Monthly Archives: March 2013

How Do You Know Who to Trust?

Ponzi Schemes. (And more. And more. And more. And more.) Advisors stealing money. Hedge fund fraud. Brokers selling unsuitable products. Amidst all of this it is no surprise that an investor seeking any type of financial advice is unsure where to turn. It is becoming increasingly difficult to determine who is truly independent, knowledgeable, ethical and […]

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It’s Still Rock ‘n Roll to Me

“Next phase, new wave, dance craze, anyways It’s still rock and roll to me.” The proliferation of Exchanged Traded Funds (ETFs) has changed the face of investing and the relationship between investors and their advisors.  More and more investors are realizing the benefits of low-cost and tax-efficient investing over traditional active strategies. Many asset managers, […]

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What does your tax-inefficient portfolio really cost you?

The majority of investors are still in a very favorable tax environment for long term capital gains. Until January 2013, all investors faced the lowest capital gains rate in the post-war period at 15%. Today, investors in the top tax bracket (married filers with income over $450,000) face a 20% capital gains rate and a […]

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Is active management justified in some asset classes?

A common refrain from advisors recommending actively managed funds for client portfolios sounds something like this: “We’ll use index funds in efficient markets such as large cap US stocks, but active managers can add value in other asset classes such as small cap US stocks and emerging markets.” This half-admission of the merits of a […]

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A must-read on student debt from the NY Federal Reserve

Donghoon Lee of the New York Federal Reserve is the author of a recent research summary outlining the current state of student debt in the United States.  You can find the report in its entirety here: http://newyorkfed.org/newsevents/mediaadvisory/2013/Lee022813.pdf The research shows what we all know: student loans outstanding are growing, and the growth is not slowing […]

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