The Alternative Investments Channel

High Yield Train Wreck

The first defaults will occur at the lowest end of the problematic market: high yield or “junk” bonds. They will play a role comparable to subprime mortgages in the last crisis. We’ll see mortgage problems as well, but I think overleveraged companies will be the core problem.

Building a Better U.S. Economy

This shouldn’t surprise anyone, but public trust in the federal government is eroding. Sixty years ago, 75 percent of Americans expressed faith in the government to do the right thing “most of the time” or “just about always.” Seventy-five percent! You can’t get 75 percent of people to agree on anything now, as the recent “Laurel or Yanny” video proved.

How to Convert an Acquaintance to a Prospect without Being Awkward

How should you approach a casual acquaintance and open the dialogue about working together?

Three Places to Get Your Content Published

Now that you understand the importance of creating a solid content marketing strategy, it’s time to get published!

Margin Debt and the Market


FINRA has released new data for margin debt, now available through April. The latest debt level is up 1.1% month-over-month. The April data gives us an additional sense of recent investor behavior.

Where Can We Beat the Market?

We closed yesterday’s post on whether markets are efficient with the conclusion that it could be possible to beat the market. But, to do so, we would need either better information or to view things differently—specifically referencing time horizons as one way to do that. Let’s start with a couple of areas where better information is a real possibility. Then, we’ll take a deeper look at the second idea, which is both more subtle and more interesting.

Conference Board Leading Economic Index: Increases Continue in April

The latest Conference Board Leading Economic Index (LEI) for April increased to 109.4 from a revised 109.0 in March. The Coincident Economic Index (CEI) came in at 103.5, up from the previous month.

Is Passive Investing Destroying the Markets?

Passive investing has been ridiculed by Wall Street for decades. The common theme is that indexing has become such a force that the market’s price discovery function is no longer working properly. Given the number of questions I get about this issue, one would think that passive investing is now dominating markets.

A-Rod’s Financial Plan

Even the most avid baseball fan may not realize that A-Rod, who was one of the highest paid players in MLB history, says that committing to a financial plan from the onset enabled him to successfully make it from rags to riches.

Five Lessons for Advisors from A-Rod

Alex Rodriguez has been establishing himself as a leader off the field, and has successfully launched ventures in business and investment management. How did he do it?

First Eagle: “Passive Investing Could Prove to be an Expensive Mistake”

First Eagle’s Global Fund (SGENX) is its flagship fund, with over $55 billion in assets. As of April 30, 2018, since inception (1/1/79), the Fund has returned 13.15% annually, versus 9.67% for the MSCI World Index. Over the last 15 years, it has been in the top 2% of its peer group. I spoke with its managers, Matthew B. McLennan and Kimball Brooker, Jr., on May 1.

Credit-Driven Train Crash, Part 1

I’ve been saying for some time that the next financial crisis will bring a major debt crisis. But as you’ll see today, it is a small part, maybe the opening event, of a rapidly-approaching train wreck. We’ll need several weeks to tease out all the causes and consequences, so this letter will be the first in a series.

In Search of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

So we headed to NYC early Thursday morning in search of the “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.” After touching down at LaGuardia we climbed into a yellow taxi held together by duct tape, rode over potholed streets with our cell phone cutting in and out (gosh I love New York City), and arrived at Grand Central Terminal around 11:00 a.m.

Gundlach – Don’t Fear the 3% Yield on the 10-Year

Fear that the multi-decade bull market in bonds will end has centered on the benchmark 10-year Treasury yield breaching 3%. But Jeffrey Gundlach said that is the wrong focus.

US National Debt Spiraling Out of Control, New Record

The Treasury Department announced last week that the government borrowed a record $488 billion in the January-March quarter. The Treasury said that actual borrowing in the 1Q exceeded the old record of $483 billion set in the first quarter of 2010 – the period when the country was struggling to pull out of a deep recession and prop-up the financial system following the 2008 financial crisis.