Improving Decisions to Evolve beyond Passive Management

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“Personally, it would be a lot of fun to be a portfolio manager in a world where 80% of the market was indexed, because there would be huge liquidity with dumb money.”

— Richard H. Thaler

Index funds have disrupted the status quo and passive strategies are expected to play an increasingly large role in the investment industry’s future. Yet some observers, like Nobel laureate Richard H. Thaler, think that future will be full of opportunities for active investment managers.

At the 70th CFA Institute Annual Conference in Philadelphia, Thaler pointed out that an environment dominated by passive indexing strategies holds greater opportunities for the smaller number of investors who remain active.

The question facing today’s portfolio managers is how they can survive long enough to see that future. Read More

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Where Should Investors Look in Times of Global Disruption?

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Peter Zeihan: The Geopolitics of a Fragmenting World

Geopolitical strategist Peter Zeihan has been predicting — and more recently, interpreting — a world that is fragmented by a failure of global stability. The work has kept him busy, and he is likely to get busier in the coming months.

International tensions and global disarray have given rise to stories about Brexit preparations that look more like people getting ready for Armageddon, the CFO of a Chinese tech company whose arrest has exacerbated international tensions, and rumors of Venezuelan gold ready to be spirited away from the country’s central bank.

From Zeihan’s perspective, these events are all symptoms of an unraveling global order. And he thinks that this disruption in the global status quo has been long overdue. Read More

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Time for Financial Professionals to Sharpen Their Saws

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Time for Financial Professionals to Sharpen their Saws

How can you improve your professional performance?

“Sharpen the saw,” says Stephen R. Covey, author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. Covey uses the metaphor of a woodcutter, straining to fell a tree with a blunt saw, to illustrate the importance of taking time to develop our skills. When we step away from our immediate responsibilities and focus on our professional growth — turning away from the proverbial tree to sharpen our saw — we set ourselves up to do our jobs better and improve our performance over the long term.

Covey’s insights raise an interesting question for financial professionals: What specific actions can we take to do our jobs better? Read More

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These Are the Most Important Connections

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network concept

The most important connections in your network may not be the ones you think.

Economist and author Tim Harford has observed how professional connections can help with job searches, and it turns out that “the most irreplaceable social connections, paradoxically, are often rather weak or distant ones.” Read More

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An Evolving Asset Class: The Future of Cryptocurrencies

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The CFA Institute Annual Conference is an unrivaled opportunity to access high-quality, unbiased educational content that equips investment professionals with the latest thinking on critical industry issues. The 72nd CFA Institute Annual Conference will be held in London on 12–15 May 2019.

An Evolving Asset Class: The Future of Cryptocurrencies
Bitcoin and the broader universe of cryptocurrencies, initial coin offerings (ICOs), and other crypto assets have dealt with some enduring problems. But the endurance of those problems has demonstrated the endurance of those investments.

“This has been going on for about nine years going into 10,” said Sandra Ro, founder and managing director of Vector Crypto Capital. “Bitcoin’s died 900 times.”

Yet it continues to make headlines.

Ro has spent years building expertise at the intersection of cryptocurrencies and large-scale financial institutions. She serves on the Global Blockchain Business Council and was a founding board director of the Enterprise Etherium Alliance. At the 71st CFA Institute Annual Conference in Hong Kong, she shared her insights with an audience of global financial professionals. Read More

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INSEAD Professor: US to Lose Its Place as Top Spot for Venture Capital Next Year

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The CFA Institute Annual Conference is an unrivaled opportunity to access high-quality, unbiased educational content that equips investment professionals with the latest thinking on critical industry issues. The 72nd CFA Institute Annual Conference will be held in London on 12–15 May 2019.


China will surpass the US in terms of venture capital investments by 2019, says Claudia Zeisberger, Senior Affiliate Professor of Decision Sciences and Entrepreneurship and Family Enterprise at INSEAD. In the last four years, venture capital activity in China has exploded, and according to her, it will soon eclipse traditional hubs such as the Silicon Valley.

At the 71st CFA Institute Annual Conference in Hong Kong, Zeisberger explained how her base projection expects compound annual growth rates of 28% in China and 6% in the US; both forecasts are extrapolated from the growth rates she has observed in the last three years. Read More

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4 Ways Millennials Can Avoid Following Their Passion

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The CFA Institute Annual Conference is an unrivaled opportunity to access high-quality, unbiased educational content that equips investment professionals with the latest thinking on critical industry issues. The 72nd CFA Institute Annual Conference will be held in London on 12–15 May 2019.

Lauren Friese, director of Workforce Innovation at RBC, suggests that many millennials need to rethink their career management strategies to achieve professional success.

Friese rejects the “follow your passion” advice that was popularized in the 90’s. Instead, she says that young professionals should focus on the moments when they believe they have been at their best. By reflecting on their strengths, and examples of positive behaviors that they have exhibited, they can frame their careers around their peak performance. Friese describes it as “following your flow.” Read More

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Food for Thought: An Insight into Japan’s Outlook

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The CFA Institute Annual Conference is an unrivaled opportunity to access high-quality, unbiased educational content that equips investment professionals with the latest thinking on critical industry issues. The 72nd CFA Institute Annual Conference will be held in London on 12–15 May 2019.

At the 71st CFA Institute Annual Conference in Hong Kong, Kathy Matsui, Chief Japan Strategist at Goldman Sachs, presented an in-depth look at the current state and future prospects of the world’s third-largest economy. Read More

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The Future of Global Investing

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The CFA Institute Annual Conference is an unrivaled opportunity to access high-quality, unbiased educational content that equips investment professionals with the latest thinking on critical industry issues. The 72nd CFA Institute Annual Conference will be held in London on 12–15 May 2019.

In the financial marketplace, the biggest players determine long-term trends. Pension funds, followed by insurance companies and sovereign wealth funds, represent more than 70% of the US$ 85 trillion in assets under management globally; their views on issues and opinions on what’s working are important.

At the 71st CFA Institute Annual Conference, three of these large asset owners held an engaging discussion on the future of global investing. Christopher J. Ailman, CIO at CalSTRS; Hiro Mizuno, executive managing director and CIO at Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF); and Alison Tarditi, CIO at Commonwealth Superannuation Corporation spoke at length and shared their perspectives. Read More

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Daniel Kahneman on Expertise, Bias, and the Investment Industry

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Daniel Kahneman: Intuition, Noise, Regrets, and the Optimism Paradox

The CFA Institute Annual Conference is an unrivaled opportunity to access high-quality, unbiased educational content that equips investment professionals with the latest thinking on critical industry issues. The 72nd CFA Institute Annual Conference will be held in London on 12–15 May 2019.

Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman has transformed the fields of economics and investing. At their most basic, his revelations demonstrate that human beings and the decisions they make are much more complicated — and much more fascinating — than previously thought.

He delivered a captivating mini seminar on some of the key ideas that have driven his scholarship, exploring intuition, expertise, bias, noise, and how optimism and overconfidence simultaneously drive and undermine the capitalist system, at the 71st CFA Institute Annual Conference in Hong Kong. Read More

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