From the category archives:


Individual Investors Make Terrible Decisions – So STOP Making Them!

I just came across yet another report (Marketwatch) demonstrating the abysmal state of US retail investor performance compared to basically doing nothing.  We just can’t help ourselves.  Based on this latest research of 20 years of data, here are a few depressing facts:  Over the past 20 years, while the S&P500 annualized return was 8.2%, […]

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How Obama Goosed the Jobs Numbers and Why It’s Much Worse Than Media Portrayals

As long as I can remember, people have always complained about the accuracy of government-reported statistics and claims.  For instance, every year, the government reports that the measure generally regarded as a barometer for inflation everyday Americans face, the CPI, is always much lower than people feel they’re experiencing in their everyday lives.  Sure, while […]

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The Fiscal Cliff is Looming! You Should Just Yawn. Here’s Why

You’ve surely heard the term by now, but the premise of the fiscal cliff is that there are several different parts of the tax code expiring and spending cuts set to kick in first thing next year. Conveniently, this occurs right AFTER the next presidential election, so we have to pretty much vote on faith […]

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Lazy Portfolios – I’m Laughing At You Again

It’s been a few years running now (2011, 2010) where I pointed out the the contrived beauty and simplicity of the “Lazy Portfolios” regurgitated by MarketWatch’s Paul Farrel ad nauseam is nonsense.  See, these nifty portfolios were set up with the benefit of hindsight and spewed out a few years ago when virtually every asset […]

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What is the Financial Threshold that Compels People to Steal Ridiculous Stuff?

Each time we see gas prices start to move up around $3.50 nationally and higher, the utterly moronic stories start to surface about people siphoning gas out of cars and other seemingly ridiculous thefts.  Here are some gems on the topic: Yes, there is actually a website dedicated solely to gas theft  Incredible. The […]

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Should Americans with No Kids Be Able “Opt-Out” of School Taxes?

I was at a family gathering this summer and the usual topic of complaining about the ineptitude of local government officials and school boards came up.  That then led to older participants questioning what their tax dollars were being used for and why they’re even paying school taxes to begin with.  It led to an […]

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Learnings from Advanta High Yield Notes: Investors to Get 38 cents on the Dollar

After some prolonged legal proceedings following Advanta’s collapse, there’s a new settlement whereby investors in their high yield notes will get 38% of the money owed.  This follows months of warnings (April 2009, May 2009, Jun 2009 and then…boom!) from me highlighting that as the company continued to blow more and more money on ads […]

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The Inflation Conspiracy? EAT ME

CBSMoneyWatch published a piece of screed this week on the Inflation Conspiracy pretty much mocking and patronizing people who question the value or validity of the government’s official measure of inflation.  The author somewhat misrepresents the intent of mainstream inflation critics by saying they “believe that somehow there’s an inflation conspiracy going on, and the […]

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Lazy Portfolios are LOSERS – Told ‘Ya So…

When I penned an article (here) criticizing the lionization of the Lazy Portfolio mantra as just historical cherry-picking and luck, the MarketWatch lemmings jumped all over me for doing the unthinkable – challenging such a seemingly successful strategy with great PR.  What I said at the time was pretty much that these portfolios were no […]

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