Money

Will Someone Please Tell Me What This Bitcoin/​Blockchain Thing Is All About?

Everyone has heard of Bitcoin by now (by convention, it’s capitalized when used as a protocol and lower case when used as a unit of exchange, like a dollar), but very few understand the importance of the “blockchain” technology that underpins it. This article expresses no opinion one way or…

Democracy, Populism, and the Tyranny of the Experts, Part IV

Not that long ago — say, when my parents were starting out in married life — building a sound investment portfolio was a piece of cake. You bought some Blue Chip stocks and some Triple A bonds and you were done.

Cash is King

Since the end of the Financial Crisis eight long years ago, a notion has settled across the land that “cash is trash.” This is the bunkmate of the “TINA” principle: There Is No Alternative to owning equities.

Three Simple Questions on the Markets, Part III

We asked a group of the region’s leading wealth managers to pen a response to three questions about the markets and how they approach current conditions. Here are their responses to the final question: If you had to put all your money in one asset class today and couldn’t sell…

Three Simple Questions on the Markets, Part II

We asked a group of the region’s leading wealth managers to pen a response to three questions about the markets and how they approach current conditions. Below are their answers to the second question: The Fed is working to “normalize” interest rates over the course of 2017. What impact will…

Three Simple Questions on the Markets, Part I

We asked a group of the region’s leading wealth managers to pen a response to three questions about the markets and how they approach current conditions. Here are their responses to the first question: Since the election of Donald Trump, stock markets have soared and the confidence of consumers and…

Three Simple Questions

Each year in our Summer issue, we ask a group of the region’s leading financial experts to help our readers by responding to a question. This year, we’ve asked three. The first batch of the questions and answers follow.

Capital Preservation Paul, Part VII

Well, the best-​laid plans…I’d intended to interview the contestants in our little investment contest to get their take on the markets and on how well or badly they, personally, had navigated the various challenges those markets had offered. I was especially interested in what, if anything, the contestants had learned.…

Capital Preservation Paul, Part VI

Bull Markets and Bear Markets are such momentous events that they tend to fixate investor attention to the exclusion of more important matters. Most people, for example, would define a “market cycle” with reference to Bulls and Bears.

Capital Preservation Paul, Part V

So far in our increasingly exciting investment contest, it’s been a positive experience all around. For the first three years the capital markets rose relentlessly: a modestly positive first year followed by two terrific Bull Market years. But things are about to change.

Capital Preservation Paul, Part IV

Last week we observed how our investment competitors fared as they navigated a boring, so-​so market environment. But this week things get more interesting.

Value Investing: Putting Time on Your Side

“All things excellent are as difficult as they are rare.” Throughout my 17 years watching markets and investing on behalf of high-​net-​worth individuals, families and organizations in the Pittsburgh area, I’ve never found this quote from legendary investor Benjamin Graham to be more appropriate.

Capital Preservation Paul, Part III

Last week we asked Mr. Market to establish the playing field for our investment contest. This week we’ll check in to see how our contestants are faring.

Capital Preservation Paul, Part II

On the last day of March, we launched our own, far more interesting version of March Madness, namely, an investment contest. Our contest features the Investing Final Four, that is, the four main kinds of investors I’ve encountered in a long and checkered career in the financial advisory business. But…

Capital Preservation Paul

I’ve been in the business of advising wealthy families for 40 years. (Actually, it’s been longer than that, but I’ve reached the age where everything gets rounded down.)
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