Must Reads of the Week – December 4, 2018

Must Reads of the Week

Our favorite reads of the week and the quotes that make them worthy…

“An executive at a large asset manager, who asked not to be identified, agreed that small firms are at a disadvantage in offering zero management fee structures.”
The Next Big Fee Trend? by Julie Segal | Institutional Investor

“It appears that fund investors have become less inclined to chase performance in the two decades since, as strong returns within a given category no longer mean retail money will follow.
Have Investors Stopped Chasing Returns? by Kevin McDevitt, CFA | Morningstar

Despite this, there is still one anomaly that will likely never go away: human nature. Fear, greed, and every other emotion in between will plague markets now and centuries hence.
When Things Stop Working by Nick Maggiulli | Of Dollars and Data

“This is surprising because our memories let us down in so many other instances, such as remembering the name of a place or a person we once knew or where we put our keys. So how is it that we can ride a bicycle when we haven’t done so in years?”
Why Don’t We Forget How to Ride a Bike? by Boris Suchan | Scientific American

“The episode became a metaphor for American capitalism in the 21st century. A highly profitable company had bloodied a consumer, and it didn’t matter because consumers have no choice… Competition is the essence of capitalism, yet it is dying.”
Competition Is Dying, and Taking Capitalism With It by Jonathan Tepper | Bloomberg

“Writing is the ultimate test of whether your thoughts make sense or are merely gut feelings… It’s hard to overstate how important this is in an industry where distinguishing what’s true from what you want to be true determines a big part of success.”
Selfish Writing by Morgan Housel | Collaborative Fund Blog

“But all the scientific theories fail when it comes to cephalopods, a group that includes octopuses, squid and cuttlefish. Despite feats of creativity, they lack some hallmarks of intelligence seen in other species.”
Yes, the Octopus Is Smart as Heck. But Why? by Carl Zimmer | The New York Times

“Technological innovation has, and will, make hate increasingly destructive if not properly checked. But, envisioning our possible future through the world of Star Trek can offer us some lessons and hope.” 
Star Trek and the Economics of the Future (Part 1): Tribalism versus Terranism by Jason Barr | Building the Skyline

“Is this really a firm that should be spending billions buying back its own stock? This is not merely bad governance and misuse of capital — IT IS CORPORATE SUICIDE.”
Bad Buybacks by Barry Ritholtz | The Big Picture

“Cheap, plentiful and the most polluting of fossil fuels, coal remains the single largest source of energy to generate electricity worldwide. This, even as renewables like solar and wind power are rapidly becoming more affordable. Soon, coal could make no financial sense for its backers.”
The World Needs to Quit Coal. Why Is It So Hard? by Somini Sengupta | The New York Times