Practical analysis for investment professionals

Primer


Shortcuts to Factor Investing 101

If investors have the option to cheaply replicate their desired exposures to help solve their portfolio problems, then why shouldn't they? Mark Harrison, CFA, curates the latest insights on what is meant by smart beta and factor investing and how they differ.

Decision Making amid Uncertainty: Six Steps to Improve Your Process

Uncertainty is everywhere. So how do you navigate it? Lauren Foster provides some helpful tips courtesy of Ben Carlson, CFA.

Five Tips to Improve Your LinkedIn Profile

Two of the most common problems with LinkedIn profiles are that they are either skeletal or generic. Julia VanDeren shares some advice from Ross Macpherson, president of the executive resume writing and career marketing company Career Quest, on how to invigorate your LinkedIn presence.

Count on Low Expected Returns, Says Antti Ilmanen

“It is not only a low interest rate world, it is also a low expected return world on any long-only investment,” said Antti Ilmanen, in his presentation at the 2016 CFA Institute European Investment Conference. Low expected returns are going to anchor bad news for all of us for the rest of our working lifetimes, he said, and maybe beyond.

Book Review: The Index Revolution

Author Charles Ellis, CFA, contends that structural changes in the US market have eliminated the prospect of outperforming average market returns, after fees, through active management. The causes include the rise in institutional and high-speed machine trading and changes in regulation. Active management may still pay off in low-efficiency markets, such as high-yield bonds and emerging market debt. The book does not address findings that the most active stock pickers who take large but diversified positions unlike the index weightings beat their benchmarks.

High-Conviction Short Sales: Empathy for the Bull

The best short sellers share one key personality trait: empathy, or the ability to put themselves in their counterparty’s shoes, says Greg Blotnick, CFA. Before initiating any short position, make sure to know the answer to the three questions he poses.

Global Inflation-Linked Bonds: A Primer

Michael Pond, CFA, delivered an interesting primer on inflation-linked debt at the recent CFA Institute Fixed-Income Management Conference. So what are inflation-linked bonds? They are most typically debts issued by sovereign nations whose nominal interest rate is adjusted, either up or down, by an inflation measure.

Good vs. Lucky: Assessing Portfolio Manager Performance

There are three intangibles that all good portfolio managers have, says Jacques Lussier, CFA, but factor-based benchmarks are still the best way to distinguish the effective managers from the lucky ones.

The Investment Risk You’ve Never Calculated

We asked CFA Institute Financial NewsBrief readers how long investment teams could underperform at their firms before they should start to worry about their jobs, and their responses confirmed that the pressure is real.

Jack L. Treynor and the Birth of the Quants

Imagine for a moment an investment world without the accomplishments of Jack L. Treynor. In this imaginary Treynor-less world, mass casino psychology and fund manager guru-worship might rule, unchallenged by any metrics other than crude popularity and marketing spend.



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