Investing: What the heck is a Larry Portfolio?

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Matthew Amster-Burton

+-*Recently, I wrote a three-part series on how to start investing. Today, I want to look at an advanced topic. Generally, I avoid advanced topics in investing, for two reasons: Most people don’t even have a grasp of beginner-level investing yet. The vast majority of “advanced” investing techniques can’t beat a simple, diversified portfolio over time…. Read More


Goodhart’s Law

Where will the market go next?

Leo Chen

+-*Goodhart’s Law: When a measure becomes a target, it ceases to be a good measure. Charles Goodhart When it was first introduced in 1975, Goodhart’s Law focused mainly on social and economic measures. Since then, many financial market indicators have lost their forecasting power and succumbed to Goodhart’s Law. Nevertheless, Goodhart’s Law in no way… Read More


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


Saving Through the Ages

Saving through the ages

Matthew Amster-Burton

+-*Reputable financial advisors, websites and your mom say to save for retirement, college, a down payment for a home and emergencies. A typical response might be, “Yeah, but how much?” and “When?” Libraries of books have been written on this subject. The implication is that determining your proper savings rate involves solving differential equations, brushing up… Read More


Is the Fed Really “Stealing from Savers”?

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Geoff Considine

+-*In a recent article on MarketWatch, Chris Martenson asserts that the Fed’s low interest rate policy and quantitative easing in recent years is deliberately stealing from savers. This article has elicited a big response, with almost 800 comments and almost 2000 likes on Facebook. The key point of the article is that the Fed’s policy… 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


Am I Effectively Diversified?

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Geoff Considine

+-*This is the sixth installment in our series on how individual investors can assess their financial health. Diversification is a perennial topic among investors, and if it seems controversial at times, that may be due to the fact that people don’t always share the same understanding of what it means. But diversification isn’t about investing… Read More


Is My Portfolio at the Right Risk Level?

Return and risk balance concept

Geoff Considine

+-*This is the fifth installment in our series on how individual investors can assess their financial health. At every stage of investing, you should periodically ask yourself how much risk you can realistically tolerate. The primary way to measure the risk level of your portfolio is to look at its allocation of stocks vs. bonds. … Read More