Skip to main content


Everyone knows that in the world of financial services there are good clients and not so good ones. That being said the not so good ones can’t be faulted for their place in line. They simply are not open to trusting the advice they hear preferring instead to reach out to friends and family for what is often perceived as unbiased delivery. Well, I’m here to say that sometimes that makes good sense, but most of the time it doesn’t.
Part of the problem is that friends and family are dispensing free advice on managing investments, while the real challenge for me was always in managing expectations. Investments are part science and part discipline, while markets, the real drivers of investment returns, are mostly emotions. Simply put there is an over informed army people who believe that an advisor can fashion a conservative investment portfolio that is wrapped in excitement.
What does that mean? It means that cash, stocks, bonds and mutual funds, while proven vehicles for investors of all economy, don’t have zing. Zing you say? Take options for example, most people believe they are crucial to returns as the premium contains a defined loss against the back drop of a larger gain. If that were true though, why not be a seller of options, take the premium and let the other sucker think the loss is manageable leverage. Because it’s exciting and the savvy advisor that peddles exciting is the advisor in demand, despite the near certainty of disappointment. Investment has become a game of chance where some stupid notion that dynamic positioning can be harnessed while tactical positioning through asset allocation and dynamic “rebalancing” is soooooo yesterday.
This neat trick is easy since friends and family don’t have to measure up to accountability. Not that they don’t have good intent, but whoever one approaches for advices should remember that trust is only the assurance of that intent not of the quality of the advice. Much of the info-gluttonous public believes every shred of information found in a Google search is evidence as long as it’s persuasive and compelling. Fine in the court of law, but in the wide open spaces of commerce no clue is certain in the markets even under the pressure of the judgmental bias that often drives it. A conservative approach to investment starts with risk tolerance. Namely, conservative can mean cautious to one person and a much riskier approach to another and neither has to be exciting. That idea isn’t sexy, but it works.

Popular posts from this blog

I B!#*$ For A Living

Not really, but I’d like to. The problem is I don’t search, or that is to say I don’t search for this blog. I do search, regularly so, with the same vigor that I flip though a newspaper. I have my pet subjects, finance, art, and sports, politics (not necessarily in that order) I never look at real estate and I rarely look at style articles. One of the reasons I don’t search for this blog is because there is a fine relationship between the price (the value of an asset) and time (the freshness of the analysis) that serve to form my views. That’s the only way I can assure that my posts are mine, grammatical blemishes and all. It also affords me the privilege of some license whereby I’m open to write about almost anything that strikes me as useful in the aim to inform. That’s one of the main reasons I choose to inhabit the space, which brings light to financial news, because it’s so reliant on nearly every other market, across all cultural and political spectrums and best of all it always…

Please Don't Believe Everything You Read

“I have news for you” said Andre
And as I peered through his bad hair weave, and “coke bottle”” glasses I realized he was right.

Nowhere in our collective memories do we ever fully understand the workings of our mind. Driven not by the collective accumulation of information but rather defined by the processes eternally influenced by the random cocktail of chemicals in our heads and poisoned by the principles we carry around in our back pockets with all smug confidence.