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Profiting from the Recklessness of Others

Profiting from the Recklessness of Others

A couple months ago, I wrote about the dangers of levered ETFs, showing how these products designed to juice investor’s returns end up eroding capital due to the subtle mathematical logic of compounding. In my last post, I followed up on the topic by describing the Kelly Criterion, a mathematical framework that can tell investors […]

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3 Behavioral Hacks for Business Owners to Help Double their Business

3 Behavioral Hacks for Business Owners to Help Double their Business

How familiar does this scenario sound? You started your business because you had a vision of helping others while helping yourself succeed financially in the process. Along the way however, you got lost in the business and the business started running you and what fulfilled you both personally and financially has faded into either boredom […]

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The Line Between Aggressive and Crazy

The Line Between Aggressive and Crazy

Suppose I offer you a bet. Flip a coin, heads you lose your entire bet, tails you win it back plus one and a half times, so a ten dollar bet becomes $25. And furthermore I’ll let you keep making this bet as many times as you like over the next hour, say. This is […]

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Credit Double Threat on the Horizon

Credit Double Threat on the Horizon

Recently, the WSJ reported on two positive credit trends in the US Economy. Individually, these trends are very positive for a growing economy, however, in combination, they could potentially be the foundation for another credit bubble way down the road. Credit scores for US consumers hit record levels last month with the average score nationwide […]

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“Make it a Quadruple”

“Make it a Quadruple”

This month, the financial press has been abuzz with the latest case study in Wall Street’s storied history of feeding speculative frenzies: the quadruple-levered ETF. On May 2 the SEC approved a request to list two ETFs, the ForceShares Daily 4X US Market Futures Long Fund under the ticker UP, and the ForceShares Daily 4X US […]

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A Permanent Bear Market in Fossil Fuels?

A Permanent Bear Market in Fossil Fuels?

In my last post I wrote about how the financial industry, led in particular by asset manager BlackRock, may begin putting pressure on the private sector to reduce carbon emissions and otherwise adopt more environmentally friendly practices, for entirely self-interested, profit-motivated reasons. Since then, I’ve been thinking a lot about the future of energy production, […]

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BlackRock Goes Green

BlackRock Goes Green

When it comes to the financial markets, I am a perennial optimist. Investing not only makes us richer in the long run, it makes the world healthier, happier, and better in almost every dimension. My optimism extends even to the ability of financial markets to solve what economists call coordination problems, an excellent and timely example […]

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Snap and Sucker Bets

Snap and Sucker Bets

Imagine I offer you the following deal: I will sell you a promissory note so I can expand my business. The note will be subject to the following conditions: I will not begin paying you back anytime soon I am under no obligation to ever pay you back, even in part You have no legal right […]

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Estate Planning: Don’t Die Trying

Estate Planning: Don’t Die Trying

Estate planning isn’t difficult but it is time consuming if you want to do it right. According to a new study by Caring.com, only 40% of Americans currently have an estate plan of any sort at all. What that means is that nearly 60% of adults in the US have left no guidance whatsoever if […]

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Starting the Conversation about Wealth Transfer with your Family

Starting the Conversation about Wealth Transfer with your Family

Talking about money with family members is not easy. In this short post, I will try and lay out a few pointers that make a difficult situation a little easier and at least get the conversation started. It is best to start at a high level and developing a layered strategy. My hope is that […]

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