I am a 15 year veteran of the buy-side, with over a decade of experience in Investment Management, at one time overseeing several billion dollars in hedge fund assets for institutional clients. Currently, I advise wealthy families on their investment portfolios as well as trade my own money.
Articles on Seeking Alpha are meant to be a snapshot of my views, but do not necessarily always reflect my portfolio. I also try to write on controversial and contrarian topics.
All money received from Seeking Alpha activities is currently being donated to various charities, including the World Food Program and UNICEF.
Nathan Weiss is the Senior Analyst and company founder of Unit Economics, a Boston-based independent research firm. Nathan Weiss was the author of The Weiss Report, a monthly newsletter focused on risk arbitrage and market neutral strategies from 1998 to 2000. From 2000 to 2006 Mr. Weiss was a generalist analyst and portfolio manager at Noble Partners, contributing significantly to their outstanding returns.
Nothing I write should be considered investment advice. Only you can decide if any specific financial asset, security, allocation, opinion, idea, etc. is best for your financial portfolio.
Author of two books, available here, Options Strategies Every Investor Should Know and The 5 Fundamentals of Building a Retirement Portfolio (both available in paperback and eBook).
Following 23 years with JPMorgan, Simon Lack founded SL Advisors, LLC, in 2009. Prior to that, Simon was CEO and founder of the JPMorgan Incubator Funds, two private equity vehicles that took economic stakes in emerging hedge fund managers. From the late 1980s through 1999 through several bank mergers Simon ran Fixed Income Derivatives and Forward FX trading for JPMorgan and predecessor institutions, ultimately overseeing 50 professionals and $300 million in annual revenues. Simon also sat on JPMorgan’s investment committee allocating over $1 billion to hedge fund managers. He is the author of two books: The Hedge Fund Mirage: The Illusion of Big Money and Why It’s Too Good to Be True, published in 2011 to widespread praise from mainstream financial press including The Economist, Financial Times and Wall Street Journal; Bonds Are Not Forever; The Crisis Facing Fixed Income Investors (August 2013). Simon makes regular appearances on cable TV business shows discussing hedge funds and investing.
Wall Street Breakfast, Seeking Alpha's flagship daily business news summary, is a one-page summary that gives you a rapid overview of the day's key financial news. It's designed for easy readability on the site or by email (including on mobile devices), and is published before 7:00 AM ET every market day.
Wall Street Breakfast readership of over 900,000 includes many from the investment-banking and fund-management industries.
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Subscribers to our investment newsletter receive communications in three ways - daily within our trading blog, weekly within our Weekend Update and monthly as we produce reports on our best investment ideas - see the examples below.
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Greenbackd is dedicated to unearthing undervalued asset situations where a catalyst exists likely to unlock the value. Greenbackd focuses on assets for three reasons:
1. Assets are simpler to value than earnings: Earnings are often difficult to forecast with any degree of accuracy and we can't value a security based on unknown future earnings. Assets, on the other hand, are known quantities at filing. This is not to say that the value of the assets recorded in the filing is the value we ascribe to them. We disregard intangible assets, heavily discount long-term and fixed assets, and apply a modest discount to current assets. We take only cash at face value. For these reasons, we prefer that each security is predominantly backed by cash, hence our name: Greenbackd. 2. Assets anticipate the downside, the liquidation value, first: This forces us to be conservative in our assessment of value.
3. Assets are a contrarian measure of value: To the extent that Wall Street makes any assessment of value, it is obsessed with earnings. It pays little attention to assets. This creates an opportunity where a valuation based on a company's earnings underestimates the company's asset value.
Our favorite stocks are those trading at a substantial discount to liquidation value with an activist investor pushing the company to undertake some corporate action (for example, return capital, pay a special dividend, buy back stock, sell a key asset or the entire company). Greenbackd is penned by a former securities lawyer now working in value-oriented activist funds management
Visit his website: Greenbackd (http://greenbackd.com/)
Jason Merriam is former publisher and editor of the Merriam Report providing innovative financial analysis based on dual cash-flow, accruals and capital productivity methodologies. An active investor for 35 years, he is also founder and president of Merriam Investor Services since 1990. MIS offers portfolio analysis and investment research services to institutional and retail investor clients. Prior to MIS, Jason was managing partner for Beach and Sea Group, a San Diego based investment LP. Merriam studied corporate finance and accounting with Robert J. Westervelt, retired senior VP of Finance at Warner Lambert and Pfizer. As Mr. Westervelt's intern, Jason assisted and was responsible for financial statement analysis, evaluation of earnings-quality, credit/liquidity/dividend assessment, etc. This opportunity allowed Jason to advance his research of the novel dual cash-flow methodology (based on the pioneering work of Harry Ernst and Jeffrey Fotta in the 1990's). Jason has 22 years experience in active portfolio management and asset allocation. Media appearances include: CNBC, MarketWatch, New York Times and San Diego Union Tribune. Visit his blog: www.merriamreport.blogspot.com
Sam Antar is a convicted felon and a former CPA. As the CFO of Crazy Eddie, Mr. Antar helped mastermind one of the largest securities frauds uncovered during the 1980s.
Today, Sam Antar is a forensic accountant. His primary work focuses on identifying and investigating public companies engaged in securities fraud by performing an in-depth (deep-dive) forensic analysis. His clients include law firms, research firms, hedge funds, and certain other entities. He advises law enforcement agencies and professionals about white-collar crime and trains them to catch the crooks.
His views on white-collar crime are frequently quoted in the print news media, online news media, TV media, professional journals, books, and blogs. He has appeared on Fox News, Fox Business Channel, WSJ Live, CNBC, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, Canadian Business News Network, National Public Radio’s Planet Money, Progressive Radio Network, Reuters TV, RT News, and other media outlets to give insights on white-collar crime. His articles have been published by Business Insider, CNBC, Newsweek, Seeking Alpha, TalkMarkets, and other publications.
In 2008, Derek Pilecki founded Gator Capital Management (http://www.gatorcapital.com). At Gator, Derek is a Portfolio Manager and is the firm's Managing Member. Gator Capital Management serves as the advisor to the Gator Focus Fund. He can be reached at email@example.com.
From 2003 through 2008, Derek was a co-Chair of the Investment Committee and a Portfolio Manager for Goldman Sach’s Growth Equity Team, where he helped to manage $30 billion in high quality growth stocks. Derek was also a member of the portfolio management team responsible for the Goldman Sachs Capital Growth Fund, and provided primary coverage of the financial sector for the Growth Team.
Prior to Goldman, Derek was an Analyst at Clover Capital Management in Rochester, New York and Burridge Growth Partners (now part of Essex Investments) in Chicago, Illinois. Before entering graduate school, Derek worked at Fannie Mae providing risk analysis for the company’s mortgage investment portfolio.
Derek holds an MBA with honors in Finance and Accounting from the University of Chicago and a BA in Economics from Duke University.
Fund manager Eddy Elfenbein writes Crossing Wall Street (http://www.crossingwallstreet.com/). He comments on a range of stocks (many of which he owns) and market trends. His work is funny, pithy, rigorous and original.
Eddy's philosophy: 'The key to doing well on Wall Street is actually very simple: Buy and hold shares of outstanding companies. But too many investors never learn this valuable lesson. Or if they do learn it, they learn it the hard way. That's where I come in. I want to help investors avoid the mistakes that separate successful investors from those who always find themselves spinning their wheels.'
Visit: Crossing Wall Street (http://www.crossingwallstreet.com/)
Power Hedge is an independent stock research and analysis firm with a passion for macro- and microeconomic analysis. Power Hedge focuses our research primarily on dividend-paying, international companies of all sizes with sustainable competitive advantages. Power Hedge is neither a permabear nor a permabull. However, we believe that, given the current structural problems in the United States, the best investment opportunities may lie elsewhere in the world. The firm's strategy is primarily buy and hold, but will stray from that strategy on occasion. Our ideal holding period is forever, however we realize that both internal and external forces can impact an investment. For this reason, we believe that it is vital to keep a close eye on all of your investments. We do not believe in changing an investment based on short-term market swings.
Traditionally, we have not always responded to comments but in order to improve the quality of our research, comments will be reviewed and we will respond to issues regarding errors or omissions. This does not include our premium service, "Renewable Energy Profits," which is available from the Seeking Alpha Marketplace. This service does include detailed discussions with our team both on the reports themselves and in a private forum.
At Investment Underground, our editors are disciplined, independent journalists who dig into technology, commodities, and stock market news to break the stories that matter. Our active approach to journalism spans analysis and interviews with noteworthy leaders to uncover real news that affects business right now.
Most notably, our insights predicted the departure of Avon CEO, Andrea Jung, and Warren Buffett’s purchase of his first technology stock in over forty years at Berkshire Hathaway.
Our work appears in Google News, Seeking Alpha, Motley Fool, Morningstar, Vatalyst, Value Walk, and Guru Focus, among others.
Andrew Shapiro is Founder, President and Portfolio Manager of Lawndale Capital Management, an investment advisor that has managed activist hedge funds focused on small- and micro-cap companies for over 23 years, one of the longest periods of experience deploying an activist/relational investment strategy today. Mr. Shapiro’s proactive ownership approach has been effective in directly creating and unlocking shareholder value in Lawndale’s portfolio companies and has contributed to Lawndale’s activist funds often being ranked among the top event-driven and small-cap value funds in peer databases for long-term performance. In addition to leading Lawndale, Mr. Shapiro has also served as a Director or Observer on portfolio company boards and debt and equity bankruptcy committees. Mr. Shapiro is a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) and, via Lawndale, has been a long-time Sustaining Member of the Council of Institutional Investors (CII).
Mr. Shapiro has more than two decades of portfolio management and analytically varied experience from a number of "buy-side" positions, employing a rare combination of credit, legal and equity analytic and workout skills. Prior to founding the Lawndale organization in 1992, Mr. Shapiro managed the workout and restructuring of large portfolios of high-yield bonds, distressed equities and risk arbitrage securities for the Belzberg family's entity, First City Capital. Before joining First City, Mr. Shapiro was involved in numerous highly leveraged corporate acquisition and recapitalization transactions for both Manufacturers Hanover Trust and the Spectrum Group, a private equity firm.
Mr. Shapiro received his JD degree from the UCLA School of Law where he was an Olin Fellow, an MBA from UCLA's Anderson Graduate School of Management where he was a Venture Capital Fellow and a BS in Business Administration from UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business, where he has taught finance courses and frequently guest lectures.
Mr. Shapiro was recently selected to the 2012 NACD Directorship 100, a list of the most influential leaders in the boardroom and corporate governance community. He is often quoted on matters of corporate governance, fiduciary duty and activist investing and has been the subject of several articles, including a Business Week article in 2000 calling him “The Gary Cooper of Governance”. Mr. Shapiro frequent speaks and panels on corporate governance and activist investing issues at a broad range of prestigious forums that include the Council of Institutional Investors, National Association of Corporate Directors, American Society of Corporate Secretaries, SEC Advisory Committee on Small Public Companies, and the Director’s education programs of Stanford Law School, UCLA Anderson Grad. School of Mgmt., the Wisconsin Business School and Yale’s Millstein Center for Corporate Governance, among others. Mr. Shapiro is a Contributing Author at Seeking Alpha.
Mr. Shapiro started Lawndale’s funds in 1993 with only $188,000 under management and through performance and added capital has grown the firm’s managed assets substantially. Lawndale applies a private equity approach through active and relational ownership of public company securities. In most investments, Lawndale plays a constructive relational role by actively working with boards and management teams to help them achieve their strategic and operating goals. In other instances, Lawndale is a direct value-unlocking catalyst, utilizing a range of tools that include aggressively promoting improvements in a company's governance and operational structures, proxy actions, asserting shareowner’s legal rights and taking active roles in restructuring and buyout proposal negotiations..
Please note that I do not read comments posted here, nor respond to messages here. I don't have the time. If you want my attention, you must seek it directly at my blog.
David J. Merkel, CFA — From 2003-2007, I was a leading commentator at the excellent investment website RealMoney.com (http://www.RealMoney.com). Back in 2003, after several years of correspondence, James Cramer invited me to write for the site, and now I write for RealMoney on equity and bond portfolio management, macroeconomics, derivatives, quantitative strategies, insurance issues, corporate governance, etc. My specialty is looking at the interlinkages in the markets in order to understand individual markets better.
I no longer contribute to RealMoney because my work duties have gotten larger, and I began this blog to develop a distinct voice with a wider distribution.
In 2008, I became the Chief Economist and Director of Research of Finacorp Securities (http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=109&STORY=/www/story/02-08-2008/0004752449&EDATE=). Finacorp went into liquidation in June 2010, after which I decided to open my own asset management shop, Aleph Investments, LLC. I manage stock and bond portfolios for clients.
Until 2007, I was a senior investment analyst at Hovde Capital, responsible for analysis and valuation of investment opportunities for the FIP funds, particularly of companies in the insurance industry. I also managed the internal profit sharing and charitable endowment monies of the firm.
Prior to joining Hovde in 2003, I managed corporate bonds for Dwight Asset Management. In 1998, I joined the Mount Washington Investment Group as the Mortgage Bond and Asset Liability manager after working with Provident Mutual, AIG and Pacific Standard Life.
My background as a life actuary has given me a different perspective on investing. How do you earn money without taking undue risk? How do you convey ideas about investing while showing a proper level of uncertainty on the likelihood of success? How do the various markets fit together, telling us us a broader story than any single piece? These are the themes that I will deal with in this blog. I hold bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Johns Hopkins University.
In my spare time, I take care of our eight children with my wonderful wife Ruth. Visit this site: The Aleph Blog (http://alephblog.com/)
Whitney Tilson is the founder and Managing Partner of Kase Capital Management, which manages three value-oriented hedge funds. Mr. Tilson is also the co-founder of Value Investor Insight, an investment newsletter.
Mr. Tilson has co-authored two books, The Art of Value Investing: How the World's Best Investors Beat the Market (2013) and More Mortgage Meltdown: 6 Ways to Profit in These Bad Times (2009), was one of the authors of Poor Charlie’s Almanack, the definitive book on Berkshire Hathaway Vice Chairman Charlie Munger, and has written for Forbes, the Financial Times, Kiplinger’s, the Motley Fool and TheStreet.com. He was featured in two 60 Minutes segments in December 2008 about the housing crisis (which won an Emmy) and in March 2015 about Lumber Liquidators. He served for two years on the Board of Directors of Cutter & Buck, which designs and markets upscale sportswear, until the company was sold in early 2007.
Mr. Tilson received an MBA with High Distinction from the Harvard Business School, where he was elected a Baker Scholar (top 5% of class), and graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College, with a bachelor’s degree in Government.
Mr. Tilson spent much of his childhood in Tanzania and Nicaragua (his parents are both educators, were among the first couples to meet and marry in the Peace Corps, and have retired in Kenya). Consequently, Mr. Tilson is involved with a number of charities focused on education reform and Africa. For his philanthropic work, he received the 2008 John C. Whitehead Social Enterprise Award from the Harvard Business School Club of Greater New York. He is a member and past Chairman of the Manhattan chapter of the Young Presidents’ Organization. Mr. Tilson lives in Manhattan with his wife and three teenage daughters.
Kerrisdale Capital is a private investment manager that focuses on value and special situations investments. We manage investment partnerships and separately managed accounts.
Seeking Alpha's Managing Editor, News; I manage the team that produces the site's news items (http://seekingalpha.com/news/), our real-time coverage of market news and analysis, as well as Breaking News-powered digests such as Wall Street Breakfast.
My name is Ben and I am a generalist equity research analyst for Right Wall Capital. Right Wall is a small, long-short equity, financials-focused hedge fund located in New York City. Prior to working at Right Wall I worked as an analyst at Blue Ram Capital, another long-short equity hedge fund located in Rye Brook, NY. Even though I am a generalist, I have an expertise in regional banks and am developing a deep understanding of asset managers as well as re-insurers. I also have many years of commercial real estate experience, a fact that I believe gives me a unique perspective on the current real estate crisis.
I have a BS in Economics from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. I plan to attend the Anderson School of Business at the University of California-Los Angeles in the Fall of 2009.
I am a member of the Sum Zero Network and the Wharton Hedge Fund Network.
Sean Wright manages the Wright Investment Partnership an international long / short hedge fund. Prior to founding his firm, he worked in private equity at Allianz Capital Partners and in investment banking at Donaldson, Lufkin and Jenrette. Sean graduated from Wharton with an MBA in 2000. Interested investors can find out more at www.wrightinvestment.com.
Robert Freedland is a medical professional by trade and an amateur investor who has been blogging on Stock Pick Bob's Advice since 2003. He has been investing in the stock market for 46 years, having made his first purchase at the age of 13 of five shares of Global Marine in September 1967. He enjoys sharing his philosophy and perspective on investing, both by blogging and podcasting. Visit Bob's blog: Stock Pick Bob's Advice (http://bobsadviceforstocks.tripod.com/bobsadviceforstocks/). Since 2009, he has been managing portfolios on Covestor, which now include Growth and Momentum (http://covestor.com/robert-freedland/growth-and-momentum), Sustained Momentum (http://covestor.com/robert-freedland/sustained-momentum), Healthcare (http://covestor.com/robert-freedland/healthcare) and Large Cap Momentum (http://covestor.com/robert-freedland/large-cap-momentum).
MagicDiligence provides useful, simple, and effective stock screening tools inspired by Joel Greenblatt's Magic Formula® Investing methodology. Our Spells give value and growth investors a list of great stock candidates every day, and our advanced Spell Caster lets you create the Magic-style stock screen you've always wanted! Learn more about our exclusive set of investing tools today!
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Only days after the S&P 500 crashed to the depths of hell at 666, the Hoffman brothers launched Wall St. Cheat Sheet: one of the fastest growing financial media sites on the web. Like a samurai, our mission is to cut through the bull and bear sh** with extraordinary insights, a fresh voice, and razor-sharp wit. We provide the highest quality education and information for active investors and financial professionals. We are official contributors to Yahoo Finance, CNNMoney, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, Business Insider, The Huffington Post, Minyanville, SeekingAlpha, and Zero Hedge. Our work has been cited in top finance and trading outlets such as The Wall Street Journal, MarketWatch, Financial Times, The Big Picture, Real Clear Markets, The Atlantic, Business Insider, The Huffington Post, Infectious Greed, DealBreaker, CBS MoneyWatch, Kiplinger, Investment Postcards, ZeroHedge, Business Pundit, TraderFeed, The Kirk Report, AbnormalReturns, and more.
For the Premium Complimentary Trial: http://wallstcheatsheet.com/premium/
Damien Hoffman, Esq. decided to launch a financial website and exclusive subscription-based newsletter after achieving a 63% return versus a -48% return for the S&P over a nearly two year time frame as a co-founder of popular stock blog SmartGuyStocks (member of the Forbes Business and Finance Blog Network, and certified by Seeking Alpha). Mr Hoffman is currently Editor-in-Chief of Wall St. Cheat Sheet and trades full-time. After graduating early with honors from Duke University, he raised private equity with friends during the late Nineties to launch a successful start-up. Mr. Hoffman went on to work for boutique sports investment bank Inner Circle LLP where he worked on the sale of the NBA franchise New Jersey Nets to Brooklyn real estate development firm Forest City Ratner Companies (NYSE: FCE-A). Mr. Hoffman also graduated with honors from the University of Miami School of Law as a Dean’s Merit Scholar. He clerked at the Florida Supreme Court for the Honorable Justice Kenneth Bell and Central Staff. In 2006 at Harvard Law School he gave a guest lecture entitled, “Business and Law in the New Independent Music Industry.”
Derek Hoffman joined efforts with his brother to launch Wall St. Cheat Sheet after a decade of investing experience and outperforming the S&P 500 over the past 5 years. Mr. Hoffman is currently the CEO of Wall St. Cheat Sheet and trades full-time. He is a regular contributor to CNNMoney. His long-term investments and short-term trades have yielded extraordinarily successful results: double digit annual returns. Mr. Hoffman has handled media investment and tactical strategy planning for Procter & Gamble and Gillette’s national asset portfolio. He has also worked in private wealth management for Morgan Stanley. Mr. Hoffman graduated early from the University of Michigan’s world class economics department.
For the Premium Complimentary Trial: http://wallstcheatsheet.com/premium/
The Oil & Gas Investments Bulletin (http://www.oilandgas-investments.com) is an online subscription-based service that finds, researches, and profiles growing oil and gas companies that have high growth rates (or high growth potential.)
Its team of writers work under Keith Schaefer, Editor/Publisher, who shares his knowledge of the oil and natural gas markets in a simple, easy to read manner. The bulletin outlines which TSX, NYSE and NASD-listed energy companies have the ability to grow, and bring shareholders prosperity even in tough times.
There is tremendous potential to profit in oil and gas companies for informed investors. Mr. Schaefer has a degree in journalism but has spent the last 15 years assisting public resource companies in raising exploration and expansion capital.