Posts Categorized: Finance

Lao Tsu Can Make You A Better Investor

Pearls of investing wisdom from unrelated sources. Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner. – Lao Tsu The market is just a bunch of other people.  Collectively, they get too excited or too scared about investments all the time, leaving certain stocks/assets way too expensive or way too cheap….

Top Margin Companies

The market’s overall profit margin is the result of profit margins within individual sectors, but within sectors it is typically a small group of companies that dominate. Here are some interesting trends related to those companies. Technology The technology sector has grown to be a large contributor to the markets overall margin, representing 23.3% of…

Profit Margins – Behind the Curtain

Profit margins are an important component of market valuation and are therefore a hot topic because the damn things won’t do what they are supposed to and mean revert.  As several writers have explained, the valuation arguments for U.S. stocks (bull and bear) hinge on the future of profit margins (my favorite pieces are by…

Long Reads

Adding a section to the site called “long reads” where I will post longer pieces that aren’t tied to current market news; these pieces will remain relevant longer than a typical post. The first is a history of money, available here: 

Robots Took Er Jerbs! Income Inequality, Technology, and Markets

Delivery drones > fewer delivery workers Turbotax > fewer tax professionals Robots, self-driving cars, automation, skynet, etc. > fewer retail salespeople, drivers, even fewer financial advisors (see wealthfront, betterment) Robots and computers took er jerbs! Kidding aside, this is a massive issue, especially for young people.  The future will not be bright if your skillset can be automated….

A Primer on Smart Beta

With $42.8B of inflows in 2013—up from $20.5 in 2012[i]—“smart beta” products have gone mainstream. The debate between traditional market-capitalization weighted indexes and “smart” strategies or indexes is an important one because the choice between the two can lead to significant differences in returns over long holding periods. Smart beta simply means a strategy that…

Changing Tides of American Business

Robots are a hot topic.  I recently read The Second Machine Age, which explores the amazing recent strides in automated machines and attempts to peer into the future and imagine life alongside robots and other emerging technologies.  We seem to be nearing an inflection point—something like Ray Kurzweil’s “singularity”—where technology growth is almost too fast…

Fuel Cells and South Sea – History Repeating

Mini-bubbles, in categories of speculative stocks, will always persist. Often caused by the emergence of some new or improved technology (fuel cells in this case), these bubbles are extremely dangerous for individual investors and should be ignored.  The allure of a quick buck, or the idea of buying and then selling to a greater fool…