Ben Carlson

Lawmakers Don’t Understand How Buybacks Work

There a plenty of topics that seem to get investors all worked up — active vs. passive, individual bonds vs. bond funds, and of course, shareholder buybacks. Depending on who you ask, buybacks are either a signal that capitalism has gone too far or the greatest thing to ever happen to investors. As with most…

Bad Advice Can Be Expensive

The S&P 500 hasn’t had a negative return for nine years now. There’s been some volatility in 2018 but overall things have been going pretty well for a while now. When things are going well in the markets it can become easier for investors to focus on the minutiae. Instead of focusing on the big…

Talking Lines on Charts & Lump Sums on What’d You Miss

I was on What’d You Miss? again Friday afternoon chatting with Scarlet, Julia, and Joe. I always have a good time talking with these three. We touched on two recent pieces I wrote — one about the 200-day moving average and the other about the lump sum vs. dollar cost averaging decision when investing cash in…

The Bond Market is Getting Interesting

The Fed has now raised interest rates 6 times in the past 3 years. Savers, it appears, aren’t being punished nearly as much as they were in the past. But holders of long-term bonds could be punished if those rates ever decide to join the party. Two-year treasures have gone from 20 basis points or so…

Animal Spirits Episode 27: Micro Bubbles

On this week’s Animal Spirits with Michael & Ben we discuss: Is it time for Sell in May blog posts to go away? By 2020 the top 10 most common ages in the U.S. will all be between 26 to 35. Will Millennials and HGTV cause the next housing bubble? Are tech stocks a micro…

Larry Kudlow’s Strong Dollar is Easier Said Than Done

In the hierarchy of difficulty in terms of predicting the outcomes of certain markets, you would be hard-pressed to figure out a harder segment to forecast than currencies. There are trillions of dollars traded every day, the markets are open 24/7 and the variables that impact these movements are nearly endless. The outcomes of market…

Schrodinger’s Portfolio

Erwin Schrodinger won the Nobel Prize in physics back in 1933 for his work on quantum theory. Schrodinger is most widely known these days for a theoretical experiment he described about a cat in a box. The experiment went something like this: what if you placed a cat into a box with a hammer, a vial…

50 Ways The World is Getting Better

“I am not an optimist. I am a very serious possibilist.” – Hans Rosling You don’t have to look too far to find negativity these days. Just watch the news, go on social media, or even have conversations with friends, family members, or co-workers. You’ll likely hear or read about political instability, natural disasters, murder,…

Animal Spirits Episode 26: The Collaborative Podcast

On this week’s Animal Spirits with Michael & Ben, we welcomed on our first ever guest host, Morgan Housel from Collaborative Fund. The three of us discussed: Who should invest in private companies? How in the world do you pick top quartile venture capital funds? Is it possible to invest privately using quantitative tools? The…

Who Benefits From Rising Interest Rates?

Rising interest rates are almost always framed in terms of risk — bonds will lose money, stocks will lose money, the economy is overheating, etc. Rarely are rising rates framed in terms of who benefits. This piece I wrote fro Bloomberg looks at the groups who could see a positive impact from rising interest rates….