For this website all you need to know about me is that: I am an interest rate junkie; Homer and Sylla's "A History of Interest Rates" is a touchstone. I have a passion for macro economics; William Greider's "Secrets of the Temple, How the Federal Reserve Runs the Country" is another touchstone. The first house that I built in 1978 sold for $28,000 that year and is assessed today, 12/9/2013, at $522,500. I got out of the housing development business in 2005. For more about me see www.gotothomas1.com
I have been in and out of the stock market many times since the early eighties, each time moving my money into real estate. My background is with the wholesale and retail building supply industry giving me a inside look at such companies as GP and HD.
Current status working in sales for a Lead manufacturer which has given me a interest in the movement of commodities.
My name is Scott Sumner and I have taught economics at Bentley University for the past 27 years. I earned a BA in economics at Wisconsin and a PhD at Chicago. My research has been in the field of monetary economics, particularly the role of the gold standard in the Great Depression. I had just begun research on the relationship between cultural values and neoliberal reforms, when I got pulled back into monetary economics by the current crisis.
I obtained my CPA in 1990 and became a CFA charter holder in 2000. I consider myself an expert in Quantitative and Qualitative analysis and have extensive experience in Technical Analysis. I also have a deep interest in stock market history and hold degrees in Economics (BSBA) and Management Information Systems (MBA). I have been actively involved with investment analysis and investment management since 1985 but have been a student of investing since the 1960s. I owned my first individual stock position while still in high school. I am a student of Benjamin Graham and Warren Buffett. I have achieved a uniquely diverse experience from multiple careers that has allowed me to develop a broad perspective enabling me to look at the big picture of macroeconomics all the way down to the retail unit or factory floor. In my youth I was in retail, then served in reconnaissance during my tours in Vietnam. I have been a blue collar, union worker in a factory and a manager in services, hospitality and transportation as well as a manager of professional staffs. I have more than 20 years of experience each in both public and private sectors. I have personal points of reference that many analysts will never have. I bring more to the table than just the theories and models I have studied or built. To understand more about my investing philosophy please visit my blog on my website.
The Curve Advisor was founded in 2011 by Joseph Choi. Mr. Choi was a senior proprietary trader in J.P. Morgan’s Global Currencies and Commodities Group. He was consistently profitable in trading Eurodollar butterflies over his trading career. He was one of the largest discretionary users of Eurodollar futures and options, trading well over 10 million contracts a year. Mr. Choi started the Curve Advisor newsletter to provide strategic commentary on the interest rate markets and discuss trade-specific market views on the Eurodollar curve. In 2016, he started an open-access web site as a resource for short term interest rate futures traders.
Time management is essential to monitoring a 47 position portfolio. My 1st comment concludes with "Rich-unck:xx hrs"; I uncheck from the article to avoid repetitive comments, nonsense, and (most) arguments. I extend another XX hrs when I respond to a question or comment...I also respond to all PMs.
BACKGROUND My journey as a self-directed investor (SDI) began in 1973, and resulted in financial independence at age 52, which also allowed me to retire from corporate life the following year (Feb 1995).
I have no special knowledge not attainable by others who also dedicate themselves to the study of the economy, market, and stocks...I could cease all portfolio management today, and place it with a professional manager; however, I enjoy the psychic and financial rewards. Alternatively, I could become a passive investor via mutual funds and/or index ETFs (those works too! ). With few exceptions, As a rule, Rich only discusses his IRA here--it is only a portion of his and Joyce’s investment assets.
INVESTMENT PHILOSOPHY If you ‘lived for today’ over the past 5 or 6 decades, you better invest in lottery tickets. The most probable path to a financially secure retirement is the product of an investment program (either active or passive) started when relatively young; living on less than all your after-tax income (saving means delayed gratification); and either self-directed or via professional management, adopting a sensible strategy suitable to age and comfort zone. There is wisdom in flexibility, diversification, and not being life-long wed to any strategy. It is appropriate to take greater risk for greater rewards (sensible growth stocks) when younger, as those are our lowest earnings years combined with our highest expense years--in the years between early investment and retirement, investments in solid growth companies can double 8 times or more.
There is time to adjust allocations to a more conservative strategy when closer to retirement. Never assume you have an information edge over the professionals. Time-in-the-market is your principle advantage. When/if you become interested in dividend stocks, never forget both price return and dividends compound, and price more so.
Financial independence is achieved when one has sufficient confidence his/her lifestyle will not change significantly, regardless of the potential depth or breadth of decline suffered by their portfolio--including a prolonged series of bear markets such as 1929-37. True, the recent 18-month bear market ending mid-2009, was deep--but also too brief to consider its lack of widespread dividend cuts to be as proof a portfolio of dividend-payers won't suffer income losses in a more prolonged decline (i.e., no portfolio is "dividend bulletproof").
The balance of this profile is lengthy, and likely not helpful to passive investors who simply go along for the ride, their portfolios bobbing up and down like flotsam in the ocean; their course always subject to the whims of winds, waves, and trends...THIS IS YOUR ONLY WARNING!
PORTFOLIO GOALS Now in my 70s, it’s no longer appropriate to engage in the growth strategies applied in wealth accumulation. As a more conservative investor, 100% of his portfolio consists of dividend-payers. 95% of positions have investment grade credit ratings (the lone exception is a REIT).This combination, along with having companies in 10 of the 11 S&P GICS sectors (none in Materials at this time) provide a measure of diversification. This IRA portfolio holds no bonds, though bonds and other investments are held elsewhere.
Maximizing total return and wealth preservation are mutually exclusive. A key observation: Having the capacity for risk is not the same as having the tolerance for it!
Rich’s objective is now a ‘smoother-ride’ that levels out the market’s peaks and valleys (limit losses, trim notable excess valuation). That smoother ride in an all-equity portfolio cannot be achieved without active management and continuous monitoring of positions--therefore TIME is an essential input to his portfolio management. Active management does not’ means frequent changes, as it is not unusual for a quarter or more to pass between a trimming or sale (nonetheless, when a company fundamentals change, or a mistake is made, corrective action is taken.)
STRATEGY SINCE 2008 Rich targets both legs of TOTAL RETURN (distributions + price change). His Growth & Income strategy often focuses on VALUE investing tactics applied to dividend-payers. Value investors seek out unpopular, companies most investors are avoiding (i.e., fundamentals have declined but credit rating is strong, BoD has implemented a rational recovery plan, and the dividend not in danger). Value investors seek to be paid to wait for other investors to recognize the stock’s value and assign it a greater share price. In any event, value stock or growth stock, Rich always seeks a ‘margin of safety’--no shares are bought at prices >FV, and his margin of safety is derived from dividends paid, price appreciation, and rising FV over time.
In all cases, value or growth, Rich selects well-established dividend-paying companies having a high-probability of growing earnings (growth of earnings is ESSENTIAL to growth of price and dividends). He tends to be flexible, forward looking, reactive to changing fundamentals, and willing to admit a mistake so action follows.
SDI is not easy, success is not assured, and in recent decades, advice from academics, and investment coaches, almost universally recommend index funds. Those NOT having the prerequisite time and interest are unlikely to develop the requisite skills for stock investing--thus the probability strongly suggests most newbies would be better served by indexing (Ben Graham wrote favorably of indexing). However, when done successfully, self-directed stock investing can offer rich psychic and financial rewards.
CORE PORTFOLIO Presently, +/-30 equities. Core holdings dominate at about 65% of total portfolio positions. Favored are traditional, large- and mid-cap, low-beta, best/near-best in class, institutional-owned, moaty, dividend-paying, value and growth stocks, having investment-grade debt ratings, and representing the consumer staples, healthcare, utilities, and telecom sectors.
OPPORTUNISTIC PORTFOLIO The remaining 15+ positions consist of equally well-known dividend-payers found among widely-owned cyclicals, such as financial, industrials, consumer discretionary, technology, real estate, and energy sectors are sensitive to the economy. In an expanding economy, cyclicals typically grow their earnings (and dividends) faster than do the typically slower-growing core companies. But because the reverse is also true, in a contracting economy, these positions are intended to be heavily trimmed to preserve gains as the economy peaks and shows evidence of decline. Some are susceptible to quite significant price declines when Mr. Market assumes their will suffer reduced earnings, and sometimes dividend-freezes/cuts, in anticipation of those events.
Rich is sometimes fully-invested, but unlike some, observes no such rule. Building a large cash cushion at the front-end of a correction/bear market (-20%) provides the dry powder required to both cushion the market's decline, and also creates the cash required to purchase excellent companies at below FV prices (without having to sell a position he wants to keep!).
TRIMMING POSITIONS When positions in either portfolio become significantly overvalued, they are trimmed by 5-10%, and the proceeds applied to fairly valued companies before the (almost always) temporary gift of over-valuation reverts to the price mean. If the position continues to advance, and absent other information, the position will be trimmed again. Added benefits to selective trimming include (1) serves as a more sensible method of rebalancing (as opposed to automatic--professionals do not use such a meat cleaver); (2) reduces the position's remaining Capital at Risk (which may suggest room for additional shares within an otherwise full position), and (3) provides the necessary dry powder to buy other shares at FV or below.
OTHER INTERESTS As we age, the importance of family grows. Rich has long volunteered in his community; over the years has served with distinction as member/chair of a number of advisory committees. Assisting others on SA is also a source of satisfaction and fulfillment.
Finally, having been blessed by years of excellent investment performance, Joyce and Rich have long been avid world travelers, and have visited over 60 countries over a span of 30 years (his SA avatar reflects the Taj Mahal in his sun glasses). They reside in Michigan--for 9 months of beauty, bliss, and family, and thoroughly enjoy wintering in equally beautiful Naples FL--for 3 months of sunny warmth and relaxation.
Life is good--it's been an unbelievably awesome ride!
BA in philosophy and political economy. Small business owner/operator since 1978, now retired. Fixed income and consumer essentials equities investor. Sometimes real estate developer. I began studying money and monetary systems after the 1982 crash that plunged my home Province, Alberta, into a long and deep depression. The "arithmetic" focus of my monetary analysis follows from reading C.H. Douglas who began writing about monetary system defects in the early 1920s and who eventually invented his "social credit" monetary system that received a wide international airing during the 1930s Depression. Douglas's contemporary but not collaborator Irving Fisher is the best known of the American monetary reformers of that era. 2008 is 1929 all over again, so in late 2008 I discovered Seeking Alpha and began writing about our monetary system defects in the hope of raising monetary awareness and promoting the kinds of reforms that can prevent a repeat of the 1930s Depression.
Commodity broker 79-81 I discovered the Gospel In July 1979 (and re-discovered it again in April 2004 -after the G.6 release was dis-continued - actually created the RR time series in the late 1980's). Dr. Leland Pritchard "You have a predictive device nobody has hit on yet" - 9/8/81 My prediction for AAA corporate yields for 1981 was 15.48%. AAA Corporate yields rose to 15.49%. I should receive the Nobel Prize. The data should be classified as "top secret" by the U.S. Gov't. I.e., I let Aladdin out of the Lamp. See: 1938 Member Bank Reserve Requirements - Analysis of Committee Proposal (transactions velocity) http://bit.ly/M0JB7X The outstanding volume of the FRB_NY "trading desk's" 'eligible collateral' fell during the Great Depression. Whereas 'eligible collateral' was multiplied thru colossal Federal deficit financing (where the Gov’t spends much more than it expects to receive), during the Great Recession (but Bernanke still chose to "push on a string"). As Greenspan pontificated in “The Map & the Territory”: “The laws of physics…once identified, rarely have to be revised”: Rates-of-change (roc’s) in monetary flows (our means-of-payment money times its transactions rate-of-turnover), equal roc’s in all transactions in Irving Fisher’s “equation of exchange”: (MVt = PT). Roc’s in nominal-gDp are a proxy for all economic transactions. The lags for monetary flows (MVt), i.e. the proxies for (1) real-growth, & for (2) inflation indices have been mathematical constants for the last 100 years. However, the FED's target (interest rates), is indirect, varies widely over time, & in magnitude. President Wilson signed “The Federal Reserve Act” into law on December 23, 1913. The Act, "Provided for the establishment of Federal Reserve Banks, to furnish an elastic currency, to afford means of rediscounting commercial paper, to establish a more effective supervision of banking in the United States, and for other purposes". "It was anticipated that credit extended by the Federal Reserve Banks to commercial banks would rise and fall with seasonal and longer term variations in business activity" "Seasonality" (principally the holidays), is the result of the FOMC’s seasonal mal-adjustments (& has its roots in the fallacious "Real Bills Doctrine”). The FOMC, through its "open market power", has the capability of either adding or subtracting to the volume of money in circulation. But the non-bank public determines its mix (the volume of currency vs. bank deposits). This policy is reflected by changes in the Depository Financial Institution’s (DFI), required reserve balances. RRs are based on transaction type accounts 30 days prior. Reserve balances are driven by consumer's & business' payment & settlements. Thus RRs provide the seasonal factor map (economic time series’ cyclical trend). This is inviolate & sacrosanct. Some calls: (1) flow5 (2/26/07; 14:34:35MT - usagold.com msg#: 152672) Suckers Rally If gold doesn't fall, then there's a new paradigm (2) Reply #187 on Jul 21, 2011, 8:31pm » the stock market should be topping & in the process of a downtrend (3) flow5 Comments (3049) As it now stands, the market falls until Oct. Then expect a very strong rally. Everybody should double up in Nov. & Dec. (i.e., futures, options, margin, etc.) 5 Aug 2011, 09:04 (4) Written on Mar 30 11:31 am prior to the MAY 6th FLASH CRASH: "Contrary to economic theory, & Nobel laureate Dr. Milton Friedman, monetary lags are not "long & variable". The lags for monetary flows (MVt), i.e., the proxies for (1) real-growth, and for (2) inflation indices, are historically, always, fixed in length (mathematical constants). However the lag for nominal gdp (the FED's target??), varies widely." Assuming no quick countervailing stimulus: 2010 jan..... 0.54.... 0.25 top feb..... 0.50.... 0.10 mar.... 0.54.... 0.08 apr..... 0.46.... 0.09 top may.... 0.41.... 0.01 stocks fall Been saying this for the last 6 months. Should see shortly. Stock market makes a double top in Jan & Apr. Then the real-output of final goods & services falls/inverts from (9) to (1) from Apr to May. Recent history indicates that this will be a marked, short, one month drop, in rate-of-change for real-output (-8). So stocks follow the economy down (with yields moving sympathetically?)" (5) flow5 Message #10 - 05/03/10 07:30 PM The markets usually turn (pivot) on May 5th (+ or - 1 day). (6) POSTED: Dec 13 2007 06:55 PM | The Commerce Department said retail sales in Oct 2007 increased by 1.2% over Oct 2006, & up a huge 6.3% from Nov 2006. 10/1/2007,,,,,,,-0.47,,,,,,, -0.22 * temporary bottom 11/1/2007,,,,,,, 0.14,,,,,,, -0.18 12/1/2007,,,,,,, 0.44,,,,,,,-0.23 1/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.59,,,,,,, 0.06 2/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.45,,,,,,, 0.10 3/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.06,,,,,,, 0.04 4/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.04,,,,,,, 0.02 5/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.09,,,,,,, 0.04 6/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.20,,,,,,, 0.05 7/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.32,,,,,,, 0.10 8/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.15,,,,,,, 0.05 9/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.00,,,,,,, 0.13 10/1/2008,,,,,,, -0.20,,,,,,, 0.10 * possible recession 11/1/2008,,,,,,, -0.10,,,,,,, 0.00 * possible recession 12/1/2008,,,,,,, 0.10,,,,,,, -0.06 * possible recession Trajectory as predicted: (7) 12-16-12, 01:50 PM #1 flow5 "We’re close to seeing the real power of OMOs. R-gDp is likely to accelerate earlier & faster than anyone now expects. The roc in M*Vt before any new stimulus is already above average. With low inflation (given some deficit resolution), Jan-Apr could be a zinger" (8) June's reversal will end the bull market that began in the early 80's. And it will not be because Operation Twist ends (although its end will force yields higher). 20 May 2012, 03:04 PMReply (9) This propelled nominal gNp to 19.2% in the 1st qtr 1981, the FFR to 22%, & AAA Corporates to 15.49%. My prediction for AAA corporate yields for 1981 was 15.48%.
Charles Hugh Smith writes the Of Two Minds blog (www.oftwominds.com/blog.html) which covers an eclectic range of timely topics: finance, housing, Asia, energy, longterm trends, social issues, health/diet/fitness and sustainability. From its humble beginnings in May 2005, Of Two Minds now attracts some 200,000 visits a month.
Charles also contributes to AOL's Daily Finance site (www.dailyfinance.com) and has written eight books, most recently "Survival+: Structuring Prosperity for Yourself and the Nation" (2009) which is available in a free version on his blog.
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.
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Acting Man has been named after the title of the first chapter of Ludwig von Mises' book "Human Action" - the best treatise on economics ever written. The blog's main author is Pater Tenebrarum, an independent analyst who has been involved with financial markets for 34 years and is writing economic and market analyses for independent research organizations and a European hedge fund consultancy. Acting Man presents articles on the markets and the economy, a mixture of commentary on current events as well as economic theory and history, mainly from an Austrian School of Economics viewpoint. As more authors have joined the site, we have begun to broaden our palette a bit, but our orientation remains the same: pro-free market, anti-state, pro peace.
Ben S. Bernanke is a Distinguished Fellow in Residence with the Economic Studies Program at the Brookings Institution. From February 2006 through January 2014, he was Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. Dr. Bernanke also served as Chairman of the Federal Open Market Committee, the System's principal monetary policymaking body.
Before his appointment as Chairman, Dr. Bernanke was Chairman of the President's Council of Economic Advisers, from June 2005 to January 2006. He had already served the Federal Reserve System in several roles. He was a member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System from 2002 to 2005; a visiting scholar at the Federal Reserve Banks of Philadelphia (1987-89), Boston (1989-90), and New York (1990-91, 1994-96); and a member of the Academic Advisory Panel at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (1990-2002).
From 1994 to 1996, Dr. Bernanke was the Class of 1926 Professor of Economics and Public Affairs at Princeton University. He was the Howard Harrison and Gabrielle Snyder Beck Professor of Economics and Public Affairs and Chair of the Economics Department at the university from 1996 to 2002. Dr. Bernanke had been a Professor of Economics and Public Affairs at Princeton since 1985.
Before arriving at Princeton, Dr. Bernanke was an Associate Professor of Economics (1983-85) and an Assistant Professor of Economics (1979-83) at the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University. His teaching career also included serving as a Visiting Professor of Economics at New York University (1993) and at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1989-90).
Dr. Bernanke has published many articles on a wide variety of economic issues, including monetary policy and macroeconomics, and he is the author of several scholarly books and two textbooks. He has held a Guggenheim Fellowship and a Sloan Fellowship, and he is a Fellow of the Econometric Society and of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Bernanke served as the Director of the Monetary Economics Program of the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) and as a member of the NBER's Business Cycle Dating Committee. In July 2001, he was appointed Editor of the American Economic Review. Dr. Bernanke's work with civic and professional groups includes having served two terms as a member of the Montgomery Township (N.J.) Board of Education.
Dr. Bernanke was born in December 1953 in Augusta, Georgia, and grew up in Dillon, South Carolina. He received a B.A. in economics in 1975 from Harvard University (summa cum laude) and a Ph.D. in economics in 1979 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Dr. Bernanke is married and has two children.
J. Bradford DeLong is a professor of economics at the University of California at Berkeley, chair of its political economy major, a research associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, a visiting scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, and was in the Clinton administration a deputy assistant secretary of the U.S. Treasury. You can learn more about his website (http://delong.typepad.com/sdj/about_this_website.html/), visit his home page (http://delong.typepad.com/main/), visit his principal weblog (http://delong.typepad.com/sdj).
I am engaged in trading Asian emerging market currencies and formerly the accountant for and a staff member of a local non profit business engaged in community service.
Please understand, the views I express are my own and are not intended to influence any positions other than my own and for our business. I have a degree in business management with an emphasis in economics.
Formerly enlisted in USAF Air Defense, both ballistic missile and aerospace defense, including joint service counter narcotics surveillance and deployments under imminent danger.
I was a partner in a small business, now a retired saver being punished by the central bank.
Bob McTeer is a Distinguished Fellow at the National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA), covering macro-economic issues, including monetary policy, fiscal policy, tax and education policy. NCPA is a nonprofit, nonpartisan market-oriented public policy institute headquartered in Dallas, Texas, with offices in Washington, D.C. See www.ncpa.org.
Prior to joining the NCPA in January 2007, Bob was Chancellor of the Texas A&M University System from November 4, 2004 through November 22, 2006. The Texas A&M University System is composed of 9 universities, 7 state agencies and a statewide health science center. The system has approximately 25,000 employees and budgets totaling $2.5 billion. Its universities have approximately 102,000 students, including about 45,000 at its flagship, Texas A&M University in College Station.
Before becoming Chancellor of the Texas A&M University System, Bob had a 36-year career with the Federal Reserve System, including 14 years as President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas and member of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC). While at the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond in the 1970s, Bob taught economics as an adjunct faculty member at the University of Richmond and Virginia Commonwealth University. While he ran the Richmond Fed’s Baltimore Branch in the 1980s, Bob taught two classes per semester in the evening program of The Johns Hopkins University.
Bob got his B.B.A. and Ph.D. in economics from the University of Georgia and taught there for two years before joining the Fed in 1968. His graduate education was financed by a National Defense Education Act (NDEA) fellowship. He holds an honorary doctorate in the Humane Letters from Austin College.
Bob serves on the Boards of Directors the Westwood Holdings Group, and Refocus Group. He is a former member of the Board of Overseers of UGA’s Terry College of Business, where he was named Distinguished Alumnus in 1991. He is past president of the Association of Private Enterprise Education, a national association of free enterprise scholars and others who advocate market solutions to public policy problems, and a former board member of the National Council on Economic Education. Bob was featured as a Texas Legend in Business in 2004 by the Texas Cable News Network.
As a Fed policymaker, Bob gained a national reputation as an independent voice, or maverick, dissenting from the Alan Greenspan majority twice in 1999 and once in 2002.
His dissents and his outspoken views and plain talk got him the labels “Lone Star Loner” and “The Lonesome Dove.” He says he’s been called worse.
Bob’s free-market views in general and his vigorous support of free-trade in particular, gave the Dallas Fed its reputation during his tenure as “The Free-Enterprise Fed.” Bob is a CNBC contributor. He has written numerous opinion pieces for the Wall Street Journal and other publications and has spoken worldwide.
Bob’s poetry and vignettes have been featured twice on the Dallas Community News Network. You may find these and other articles and speeches on www.BobMcTeer.com.
Full-time Investor, and frequent speculator.
Focus on US Stocks and Real Estate.
Degree in Economics and Finance.
Over 35 years of economic analysis and active investing experience. Retired Financial Services CEO (company had $2 Billion in financial assets).
Macroeconomic conditions and cycle progression are the foundation of my investment strategy. I evaluate the macro trend, and then select investments that will benefit from that trend, shifting the mix as the cycle progresses. Earnings growth is the sustainable fuel for investment gains. So, I look to position my portfolio accordingly.
I stay fully invested during the rising tide of a growing economy. I use leverage until the expansion shows signs of constraints and exhaustion. Rising input costs (wages, materials, energy, interest rates) eventually squeeze corporate profits, making growth less feasible. When I see evidence of a coming recession combined with weakness in the market, I exit my equity positions, reduce my real estate holdings, and shift to the safety of cash and treasury bonds. After the market slides deeply, and after the panic reaches headline proportions, I begin to reinvest as I anticipate or see evidence of the market bottom. I successfully avoided the 2001-2002 and the 2008 bear markets, while being fully invested for the bull markets around those declines.
In prior cycles I purchased individual stocks. However, during this bull market I am making heavy use of ETFs (including Sector ETFs). This is much less work, but results in more average returns. I do purchase some individual company stocks when I think the company will perform better than the average in its industry sector. I do not sell short, and rarely use options.
My portfolio is about half market tracking. I also use sector rotation, selected specific companies, modest margin debt, and 3x leveraged ETFs, within the rising cycle trend to magnify and outperform the average trend. I also adjust the size of my market exposure based on market conditions, and historic patterns.
Over the past 35+ years of active investing in stocks and real estate, my investment returns have been significantly above the average return of the S&P 500 (largely due to market timing and leverage). Since October 2007, my Stock portfolio average total return has been about 15% per year, compounded. My Real Estate portfolio average total return has been about 8% per year for the same period. The S&P 500 average total return has been about 5% per year during the same period.
My gross investment asset allocation target is roughly 70% stock, and 30% real estate (rentals). Current Stock Portfolio Mix (July 2016): 47% Broad Market Tracking (VTI, SPY, RSP, QQQ, VB...),18% Homebuilders and related, 15% Consumer Discretionary (VCR), 07% Industrials (XLI), 05% Berkshire Hathaway, 08% all other. Margin Debt is about 4% of portfolio value. Total Market Leverage is 1.05x (down from 1.34x in 2014). No bonds, and cash is less than 2% of gross assets. Real Estate is Residential Rentals, mostly near the beach (average LTV is about 40%).
Timothy Taylor is the managing editor of the Journal of Economic Perspectives, based at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, which can be read free on-line courtesy of the American Economic Association, author of The Instant Economist: Everything You Need to Know About How the Economy Works, published January 2012 by Penguin Books, author of Principles of Economics: Economics and the Economy, a introductory college textbook available from Textbook Media, Inc. (third edition published in 2014), and lecturer for several courses from The Teaching Company including Unexpected Economics, Economics: An Introduction, America and the New Global Economy.
Ph.D. economics and Finance MBA finance
Globe Institute of Technology
Professor – Economics and Finance, Chair of Business Department
Colorado Technical University
Adjunct Professor – courses: Applied Managerial Finance (Graduate Level), Microeconomics, International Finance
European School Of Economics (New York Campus)
Adjunct Professor – Economics (Graduate Level) Courses taught: Microeconomics
Metropolitan College of New York
Adjunct Professor – Economics, Banking and Finance
Courses taught: History of Economic Thought, Macroeconomics, Money and Financial Institutions
World Gold Council
New York, NY
• Constructed econometric models relating to gold's role as a portfolio diversifier primarily aimed at institutional investors.
• Focused on models of the embedded optionality of gold in terms of its relation to other investment assets and economic fundamentals such as inflation and business conditions.
Founder and President, Internet Startup company with polling and investment advice websites.
Fundamental Portfolio Advisors, Inc.
Chief Portfolio Strategist – President
• At the predecessor company I started the New York Muni Fund, the first single state triple tax-free municipal bond fund.
• I took the fund from a one-employee start-up where I performed every function to a family of mutual funds which had five funds with total assets above $300 million and which did all of its distribution, accounting and transfer in-house.
• I wrote the initial prospectus and was responsible for managing the portfolios of what eventually grew to be a family of 5 mutual funds.
• Was chief economist for parent company’s brokerage affiliate.
• Involved on the buy-side in the development and monitoring of various structured municipal finance products. Worked with major issuers such as New York City and major investment banks such as Merrill Lynch and Goldman Sachs.
• Designed and submitted a U.S. Patent Application for a portfolio management system for mutual funds involving derivatives.
Note: In 1996 Fundamental Portfolio Advisors and myself were subject to civil litigation by the SEC which resulted in deregistration and a permanent bar from the securities industry.
A. Gary Shilling & Co.
Senior Economist – Vice President
Economic consulting, modeling and forecasting. Both macro and micro.
• Clients included: Emerson Electric, Bethlehem Steel, Castle & Cooke, Cooper Industries and the U.S. Department of Transportation.
• I was the author of the 1979 study commissioned by the U.S. Government Interstate Commerce Commission, which calculated the expected economic impact of trucking deregulation.
White, Weld & Co, Inc.
• White, Weld was the sixth largest investment banking and brokerage firm when Merrill Lynch bought it.
• Extensive work was done on the All-American Pipeline Proposal to tap the Alaskan Gas Reserves.
• The economics department of White, Weld formed A. Gary Shilling & Co. at the time of the Merrill Lynch merger.
American Stock Exchange
New York University
June 1978 Ph.D.
• Ph.D. dual field, economics and finance.
• Doctoral dissertation was in contingency claims (options) theory
June 1973 MBA with concentration in economics and finance
NYU Engineering School
June 1971 Bachelor of Science - Nuclear Engineering Tau Beta Pi
Analysis of the Embedded Inflation Optionality in Gold Prices. World Gold Council, 2000. New York, N.Y.
The Economic Impact of Trucking Deregulation. Interstate Commerce Commission, 1979, Washington D.C.
I've traded options and futures for about five years. I also consult for determining strategic and tactical allocations for a variety of investors, and have done so for eight years through my company, Radiant Financial Solutions. It is far more common for me to invest using ETFs, closed end or open end mutual funds rather than dealing in individual securities. My credentials include CFA, Master in Financial Engineering as well as Applied Economics from University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. I currently live with my wife and two kids in Scottsdale, Arizona. We enjoy hiking, travel, cooking, and hockey.
Ted Waller is a private investor who bought his first stock at age 13 (GTE) and has over 50 years of investing experience. His focus is on deep value and low risk. Acquiring wealth is a slow incremental process that requires setting goals, adherence to principles, patience, and flexibility.
I have thirty four years experience investing as an individual, as an adviser to trustees of a son's Guardianship Trust, as co-trustee of a Special Needs Trust, as sole trustee of a supplemental needs trust for my sister, and previously assisting parents to manage a substantial portfolio. In viewing investments I use a blended approach of fundamental analysis, technical analysis, hedging and incorporating an economic perspective. I have a BS in Economics and a BA with a major in Chemistry, both from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis. I spent most of my career as an industrial process systems engineer and recently several years as a part-time mortgage banker.
I spent eight years at Bank of America in New York (1978-86) covering Wall Street, then moved to Moody's Investors Service where I worked for 22 years, covering banks, sovereigns and corporates. I chaired the Credit Policy Committee for four years. I retired in 2007 as vice chairman.
PLEASE FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER: @christophermah3
My philosophy: I am a libertarian, a market monetarist, an admirer of Fisher, Friedman and Minsky. I believe in a strong safety net and strict regulation of the financial system. I support most of Dodd-Frank. I think that the world's #1 problem today is inadequate inflation and nominal growth. I believe that the Fed should have two mandates: financial stability, and a nominal output target. I follow Scott Sumner and the other market monetarists. I respect Krugman as a brilliant economist who happens to be a leftist.
In addition to publishing at Seeking Alpha, I have my own financial blog at http://capitalismandfredom.blogspot.com
With advanced degrees in both economics and finance, I place great deal of importance upon macreconomic developments and fundamental analyses of industries and individual companies
In typical markets, I seek out investment themes which offer compelling reasons to invest in a group of like companies. Within a theme group, I look for earnings consistency, growth, market leadership, competitive advantage and reasonable valuations as measured by PEG ratios and other metrics.
I like companies that dominate their economic space and which enjoy what Buffet refers to as a durable competitive advantage and Morningstar refers to as an economic moat. I try to remained disciplined investor but will frequently yield to the lure of a pure momentum plays.
To assist in identifying current themes, I spend an inordinate amount of time reading and subscribe to IBD and use Zack's and StockCharts.com to filter, screen and rank investment candidates. Four or more technical measures may be used to time entry and exit points by understanding underlying momentum, strength and directionality.
Dr. Ahanotu is a graduate of Stanford University with over twenty years of experience doing analytic modeling, executing pricing strategies through price optimization, and implementing, developing, and selling enterprise software. He adds to this industry experience another five overlapping years of research in knowledge management and organizational learning. Duru Ahanotu, Ph.D. founded Ahan Analytics, LLC to deliver sustainable, data-driven approaches for improving business performance. He recognizes the unique challenges companies face in leveraging their data to increase revenues, become more efficient, and drive profitability.
Before launching Ahan Analytics, LLC, Dr. Ahanotu was last a Sales Consultant in the Advertiser and Publisher Solutions (APS) group within Microsoft Advertising. In this capacity, he provided product knowledge, functional expertise, and technical support to APS account executives who sold APS’s suite of media monetization products. He led product demonstrations and increased the productivity of the sales team by training and certifying employees on the use and demonstration of the software. Dr. Ahanotu took on this role after Microsoft acquired his former employer Rapt, Inc. Rapt provided software solutions for maximizing revenue and yield for online media publishers.
With Rapt, Dr. Ahanotu last served as an Engagement Manager for a software implementation for a $100 million on-line publisher with a rapidly growing business. With his project team, Dr. Ahanotu created and coordinated novel approaches to inventory forecasting, structuring of product hierarchies, and ETL across software systems for order management, advertising delivery, and Rapt’s software. He also generated a step-by-step methodology for interpreting and using the results of price optimization.
As a Solutions Architect, Dr. Ahanotu served as the lead Solutions Consultant on client engagements and provided technical assistance and guidance to Solutions Consultants on other projects. Dr. Ahanotu designed and implemented price optimization solutions, demonstrating expertise in mathematical modeling, pricing, data analysis, SQL, and relational data models. He led discussions with customers and internal teams to improve implementation processes and product design.
Dr. Ahanotu held oversight responsibility for the analytic modeling for two projects using Price Director, Rapt’s price optimization software. Each project supported pricing decisions in Fortune 50 businesses: one business was a leading online media publisher, and the other was a rapidly growing technology company in a low margin business. Dr. Ahanotu helped the latter client integrate Price Director into pricing workflow. As part of this first-ever client implementation of Price Director, he worked closely with Product Management, Analytic Development, and Software Engineering to ensure that early-stage product functionality met client needs.
Dr. Ahanotu contributed several new methodologies for implementing Price Director analytics and conceptual frameworks for training clients on these analytics. He is a contributor on a related Rapt patent: “Method and System for Producing Optimized Prices for Products for Sale.” Dr. Ahanotu presented a white paper on the pricing of New Product Introductions at the 2006 INFORMS Annual Meeting. The Professional Pricing Society published this paper in The Journal of Professional Pricing (Vol. 16, No. 1, First Quarter 2007) as “Pricing New Products: Turning Portfolio Uncertainty Into Profits.”
Prior to Rapt, Dr. Ahanotu was a consultant with Integral, Inc, a small strategic management consulting firm. During his three-year tenure, he consulted on product development and technology strategy focused on high tech and pharmaceutical companies. Prior to Integral, he developed mathematical programming algorithms for managing and optimizing “Y2K” projects as an independent contractor. Prior to this work, he implemented expert systems for diagnosing and troubleshooting automotive and semiconductor manufacturing equipment as a Business Solutions Project Manager and Consultant for Expert Edge, Inc.
Dr. Ahanotu earned a Master’s and Ph.D. in Engineering-Economic Systems (1999), a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, and Honors in Values, Technology, Science, and Society (1991) - all at Stanford University.
“Sold At TheTop” is the snarky pseudonym for the organic blogger that maintains the reasonably popular and, dare I say, possibly even slightly influential web log PaperEconomy (www.papereconomy.com).
“Sold”, as he prefers to be called (especially by his wife under certain saucy circumstances… mmmm…) is not a professional economist, analyst or stock trader and has neither been trained in finance nor statistics.
What Sold offers is a dedicated and serious passion for macroeconomic analysis and further, for the creation of striking, some say even artistic, visualizations of macroeconomic data. Though not a “perma-bear” Sold is very bearish about the current state and future of the American economy subscribing whole heartedly to notion that the recent financial crisis is but the second act of an immense systemic unwind that commenced, more or less, in the year 2000.
Sold is NOT A PESSIMIST by nature but a true skeptic and a realist that prefers solid and sustained evidence of fundamental economic recovery to “Goldilocks”, “Green Shoots”, “Mustard Seeds” and wholesale speculation. Further, Sold believes that the evidence for rational and efficient markets as well as collective wisdom is scant.
In his spare time Sold works as an independent software consultant spewing out cutting edge code like he’s spraying silly string.
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).
Scott Grannis was Chief Economist from 1989 to 2007 at Western Asset Management Company, a Pasadena-based manager of fixed-income funds for institutional investors around the globe. He was a member of Western's Investment Strategy Committee, was responsible for developing the firm's domestic and international outlook, and provided consultation and advice on investment and asset allocation strategies to CFOs, Treasurers, and pension fund managers. He specialized in analysis of Federal Reserve policy and interest rate forecasting, and spearheaded the firm's research into Treasury Inflation Protected Securities (TIPS). Prior to joining Western Asset, he was Senior Economist at the Claremont Economics Institute, an economic forecasting and consulting service headed by John Rutledge, from 1980 to 1986. From 1986 to 1989, he was Principal at Leland O'Brien Rubinstein Associates, a financial services firm that specialized in sophisticated hedging strategies for institutional investors.
Visit his blog: Calafia Beach Pundit (http://scottgrannis.blogspot.com/)
I look for a change in sentiment that precedes the change in trend. Moments of "lag" in sentiment can provide superb entry points into special situations at a discount; and obversely, manic enthusiasm can provide an opportunity to go short.
I research the fundamentals, know what I am getting into, and go long or short accordingly. Technical studies of the market are also an active part of my trading. I have invested for 22 years.
David Fry writes a subscription newsletter focused on technical analysis of exchange-traded funds, called ETF Digest (www.etfdigest.com). Dave founded the ETF Digest in 2001 and was among the very first to see the need for a publication that provided individual investors with information and actionable advice on global ETF investing.
We particularly like the overview of financial markets that his work provides. Even if you're not a fan of chart analysis, Dave provides insight and commentary into which global markets are "working" and why.
Specializing as a market strategist and tactician, Fry focuses on evaluating, creating and implementing a variety of ETF portfolios for individual investors and financial professionals. His philosophy and approach incorporates fundamental with technical analysis in pursuit of risk management and capital preservation especially during uncertain and volatile times.
His new eBook, The Best ETFs: U.S. Equities,is now available on Amazon Kindle. Written as a cheat sheet to only the best ETFs for you or your client’s portfolios. For those that don't have a Kindle, you can purchase the pdf here: The Best ETFs: US Equities [https://gumroad.com/l/The%20Best%20ETFs]