Oil, Markets, Volatility

Oil, Markets, Volatility

David R. Kotok

-+*Sharply lower oil prices have occasioned a huge discussion about their impact. We see it play out daily in newspapers, on TV and radio, at websites, on blogs, and in market letters. The range of forecasts runs from one extreme to another. On one side, pundits predict a recession resulting from a US energy sector… Read More


6 Reasons Why You Don’t Want to Invest Like a Professional Trader

Stock market analysis

Kateri Young

-+*As everyone with a computer knows, the web is shoulder-deep in brokerages, services, and publications that promise to help you invest just like the pros. That’s no surprise. It’s a logical step in the democratization of information. On a technological landscape where anybody can become a self-made journalist, filmmaker, or detective, what’s stopping anyone from… Read More


Are My Investment Decisions Tax Efficient?

Close up Business background

Geoff Considine

-+*This is the eighth installment in our series on how individual investors can assess their financial health With investment gains, as with other types of income, it’s not how much you make that ultimately matters, but how much you keep.   In other words, you only get to spend what’s left after you pay taxes. There… Read More


How Much am I Paying in Investment Expenses?

Abstract Business Tip of the Dollar Iceberg.

Geoff Considine

-+*This is the seventh installment in our series on how individual investors can assess their financial health. In my experience, I’ve found that many people have no idea how much they’re paying for the privilege of investing. And survey data supports my observations. Ignorance is not bliss. Analysis of investment expenses suggests that many people… Read More


Is Twitter the Canary in the Coal Mine?

Geoff Considine

-+*Investors are shrugging off the suggestion that stocks are over-valued or that the technology innovators are a one-way path to riches if the year-to-date performance of Tesla Motors (TSLA) and Facebook (FB) are any indication. Twitter’s stock (TWTR), which soared from a $45 closing price on its first day of trading (November 7, 2013) to… Read More


Economic Inequality

Geoff Considine

-+*Income inequality is increasingly acknowledged as a key economic issue for the world.  The topic is a major theme at Davos this year.  Economic inequality is also an increasingly common topic in U.S. politics. A new study has found that economic mobility does not appear to have changed appreciably over the past thirty years, even… Read More


Estimating the Real Costs of Investing

Geoff Considine

-+*One of the least-understood aspects of investing among individual investors is the total costs associated with building and maintaining a portfolio.  In comparison to the huge rises and falls that we see in the market, the expenses associated with mutual funds or brokerage costs may sound small.  Over long periods of time, however, the ups… Read More


Gaming The System

Robert P. Seawright

-+*When I was a kid I had a paper route.  One of my customers was a barber who made book on the side.  Shocking, I know.  The giveaway was the group of guys always hanging around but not getting their hair cut and the three telephones on the wall that rang a lot.  Even as… Read More