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How Risk and Uncertainty Affect Stock Returns

Asset pricing models imply that equity portfolios’ time-varying exposure to the market risk and uncertainty factors carries with it positive risk premiums. Turan Bali and Hao Zhou contribute to the body of literature on this topic through the study “Risk, Uncertainty, and Expected Returns,” which appeared in the June 2016 issue of the Journal of Financial and…

The Volatility of Active Management

S&P Dow Jones Indices has long provided a great service to investors with its semi-annual S&P Indices Versus Active (SPIVA) scorecards. The evidence offered in these reports has shown time and again that, regardless of the asset class, the vast majority of active managers persistently fail to outperform their benchmarks, and that there is little to…

Factor-Based Investing: A Q&A With Larry Swedroe

Larry Swedroe discusses his new book, “Your Complete Guide To Factor-Based Investing,” as well as the theory behind factor strategies and how investors can achieve their risk and return objectives through them, in a recent Q&A. Find it on MutualFunds.com By clicking on any of the links above, you acknowledge that they are solely for…

The Guide to Happy Giving

The giving season is underway, with the holidays and year-end bearing down on us. So how can we transform one of the more stressful, and sometimes guilt-ridden, elements of the season into something more life-giving? Whether you’re giving to a family member, a friend or a cause, please consider the following four directives as a…

An Interesting Test of Market Efficiency

Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF) is the world’s biggest state investor, trumping all other managed government retirement and sovereign wealth funds. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s drive to spur the Japanese economy out of its two-decade-and-growing economic slump, known as Abenomics, has pushed the GPIF to plow more money into risky investments, aiming both to…

“Free Lunch” Investing Takes Time to Cook

As the director of research for The BAM Alliance, I’ve been getting lots of calls recently from investors questioning their international equity investments. This hasn’t been a surprise, as any time an asset class does poorly, a significant number of investors will question why they own that asset. One particular inquiry I received addressed the…

Some Alternatives to Big Banks and Their Record-High Fees

Fees are at an all-time high at the nation’s big banks, while the interest they pay is at an all-time low. Worse yet, evidence recently has come to light of the criminal abuse of a practice common among large banks since the fall of Glass-Steagall: cross-selling. Cross-selling is rooted in consumer research that large financial institutions tend…

On the Performance of Long-Serving Active Mutual Fund Managers

Given its importance to so many investors, it’s not surprising that there has been a tremendous amount of research into the performance of actively managed mutual funds. An overwhelming body of evidence has demonstrated that the vast majority of active funds underperform their appropriate risk-adjusted benchmarks, even before considering the impact of taxes. In addition,…

Diversification Is Key to Factor Investing

As my co-author, Andrew Berkin, and I explain in our forthcoming book, “Your Complete Guide to Factor-Based Investing,” no matter how strong the evidence regarding the persistence and pervasiveness of an investment factor’s return premium, there’s some chance that the factor will experience long periods of underperformance. You can see the evidence of this in…

The Dangerous Education Gap

A large body of research on the behavior of individual investors has demonstrated that low levels of financial knowledge, in addition to biases in the selection and processing of information, drive suboptimal financial choices. Among the findings from the literature are: Men tend to be more financially literate than women, independent of country of residence,…

Investing in Consumer Loans Comes More Into Focus

Online peer-to-peer (P2P) lending is emerging as a provider of credit to individuals as well as small businesses, with the potential to benefit borrowers (by reducing the high cost of bank credit, credit card debt and payday loans) and lenders (by providing opportunities to earn higher yields). A significant hurdle for investors, however, is the…

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