I'm the editor of UKValueInvestor.com, an investment website and monthly newsletter where I write about building high yield, low risk portfolios.
My book, “The Defensive Value Investor”, covers my investment strategy in detail.
Brad Thomas is a research analyst and he currently writes weekly for Forbes and Seeking Alpha where he maintains research on many publicly-listed REITs. In addition, Thomas is the Editor of the Forbes Real Estate Investor, a monthly subscription-based newsletter. He is on the Advisory Board of NY Residential REIT and he is a shareholder and publisher on TheMaven (MVEN).
Thomas has also been featured in Forbes Magazine, Kiplinger’s, US News & World Report, Money, NPR, Institutional Investor, GlobeStreet, CNN, Newsmax, and Fox. He is the #1 contributing analyst on Seeking Alpha in 2014, 2015, and 2016 (based on page views).
Thomas has co-authored a book, The Intelligent REIT Investor, and is the author of The Trump Factor: Unlocking The Secrets Behind The Trump Empire (available on Amazon).
Thomas received a Bachelor of Science degree in Business/Economics from Presbyterian College and he is also on the Advisory Board of the Donald J. Trump Presidential campaign.
Dana Blankenhorn http://www.danablankenhorn.com has been a business journalist since 1978, and a futurist all his life.He warned about the coming Houston oil collapse in 1979. He began making a living on the Internet in 1985. He launched the first e-commerce daily for CMP in 1994, warned of the coming dot-bomb at a-clue.com in 1997 and began covering the Internet of Things in 2003.Along the way he's written for a host of newspapers, magazines, news services and Web sites. Most recently he was at TheStreet.com, covering technology and investments. He still has time for freelance assignments. He lives in Atlanta.
If you’re on my profile page, you probably want to know a little more about me before signing up for the Mortgage REIT Forum. That seems reasonable.
Why is my name hidden?
I see things that are problems in the world and I work to correct them. I shine a light on places where companies don't want anyone looking. A few CEOs have reached out to me because they appreciated the thorough analysis; others have taken great offense because I go against the grain by calling out poor investments. Most analysts simply apply hold ratings or move on to find a different company to discuss. Executives of companies that are performing poorly on a fundamental level don’t want extra attention, so ignoring them is the safer course. Since I choose to highlight those problems, I keep my name off the site. Hiding my name makes it a little more difficult for those companies to try to silence me with nuisance suits.
Why did I pick mortgage REITs?
As I learned the sector, I began building more and more complicated models to estimate the fluctuations in value and performance across different mortgage REITs. I became even more interested as I found certain economic theories, such as efficient market prices, clearly did not apply. The lack of high quality public analysis meant investors were often poorly informed which set the stage for price failures. Economics would suggest that the rewards from this analysis must be the fair compensation for the talent that goes into finding them, but efficient markets still requires that the adjustment be immediate. It is not. Do you want an example? Look at the price movement in Resource Capital Corporation leading up to and following the earnings release (03/14/2017). There was a gap, even the morning of the earnings release, because the other professionals covering them needed time to update their expectations.
How did I build my system?
I was good at math and decent (certainly not great) at excel. I spent a great deal of time theorizing about how things worked and building models to represent that view. Then I would pull historical data from a company and see if my model was correct. If it was, great, I could expand the sample size. If it was wrong, I would look for the reason. I try to nail down as many variables as possible. The result of working long hours and constantly reassessing my beliefs as I tested them against the historical data was a deeper understanding of how the parts actually worked. This is why you may see me criticize analysts that put in a weak effort or try to cut large corners.
What is my view on risk?
There is a world of difference between the ways an investor can generate their returns. The traditional view is to see earning excess returns as compensation for taking on high levels of risk. I believe it is far better to focus on earning returns from catching market failures. These failures happen due to poor liquidity and investors (including analysts) working with incomplete information. I believe that by knowing the individual companies well, the investor can step in when the “risk” is heavily skewed in favor of “returns”. They should hunt for opportunities where there should be sufficient room for positive returns and very low probabilities of any major decline.
That theory guides my investment decision making. I do not try to generate higher returns, I try to generate more consistent returns by reducing the downwards risk. Occasionally that results in exceptionally high returns when something corrects, but it also means I am willing to pass on several decent opportunities because I want the risk/return profile skewed heavily in my favor.
It is also a reason you’ll see me emphasize preferred shares as an investment strategy. Some of these have very stable valuations and strong yields. At the same time, I will also look to sell the shares if I believe they are overvalued. This can be challenging for many buy and hold investors, but it is another way to take advantage of liquidity. I pay less attention to setting up those limit-sell orders on the preferred shares if I have a large cash position already, but if I see several things at attractive prices then I don’t want to stay in a share if I could reallocate the capital to something that is materially more attractive.
The subscription platform allows me to do a few things very well. It allows me to share the research I’m doing for my own investment decision making. It allows me to communicate rapidly with investors that are willing to pay for my best work. The editorial process takes time, but subscription articles can be posted as quickly as I can write them and upload the file. This is critical for updating investors to a liquidity event.
It also allows me to diversify income streams. With the growth in ad-blocking technologies and widespread use of mobile devices, I want more sources of revenue for my work. This is the only method I’ve found that works. Don’t take my word for it though, consider reviews from my subscribers. I’m still maintaining a perfect 5 star average rating.
Want Recent Examples?
Look at the tickers for RSO, ORC, and WMC. I was able to call a buy rating and two sell ratings. I would consider RSO and ORC homeruns (price movement over 15% within a month) and WMC a solid double (falling 7% to 8% to land within my suggested range for closing shorts). Disclosure: Long RSO.
Markos N. Kaminis generated a 23% average annual return on "Strong Buy" stock selections over 5 years and ranked 2nd among a group of 60 analysts in-house as a Senior Equity Analyst over a seven-year period at Standard & Poor's. After proving his value in-house, he was promoted into a special role as an idea generator, supporting the portfolios of institutional clients as well as driving performance within S&P's recommended lists and portfolios. At times, Markos was responsible for up to 10% of the firm's entire "Strong Buy" list and is due a great deal of credit for the group's outstanding performance during his tenure.
Markos followed a group of 30-40 Small and Mid-Cap firms, and was charged with finding new buy and sell candidates across industry sectors. He generated a 23% average annual return over five years on his "Strong Buy" recommendations, and 26% over three years ended 2004. He was ranked 1st of 60 analysts in-house for his "Strong Buy" performance over 4 years (2nd over 5). Markos also authored IPO research and wrote for high-level newsletters, The Outlook, Equity Insights and Emerging Opportunities, as well as for BusinessWeek Online. He represented his firm as an analytical expert commentator for major media, including television, Internet and through quotes and interviews in reputable publications.
Besides predicting the stock market correction of 2015 through a series of prescient reports here in August. (see proof here: http://seekingalpha.com/article/3482226-investor-who-predicted-the-stock-market-correction-offers-an-update ), Markos also advised investors to buy stocks at the bottom of the market in mid-February 2016 and again post-Brexit at the trough, and to buy gold in January 2016 before the commodity started its move higher. While not perfect, over the years, Markos has made countless correct market and security calls for his followers, including forecasting the demise of J.C. Penney on the heralded CEO hire's disruptive plans, the bankruptcies of Washington Mutual and Pilgrim's Pride in the $30 and $20s, respectively, as well as the purchase of Facebook in the mid-$20s when it was considered a pariah post its IPO (today it is a market darling). Markos also warned of the real estate market collapse and the financial crisis in the early days of his blogging.
What I personally want you to know about my plans: After witnessing the worst of Wall Street firsthand and having the ideal vision of my childhood career choice corrupted by reality, I almost switched to full-time charity work at age 40 and still have plans for several non-profit endeavors. The future is somewhat unknown, and I am open to employment offers for portfolio management or other ideas. While continuing to publish regularly, I expect to begin work on several book ideas that I believe are important for business, for our nation and for society.
I may put my stock selection skills, earned through blood, sweat and tears, to better use, and to make my own way. I would like to give investors something rare, a dignified partner who can manage money with integrity and a clear conscience about the degree of due diligence behind investment decisions... someone who cares more about your money than your wife. I hope readers will become followers of my column here & at my blog, so that when our numbers are substantial, we might start an investment fund or two.
Prior to his Wall Street career, Mr. Kaminis spent time in the back-office, as a mutual fund accountant, where he managed for a time the work of two men. Before this, from age 11 to age 25, he worked as a carpenter's apprentice and carpenter with his father, in both commercial and residential projects. Mr. Kaminis has an intimate knowledge of the real estate (undergraduate degree in Real Estate and Finance) and construction market, as well as the restaurant industry.
However, as a generalist stock analyst, he showed the ability to learn any and the most complicated of industries in short time - and he gamed every challenge presented to him. Mr. Kaminis earned his MBA at the Katz Graduate School of Business at the University of Pittsburgh, and his BA at Temple University in Philadelphia. However, Markos has been studying the stock market since age 13, when he determined his career path.
He made his first investment at age 16, and funded much of his undergraduate education with the proceeds of his investing success. Mr. Kaminis continues to keep busy forecasting the economic path and securities market activity. Markos is considering the eventual start-up a long/short capital appreciation hedge fund. Such a fund would limit risk through beta reduction, using a diversification strategy targeting sector & industry and long & short position inclusion. At the same time, Markos' theoretical fund would seek maximum capital appreciation through the exploitation of Mr. Kaminis' inherent economic & market discernment gift and proven stock selection skills.
Mr. Kaminis also has a team of a select few analysts, technicians, strategists and economists that he has been impressed by over the years, which he expects to tap for the project when the time is right. Mr. Kaminis welcomes your interest in such a potential forward effort, and looks forward to discussing his plans with those appropriate and within legal constraints.
Markos toys with very early stage entrepreneurial efforts in the testing of certain business models, all of which he intends to tie to a planned non-profit project serving the most helpless among us. The tie will be that the businesses will give employment opportunity to individuals who would otherwise have difficulty finding gainful employment. It will house and heal the homeless, ex-convicts, those completing rehabilitation efforts for drug and other addictions, and others in need of help.
Markos is currently Directing the widely syndicated blog he founded, "Wall Street Greek," and is writing for other well-known publications besides advancing several big ideas. Markos' column is syndicated across sites like the Boston Globe, Kiplinger Magazine, UPI and other reputable newspaper and TV websites, as well as private networks, Amazon Kindle, iPhone and more. In the past, he has written for RealMoney.com, Motley Fool and others.
Requests to research specific companies are welcome, as we serve our readers. You may contact us via this blog's contact info. Mr. Kaminis welcomes you to follow him here at Seeking Alpha, where he is proud to be a long-time contributor to this strong team of writers. He considers the Seeking Alpha team and management close friends, and for you, people worth knowing and following. Visit his site: Wall Street Greek (http://www.wallstreetgreek.blogspot.com/)
We are a team of market professionals with 18 years combined experience as investment advisers and stock analysts. We specialize in the transportation sector (rails, air freight, ports, shipping and logistics). We use our deep knowledge about this space to help readers earn higher risk adjusted returns. In addition, we have 11 years of experience trading options and use these to generate extra income. A client with a $100,000 dollar portfolio can expect an extra $3,000 to $8,000 from these investments.
I have been interested in the market my entire life. From my first equity purchase when I was 15- Chrysler just before the government bailout to managing the portfolio of my father- and outperforming the major indexes with lower risk for over 20 years, I have been attracted to the intellectual and financial challenges of identifying opportunity and making above average returns- again on a risk adjusted basis.
Professionally, I am currently the CFO of a post-start up software development company with a focus on mobile telecom applications. I have served as the CFO,COO, CRO and President of public and private companies. My academic background includes a BS in accounting from the University of Illinois and an MBA in finance and corporate strategy from the University of Michigan. I have CPA and CGMA designations.
Generally, I seek outsized appreciation opportunities with below average risk and often favor stocks that have downside protection through one or more of the following- robust dividend yield, high book value, cash balance or other backstop. I tend to shy away from momentum stocks and those with very high PEs or PEGs.
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.
Sign up here to receive the Wall Street Breakfast in your inbox every business day: http://seekingalpha.com/account/email_preferences
I apologize to investors who follow my articles, but I don't currently plan to resume any involvement with SA, though that may eventually change, if the site ever implements/enforces deterrents to web stalkers. For now, I only publicly share opinions on stocks via Twitter, StockTwits, etc. The rest of what follows is my normal profile, so I won't have to rewrite it, should I ever continue posting on SA. Best of luck investing. Cheers. I run a small family office managing long-term portfolios and special projects beyond the capital markets. I'm fortunate to have worked for a NYSE-traded financial firm for the decade through 2010, but I am not an adviser, my articles only share our investing actions/opinions, and they are not investment advice. Proof is in the pudding, so here are our stock portfolio returns from the most recent five years: 2011 +37%, 2012 +32%, 2013 +52%, 2014 +11%, 2015 +14%, 2016 +37% (those are only capital gains, but all except 2 out of ~25 holdings pay dividends). Returns are moderating as expected, since most all positions were rebuilt/opened in 2010-2012 at extreme undervaluation levels, yet only 1-3 new positions are opened in each more recent year at moderate undervaluation levels. I also trade around our core positions for short-term profits, but I do not include trade gains in portfolio return tracking, and my articles are strictly about long-term investing. My investing career started in the 1980s, and the transition to full-time was finalized in 2009. I only list returns from 2012 because that's when I became most active on SA, and the stock calls that led to those results can be verified here. For 2008-2011, my focus was shorter-term trades, which made total annual returns harder to tally, so without wasting time backtracking, I can only say returns were worthwhile. For most years prior, I was a blue-chip-only, buy-and-hold guy, which also worked well, so I still own most of those stocks in accounts separate from our actively-managed portfolios.
Dallas currently owns and operates as CEO an Austin-based enterprise consulting firm that specializes in private company lifecycle management, up to and including taking companies public, and in helping consult publicly traded companies ranging in market cap from $100 million to $500 million. He has a specialization in deal flow management and is often the referring and closing source of Joint Ventures and broader M&A. Dallas often works directly with management teams and Boards of microcap and stressed equity companies in which he or members of his professional network are heavily invested. This includes helping with overall strategy, helping with capital structure management, helping facilitate liquidity, helping facilitate Joint Ventures and broader M&A, and helping restructure the business segments if necessary. Recently Dallas has been interviewed by The Pittsburgh Business Times, The Banker, Columbus Business First, Houston Business Journal, The Deal, Energy Intelligence, and his tweets have been used by CNBC to highlight hot button issues regarding Carl Icahn, Bill Ackman, Nelson Peltz’s takeover attempts at DuPont, etc. Dallas has also been quoted and sourced to by StreetSweeper.org, Marcellus.com, MarcellusDrilling.com, Bakken.com, OilOnline.com, and other physical and online publications. "One place of great inefficiency is in the stressed equity markets – or the markets in which a company appears as bankruptcy or a breakup is inevitable. As equities become stressed they often sell down to absurd levels of value that present, should there be value to be unlocked, opportunities for “venture level” returns. These often range in the 3X-10X range. With my unique ability to actually improve business outcomes by working directly with a company and management/Board I’m in a position, should I view the underlying business as salvageable, to directly improve the long-term viability of the company. I am NOT simply an investor in these names but an acting consultant. This allows me to “overlay my network” and to move the company away from a stressed or defaulting outcome and into an outcome probability that allows the equity price to move substantially higher."
David Stockman is the ultimate Washington insider turned iconoclast. He began his career in Washington as a young man and quickly rose through the ranks of the Republican Party to become the Director of the Office of Management and Budget under President Ronald Reagan. After leaving the White House, Stockman had a 20-year career on Wall Street.
At the podium, Stockman’s expertise and experience cannot be matched, and he has a reputation for zesty financial straight talk. Defying right- and left-wing boxes, his latest book catalogues both the corrupters and defenders of sound money, fiscal rectitude, and free markets. Stockman discusses the forces that have left the public sector teetering on the edge of political dysfunction and fiscal collapse and have caused America’s financial system to morph into an unstable, bubble-prone gambling arena that undermines capitalist prosperity and showers speculators with vast windfall gains.
Stockman’s career in Washington began in 1970, when he served as a special assistant to U.S. Representative, John Anderson of Illinois. From 1972 to 1975, he was executive director of the U.S. House of Representatives Republican Conference. Stockman was elected as a Michigan Congressman in 1976 and held the position until his resignation in January 1981.
He then became Director of the Office of Management and Budget under President Ronald Reagan, serving from 1981 until August 1985. Stockman was the youngest cabinet member in the 20th century. Although only in his early 30s, Stockman became well known to the public during this time concerning the role of the federal government in American society.
After resigning from his position as Director of the OMB, Stockman wrote a best-selling book, The Triumph of Politics: Why the Reagan Revolution Failed (1986). The book was Stockman’s frontline report of the miscalculations, manipulations, and political intrigues that led to the failure of the Reagan Revolution. A major publishing event and New York Times bestseller in its day, The Triumph of Politics is still startlingly relevant to the conduct of Washington politics today.
After leaving government, Stockman joined Wall Street investment bank Salomon Bros. He later became one of the original partners at New York-based private equity firm, The Blackstone Group. Stockman left Blackstone in 1999 to start his own private equity fund based in Greenwich, Connecticut.
In his newest New York Times best-seller, The Great Deformation: The Corruption of Capitalism in America (2013), Stockman lays out how the U.S. has devolved from a free market economy into one fatally deformed by Washington’s endless fiscal largesse, K-street lobbies and Fed sponsored bailouts and printing press money.
Stockman was born in Ft. Hood, Texas. He received his B.A. from Michigan State University and pursued graduate studies at Harvard Divinity School.
He lives in Greenwich, Connecticut, with his wife Jennifer Blei Stockman. They have two daughters, Rachel and Victoria.
Richard Zeits is an Oil & Gas industry analyst and consultant. His background includes fourteen years as Energy industry-focused investment banker, portfolio manager and senior investment analyst with bulge bracket firms in New York. Zeits Energy Analytics use elaborate proprietary analytics and data bases to provide in-depth industry research, market intelligence, and forecasting.
The professionals at Eight Diamonds Advisors have on average more than 20 years of experience working in the financial markets. Their backgrounds cover a broad swath of disciplines including M&A, restructuring, forensic accounting, investment management and research analysis.
I am a retired college faculty in Philosophy, with specializations in Ethics, Socio-political Theory and Rational Choice/Decision Theory. My teaching focus was on Business Ethics, Medical Ethics and Logic. After retirement I freelanced as a Grant Writer/Fund Raising Consultant. I have taught at Washington University in St. Louis, the University of Missouri - St. Louis, and St. Louis Community College.
I believe that potential investments ought to be evaluated through an examination of their fundamentals - i.e., fundamental analysis. Those investments can then be analyzed with respect to whatever criteria an investor may wish to bring to bear, but at least the investments they make will be more or less fundamentally sound. For me, one of the more important features of an investment (after fundamentals are satisfied) is dividend yield. I expect my investment to earn money for me.
I also believe that the day of the "traditional" investment strategy based on one's age/proximity to retirement is over. To be sure, one wants to put one's money in places where it is more secure, but in the day and age of internet-based investment services, a variety of ETFs, and reasonably safe investment vehicles, there is no need for retired people to stick the bulk of their assets in relatively unprofitable treasury notes and bonds.
Background in corporate finance at multiple Fortune 200 companies including real-estate, media, and banking. Believe strongly in detailed analysis of company balance sheets and income statements, going into deeper detail than the average investor. Look to identify companies whose fundamental financials or outlook, differ significantly the the market value afforded to that company at a particular point in time. As a rule, beginning May 2013, I very rarely will hold any position in a stock that I cover on Seeking Alpha. This is done solely to protect the integrity of my research and opinion expressed in any article contributed to the site. In the rare case that I do hold a position in a stock I discuss, it will be clearly noted in the customary disclosure as well as the article itself.
I am an undergraduate student majoring in finance and attending Grove City College. At Grove City College I oversee our Student Investment Society. I also serve as Executive Treasurer of our Student Government Association.
In terms of an investment philosophy, I focus on businesses with wide moats and strong balance sheets which generate large amounts of free cash flow. I tend to stay away from large cap names and focus on anything in the mid cap space all the way down to some micro caps.
This past year, I attended the CMU Seeking Alpha Stock Pitch competition with another undergrad writer and placed second for our thesis on Nexstar Broadcasting.
To connect with me and see a more detailed background, you can visit my LinkedIn page: https://www.linkedin.com/in/bryanthomas42
James Altucher was the managing director of Formula Capital, an asset management firm and fund of hedge funds. He's written five books on investing: Trade Like a Hedge Fund, Trade Like Warren Buffett, SuperCash, The Forever Portfolio, and his latest book, The Choose Yourself Guide To Wealth. He currently writes at Jamesaltucher.com and has released a newsletter, The Altucher Report.
Mr. Altucher is the founder of Stockpickr.com, a social network for finance that had millions of unique visitors per month when it was sold to TheStreet.com in 2007. He has written over 200 columns for The Financial Times and has written for TheStreet.com, Forbes, Yahoo Finance, Fidelity.com, and other publications. He was also the founder of a web services firm, Reset Inc, which he sold in 1998, at which time he became a partner at VC firm, 212 Ventures/Investcorp. Mr. Altucher regularly appears on CNBC, Fox News, Fox Business, and CNN Radio, and is also in his spare time a nationally ranked chess master. Mr. Altucher received his BA at Cornell University and attended graduate school for computer science at Carnegie Mellon University.
You can follow him on twitter @jaltucher.
10+ years experience investing in every kind of company imaginable with a current focus on smaller market cap companies, especially those with interesting dividends. Here to post my thoughts publicly in order to help other investors and to gain valuable feedback from the community here.
MyPlanIQ.com is the only web application that offers advanced asset allocation strategies customized to a wide range of retirement and taxable investment plans such as 401(k), IRA and brokerage accounts. The unique key advantages of MyPlanIQ.com are
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MyPlanIQ.com enables private investors to achieve institutional investment results and experience with a fraction of cost and efforts.
Brendan, a Pennsylvanian by birth, completed his B.S. at Allegheny College and his Ph.D. at Stanford University in the field of organic synthesis. He has been employed by a major pharmaceutical company and a tiny biopharma startup, but is an avid investor as well. His writings focus on a variety of topics ranging from stocks and bonds to analysis of recent news events relevant to financial markets.
Professor Ferdinand E. Banks (BA,MSc,PhD) is the leading academic energy economist in the world. He has published prolifically, and has lectured at eminent universities and institutions in over a dozen countries, currently serving as visiting professor of oil and gas economics at the Asian Institute of Technology, in Bangkok, Thailand. Former posts include senior lecturer at the United Nations, econometrician and commodity economist with UNCTAD, and professorial fellow at the Reserve Bank of Australia, among many others. Professor Banks has twelve books published internationally, including his latest, The Political Economy of World Energy: An Introductory Textbook (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/9812700366).
Joe is CEO of Stanford Wealth Management and a retired SVP of Charles Schwab. He served 36 year in active and reserve military service in special operations and the intelligence community. He brings that geopolitical experience and rational systematic perspective to his research and analysis. He is the author of the investment primer "Bringing Home the Gold" and a member of the SA Marketplace.
If you have a $500,000 portfolio ($250,000 for solely mutual funds & ETFs) you may contact Joe for a no-obligation "second opinion" on your current portfolio: firstname.lastname@example.org.