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Finance is for everyone.

And That’s the Way I Like It

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This isn’t investment advice. Always do your own research before investing.

Introduction

I was inspired to write this article after reading Tony Yiu’s The Investments I Like And Why I Like Them.

It made me realize that financial writers should be transparent about their investments. If you’re telling people which stocks (or houses or ETFs or mutual funds) to purchase, then you had better have purchased those assets yourself.

Since contributing to Alpha Beta Blog, I’ve written two articles on the benefits of index funds over actively managed funds. …


Answer this Question Before you Start Investing

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Introduction

I want to be rich.

A crass admission, I know, but it’s true.

I don’t invest my money because I think it’s fun (even I admit my investment style is dull).

If I were the son of a billionaire, and if my parents were to give me an inheritance of $10 million, I wouldn’t invest it in the stock market.

With $10 million, I could spend $100,000 every year, and, after 70 years, give my descendants a small loan of $3 million to share among themselves — let them experience the fickleness of a sadistic stock market.

But, I don’t…


The Path to Becoming a Dividend Investor

Everything written here is my opinion. Always do your own research before investing.

In writing these finance articles, I hope to make investing less intimidating for new investors.

That’s partly why I promote index funds. They remove the need for investors to pick winning stocks, which is the main intimidation tactic for new investors, and which is difficult to conduct correctly.

However, in reading my articles, you may think that the only way to make money from the stock market is by selling stocks for more money than you paid to purchase them.

This is not true.

Generally, there are…


It was the most stressful experience of my life

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I remember the first time I ever logged into my student loans account.

I had just entered my final year of university, and, with loan repayments to start in the following year, I wondered how much I owed Mrs. Tax Payer, who had been kind enough to pay for most of my tuition.

When the website told me that I owed her $20,000, I wondered if Mrs. Tax Payer had been too kind.

That it was just $20,000 should have made me happy. …


How Do We Choose Which Ones to Include in Our Index Portfolio?

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The opinions expressed in this article are my own. Always do your own research before investing.

When I first heard about index investing, I was skeptical.

However, the more I learned about the terrible performance of active portfolio managers, the more I learned that index investing was a good idea.

Although I believe that active investing has its place, I also believe that index investing should be the crux of everyone’s portfolio, regardless of their investment experience.

Which begs the question: what should you look for in an index fund?

According to the Index Industry Association, there are more than…


I Promise I’m Not Crazy

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Not investment advice. Always do your own research before investing.

A few weeks ago, I came clean about what was in my investment account.

I wanted to show readers that I have skin in the game. That is, not only do I believe that index funds are some of the best investments that investors can hold, but also, I’m prepared to face the financial consequences if I’m wrong.

What I failed to mention, unintentionally, is that my entire investment account is in the stock market.

It’s here where financial planners rush to the comments section to exult the glory of…


Can Mutual Fund Investors Tell The Difference?

Photo by Joshua Golde on Unsplash

(Not investment advice. Do your own research before investing).

Introduction

In my previous article for Alpha Beta Blog, I argued, first, that market efficiency in the Canadian stock market changes over time, and, second, that it’s more efficient in the long run than it is in the short run.

I then discovered, through other research, that anywhere between 65% and 85% of Canadian, actively managed mutual funds fail to beat their benchmark over a ten-year period.

I advised retail investors to invest in index funds, as it was unlikely that they would choose a mutual fund that could beat the market.


Pretty damn efficient, it turns out!

Photo by Ameer Basheer on Unsplash

As Tony Yiu cautions,

The investment opinions expressed in this article are my own. Please do your own due diligence before investing.

With that out of the way, let’s dive in.

Introduction

When the Efficient Market Hypothesis (EMH) entered mainstream thinking in the 1960s and 1970s, financial economists found themselves on opposing sides: markets were either efficient, or they were not.

We now know that it’s not a question of if the markets are efficient but to what degree they are inefficient.

The question is especially significant for active traders. If markets are mostly efficient, the average investor cannot hope for…


How The Answer to One Question Turned Me Away From Maximalism

Image by Michael Heuser on Unsplash

By nineteen, I had the first of what would soon become many existential crises.

Boredom caused many of these crises–the brain’s favorite pass time is conflict, after all–but this crisis came differently: it came from speaking with a friend. We were discussing our plans after graduation. Without thinking, I told him that I wanted to study law.

“Why?” He asked.

It was an excellent question. When I couldn’t think of a reply, he asked me if I really wanted to go to law school, or if I felt like I had to go to law school, given that I was…


An article that is not about the normal distribution

Meme made by author using imgflip.com/memegenerator/Dwight-Schrute

Introduction

With all the fanfare surrounding the normal distribution, newcomers to data science can make the mistake in thinking that data scientists care only about the normal distribution.

While the normal distribution is arguably the most important (and most perversely used) probability distribution, it is not always the best tool, nor the best assumption to make, in solving business problems.

Say that you work at Dunder Mifflin Paper Company. Assistant (to the) Regional Manager Dwight K. Schrute gives you files on one-hundred clients. Mr. Schrute wants to know the following:

  1. Of the one-hundred clients, what is the probability that 5 of…

Andrew Plummer

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