Helping you make wiser investment decisions

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Don’t Underestimate South Africa’s Wealth Market

South Africa is renowned for its stunning landscape, spectacular wildlife, vibrant cities, and epic political history. But these days the country is also a hotspot for luxury apartments, hotels, retirement estates, and second homes. In fact, 40,400 high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs), with combined wealth holdings of $171 billion, call South Africa home, according to Research and […]

Weekend Reads: Pickleball, Pythagoras’s Theorem, and Pandemics

Pop quiz: What’s the fastest-growing sport in the United States? Three. Two. One. Go! Pat yourself on the pack if you guessed right. No, it’s not rugby. Nor is it lacrosse. And despite World Cup fever gripping sports fan all over, it’s not “the beautiful game,” either. It’s pickleball. Yes, you read that right. Pickeball. […]

Zeitgeist: Why It Matters to Advisers and Investors

The word “zeitgeist” means “the defining spirit or mood of a particular period of history as shown by the ideas and beliefs of the time.” What is the defining spirit for advisers and investors today? It’s all about client experience, communication, and social media. Client Experience The client experience is central. The CFA Institute research report […]

Skill Ratio vs. Information Ratio

Following the introduction of the Skill Ratio, it’s worth exploring how it differs from the information ratio. First, how are they calculated? The information ratio’s denominator can be computed in different ways, but it generally explores tracking error based on shorter time periods, usually monthly or annually. The Skill Ratio can also use varying time […]

You May Beat an Algorithm Today. What about Tomorrow?

Technology will upend the way investment decisions are made. How should investment decision makers respond? This conversation has a tendency to assume an emotional tone even before it gets existential. For instance, you hear genuine angst over Microsoft Office’s new layout, and that’s just a redesigned application. Innovation has cumulative effects though, and after more than […]

From Black Monday to BlackRock: Is Tech the Key to Crypto Dominance?

On Monday, 19 October 1987, stock markets crashed around the world It began in Hong Kong and spread to Europe. The Dow Jones fell over 22% within a few hours. On Black Monday, Larry Fink was working at First Boston. Maybe the loss of $100 million of the bank’s money under his watch prompted him […]

How Can Investment Professionals Build Trust?

Trust forms the basis for most social relationships and is especially foundational to those between clients and investment professionals. Think about it: Clients entrust their capital to advisers to invest, often at the advisers’ discretion. The entire financial system is built on relationships in which those with an abundance of capital and a deficit of […]

Portugal and the New Economy in Europe

Portugal’s resurgence from the economic crisis over the past few years has been nothing short of extraordinary. As recently as 2011, Portugal required a €78-billion bailout* from the European Union and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Since 2013, the country has been on a steady track to economic recovery. Driven by higher inflows of foreign […]

Forest Crimes: Are Investors Aware of Related Financial Risks?

This article draws upon a six-month legal review process involving finance professionals and experts in US law enforcement. Illegal deforestation — should investors view it as a faraway, chronic, and exceedingly complex problem that defies meaningful legal intervention? Or are there real legal enforcement risks and solutions to this problem that should matter to investors? Consider […]

Canadian ETFs: Capturing Investors’ Mind Space

Ever since Toronto 35 Index Participation Units (TIPs 35) went up for sale in 1990, Canada has played an outsized role in the development and evolution of exchange-traded funds (ETFs). So where are ETFs headed in Canada and around the world? Peter Haynes, CFA, managing director of index products at TD Securities, explored these questions in a […]

Should RIAs Change Their Business Model?

There is nothing like solid returns in the financial markets to boost revenues and profits at registered investment adviser (RIA) firms using the assets under management (AUM) model. But will the good times continue? Industry observers cite several emerging trends and results from recent surveys of RIAs that could portend problems. These potential roadblocks include […]

Weekend Reads for Investors: Slight Hangover Edition

By now you know that the Swiss voted down the proposal to end fractional reserve banking in their country. To me, the Vollgeld Initiative was emblematic of just how much of a hangover effect remains from the global financial crisis, the first pangs of which are now a decade old That Switzerland might consider ending central […]