The Sustainable Investor: In Pursuit of an Enlightened Investment Portfolio
Your money and your brand
June 01, 2015
Last week, I had the distinct pleasure of speaking with members of the Independent Business Advisers of North America (IBANA). And while I guessed that perhaps someone cancelled as the date approached (!), I still enjoyed having the opportunity to converse with a room full of savvy business analysts. It's hard to BS folks whose job it is to know "business". My topic for the day was "Unleash the 95%"; the title referring to the requirement that foundations annually distribute 5% of their assets. (What happens to the 95% that they retain? That is the question.) First, I wasn't picking on foundations. Not at all! In fact, I...Read Full Article...
Why Investing is Like Getting an MRI
April 09, 2015
It's much less challenging to manage client investment accounts when most of the corporate earnings and economic news are good. But there is an old saying that goes something like this: "Don't confuse brains with a bull market." The markets giveth. The markets taketh away. Surely, more often than not, investing in equities has been a profitable exercise. The problem resides in the years when it has not. Sometimes those are really bad experiences that seem to last forever. Like being inside an MRI machine... Scary. Noisy. Claustrophobic. With no communication. And you've been told not to move. (Or Heaven forbid, you moved...Read Full Article...
Sustainability Interactive conference -- Video
February 18, 2015
https://vimeo.com/119806316Read Full Article...
Draghi Gets Some Religion; Europe, a Reprieve?
November 21, 2014
With the Eurozone economies skidding toward zero percent economic growth (or worse), investors got a reprieve this week: Evidence that the eternal inflation hawk, the Bundesbank, was no longer driving European monetary policy. Since the hyperinflation era after WW2, Germany has employed a strict monetary policy that made the (former) Deutschemark, one of the world's most stable currencies. German adherence to this policy, and some would say its obsession with inflation, was fine when Germany was a stand-alone nation. But when its authority dominated Eurozone policies, many questioned whether its strict precepts weren't actually driving many European nations into recession/depression. This week, Mario...Read Full Article...
Beyond Correlation: Re-examining the True Purpose of Investing
November 12, 2014
Where did we all go so wrong? How did the financial industry's investment approaches get so far from reality? At some point, investing became about volatility, standard deviations, correlations and "Monte Carlo" analyses. An "institutional" mindset took over as individuals began to mimic the actions of the big institutional investors (i.e., pension funds.) We became more concerned with beating benchmarks than with growing our long term assets. So, today, we need to re-examine the true purpose of investing, and reconnect it with real people and real money. I'll admit it. I was part of the problem... When I managed a mutual fund some 15 years ago in the volatile emerging equity markets,...Read Full Article...
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