This is a book review of Michael Lewis' new book. It is an enjoyable and very informative read while making sense of some fairly complicated topics. The theme of high frequency trading (HFT) is quite relevant to all in our community and to Michael Lewis' credit he brings the topic to our attention in a book that no doubt will join his list of best sellers.
This Review is an update of one of the original six reviews - InvestorLit 2011(6) "US Small Cap". As noted in that Review: "US small cap has outperformed US large cap by over 2% per annum since 1926, although underperforms at times and is more volatile than large cap. But, being a less efficient market, it also allows manager alpha, typically expected to be about 3% per annum." Three years later, in this Review, we note US small cap has performed very well. To the extent that some managers are cautious about its prospects this Review examines performance, reasons, and offer some views going forward.
This Review is about fracking of shale oil fields and the resulting gas which comes with this drilling. There has been a great deal of optimism associated with the new production of shale oil and gas since it began around 2005 and some very optimistic and wide ranging implications of this for the economy. There are some cautionary notes though which cause one to question the
extreme optimism. In this review we examine the arguments on both sides, noting the additional drilling required to meet the optimistic forecasts, and then discuss some of the economic implications of the findings – which are on the cautious side.
This Review is an update of InvestorLiterature.com Review 2013(3) “Asset Mix: Pension Funds and LDI”. What happened in 2013 was “A Perfect Storm” for LDI strategies. Long bond rates and real rates rose significantly and equities performed very well in 2013, resulting in the best single calendar year improvement in pension funded status since 1957 (at least by my estimation). The case was made in the previous Review, that with rates at record lows and stocks appearing relatively cheap, to adopt an LDI strategy at this time could forego potential performance. We find this still to be the case, despite the recent rise in rates.
This Review discusses a recent paper by Professors Christos Ntantamis (formerly Mount Allison University, now TD Bank Group, Economics) and Jun Zhou (Dalhousie University), 2013 winner of the Hillsdale Investment Management Inc. – Toronto CFA Society Canadian Investment Research Award. Their paper presents a very insightful and original analysis of three commodities (gold, oil, and metals), showing that “there is little evidence that the market phases identified for the individual stocks are related to those for the commodity prices.” As such, this is a valuable finding for all investors, but especially Canadian investors, where the S&P/TSX 300 has a current weight of 50% in gold, metals, and energy.