Steven Bavaria writes about finance, economics and politics, drawing on his fifty years experience in international banking, credit, investment, human resources/training, journalism and public service. Now retired from his "day job" in the finance industry, Bavaria lives mostly off his investments. His focus is largely on income-oriented stocks, bonds and mutual funds, especially closed-end funds, ETFs and other IRA-suitable investments. His book "Too Greedy for Adam Smith: CEO Pay and the Demise of Capitalism" is based on his experiences running human resources at the Bank of Boston, where he first learned about the excesses in the CEO pay arena. The book is available on Amazon and at independent retailers. (Here is the link.) 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, before returning to Boston to run the bank's human resources department. Later 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. (Read it here.) Bavaria graduated from Georgetown University and New England School of Law. He lives in Boca Raton, Florida.
I am an early career scientific researcher who has taken a strong interest in investing. While I invest primarily to achieve my personal financial goals, I find that doing so gives me another outlet beyond science where critical and logical thinking yield significant rewards.
On Seeking Alpha's Marketplace, I offer a premium service called the Cambridge Income Laboratory focusing mostly on research and analysis of exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and closed-end funds (CEFs). Currently, we are the top-ranked service for ETFs, and also rank 2nd for CEFs and arbitrage.
The Cambridge Income Laboratory boasts a community of over a hundred serious income investors dedicated on sharing ETF and CEF ideas and strategies. Check us out to see why one subscriber calls us a "one-stop shop for CEF research.”
Within the academic field, I have a career total of over 100 publications, 3300 total citations and an h-index of 34 (metrics from Google Scholar).
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Tom Roseen is the Head of Research Services, joining from Janus in 1996. He is the editor and an author of Lipper's U.S. Research Studies, FundFlows Insight Reports and FundIndustry Insight Reports. He is involved in fund analysis and research, and contributes to the monthly and quarterly equity and fixed income FundMarket Insight reports, webcasts and podcasts, where he focuses on domestic and world fund performance and attribution. His areas of expertise include closed-end fund analysis, portfolio evaluation, equity and fixed income fund research, fund flows analysis, after-tax performance and Lipper Leaders. Tom has a BS in finance from Metropolitan State College of Denver and a Master's in International Management from the University of Denver. Tom is a member of the CFA Society of Colorado.
I am a JD/CPA with extensive experience working in the CLO industry. I am currently the legal counsel at MJX Asset Management, a $12 billion aum CLO manager. I was also an initial member of CIFC's (a public leveraged loan investment manager) executive team where I was responsible for the issuance of 7 CLOs and numerous warehouse facilities. Prior to that experience, I was a Director in S&P's CDO rating group, where I specialized in rating middle market CLOs.
Retired; Bull or Bear (BDC, mREIT) 50/50 Portfolio; dividends greater than 75% of my gross employment income. I created a High Yield Investment dividend generator that contains a 50% weighting between agency mortgage REITs and BDCs.
**** Retired 2017 ****Retired 2017 ****Retired 2017 ****Retired 2017 ****
My current investment method started January 2014 to concentrate on high yield equities that put more importance on income and less on capital appreciation. Investment purchase is based on each individual stock generating a minimum dividend per year. As long as stocks are generating income to meet or exceed my minimum dividend they will not be added too or removed. I am not a Financial Analyst or a professional money manager, just someone who realizes income cash flow is the focus of my investment method.
1) Currently surplus dividends are reinvested back into stocks that require their dividends to be increased to meet my minimum yearly dividend. Since retiring in 2017 I have set up withdraws based on 50% of total cash flow income generated increasing at 3% per year.
2) The investment selection is based on this principle; BDCs outperform when markets are going up (positive correlation), and mREITs, outperform when markets are going down (negative correlation).
3) Capital gain does not apply to my investment method since this implies the anticipation of buy and hope for price increase in order to sell at a profit. Income cash flow is the main driver of my investment method in retirement. Portfolio balance will naturally increase since I'm always be in the accumulation phase.
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Convergence Investment Management is a Registered Investment Advisory firm that focuses on unique opportunities within the Closed-End Fund and Exchange Traded Fund marketplaces. We believe that the markets, while very efficient, are not perfectly efficient and that opportunities for superior risk adjusted returns exist for those willing to put in the work to identify short-term price dislocations. Charles “Chad” Gray is Convergence Investment Management’s Portfolio Manager. Prior to launching Convergence, Mr. Gray spent much of professional his career in Silicon Valley developing better data analytics platforms and data management techniques, many of which have been applied to the Convergence approach. Mr. Gray earned both an M.B.A. and M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a B.S. in Engineering from Northwestern University. He has also earned the CFA designation and is an active member with the CFA Society of San Francisco.
The author works at a long horizon multi asset class investment management organization; and has been in the markets professionally for two decades. Avocation is unusual situations, as well as instruments with embedded options. Has a bias toward misunderstood, illiquid, potentially "yieldy" types of securities that have lost their narrative, and thusly, their holder constituency. Likes securities which have a "hard" net asset value that can potentially be used as a safety net if circumstances do not cooperate with the intial analysis. In most cases, prefer to find investments where time is in the holders favor - whether it means value is being recognized by a slow moving liquidation, or a legal process that is being ground out, or even the demise of control shareholders / management. These "thin file" investment ideas mean that most of the leg work has to be done by the investor themselves, rather than relying on sell side analysts, or external third party firms. Primary sources of research include corporate filings as well as competitor and peers filings, and an understanding of management's incentives/motivations for certain outcomes.
Current focus areas include most of the unusual wrapper yieldy vehicles that would not go into conventional capitalization weighted indices such as FI CEFs, BDCs, MLPs, REITs, mREITs, Royalty Trusts and so forth.
I provide economic analysis, market commentary and company-specific research. My general view is to operate a diversified basket of long-term investments in both equities and fixed income. I have a bachelor's degree in economics from San Diego State University (2007), eight years of publishing experience and over a decade of cumulative investment experience. I have been published in several newspapers and magazines, including The Wall Street Journal and Barron's.
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'd like to do 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 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 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. As an academic scientist I routinely published my research results. It's how I spent my working career, so it comes more or less naturally to me. It forces me to think about details I might otherwise overlook.Like all academics, I consider it an essential part of doing research. So, the writing I do here is as much for myself as for the reader. It also opens me to feedback from others who may draw quite different conclusions.
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. So, I encourage and appreciate thoughtful comments, especially from those who disagree with me (although I will ignore obvious trolls and encourage others to do so as well).
My Investment Philosophies and Strategies: I maintain two portfolios: one for income and one for growth. As I have passed the age where I have to take mandatory withdrawals from my IRAs,I have transitioned my taxable brokerage account to a nearly pure growth focus along with large holdings in tax-free municipal-bond CEFs. My goal for the IRA is to generate income to meet MRD levels. The remainder is held in a fairly defensive growth portfolio. I've reached a point where I'm more concerned about drawdowns than I am about beating the market.
Finally, I've chosen to remain anonymous, which I feel obligated to address. 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. But I do have a professional on-line presence which I'd prefer not to mix with my Seeking Alpha persona. 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, but when I write about something here, it's something that I have a personal financial stake in (perhaps a negative stake in that I'll tell you why I rejected it). I do not give advice; what I publish is much more in line with my 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.