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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.

Healthy, Wealthy, Wise

By |September 11th, 2018|

What are you doing to stay healthy? Photo: JD Maidens. Source: US Air Force Our bodies and our finances are linked, and not just because of how much we spend on prescriptions. Health is integral to our lives, the same way money is. And studying finance is similar to studying medicine: there are technical issues that require specialized training, but most of the principles are [...]

Turing In

By |September 11th, 2018|

What is a Turing Test? Photo: Mike MacKenzie. Source: Flikr. CC-BY-2.0 A Turing Test is a way for people to examine how intelligent a machine seems to be. It evaluates the question, “Can machines think?” by redefining thinking. Instead, Turing asked if a computer could converse so naturally that speaking with the machine would be indistinguishable from conversing with a human. The classic Turing Test [...]

Of Nations and Nationalism

By |September 7th, 2018|

Can Europe hold itself together? Recent YouGov Poll. Source: YouGov. In 1848, revolution swept across Europe. Governments fell in Italy, France, Germany, Denmark, Hungary, Poland, and elsewhere. In all, over 50 countries were affected. The uprisings were led by shaky ad hoc coalitions of reformers, intellectuals, and workers, which weren’t competent at governing They were often violently put down, but the 1848 revolutions frightened the [...]

Reflections on Tolstoy

By |September 6th, 2018|

“All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” Source: Pixabay. That’s how Leo Tolstoy begins his epic novel “Anna Karenina.” The line has been quoted over and over again, in movies and articles and other books. It even has its own Wikipedia entry: the Anna Karenina Principle. The idea is that to be happy, a family must be successful [...]

On the Job / Off the Job

By |September 5th, 2018|

What is the “gig economy”? Photo: Peter Griffin. Source: Publicdomainpictures.net A “gig” is the world sometimes used for temporary contract for a musician or other performer. I once heard a short-term Music Studies professor complain that he’d never find another gig as good as the one he had in Hanover. The gig economy refers to our economy today where more and more people are independent [...]

Crazy Rich Asians

By |September 4th, 2018|

Is Asia the future for wealth management? Photo: Erwin Soo. Source: Wikimedia One of the most popular movies this summer has been “Crazy Rich Asians,” a charming romantic comedy set in the city-state of Singapore with echoes of “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner.” Asia has certainly seen dramatic growth in its wealth management business, with over China having over 1.2 million individuals who have more [...]

Apocalypse Later

By |September 3rd, 2018|

Sometimes the world doesn’t end. Source: Pixabay. A few years ago, the financial world was buzzing about “robo-advisors.” These web sites and smartphone apps were going to revolutionize investing and wealth management. The services start with a set of interview questions, then make investment allocations into various Exchange Traded Funds. By using algorithms to provide rule-based recommendations using low-cost index funds, their hope was to [...]

Order, Decay, and Competition

By |August 30th, 2018|

History was never over. Berlin wall, November 1989. Source: Department of Defense In early 1989 Francis Fukuyama gave a talk and wrote a paper with the provocative title, “The End of History.” In this seminal paper he argues that with the collapse of Soviet-style communism, liberal democratic capitalism had no meaningful ideological competitor on the world stage. Smaller countries like North Korea or Vietnam might [...]

The Future that Happened?

By |August 29th, 2018|

Will demographics doom China? Traffic in Beijing. Source: Wikimedia. People use to worry about overpopulation. You still see the bumper stickers: “Two’s Company, 7 Billion’s a Crowd.” But not so much anymore. Global population growth has slowed dramatically. Urban lifestyles, better health care, and birth control have dramatically reduced population growth just about everywhere. In the 1960’s, the world’s population was growing at over 2% [...]