• If You’re Going to be Cheap…be Cheap

    August 16, 2017
    Alpha, Investor Behavior

    My hometown has a locally owned pizza place that’s been a staple of the community for almost 40 years; I even worked there for a stint in college. The pizza they serve is pan style and both the dough and sauces are made fresh daily. Even the toppings are scrutinized for freshness throughout the day. The owner’s life has been dedicated to improving the customer’s experience with the quality of their product. For example, as a delivery driver I wasn’t allowed to chew gum, because “the first thing the customer should smell is our pizza, not your gum.” It’s the kind of food that transcends the body’s basic necessity of fuel and feeds your soul, makes you happy, and causes you to pause, if only for a second, to reflect on the complexity of the flavor.

  • Wisdom in the Woods

    August 09, 2017
    Market Environments

    This past weekend we were fortunate to be invited to participate in David Kotok’s annual fishing trip in the great northern woods of Maine. This event, organized by the co-founder of Cumberland Advisors, dates back almost 30 years, but took on special importance post 9/11. As the attendee list consisted of a collection of economists, advisors, traders, market strategists and portfolio managers, thoughtful discussions and strong opinions were plentiful, augmented by a surprise visit by Senator Susan Collins. Elements of the long weekend were covered by The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, ETF.com, and frequent market commentator and financial advisor, Barry Ritholtz, all of which I’d encourage our readers to explore.

  • Is it Time to Act(ive)?

    August 02, 2017
    Active vs. Passive, Market Environments

    Total intra-market correlations within the Russell 1000 have fallen from post-crisis highs reached in 2015. As the chart below shows, correlations are now near 15-year lows, suggesting an improved environment for stock-pickers. We find this intriguing, especially in light of the money flowing out of active and into passive strategies, as high correlations have been a factor in active money managers’ challenges in beating the market.

  • Corporate Earnings Have Tough Act to Follow

    July 25, 2017
    Earnings, Expectations

    Corporate earnings are riding a truly remarkable hot streak and Wall Street sentiment is higher than it has been in years. Suffice it to say, the bar is raised for companies reporting their next round of earnings, which began in earnest July 17.

  • 5 Questions Investors Have About Managed Futures

    July 19, 2017
    Investment Planning, Managed Futures

    We were recently interviewed by a reporter for US News on the topic of Managed Futures—and why investors should consider the category. Since there’s been a lot of press about Managed Futures lately, we thought it timely to address some of the most common questions asked by investors.