A Gentle Introduction to Investing

How can people make good investment decisions when they don’t know the difference between a stock and a bond? Many beginning investors are intimidated by the prospect of learning about economics and finance – subjects that, for many, are deadly dull – or of meeting with salespeople trying to push investment products and schemes, or… Read more »

Investment Quarterly and Fiduciary Forum

Below is a collection of past issues of our Investment Quarterly and Fiduciary Forum.   Investment Quarterly   Investment Quarterly 1999 Q4 Diversification versus New Paradigm Investing Variance Drain: Maximizing Return May Be Hazardous to Your Wealth Portfolio Allocation and Risk Loading Factors Investment Quarterly 2001 Q1 The Great Debate: Behavioral vs. Standard Finance Predictability… Read more »

Money Market Reform: What You Should Know

The ubiquitous money market mutual fund has been a hot topic at the U.S. Treasury Department and the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) since the Great Recession and Financial Crisis of 2008/2009. The Government’s concerns are based on actions taken by institutional investors during the crisis when a large institutional money market fund could no longer… Read more »

Actuarial Publications: Patrick Collins et al.

A list of published articles on the topics of Life Insurance and Annuities, Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts and Fiduciary liability for insurance transactions and policy management.   Asset Allocation, Human Capital, and the Demand to Hold Life Insurance in Retirement – Patrick J. Collins, Ph.D., CLU, CFA, and Huy Lam, CFA, Financial Services Review, (Winter,… Read more »

The WealthCaster™ Risk Modeling System: A Technical Description

WealthCaster [WC] is a risk modeling system that illustrates the financial consequences of various portfolio design and asset management elections. It is designed for both trust-owned and individual portfolios; but can be generalized to reflect other asset management environments (e.g., endowments and foundations). In addition to facilitating asset allocation decisions—the user may select up to… Read more »

Jumping Into the Pool

Certain securities are called “pooled” investment funds. These securities provide an efficient way of diversifying a portfolio. Even small dollar amounts invested in a broadly diversified pooled fund can spread investment risk across many individual issues. A U.S. investor attempting to purchase a broad sample of European stocks, for example, would face daunting information and… Read more »

The Investment Trap: Is More Money Better than Less?

If you need to send money into the future to pay for anticipated expenses, you may need to become an investor. Thinking carefully about your desired lifestyle is the first step in deciding (1) how much money you and your family will need to fund your future standard of living; and (2) how much risk… Read more »

An Illiquid Project Can Dry Up Your Wealth

An ‘illiquid project’ – a term that only an economist would think of using – refers to an investment that may not allow you to cash out at the time of your choosing. Alternately, if you demand your money back, you may receive less than market value. An example is an investment with an early… Read more »

Currency Markets

One of the markets that few investors understand well is the global currency exchange. Most currencies are free floating, which means their relative value can adjust at any time based on the forces of supply and demand. So, when the markets deem the prospects for global growth to be weak while observing that the U.S…. Read more »