• Research and data-driven behavioral insights to guide client conversations

  • Practical application of behavioral finance to portfolio construction, management and analysis

  • Ideas, guides and materials designed to differentiate and grow your practice

  • Current market conditions from the Behavioral, Economic, Valuation, and Technical perspectives

Predicting Returns Using Behavioral Market Barometers

This paper introduces market barometers that are based on measurable and persistent investor behavior. I test the ability of U.S. market, international market, and capitalization barometers to predict S&P 500, MSCI EAFE, and Russell 2000 returns, respectively. The empirical results for January 1981–December 2020 are statistically and economically significant and cannot be explained by trailing equity returns or the Institute of Supply Management Purchasing Managers’ Index,1 one of the best measures of economic activity. Barometers are used to develop a set of trading rules that show evidence of superior performance when compared with relevant benchmarks over the period evaluated.

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Active Equity: “Reports of My Death Are Greatly Exaggerated”

In our 2019 book, Return of the Active Manager, we declared that active equity management was alive and well in spite of the recent movement to index investing. We provided numerous ideas on how to improve the evaluation of investment opportunities as well as manage equity portfolios, from the perspective of behavioral finance. 

Little did we know that a new golden era of active equity would commence shortly thereafter.

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How Behavioral Finance Is Delivering Alpha

A growing trend within the investment industry is the direct application of behavioral finance to portfolio management. This represents a new direction, building on the industry’s current emphasis on how investors and advisors can avoid the emotional biases that destroy wealth. Its focus is on using behavioral factors as the basis for constructing an investment strategy, while at the same time avoiding the cognitive errors made by fund managers. 

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