“It is a narrow mind which cannot look at a subject from various points of view.” –George Eliot I’ve had a tricky back for a long time. I remember first going to the doctor about it when I was a plebe. It didn’t really bother me much and would occasionally spasm up, but then the […]

Should I Pay Down the Mortgage or Invest the Difference?

To quote a reader, this article is “worth getting to the end,” so, make sure you get to the end! “Worm or beetle – drought or tempest – on a farmer’s land may fall, Each is loaded full o’ ruin, but a mortgage beats ‘em all.” –Will Carleton This is one of the most common […]

In 2013, Were You Better Off Hiring Someone to Manage Your Money for You?

“History repeats itself, first as tragedy, second as farce.” –Karl Marx Look up the phrase “this time it’s different” on Google, and you can find a panoply of situations where the headline writer has pounded his keyboard, imprecating that the situation about which he writes is truly different. Just in the first two pages of […]

Flash Boys and High Frequency Trading: Does It Really Affect You?

“The average investor has no hope of knowing, of course, even the little he needs to know.” –Michael Lewis This week, Michael Lewis, author of Moneyball, Liar’s Poker, and many other books about business and Wall Street, released Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt documenting the rise of high frequency trading (HFT) and how HFT […]

Are You Allured by That Active Fund Manager’s Great Performance Last Year?

“Almost everyone’s instinct is to be overconfident and read way too much into a hot or cold streak.” –Nate Silver When I was at West Point, the powers-that-be decided that it was a good idea to offer all of the juniors a $14,000 loan at a low interest rate. It was called the cow loan, […]

Revisiting SAFEMAX

“Retirement is just a nice way for the company to tell you that they have found more talented, youthful and skilled staff than you.” –Unknown Back in 1994, William Bengen came out with a seminal study evaluating just how much people could withdraw each year in retirement and not run out of money before they […]