The vast economic growth in the rich nations since the Second World War has failed to make people any happier. Is it time to rethink how we measure economies? A conversation with Prof. Richard Easterlin, a leading scholar in happiness economics.
A report focuses on the life and spending habits of the 211,275 wealthiest individuals on the planet, and their network of family and friends.
Alan Rechtschaffen quotes two definitions of "moral hazard" in this book. The first, from Ben Bernanke, seems to get the book off to a rather awkward start. The second, from Zachary Gubler much later on, represents something of a recovery.
Guest columnist Andrew Smith, CAIA, traces the history of Business Development Companies.
According to a new report from Intralinks and Cass Business School, M&A activity is a critical component in how successful companies innovate and enhance shareholder value. Actavis' latest coup, rescuing Allergan from the clutches of Valeant and Pershing Square, may make the report's authors' point more vividly than their dry numbers can.
Guest columnist Brad Case, Ph.D., CFA, CAIA, examines the differences between private and public real estate investments.
Big Data makes possible new ranges of inferences, and gives value to new skill sets. There will continue to be plenty of roles for human beings in recognizing the shadows cast by the intense light emitted by new technologies.
The release of Lord Grabiner's report provides evidence going well beyond the conclusions that Grabiner himself is willing to draw, and shows a central bank acting as a wink-and-nod clearing house.
A bitcoin-mining fire, a survey of small and medium businesses and their levels of preparedness for bitcoin customers, and a new criminal accusation against an alleged ponzi scheme: all conribute to the sense that bitcoin is a microcosm of the whole financial world, good and bad.
One of the unintended consequences of high-frequency trading may be that it forces a market re-design. Guest columnist Ginger Szala looks at the issues.
Carter's decision allows Pershing Square to vote its equity in Allergan in ways favorable to Valeant's planned purchase thereof. More is going on here than just another incident in the consolidation of the biopharm world.
Draghi and Yellen seem to be headed in opposite directions. One is revving up the money-creation engine, the other is 'tapering.' So why is Yellen so publicly supportive of Draghi? And what happened to the rebellion within the ECB?
In 2012, [as the crude oil price was settling in to $110 and low vol,] the renewables’ infrastructure space for private funds reached an aggregate estimated deal value of $132 billion. In 2013, that fell to $95 billion. It now seems unlikely that 2014 will match last year.
Guest columnist Vikas Shah speaks to Nobel Prize winning economist, Professor Alvin E. Roth about market re-design.
In what will be its last regular monthly report on such matters, GFIA tells us that a sharp correction hit markets in Asia ex Japan in September, and tells us of some of the funds that defied the outgoing tide.
Enron was once the leader in a category of merchant traders that mediated in the world of energy commodities. Enron died, and banks largely took it over. Yet in spirit, at least, Enron is back.
The story on the front page of The Wall Street Journal, about the Dendreon/Provenge investigations, focuses on trading in Dendreon stock over a three week period, beginning with the date of an e-mail sent out on June 7th, 2010.
A Bank of England paper discuses the "cover 2" standard for the adequacy of the default funds of central clearing houses, an issue of increasing importance as the push to centrally-clear everything picks up steam. One question it raises somewhat incidentally is the proper pronunciation of the acronym SLOIM, for "stressed losses over initial margins."
A new paper by a scholar at the McCombs School of Business looks at what causes what on Wall Street, starting with how (if at all) analyst downgrades cause price declines.
The convergence of a central banker and micro financiers at a recent ceremony in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea inspires a look at where the MFI industry stands, and where it is headed.
Christopher Faille offers some personal thoughts about the Starr International/AIG litigation, and about the hush-hush Federal Reserve Doomsday Book. This leads to the deeper question of the openness of the U.S. as a society.
Move over! It's crowded in here. What happens when hedge funds crowd a trade? Guest columnist Andrew Beer looks at hedge fund performance and the crowded trade.
The Swiss National Bank and the government oppose a pending referendum that would drastically change the country's policy on gold. But of course the anti-establishment nature of the petition is the whole point.
India accounts for much of the positive showing of Asia ex-Japan in the hedge fund world YTD. That positive showing, in turn, may be attracting asset flow.
The legal environment in The United States remains averse to the sort of bold-faced repudiation of debt that Detroit attempted in the matter of its so-called Certificates of Participation (COP). Fortunately on several fronts, Detroit has decided to repudiate the repudiation.
The latest Economics Award has drawn the attention of the world briefly to a body of work that has a number of points of interest for the alt-investment community.
Guest columnist Diane Harrison looks at the ebb and flow of money and what it means to portfolio construction.
If we look for the recent peak in Dow Jones U.S. oil & gas stocks we’ll look to the start of the summer. In June of this year the energy sector got above $850. The fall from that height puts the size of our correction in the neighborhood of 16%. It is possible these stocks are leading the rest of the market down.
When should customized risk models win out over the standard sort? According to two authors of a new report, there are seven factors, starting with the time horizon.
What is the real issue behind intermarket sweep orders, and the recent dust-up over an NYSE rules change? Faille answers: Privilege.
GFIA shares some ruminations about the relationship between the abundant academic work on alternative investment and the insights of practitioners. Meanwhile, the Bank of Japan seems to be engaged in some ruminations of its own, and practitioners have to await the results.
As the editorial page of the Wall Street Journal reminded us recently, investors sometimes gamble on politics. That is their right, but good capitalist hygiene is served when, once in a while, such a bet goes badly wrong.
The most intriguing revelation in the exchange of briefs between the State of New York and Barclays appears in a humble footnote, where Barclays seems to concede that an employee was pressured to change an internalization number. But it was just the once....
In the matter of a merchant selling computers that are supposed to mine bitcoin, the FTC alleges that the merchant is a sham, simply using the language of the bitcoin world to find suckers. But the agency might have gotten a bit ahead of itself here.
Guest columnist Andrew Smith, CAIA, traces the rise and growth of liquid alternatives.
Guest columnist Peter Urbani looks at emerging managers and why they may be re-emerging and bringing alpha with them.
Revolution is underway in the energy world. For investors, one of the most unexpected facts about this revolution is that it permeates precisely those portions of the energy sector long thought sleepy and conventional: the fossil fuels.
Should investors, especially institutional investors, push back (or push back harder than they have so far) against the fee structure preferred by those whom they pay to manage their money? And is the recent announcement from CalPERS such a push?
Yes, law firms that serve alpha hunters are consolidating. But don't take it personally, HF or PE managers. This isn't about you. It's about them. And it isn't necessarily a bad thing.
Guest columnist Maury Cartine looks at a new IRS memorandum on self-employment tax and how it applies to limited partners.
Guest columnist Andrew Beer looks at the changes in institutional investing.
Guest columnist Don Steinbrugge, CFA, looks at some of the potential reactions to CalPERS' leaving hedge funds.
A new report from Celent discusses the as-yet unimplemented Title III of the JOBS Act. Celent's Isabella Fonseca offers suggestions for how both wealth managers and tech providers might benefit.
If I should declare that I will never eat duck, and then I simply re-name certain ducks “chickens” and eat them, then people who genuinely as a matter of principle refuse to eat duck may consider me a false friend. And those who have no objection to the eating of duck may think me a silly goose.
Guest columnist Charles Skorina looks at the five-headed NYC pension system with its new leader, Scott Evans.
Guest columnist and intrepid reporter Doug Friedenberg talks to Brad Katsuyama about HFT, Michael Lewis and more.
Two rules within the CFTC rulebook that offer exemptions for certain CPOs from certain regulatory requirements mirrored the original pre-JOBS Act Reg D on the SEC side. But of course we are now in a post-JOBS Act world, and the CFTC staff has now acted, not through a rule change but by staff letter, to harmonize with its sister agency and with the JOBS Act mandate.
The Manhattan bankruptcy court has now granted individual defendants in the MF Global matter, including Jon Corzine, access to funds from their D&O insurance. But it wasn't easy for them to get here, and therein lies our moral.
The eight authors of a new study seek to add to “the existing literature of Bayesian VaR methods by … considering the … general class of Burr XII extreme value distributions “ and by estimating error bounds. After having a little fun we try to puzzle out what that means.