Practical analysis for investment professionals


Urbanization and Securitization: Two Key Trends to Watch in China’s Economic Rebalancing

With around 10,000 projects now in progress throughout the country, “the urbanization process in China is one that is absolutely unprecedented in human history,” according to Zheng Xiaoping. And, while securitization is an important financing tool for urban development in China, it is also becoming key to China’s fixed-income market.

Charles Ellis, CFA, on the Investment Profession: “We Can Do Better”

"We flood the system with data without very much explanation of what the data really means, and we do not focus on the clients," Charley Ellis recently told an audience of investment professionals. "We sell products. And we increase our fees, and our fees have increased significantly."

Different Sizes, Similar Strengths: Common Traits of Successful Investment Practices

Two radically different money management firms agree on the common components that drove their successes.

How Demand for Water Will Play Out: What You Learn from Attending Trade Shows

Attendance at conferences and trade shows highlights the necessity of basic field work that allows for the identification of mismatches between financial market expectations and reality, and this is how to capture profits and avoid losses.

Averting the Pension Cliff with Commonsense Accounting Principles

At the recent CFA Institute Global Investment Risk Symposium, Ron Ryan, CFA, of Ryan ALM, appealed for greater transparency and the application of commonsense principles in pension accounting, warning that without such changes the solvency of corporations, cities, and states is at stake.

Current Thinking on Investing in Gold and the Gold Standard

Mark Harrison, CFA, rounds up the latest thinking on gold as an investment and basis for monetary systems.

Fixed Income ETFs: A Primer

At the recent Fixed-Income Management Conference 2012, BlackRock’s Matthew Tucker, CFA, managing director and head of the firm's iShares Fixed Income Strategy team, delivered a valuable primer on fixed-income exchange-traded funds (ETFs).

James Grant: “Interest Rates Have Fallen, and They Can’t Get Up”

Bond market maven James Grant gives a “cook’s tour” of the “reigning errors and foibles” that are being made in today’s bond markets and that have led us astray in committing capital.

Investing in Bonds Will Be Nothing Like the Past 20 Years, Says BlackRock Fixed-Income CIO Rick Rieder

At the recent CFA Institute Fixed-Income Management Conference, BlackRock Chief Investment Officer Rick Rieder contended that the fixed-income market is undergoing structural changes in the wake of the Great Recession that have not been present for at least 20 years. Among the major elements of this shift: the long-term continuation of artificially low interest rates and a shortening of investment time horizons.

Four Key Factors That Every Hedge Fund Investor Should Consider

Simon Lack, CFA, author of "The Hedge Fund Mirage," says that the popularity of hedge funds may be unwarranted given the performance history, lack of transparency, high fees, and minimal investors protections. All of these factors, he says, should be weighed carefully before investing.

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