Market Wisdom from Howard Marks

In a recent podcast, author Tim Ferris interviews Howard Marks to discuss the Oaktree Capital co-founder’s views on investor psychology, his new book Mastering the Market Cycle: Getting the Odds on Your Side, and macro issues related to the economy. The lengthy discussion spans Marks career, life lessons, and how to navigate an uncertain and random world. Here are some highlights: Marks emphasizes the importance of knowing your limitations as an investor. The phrase, “I don’t… Read More

The Pitfalls of Back Testing

By Jack Forehand (@practicalquant) —   Active investment managers have a pretty dismal long-term record. Depending on which study you look at somewhere between 80% and 90% of managers underperform their benchmarks over the long-term net of fees. But what if I told you there was a way to turn those results upside down? What if there was a world where managers beat their benchmark 90% of the time? What if there was a world where managers… Read More

Lessons Learned Since the Financial Crisis

By John Reese (@guruinvestor) —  It’s been over a decade since the financial crisis that led to the deepest economic downturn since the Great Depression, one that pulled the financial rug—and jobs– out from under nine million people and led to foreclosures on approximately eight million homes. Berkshire CEO Warren Buffett—who was born in 1930—appreciates the lessons learned by both events, so much so that in the hallways of his company’s Omaha, Nebraska headquarters he… Read More

Common Mistakes in Factor Investing

By Jack Forehand (@practicalquant) —   With the release of Michael Batnick’s new book “Big Mistakes: The Best Investors and Their Worst Investments” last week, the topic of mistakes in investing has been front and center on Twitter and on investing blogs. Many investors view mistakes as a topic they want to avoid. Most of us don’t want to admit when we’re wrong and we certainly don’t want to revisit it in the future and bring back… Read More

Every Investor Should Read These O’Shaughnessy Tweets

In a recent Bloomberg article, columnist Barry Ritholtz references a provocative tweetstorm by famed investor James O’Shaughnessy regarding “investor ignorance.” “The post, as regular readers know,” writes Ritholtz, “was about one of my favorite subjects. To be more precise, it was about our own lack of understand of our own lack of understanding.” O’Shaughnessy’s message centers on how important it is for investors to understand what they don’t know, starting with how the market will… Read More

Why What Sells Isn’t What Works in Investing

By Jack Forehand (@practicalquant) —  There are many disconnects in the asset management industry between what sells and what succeeds. Often, what is the most effective for obtaining clients is the exact opposite of what actually produces the best investment returns.  Every investor is subject to a series of behavioral biases that they probably don’t even recognize. Good financial planners use those biases for good by trying to make clients aware of them and helping to… Read More

Housel on the Irony of Luck

In a recent article for the Collaborative Fund, Morgan Housel contrasts luck and risk as they relate to investing, arguing “you cannot understand one without appreciating the other.” “This is the irony of investing,” writes Housel, “Risk and luck are different sides of the same coin, but we treat one as critically important, and the other like it doesn’t exist—at least for you, when you succeed.” Housel offers the following insights/comparisons: Investors should quantify both.… Read More

Stock Market Lessons Learned in 2017

By John Reese (@guruinvestor) — Over the past twelve months, we’ve seen the bull market continue to trudge ahead with highs in many U.S. indexes and growth in various sectors and industries. With the news of major tax reform comes optimism for continued corporate earnings strength. That said, however, there are also growing concerns regarding an overvalued market and a potential correction. Let’s review what we’ve learned over the past twelve months: Bull markets don’t… Read More

What BitCoin Can Teach You About Investing

By Jack Forehand, CFA (@practicalquant) — I am unfortunately not one of the people who has enjoyed the two thousand plus percent return of BitCoin this year. I have spent a lot of time studying it, and in hindsight I certainly wish I had bought it when I began that research process, but as a disciplined (at least most of the time) value investor who runs fundamental based investment strategies for a day job, I… Read More

What A 238 Mile Sailboat Race Can Teach About Investing

By Jack M. Forehand —  I have raced sailboats since I was 12 years old. It has always been a passion of mine. The combination of being on the water while doing something competitive at the same time has always been a big draw for me. Over Labor Day weekend, I competed in the Stamford Vineyard Race on a friend’s boat Threebeans. The race includes many exhilarating moments, but also significant down time, and during… Read More