What’s Driving the Price of Oil?

Geoff Considine

Gas prices are not keeping Americans at home this Memorial Day weekend. AAA projects that 34.8 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more this holiday weekend. Here at the Portfolioist, we thought the start of Memorial Day weekend would be a good time to re-examine what drives the price of oil. This article was first… Read More


What You Need to Know Before You Invest in an IPO

Geoff Considine

In light of all the discussion surrounding Facebook’s IPO, we thought we’d repost one of our most popular articles that explores the characteristic performance of IPOs.  This article was previously published in June of 2011, but the narrative feels very timely today. It shouldn’t surprise you that investors have had a long history of enthusiasm for IPO stocks…. Read More


Are We Hard-Wired To Make Bad Financial Choices?

Geoff Considine

Proper financial planning that provides for our financial needs in retirement is perhaps the prototypical example of willful blindness. We all know that most people have not saved enough to provide for a sustainable long-term income in retirement. The core issue here is that we (as a society and as individuals) are making consistently bad… Read More


Does “Low Risk” Outperform?

Robert P. Seawright

A new paper by Robert Haugen, president of research house Haugen Custom Financial Systems, and Nardin Baker, chief strategist, Global Alpha, Guggenheim Partners Asset Management, claims that low risk (really low volatility) stocks consistently delivered market-beating returns in all of the 21 developed countries they studied between 1990 and 2011 (video here). Their research showed the same was… Read More


The Most Common Mistake Investors Make

Geoff Considine

Each year, the research firm DALBAR publishes their Quantitative Analysis of Investor Behavior.  Every year, the results show that individual investors are their own worst enemies. And this year is no exception. The QAIB examines the real returns earned by investors in equity mutual funds, bond mutual funds, and asset allocation mutual funds.  Over the… Read More


The Hidden Risk in Target Date Funds

Geoff Considine

Lately, Target Date Funds (TDFs) have been the subject of intense scrutiny and criticism, because investors have realized (in many cases, after the fact) that these types of funds can be very volatile. In the aftermath of the 2008 collapse of the financial markets, TDFs for investors near retirement (funds with a projected retirement data… Read More


What’s Driving the Price of Oil?

Geoff Considine

There’s lot’s of talk right now about the price of oil and, particularly, gasoline.  Oil is trading at more than $104 per barrel and the national average price of gasoline at the pump is $3.80.  It looks as though the price of a gallon of gas will be a significant political topic for the election… Read More


Stocks and Shocks: What to Do?

David R. Kotok

How do we avoid walking into a “left hook” in the markets? That was the discussion this week during a client review. “Can’t you see them coming and avoid them?” he asked. Well maybe some folks can, but the issue of investing with possible shocks as an outcome is a very difficult one. “Do you… Read More