Friday, December 5, 2014

Short Takes: Active Fund Underperformance, Wealthsimple Review, and more

Here are my posts for this week:

Book Giveaway Winners: The Value of Simple

Dead Cat Bounce

High-Frequency Trading Simplified

Here are some short takes and some weekend reading:

Jason Zweig puts the brutal 2014 performance of active fund managers into perspective.

Dave Liggat gives “robo-advisor” Wealthsimple a try and gives us a thoughtful review. I wonder whether a simple app would ever be meaningful competition for such automated index investing services. You could certainly imagine all the automation of Wealthsimple or its competitors getting coded into an application that just tells you what trades to perform in every situation. The question then becomes how many people are bold enough to go with an automated index investing service but not so bold as to do the trading dictated by an inexpensive application.

Preet Banerjee is finally back to blogging and points to a very funny video explaining quantitative easing.

Scott Adams explains why your smart phone may be making you fat.

The Blunt Bean Counter describes ways of avoiding OAS clawback ranging from simple income-splitting to complex strategies involving holding companies and trusts.

Big Cajun Man has some suggestions for ways to put pay raises to good use. Some friends of mine get regular pay raises, but others haven’t seen a raise in years.

My Own Advisor reviews and gives away copies of John Robertson’s new financial book The Value of Simple.


  1. I am getting pay raises but only because I am in a Union, and even then, I got the raises retroactively, after 3 years of negotiations, so quite nice really. Thanks for the inclusion.

  2. Thanks for the mention Michael. I think John did a great job on his book.

    When are you writing your book? :) Certainly you have enough material from the site alone.

    Enjoy your weekend,

    1. @Mark: Writing a book sounds good until I think about all the work :-)

    2. As an analytical guy, I think you'd enjoy it though...

      You can always continue to get rich blogging, like me. I think my hourly rate is around $4/hr based on a few hours per week.


    3. @Mark: Blogging for the year makes me about an extra day's pay or so. All I need is 200x the readership and I'm set :-)

  3. Thanks for helping to get the word about the book out there, Michael!

    "I wonder whether a simple app would ever be meaningful competition for such automated index investing services."

    Whoa now, let's not give away the plans for VoS Phase II just yet!

    1. @Potato: If your book profits make it to 6 figures, let me know so I can start writing my own book.

    2. I'll start by letting you know when it goes into the black...