Category Archives: Uncategorized

Knowing the count

I just finished Ed Thorp’s new autobiography A Man for All Markets and I really enjoyed it. Thorp is, among other things, the man who wrote Beat the Dealer in 1962, the first truly mathematical approach to beating blackjack. He was first to calculate that while betting strategy was important, it had to go along with the cards as […]

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A most unusually average year

By now 2016 is far off in the mirror and everyone is focused on more current events, but I want to take us back a few weeks to reflect on the year that was, at least as it pertains to portfolio performance. First, US stocks, measured by the S&P 500, finished the year up 11.96%, […]

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You have got to be kidding me with this Forbes garbage

For most of the last year I’ve been getting solicitation emails from the “Five-Star Wealth Manager” people, desperately trying to get me to pay them to make me look like some kind of nonsensical award-winner.  Today’s really takes the cake. Here was the email:     And here is the “offer:”     The lede […]

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What you can learn from a tax return

With all of the hubbub surrounding a certain presidential candidate’s unreleased tax returns, I thought it would be fun to talk about what you can really learn from a 1040. Most financial planners will agree that reviewing a client’s tax return gives tremendous insight into their financial life.  So here’s a quick rundown. Income, and […]

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Do the work

I was chatting with a client recently and we got a little sidetracked (as I have a tendency to do) talking about hobbies and fitness. My client (we’ll call him Jim, because that’s his name) had started swimming recreationally at the beginning of the year. After a career of working too hard and raising a […]

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What you’re supposed to do

(This is going to be a little off topic. Sorry.) Yesterday I had the pleasure of catching up with the always thoughtful Carl Richards of Behavior Gap/Sketch Guy fame. If you’re not familiar with Carl, well, you should be. Read both of his books, check out his NYT column, enjoy his artwork. Carl is a rare breed. […]

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Live on Less. Have More.

My friend Morgan Housel recently asked me to contribute to a piece he did, asking for my best 5-word financial advice. My response was the title above. But I want to expand on this a bit, since it’s a little vague. Maybe by design. Simply understood, if you can spend less money, there’s more to […]

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Permanently bearish commentary

“May you live in interesting times.” The world is a pretty amazing place, moreso today than ever before. We have instant-on, ready access to more information that even existed 100 years ago. Better research, more powerful computing, more data, more robust data and more analysis of that data are all in my pocket (okay, plugged […]

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An email precursor

I found an old email recently that I found very interesting and somewhat telling. This is from me to my dad in early 2011, about 18 months before I started this firm. In it I was very clearly torn about the direction of my career, my industry and how I would go about doing this […]

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1Q 2016 Markets In Review

Market Overview Markets had a rough ride to small gains in the first quarter. After a quick drop during January and the first half of February, the S&P 500 recovered during the following six weeks to post positive returns of 1.35%. Small cap stocks could not keep up in the recovery rally and were down for the quarter. […]

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Some folks wiser than me

Tadas over at Abnormal Returns is doing his annual “Finance Blogger Wisdom” roundup and I was happy to participate. We are spending the week covering robo advisors, smart beta, the rise of indexing and more.  The first two are out with more coming every day: Finance blogger wisdom: smart beta bubble? Finance blogger wisdom: peak […]

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The fight and lies against Fiduciary

Oh buddy. I’m going to share a recent exchange I had with a client regarding what a friend heard from his “advisor” regarding the new DOL Fiduciary rule that is likely to be in place in the next year.  This is copied, verbatim, with permission from my client. “This is the real deal folks. I […]

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