A Durable Future (Part 1)

By | 2017-07-17T16:48:42+00:00 July 3rd, 2017|Global Market Update -- A Durable Future (Part 1)|

Do durable assets make sense as investments? Gold Roman Aureus. Source: Wikipedia Some things have been around a long time: silver and gold were currencies and a store of value for millennia; fine jewelry has always been a sign of status; and housing and land are always in demand—everyone has to live and world somewhere. But do they make sense in an investment portfolio? A little perspective is important. People get very emotional about real investments. We’re naturally attached to our homes. And how [...]

The Missing Asset (Part 2)

By | 2017-07-17T12:21:29+00:00 February 2nd, 2017|Global Market Update|

Is this a good time to add real estate to a portfolio? Image: Photoeverywhere.co.uk Real estate is a cyclical asset. When times are good, everyone is expanding. They want to be a part of the boom. When times are bad, it’s impossible to even think about positive returns, much less growth. And, of course, your perspective is always affected by your personal experience. While real estate is a global asset class, all real estate is local. Real estate comes in four major flavors: residential, [...]

The Hidden Asset

By | 2017-07-17T12:21:30+00:00 February 1st, 2017|Global Market Update|

What’s the asset that no one talks about? Photo: Bryan Hanson. Source: Morguefile When I discuss asset allocation, I usually focus on stocks and bonds. Bonds are a senior claim on a business’s cash flow, and stocks are a residual claim on cash flow. So stocks benefit from a business’s growth, but they’re riskier – they get wiped out if the business fails. Bonds are safer, but they don’t go anywhere. If everything goes right, you just get back what you put in, with [...]

A Room of One’s Own (In a Portfolio)?

By | 2017-07-17T12:22:42+00:00 July 21st, 2015|Global Market Update|

What good is real estate? Photo: Joao Pacheco. Source: Picjumbo I don’t mean as a place to live. Everyone needs four walls and a roof. I’m talking about real estate as an investment. Lots of people consider investing in real estate. By this they usually mean private real estate—buying a small apartment or office building and renting out the space. There may be a lot of specific, local demand for living and working space: college students cycling through; young couples relocating to an area; [...]

Searching for Safety (Part 3)

By | 2013-06-05T09:44:46+00:00 June 5th, 2013|Global Market Update|

How can investors figure out what’s safe and what’s not? The process of investing in safe assets, seeing them appreciate, and moving out of these (formerly safe) assets can seem like a kind of dance—a two-step—where investors pile into a safe asset, watch it appreciate and start to come down, then pile into the next new thing, only to see the process continue: lather, rinse, repeat. It started with the internet boom. Investors had no illusions that these were safe stocks, but when the [...]