Posts From Ben Carlson

Ben Carlson

Ben Carlson has been managing institutional portfolios for over a decade. He is currently part of a portfolio management team that oversees a large endowment fund for a charitable organization. Ben’s work has been featured on numerous websites including the Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, MarketWatch, The Globe and Mail, Business Insider and the Washington Post. Ben has earned the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation.


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The Inflation-Factor In The History Of Interest Rates

Neil Irwin had a really good write-up at The Upshot this week about the history of interest rates. He made the case that low interest rates may be here to stay if history is any guide. Take a look at the graph he used in the story: Here’s Irwin with…

What Role Do Expectations Play In Your Investing Strategy?

Add John Bogle to the growing list of respected investors  — GMO, Research Affiliates, William Bernstein, Ray Dalio, Robert Shiller, Cliff Asness — who believe investors should temper their expectations for future market returns in the coming decade. From a recent interview with Morningstar: So, I think the best thing…

Investors: Beware The Certainty Trap

Data availability is something of a double-edged sword in today’s financial markets. On the one hand, we now have a nearly unlimited supply of research, opinions, back-tests and historical simulations with which to base our investment views upon. On the other hand, the fact that we have more information available…

The Momentum Factor: Why Momentum Investing Works

In a recent Q&A with Patrick O’Shaughnessy, I said the following when asked about the momentum factor (re: momentum investing): I’m a huge fan of the momentum factor, mainly for its diversification benefits. It’s also the least understood of the well-known risk factors. I’ve done a ton of work on…

Are Financials The New Defensive Sector?

With stocks trading near all-time highs yet again investors are continuously nervous about the potential for a correction. In the past, many investors would be looking to rotate out of the more cyclical sectors (materials, financials, energy, consumer discretionary and industrials) into the more defensive sectors (healthcare, utilities and consumer…

Doubling Down On Risk: Why Investors Should Watch Their Reach

In August of 2007 we had one of the first truly large market dislocations that preceded the financial crisis. All at once, a large group of the biggest quantitatively managed hedge funds all started to get crushed at the same time. In just a couple of weeks, strategies that had…

The Amazing Run In Biotech Stocks

Biotech stocks have been on fire in 2015. In the Biotech & Pharmaceuticals sector of the Russell 2000 Growth Index, there are over sixty stocks up by more than 30% this year. More than thirty stocks are up greater than 50% while six have more than doubled. The iShares Biotechnology…

Mutual Fund Investing: Not All Behavior Gaps Are Created Equal

I spend a lot of my time writing about the common mistakes made by investors because I operate under the assumption that cutting down on unforced errors could drastically improve portfolio performance for a majority of investors. The behavior gap between reported fund returns and actual investor returns that results from poorly…

Back-Testing The Tony Robbins All-Weather Portfolio

Tony Robbins has a new book out this week called MONEY Master the Game: 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom. The interviews that Robbins did with some of the greatest investors of all-time (Buffett, Dalio, Tudor-Jones, Icahn, Swensen, etc.) sound like they’re worth the price of admission alone. In a piece Robbins wrote…