Resources

‘Sure Things’ to Watch for in 2017

Larry Swedroe compiles his list of financial predictions to watch for the year. Every year, I like to keep track of the predictions “gurus” and other market observers make for the upcoming year, specifically the ones they say are “sure things.” It seems like no one in the financial media holds them accountable (which is…

“A State of Heart” Featuring Tim Maurer

For some, fiduciary is just a headline. For us, “It’s who we are.” The word fiduciary has been in the news a lot of late, from Wall Street to Washington, but it’s a word that has always been part of our daily dialogue. Advisors who act as fiduciaries, as we do, are legally required to put the…

The Impact of Scale on the Performance of Active Managers

Diseconomies of scale and their impact on active manager performance. There is a large body of overwhelming evidence that past performance is at best a poor predictor of active managers’ future performance. That is why the SEC requires that common and familiar disclaimer. There are many explanations for the difficulty that active managers face in…

Another Angle On Factor Diversification

ETF

Last week, we examined the data (from my new book, “Your Complete Guide to Factor-Based Investing,” which I co-authored with Andrew Berkin) on the odds that the premiums associated with some common investment factors would produce a negative return over various horizons. We then examined how constructing a diversified factor portfolio might impact those odds…

Election Revives Old Myths

ETF

The results of the U.S. presidential election not only surprised almost all the gurus who were saying that a Hillary Clinton victory was a sure thing, but also those forecasting that, if by some miracle Donald Trump won, a stock market crash was bound to occur. Prior to the election, I had received many inquiries…

The Perils Of Bargain Hunting

ETF

As I have been discussing in a series of articles (which you can find here, here and here), we now have a substantial body of evidence demonstrating that individual investors possess a preference for low-priced equities. This is anomalous behavior, because the level of a company’s stock price is arbitrary—firms can manipulate it by adjusting…

How Risk and Uncertainty Affect Stock Returns

Asset pricing models imply that equity portfolios’ time-varying exposure to the market risk and uncertainty factors carries with it positive risk premiums. Turan Bali and Hao Zhou contribute to the body of literature on this topic through the study “Risk, Uncertainty, and Expected Returns,” which appeared in the June 2016 issue of the Journal of Financial and…

Here’s A Better Measure Of Value

ETF

Eugene Fama and Kenneth French’s seminal 1992 paper, “The Cross-Section of Expected Stock Returns,” resulted in the development of the Fama-French three-factor model. This model added the size and value factors to the market beta factor. One of the benefits of adding the value factor (the tendency for relatively cheap assets to outperform relatively expensive…

The Volatility of Active Management

S&P Dow Jones Indices has long provided a great service to investors with its semi-annual S&P Indices Versus Active (SPIVA) scorecards. The evidence offered in these reports has shown time and again that, regardless of the asset class, the vast majority of active managers persistently fail to outperform their benchmarks, and that there is little to…

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