David Larrabee, CFA

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David Larrabee, CFA, is director of Member and Corporate Products at CFA Institute and serves as the subject matter expert in portfolio management and equity investments. Previously, he spent two decades in the asset management industry as a portfolio manager and analyst. He holds a BA in economics from Colgate University and an MBA in finance from Fordham University. Topical Expertise: Equity Investments · Portfolio Management

Aswath Damodaran: The Most Reliable Investment Valuations Balance Numbers and Narratives

Aswath Damodaran: The Most Reliable Investment Valuations Balance Numbers and Narratives

When it comes to valuing stocks, the most reliable valuations come from imaginative number crunchers and disciplined storytellers, says Aswath Damodaran. And too often pure “numbers” people drift off into what he calls “spreadsheet nirvana.” Similarly, investors who focus purely on the narrative of a potential investment run the risk of quickly “veering from reality to fantasy.” Damodaran urged investment managers to bridge the gap between numbers and narratives, insisting that the best valuations are not just “a collection of numbers, but a story connected to numbers.” Read more

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13F Watch: Active Management Looks Like a Contrarian’s Bet

13F Watch: Active Management Looks Like a Contrarian's Bet

It’s been an annus horribilis for stock pickers. In the US, fewer than one in five active fund managers are beating the market this year, their worst showing in over a decade. As a result, active funds have been bleeding assets and passive products are seeing record inflows. The fortunes of active managers certainly weren’t helped by Warren Buffett, who earlier this year advocated for passive investing. Read more

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Weekend Reads: Beating Expectations — Again and Again

Weekend Reads Exceeding Expectations Again and Again

Companies have gotten so good at managing earnings (and Wall Street) these days that when reporting season rolls around, it’s hard to ascribe any value to news that a company “beat” expectations. In fact, a review of quarterly data compiled by FactSet Research Systems reveals a recurring pattern in recent years. Companies guide earnings and revenue estimates down over the course of the quarter and then clear the lowered bar when they report financial results. Markets cheer. Rinse and repeat. Read more

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Weekend Reads for Investors: Volatility and the “Yellen Put”

Investors: Volatility and the "Yellen Put"

Up until last week’s wild ride for stocks, volatility had been largely absent from the market, but the cumulative effect of ongoing geopolitical chaos, spreading Ebola anxiety, and uninspiring economic data, combined with the rumored unwinding of some leveraged positions by hedge funds, at least temporarily jolted global equity markets. Complacency was quickly replaced with panic and we got a reminder of what happens when everyone heads for the exit at the same time. Read more

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