilled to be back in La Belle Paris. Add that I also like it because I find several subtle word plays there; I'll leave it to you to decipher that comment.
Finally, I've chosen to remain anonymous, which I feel obligated to justify. First, I have no professional role in finance and nothing to sell, so there is no advantage to be gained by "making a name for myself' here. Second, I value my privacy and have kept my internet presence as low-key as my professional life allowed. I certainly want to avoid any possibility of some internet connection trying to track me down. Odds against that happening are, of course, outrageously long, but why take them on at all?
Disclosures: I have no ties to the financial or security industries in any form. My interests are strictly personal. The banker part of the nym has absolutely no relationship to the profession of the same name. Readers should be aware that I am an investing novice, some might say dilettante. I do not give advice; what I publish is much more in line with a research notebook. Anyone who finds anything of interest will necessarily want to do his or her complete research and due diligence. It would be foolish to rely on my conclusions without having done so.
I am a former Investment and Commercial Banker with over 30 years experience in the field. I have been advising both individuals and institutional clients on high-yield investment strategies since 1991. As author of “High Dividend Opportunities”, a premium subscription service at Seeking Alpha, my objective is to bring investors the most profitable and newest high dividend ideas, with special focus on the Energy sector. The service includes an actively managed model Portfolio targeting an overall dividend yield of 6-9% in addition to long-term capital gains. My research aims to maximize returns by identifying undervalued securities in the High Yield space.
In addition to being a Certified Public Accountant CPA from the State of Arizona, I hold a BS Degree from Indiana University, Bloomington, and a Masters degree from Thunderbird School of Global Management (Arizona). I am also a Certified Mortgage Advisor CEMAP, a UK certification. My Research and Articles have been featured on Seeking Alpha, Investing.com, ETFdailynews, and on FXEmpire.
For more information on how to subscribe to “High Dividend Opportunities” and gain exclusive access to the portfolio, live alerts and market commentaries, check the post: Introduction to “High Dividend Opportunities” on my Instablog or just email me at email@example.com .
Darren owns ProActive Financial LLC where he provides Financial Planning and Analysis consulting services. Darren's education includes a Bachelors in Economics, an MBA, and a Certificate in Personal Financial Planning.
James Picerno is a financial journalist who has been writing about finance and investment theory for more than twenty years. He writes for trade magazines read by financial professionals and financial advisers. Over the years, he’s written for the Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, Bloomberg Markets, Mutual Funds, Modern Maturity, Investment Advisor, Reuters, and his popular finance blog, The CapitalSpectator.
Visit: The Capital Spectator (www.capitalspectator.com)
Macro Investor | Mid/Long Term Horizon | US Equities, Commodities and Fixed Income | English, Dutch & German | Main Goal: Deliver the 1% of Global Data Needed To Make Money | Education | Ask Me Anything: firstname.lastname@example.org |
What to expect from my articles: I write mainly about my basic set of economic indicators that give a solid outlook about the economy. I then discuss trades that fit to the mid/long term outlook.
I am a 40-something year old retired US lawyer living as an expat in Lisbon, Portugal. I publish articles here on SeekingAlpha, and have an expanded group of articles and posts on my webpage, TheInvestorUnderground.com.
Kevin T. Jacques is a former senior economist with the U.S. Treasury Department in Washington, D.C. During his 14 years with the Treasury Department, he worked on topics including risk measurement and management systems, bank capital regulations, and systemic risk. In the mid-1990's, he served as staff on the President's Working Group in Financial Markets examining systemic risk in the U.S. financial system. In addition, during his time in Washington, Dr. Jacques taught finance in the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University.
Dr. Jacques’ economic and financial commentaries have received hundreds of radio, television and newspaper citations including Bloomberg Financial News, National Public Radio (NPR), PBS television, American Banker, U.S. News & World Report, and others.
Currently, he teaches investments at Baldwin Wallace University. He holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Michigan State University.
Lead Wealth Advisor, Chief Investment Strategist, and individual investor with two masters degrees and a CFA designation who has been in the business for over 20 years. Along with our team we author the Seeking Alpha premium subscription service "YIELD HUNTING: Alternative Income Investing" dedicated to income investors who are searching for yield without the high risk of the equity market.
We feature a core-satellite model that allows investors to adjust for their own particular risk tolerance. We specialize in fixed income closed-end funds for generating income during retirement, micro and small-cap value investing, and macro analysis.
Raised in America, Germany and the UK, I studied inter alia under Nobel Laureate Friedrich von Hayek in Freiburg i. Br., Germany. The next 30 years were spent as a financial economist with leading banks of their day: Morgan Guaranty Trust, J Henry Schroder Wagg, N M Rothschild and S G Warburg. Moving to Hong Kong in 1989, I was the Chief Regional Economist for the latter two banks and a smattering of others.
Affiliated with IAM Legacy Ltd., I now provide especially non-financial professionals with experienced, commission-free financial structuring advice - saving them costs northwards of 90% in the process.
Enzio von Pfeil (http://www.enziosclock.com/) has been an investment economist all of his professional life. Having studied under Nobel Laureate Friedrich von Hayek in Freiburg, Germany, he got his PhD in economics and then joined some of the major banks in their day: Morgan Guaranty, Schroders and Warburgs. He was Chief Regional Economist for major stock brokerages in Hong Kong since 1990, where he is happily married. Author of books and thousands of research notes, he is a regular guest of Bloomberg-UK and Bloomberg-Germany, and is invited frequently to CNBC and other channels. His focus always has been on how to make money out of economics, and his application is real: he now lives off his own investments. He founded Enzio's Clock (http://www.enziosclock.com/) in November 2000 with the objective to help his subscribers profit from cycles through rigorous application of his proprietary Economic Clock.
Vance Harwood is a private investor and consultant whose interests include macroeconomic forecasting, investor psychology, and volatility as an asset class. His investment activities include trading index ETFs, volatility related ETPs and their associated options. He blogs at sixfigureinvesting.com—mostly about volatility, but occasionally about options strategies, bond funds, and general market topics. He tracks the USA based volatility ETPs and has simulated the performance of most of them back to the initiation of VIX Futures in 2004.
A couple things Vance believes:
The past does not predict the future (see Nassim Taleb’s “Fooled by Randomness”). This invalidates much technical analysis–although I think the psychology of stock movements is very important
Past behavior of assets relative to each other (e.g., bonds vs stocks) does not guarantee future behavior
Markets fall a lot faster than they go up, typically at least 2X
“Buy and hold” ensures that you will experience the worst days as well as the best days of the market
Investing in individual stocks carries many more unknowns than aggregates like index ETFs (e.g., earnings surprises, analyst’s ratings)
I run two services, Free CoT Data and Simple Stock Model. Free CoT Data reveals how different types of traders are positioned in the futures markets. Simple Stock Model aggregates financial and economic data so that investors can easily form a comprehensive data-based outlook on the S&P.
After more than 4 decades in the financial markets, Robert P. Balan has retired. Education in mining engineering, computer science, finance, and training in economics led to a commodity analysis career during the commodity boom of the early 1970s. Robert made a switch to global macro focus in the early 1980 when the commodity bull market waned, with specialization in foreign exchange. Robert wrote a very high profile daily FX analysis while Geneva-based in the mid-1980s (the first FX commentary with a real global readership, "most accessed" in the Reuters and Telerate networks from 1988 to 1994). He worked for Swiss Bank Corp and Union Bank of Switzerland (precursors of today’s new UBS) as head of technical research and as proprietary trader in various major finance centers (London, New York, and subsequently head of proprietary trading in Toronto, respectively) from late 1980s to mid-1990s. A stint at Bank of America as head of global technical research (in London and New York) followed in late 1990s to early 2000s. Robert did technical analysis for Saxo Bank (Denmark) in the mid-200s based in New York. He returned to Switzerland in 2004 as head of technical research and strategy, and FX and commodity market analyst for Swiss Life Asset Management in Zurich. He joined Diapason Commodities Management in 2008 as senior market strategist, and subsequently as Chief Market Strategist, utilizing fundamental macroeconomic drivers, and structural/technical data in modeling asset price and sector movements. Robert wrote a book on the Elliott Wave Principle in 1988, which was hailed by the London Society of Technical Analysts as “the best book ever written on the subject”. Robert is a member of the National Association for Business Economics (NABE), USA.
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.
Doug Short is first-wave boomer with a lifelong interest in markets and the economy. His professional career had been a satisfying split between academia (English Professor at North Carolina State University) and Information technology (IBM and GSK).
Doug retired in 2006 to devote himself full-time to his dshort.com financial website. The domain has now been acquired by Advisor Perspectives, and Doug has been appointed the Vice President of Research.
Doug is especially interested in the economy, long-term market trends and behavioral finance.
Tom Aspray, professional trader and analyst was originally trained as a biochemist but began using his computer expertise to analyze the financial markets in the early 1980s. Mr. Aspray has written widely on technical analysis and has given over 60 presentations around the world. Many of the technical indicators that Mr. Aspray wrote about in the 1980s, such as the MACD, have since gained worldwide acceptance.
Tom is regular contributor to Forbes where he writes a regular Week Ahead column. His expertise as a technical analyst has been acknowledged by the WSJ as well as some of the best known technical analysts.
Brian Gilmartin, is a portfolio manager at Trinity Asset Management, a firm he founded in May, 1995, catering to individual investors and institutions that werent getting the attention and service deserved, from larger firms. Brian started in the business as a fixed-income / credit analyst, with a Chicago broker-dealer, and then worked at Stein Roe & Farnham in Chicago, from 1992 - 1995, before striking out on his own and managing equity and balanced accounts for clients. Brian has a BSBA (Finance) from Xavier University, Cincinnati, Ohio, (1982) and an MBA (Finance) from Loyola University, Chicago, January, 1985. The CFA was awarded in 1994. Brian has been fortunate enough to write for the TheStreet.com from 2000 to 2012, and then the WallStreet AllStars from August 2011, to Spring, 2012. Brian also wrote for Minyanville.com, and has been quoted in numerous publications including the Wall Street Journal.
Harvard College, BA, Economics; Stanford Graduate School of Business, MBA
Managing Director, Boslego Risk Services
I founded Boslego Risk Services and became a recognized expert in the area of energy price risk management (hedging), providing oil and natural gas hedging strategies to major oil companies such as Exxon, Shell, Mobil, Chevron, Texaco and Phillips; to the national oil companies of Norway, Venezuela, Mexico, Canada, France and Italy; to major users of energy products, such as Delta Airlines, United Airlines, Burlington-Northern Railroad, and Canadian Pacific Railway; to major trading firms, such as Enron, Phibro, Sempra and Vitol; and to large hedge funds (confidential).
As the recognized expert in energy hedging, I was selected by the former president, John Treat, of the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) to write the chapter on hedging in his book, Energy Futures.
I expanded my risk analysis and hedging services beyond the energy markets to financial markets. Given the failure of traditional portfolio diversification to limit losses to levels tolerable to most investors in 2008/09, I created investment strategies utilizing risk management techniques for hedge funds and financial firms.
Ian’s Insider Corner research focuses primarily on long-term dividend-paying companies with stable and reliable growth, stocks suitable for individual retirement accounts. Ian also looks for “niche” shorter-term trading opportunities, and coverage. During the 3-years Ian worked at Kerrisdale Capital, the New York-based activist hedge fund had great success exposing fraudulent companies. Kerrisdale Capital returned almost 200% in 2011, and more than 300% in total. Ian Bezek offers in-depth coverage of all the stocks in his “IMF” portfolio.
I am a 40-something entrepreneur and executive, managing my own portfolio. I have been an Internet entrepreneur, founding and running VC-backed companies. For a little less than ten years I managed several global lines of business as Managing Director for a large management consultancy, where my teams supported primarily senior executives at global 2000 firms. My passion is creating and learning, and I am intensely interested in understanding all aspects of how businesses work, grow, succeed and fail.
You can follow me on Twitter and StockTwits, just search Nathan Buehler.
I have always had a passion for finance and investing. I enjoy and appreciate engaging with like minded individuals that inspire me to think beyond what is generally accepted. My investment experience spans almost ten years. The bulk of my knowledge has come from independent observation, research, patience, and perseverance. Most of my strategy is geared towards long term outlook with focuses on short term events or situations that create attractive opportunities.
I hope the articles presented here help you in your investment decisions. I value our discussions and look forward to professional dialogues. If I can ever help you with anything please contact me. Know you are always going to get a straight answer. If I don't know the answer I will either research it for you or tell you I don't know.
During the school year there may be a delay in my responses. Keep the feedback coming!
INDEPENDENT Financial Advisor / Professional Investor- with over 30 years of navigating the Stock market's "fear and greed" cycles that challenge the average investor. Investment strategies that combine Theory, Practice and Experience to produce Portfolios focused on achieving positive returns over a period of time. Providing advice in helping to avoid the pitfalls and traps that wreak havoc on your portfolio with a focus on Income and Capital Preservation.
I manage the capital of only a handful of families and I see it as my number one job to protect their financial security. They don’t pay me to sell them investment products, beat an index, abandon true investing for mindless diversification or follow the Wall Street lemmings down the primrose path. I manage their money exactly as I manage my own so I don’t take any risk at all unless I strongly believe it is worth taking.
Blogging here on SA is part of my research. I write to find out what I think.
I invite you to join the family of satisfied clients send an e-mail :email@example.com
Jeff is the President of NewArc Investments Inc., manager of both individual and institutional investments. Jeff is a registered investment advisor, and portfolio manager for NewArc's investment programs. Jeff is a former college professor with a hands-on, real world attitude. His quantitative modeling helped inform state and local officials in Wisconsin for more than a decade. A Public Policy analyst, he taught advanced research methods at the University of Wisconsin, and analyzed many issues related to state tax policy. Jeff began in the financial business as Research Director for trading firm at the Chicago Board Options Exchange. He investigated anomalies in the standard option pricing models, taught classes for beginning options traders, and developed new forecasting techniques. In 1991 he established a general research consultancy, working with professional traders at all of the Chicago financial exchanges. In 1998 he started NewArc Investments, Inc. Jeff has a commitment to the specific needs of individual investors. It is not a one-size-fits all approach, but one that emphasizes the unique circumstances of each client. Jeff also serves on the board of two small technology companies (currently Chairman at one). He is occasionally as an expert witness in legal cases involving financial markets and hedging.
Charles (Chuck) C. Carnevale is the creator of F.A.S.T. Graphs™. Chuck is also co-founder of an investment management firm. He has been working in the securities industry since 1970: he has been a partner with a private NYSE member firm, the President of a NASD firm, Vice President and Regional Marketing Director for a major AMEX listed company, and an Associate Vice President and Investment Consulting Services Coordinator for a major NYSE member firm. Prior to forming his own investment firm, he was a partner in a 30-year-old established registered investment advisory in Tampa, Florida. Chuck holds a Bachelor of Science in Economics and Finance from the University of Tampa. Chuck is a sought-after public speaker who is very passionate about spreading the critical message of prudence in money management. Chuck is a Veteran of the Vietnam War and was awarded both the Bronze Star and the Vietnam Honor Medal.
I have worked in the financial service industry for 40 years. My area of expertise is risk management and complex financial products. I have been a frequent speaker, on behalf of many financial firms, to financial professionals across the country.
I have extensive experience in statistics and actuarial science.