Practical analysis for investment professionals
Prepaid Variable Forwards: Hedging Risk and Deferring Taxes

Think of the name Lauder and the first thing that probably comes to mind is cosmetics. But mention the family to a savvy tax and estates attorney, or a financial adviser who is adept at arranging tax-advantaged transactions, and you may be surprised to hear the words “prepaid variable forward contract.”

Just Released: CFA Magazine (January/February 2012)

After a decade of outperformance, have inflation-linked bonds reached a tipping point? This issue’s cover story examines recent developments with TIPS, including what investors… READ MORE ›

Take 15: The Risk Factors and Economic Impact behind Commercial and Sovereign Debt

Stephen G. Cecchetti discusses commercial bank leverage, calculating risk weightings, and the long-term effects of excessive sovereign debt.

Private Wealth Roundup: The Eurozone Crisis

While the eurozone crisis dominated the news in recent weeks, there were plenty of other articles on topics of interest to wealth advisers and their clients.

Take 15: Why Is Leadership Critical to Your (and Your Firm’s) Success?

James Ware, CFA, discusses the importance of leadership skills in the investment industry in light of the recent global financial crisis, how firm culture contributes to (or detracts from) success, and critical skills investment professionals need in today’s climate.

Fixed Income Roundup

While December is typically a quiet month in the world of finance and investing, last month had a surprising number of important stories. Concerns over the European sovereign debt crisis dominated the intellectual bandwidth, yet there were other stories deserving of the fixed income investor's attention.

Forecast Fatigue: What’s the Value of Annual Market Predictions?

At the beginning of each year, most leading brokerage houses and many prominent investors issue market forecasts. As we approach the saturation point, it is worth pondering whether these forecasts merit the attention of professional investors.

Take 15: ROE: The Wrong Performance Measure for Banks

Robert Jenkins, FSIP, cites the flaws in the traditional return on equity (ROE) measure in measuring bank financial performance and proposes some much needed alternatives.

Losing Money to Preserve Capitalism: Can We Afford to Continue Bailouts? (Part 2)

Modern banking system bailouts fly in the face of the ancient capitalist philosophy of losses signaling market risks. In addition, financial bailouts tend to escalate in size and damaging effects with time.

The Hildebrand Case: Ethics and the Power of Perception

The recent scandal that led Swiss National Bank chairman Philipp Hildebrand to resign highlights the difference between what is legal and what is ethical. The law tells us what we “can and cannot do,” whereas ethics tells us what we “should and should not do.”



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