Posts filed under “ETFs”

What If They Threw a Panic and No One Came?

hedge fund
Source: Bianco Research



“Its enough to give a long-term investor some hope for the future of finance.”


Here’s a bit of role reversal for you: Mom and Pop were content to ride out the market’s volatility this past month, more or less sitting tight. Meanwhile, the pros were driven to the point of near panic.

What was all the fuss about? Take your pick. Perhaps the China slowdown will cause a global recession. Maybe the Federal Reserve is going to raise rates and kill the bull market. Oil prices might fall too far, destroying emerging markets. Or the U.S. economy is about to go belly-up.

Whatever the fear was, someone was there to give it voice. The downside of the Twitter era is that everyone has a megaphone, and any lack of wisdom of insight is no a deterrent to broadcasting it. This month, that described Wall Street and not Main Street. It was the pros who lost it.

Start with hedge funds. After missing a generational rally in which the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index tripled, hedge funds finally began going long U.S. equities — just before the China trap door swung open. TheWall Street Journal reported that many funds got shellacked this month, giving up all of their year-to-date gains in a week. Bridgewater, Omega, Third Point and Pershing Square all took a beating, but only Omega seemed to be positioned to capture the bounce-back rally (note that I am not objective, as you can hear in my Masters in Business podcast with Omega founder Leon Cooperman).

Beyond the hedge funds, the algorithmic traders seemed to have run amok as well. It is a natural human response, to borrow from Daniel Kahneman’s book “Thinking, Fast and Slow,” to react emotionally first and logically second. However, no one can think faster than a machine, and the algos managed to engage in some very fast, and what looked like emotionally driven trading. As we saw this week, that sort of behavior was amply punished. My colleague Josh Brown summed it up in a post, “Computers are the new Dumb Money . . .

Continues here: Mom and Pop Outsmart Wall Street Pros



Category: ETFs, Investing, Psychology, Sentiment

Elevator Down, Stairs Up

Source: WSJ

Category: ETFs, Markets

Gold Miners Are No Longer a Proxy for the Metal

Let’s say this right up front: The SPDR Gold Shares Trust exchange-traded fund has killed the shares of the gold miners. For a few years now, I have been very skeptical about gold’s value as an investment (this may seem excessive, but see this, this, this, this,this, this, this, this, this, this and of course this). The primary reason for this is straightforward: Gold is bought…Read More

Category: ETFs, Gold & Precious Metals, Investing, Really, really bad calls

A Secret Wall Street Brainwashing Machine is Wholly Unnecessary

Every now and again, I disagree with an article written by someone I like and respect. On occasion, an author will crank out a column that makes me angry. And on rare occasions, I will read something where I disagree with just about every sentence. Today is one of those total disagreement days. Marketwatch columnist Paul Farrell…Read More

Category: Asset Allocation, Cognitive Foibles, ETFs, Investing, Psychology, Really, really bad calls

A Brief History of Financial Engineering

Killer slice of history from Bloomberg Business:   click for utterly ginormous infographic Source: Bloomberg Business

Category: Derivatives, Digital Media, ETFs, Gold & Precious Metals, Quantitative

John Bogle’s Investing Genius Needs An Update

Now before I commit blasphemy, a few words: I am as close to being a Boglehead as you will find, without actually being one. The bulk of my portfolio is in passive indexes. Most of the assets I manage are in a broad allocation model. This is a tribute to the wisdom and teachings of investing…Read More

Category: Apprenticed Investor, Asset Allocation, ETFs, Investing

What is an Online Financial Advisor?

I thought this infographic was inforamtive. We launched our own online advisor last year called Liftoff:   Source: Paladin Research & Registry

Category: Asset Allocation, Digital Media, ETFs, Investing, Technology

Why Gold & Oil Are Trading So Differently

Category: Commodities, Energy, ETFs, Gold & Precious Metals, Media, Technical Analysis, Trading, Video

Folklore of Finance

I really enjoyed this report by State Street, which discusses how often Folklore dominates financial decision-making. Well worth the free download:     click for full PDF of research report Source: State Street Source: State Street

Category: ETFs, Investing, Psychology

U.S.-listed ETP Flows

Source: Fidelity

Category: ETFs, Markets