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The NFL and Stock Market Games

Posted Oct 08, 2015  |  By Eric S. Holt, CFA

We recently had friends over to watch the Lions play the Broncos on Sunday Night Football.  During halftime, one of them said to his son, “Ask Coach Eric to pick those stocks for you.  This is what he does for a living.”  He then explained the assignment was to pick five stocks and the sixth-grader with the best returns over a 90-day period “wins” the contest.  My heart sank.  The intentions of this game (exposure to financial principles at a young age) are absolutely in the right place but a simulation like this teaches exactly the wrong things to someone learning about investing.  Here are the issues:

Quarterly Market Review

Posted Jul 20, 2015  |  By Eric S. Holt, CFA

Quarterly Market Review – Second Quarter 2015 | Read the full article

Past Performance, Bigfoot, Broccoli and Future Performance

Posted May 28, 2015  |  By Eric S. Holt, CFA

These things have nothing to do with each other. At the bottom of virtually every piece of marketing in the investments industry, you will see the following:

“Past performance does not guarantee future results.”

The Securities and Exchange Commission mandates that this disclaimer be put on all advertising and marketing materials. We want to believe past performance is an indicator of future results; after all, a person’s track record in business/sports/music/art gives us a pretty good idea of how they are going to do in the future. Unfortunately, in the portfolio management world, the past tells us very little about the future.  Consider the following from “The Persistence Scorecard” (“Does Past Performance Matter: The Persistence Scorecard”, December 2014):

Economic Reviews

Posted May 19, 2015  |  By Eric Holt

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