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The Global Market Update is curated by Douglas Tengdin, CFA an employee of Charter Trust Company.
The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of Charter Trust Company.
Investments may involve investment risk, including the possible loss of value.

Northern Exposure

By | July 13th, 2010|

Can Canada serve as a financial regulatory model? At its heart, banking moves cash from those who have it to those who need it. It may be small depositors and large borrowers, or the other way around. This intermediation is essential. Otherwise, the cash can’t get where it’s needed and growth opportunities go undeveloped. The more sophisticated the economy, the more complex the banking system. [...]

Building Pressure (BP)?

By | July 12th, 2010|

Could BP go bankrupt? A lot of people are asking that question. The company has already spent $3.5 billion on the cleanup and has pledge to spend at least $20 billion on reparations. But since civil fines could total tens of billions, and punitive measures are often three times this, could a court decision force BP into bankruptcy? After all, the company has a net [...]

Exchanging Places

By | July 11th, 2010|

A lot of people are interested in currencies. With Exchange Traded Funds linked to currencies, it’s easier than ever to take a position on the dollar. For those folks, I have just one word: don’t. When you look at an investment, you need to understand what you’re buying. In a market economy, wealth is created by enterprise. Stocks represent ownership of those businesses. Bonds are [...]

Lake Wobegon Investing

By | July 9th, 2010|

“Raise your hand if you’re an above-average driver.” Ask that question in any group and see how many hands go up. Usually it’s way more than half. That’s because we’re pretty overconfident. We think we know more than we do, and we think that we’re better than we are. It’s not just because people are arrogant. It’s also because the folks who lack a true [...]

The Emotional Investor

By | July 8th, 2010|

“Don’t tell me not to be emotional!” How often have we heard these words yelled, implied, or quietly affirmed. But our own lack of rationality is often a major obstacle to our own success. Or at least, our failure to acknowledge our lack of rationality gets in the way. Let’s face it: we’re emotional creatures. We hope, dream, panic, and run away. We’re built that [...]

Successful Failures

By | July 6th, 2010|

Why is it so hard to invest successfully? Study after study has shown that the average investor doesn’t do as well as a low-cost index fund. Since low-cost index funds are everywhere, why is this? One reason is that we think that no one has faced what we’re facing. So don’t listen to those who have gone before. But we know that what has been [...]

I Love to Hear the Story

By | July 5th, 2010|

Are we wired to believe in stories? Our brains seem to be programmed to connect discrete events and fashion a narrative around them. This has been known for thousands of years. How else to explain the durability of the classics, from Homer to Homer Price? And if for some reason we can’t connect the dots, we’ve lost a part of ourselves. But there’s a downside. [...]

Dividends and Investors (Part 4)

By | July 1st, 2010|

So are dividends the secret sauce? Are dividends the best way to divine a stock’s future? Lots of folks think so. We’ve discussed how steady and growing dividends can indicate financial health, commitment to investors, and provide a stable real income stream. So many folks have gotten the dividend bug that there are some 800 mutual funds with over $400 billion in assets that focus [...]

Dividends and Investors (Part 3)

By | June 30th, 2010|

Are you a chicken farmer, or an egg farmer? Chicken farmers raise chickens for their meat. Egg farmers raise chickens for what they lay. Investors who plan to sell their stocks to pay for college or to buy a second home are chicken farmers. Investors who hope to use the income from their investments are egg farmers. The financial press is hopelessly biased against the [...]