Find Value in Publicly-Traded Alternative Asset Management Companies

U.S. publicly-traded alternative asset managers are one of the few places in the stock market today where there can be lots of value. The industry is attractive but generally misunderstood by investors because of its relative newness, perceived earnings volatility, and the complexity of its accounting. While analysts today will point out that these firms can take advantage of the current opportunities in distressed debt and a depressed energy sector, alternative asset managers are even more important in a world where bonds are Read More »

Spin-Offs: A Source of Hidden Value

Researched and written by Jamie Grundman, who joined our team in December 2014. He’ll be contributing regularly.

The S&P 500 Index rose 11.4% in 2014 and it’s trailing price-to-earnings multiple rose 12% from 15.5x to 17.4x. This is on the back of an over 200% return since the market bottomed in March 2009. With those gains, it is getting tougher and tougher to find good companies at deeply discounted valuations. In an interview, Charlie Munger, Vice-Chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, and one of the most successful investors of all time, said “a great Read More »

What Do Successful Investors Have in Common?

If you said “luck,” you’re wrong. If you’re thinking whatever it is, you haven’t got it, you’re also wrong. Because they’re traits that are available to each and every one of us:

Above all else, successful investors are savvy shoppers. They also have a lot of patience.

That’s right. They look for bargains. They know value when they see it. And until they see it, they wait. They also understand and appreciate the power of compound interest — and Read More »

What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You

You’d probably be surprised to learn how many investors don’t fully understand their investments. By that I mean accurately, and equitably, evaluating returns, costs and benefits of different investments as well as measuring the true value provided by investment advisors.

Knowledge is an investor’s best friend; and it is for this reason that the industry, namely IIROC (Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada) has begun makingRead More »

How Meaningful is a Fund’s Past Performance? A Recent Study Might Hold the Answer.

It’s a debate that’s been raging forever:  Who’s more successful?  Active managers who strive to outperform the market or their more passive counterparts.  What’s right?  What’s wrong?  The truth is, the jury’s still out.  There’s been nothing conclusively pointing in either direction.

Until now, perhaps.  Until S.&P. Dow Jones Indices conducted a study that delved into it, Read More »

Having a Financial Plan Benefits Investors and Their Advisors

Let’s start with the obvious benefits:

Having a properly-executed financial plan is like having a 360 degree view of your entire financial situation, in one document.  To put it another way, it’s like having a total body scan except, instead of it being about your physical health, a financial plan concentrates on your financial condition.

It enables you to give serious thought to both your short and long term goals.  ToRead More »

It Pays to Know

Informed investors are typically more successful.

Investors should be knowledgeable.  Investors should understand what’s important — even when working with an advisor.  Especially when educating yourself doesn’t have to be complicated.  Nor does it mean you’ll have to go through mounds of indecipherable jargon.

In fact, the Crestmont Research website is exactly the opposite.  Incredibly helpful, it’s Read More »

An Investment You Can Really Feel Good About …

It’s human nature.  We all like to do well.  Who wouldn’t?  But it’s equally important, and so gratifying, to do good.  To share our good fortune.  With those who aren’t as blessed or, with any of the deserving not-for-profit organizations and charities we care about.

Obviously we want our gifts to make as positive an impact as possible.  To truly change the lives, for the better, of those less fortunate.  To make the seemingly impossible, possible for Read More »

A Smart Way to Start off a New Year

What better way to approach a new year, than by reflecting on what we did right — and even more importantly — what we did wrong, or could have done better, in the past?  

In other words, by looking for lessons we can take with us into the future.  So we avoid making the same costly mistakes over and over again.  Good advice, not only about life inRead More »