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Man vs. Machine

I recently read Michael Lewis’ new book entitled The Undoing Project which is all about the history of behavioral economics, which is a discipline that has created a paradigm shift in my understanding of human behavior. In this week’s post we will share one of the many stories from the book and explain how it relates to investment decisions. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/man-vs.-machine/

Winds of Change

Virtually every measure of valuation in the US looks historically expensive and overinflated when compared to international stocks. We believe 2017 may bring the winds of change in global equity leadership, with a shift in relative strength from US to international. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/winds-of-change/

Bubbles!

If you are an investor, you are most likely familiar with the term “bubble” as it pertains to investing. Twenty years ago this was not the case, but today we are all too familiar with the term. The problem we now face is that everyone is hyper-aware of bubbles to a point where there is a bubble boogeyman around every corner. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/bubbles/

Overboard US Stocks

Over the past six years the US stock market has dominated the rest of the globe, with the S&P 500 outpacing the MSCI All Country World ex US index by over 10%...annualized. In our highly correlated, highly globalized world this amount of out-performance from the largest developed component of the global index is nothing short of mind-blowing. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/overboard-us-stocks/

Not Just Lip Service

Last week we wrote about how fees and expenses have been driven lower across our industry. Firms are being forced to consider how they get paid and what value they truly provide, which is, of course, a fantastic thing for consumers. But not all fees are created equal, and there are some costs that are still worth incurring. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/not-just-lip-service/

Volatility’s Impact

A few weeks ago we wrote a post entitled The Economics of Loss discussing the importance of reducing volatility and managing exposure to large draw downs in your portfolio.. Not only are large swings in investment value hard to deal with emotionally, but they can be detrimental to the mathematical sustainability of a long-term retirement plan. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/volatilitys-impact/

A Subtle Difference

Sometimes we get asked the question of whether “trend following is a form of market timing.” In this week’s post we will explore this question and unpack why there are subtle, yet very import differences between a trend following investment discipline and a market timing strategy. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/a-subtle-difference/

An Alternative to Buy-And-Hold

We field many questions about the potential value-add of a tactical allocation strategy over a more static buy-and-hold approach. Ultimately, there are a number of different ways to solve the retirement puzzle. Buy-and-hold investing is one perfectly legitimate strategy, but it is not a one-size-fits-all solution that every investor should follow. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/an-alternative-to-buy-and-hold/

Beach Balls Under Water

Since the election, investors have been scrambling to understand what a Trump presidency might mean for future of financial markets. Global asset prices had all but priced in a Clinton victory, and the chaos that ensued in futures markets as Trump’s victory took shape throughout the evening reflected a sense of confusion over how to interpret the results. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/beach-balls-under-water/

All Together Now

Last Friday we caught a glimpse of the extent to which financial markets are still addicted to monetary stimulus when stocks, bonds and commodities all tumbled in response to comments made by Fed officials. When everything is grinding upward, moving All Together Now is not a problem, but that sentiment changes quickly when asset classes begin to nosedive in tandem. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/all-together-now/

A Royal Divorce

Last week’s referendum vote in the UK was the culmination of a debate that has been raging for several years on whether Britain should be part of the European Union. The vote in favor of a Brexit sent shock waves throughout the global financial markets which were by and large pricing in a "Remain" outcome. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/a-royal-divorce/

Bad, Bad, Bad

Last Friday the US Department of Labor offered up a shocking, and largely confusing, jobs report for the month of May. Payrolls increased by just 38,000, the lowest in more than five years and a full 120,000 below the consensus expectation of a 158,000 increase. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/bad-bad-bad/

More Decisions Under Uncertainty

With a short week and on the heels of last week's post, we have decided to do a re-post on the topic of Decision Analysis. This week's post looks at how to make rational versus emotional decisions in the face of uncertainty. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/more-decisions-under-uncertainty/

Part of the Game

The human brain processes information in a linear fashion, but we don't live in a linear world. Our world is a complex system with lots of moving parts and plenty of good old fashion chance/luck at play. As such, we shouldn't judge our decision making based on good or bad outcomes, but rather look at the process behind the decision being made. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/part-of-the-game/

Did MarketVANE Do Its Job?

Last September we penned The Babe Ruth Effect to explain what one might expect from a trend following model like MarketVANE. As we pointed out, roughly two-thirds of “the Babe’s” at bats resulted in outs, meaning that every time he stepped up to the plate the most logical expectation would be that he would fail. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/did-marketvane-do-its-job/

The Right Stuff

Charlie Munger is unarguably one of the most well-respected and successful investors of our time. With wit and wisdom that are second to none, and a straight shooter style of communication, he is one of the most carefully studied and oft-quoted personalities in our industry. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/the-right-stuff/

And We're Off!

And we’re off…by about 6%! The first week of trading in 2016 claims the honor of being the worst starting week on record for the S&P 500 Index in its long and storied history dropping by close to 6%! It was a rough week for sure, but how should it effect our investment outlook for the future? http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/and-were-off/

The Year of Meh

According to Wikipedia, the word Meh is the verbal equivalent of a shrug of the shoulders. This word perhaps perfectly encapsulates the feelings most investors have toward their returns in 2015. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/the-year-of-meh/

The Lone Cockroach

We’ve all heard the saying “one man’s junk is another man’s treasure.” Well, for the junk bond market over the past few months the treasure has been conspicuously absent. Junk bonds have been under pressure lately, leaving many wondering how much more carnage there might be and what it might portend for other areas of the market. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/the-lone-cockroach/

Preparedness

It is in the midst of economic and financial market turmoil that investors typical make their biggest mistakes, so by preparing ahead of time for those environments we can mitigate the risk of the regret-driven decisions that would cause major setbacks to our clients’ long-term objectives. http://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/preparedness/

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