The Factor-Based Investing Channel

Mister Valuation plans for 2018: A New Year a New and Better Approach

Every year I take the holidays off in order to reflect on what I have accomplished for the year, but more importantly, to think deeply about and contemplate what I might do better in the upcoming New Year. This process has provided me with numerous inspirations over the years, and this particular year was no exception.

U.S. Policy Outlook for 2018: Expect Action on Trade and Government Spending

Although much of 2017 represented a series of fits and starts in Washington, the Trump administration and the Republican-led Congress ultimately – and against long odds – delivered on one of their biggest campaign promises: a relatively sweeping rewrite of the tax code, representing a likely boost to 2018 U.S. real GDP of 0.2%–0.3%.

Five Ways to Keep Your Muni Portfolio on Track in 2018

They are the primary objectives of municipal bond investing: Safety. Income. After-tax return. But the market doesn’t always provide the ideal environment, and the coming year looks to be no exception. How can muni investors avoid getting knocked off course in 2018? They can adhere to these five strategies.

Bonds’ Day of Reckoning

In the 9th year of this bull market, investors remain overweight bonds in an environment poised to drastically limit fixed income returns. It’s time to avoid bonds’ day of reckoning.

Q1 2018: Goldilocks Need Not Fear the Bear in 2018...But Her Respite Will Be More Fitful

Tina Byles Williams, CIO and CEO of FIS Group, has just published the latest Q1 2018 Market Outlook, which delves into predictions for the year ahead, from a more challenging environment for risk assets to geopolitical tensions on the horizon.

Weekly Unemployment Claims: Down 41K, Lowest in Almost 45 Years

Today's seasonally adjusted 220K new claims, down 41K from last week, was better than the forecast of 250K and its lowest in almost 45 years. From the release: "Claims taking procedures continue to be disrupted in the Virgin Islands. Claims taking process in Puerto Rico has still not returned to normal."

Fads, Manias and Bubbles!

It is important to separate mini-manias from true bubbles. Unfortunately, the difference is mostly the amount of money chasing the folly. Millions and even billions of dollars lost (and thousands of jobs) equate to fads, while trillions of dollars lost (and rampant unemployment and recessions) are bubbles.

Dow 26K: Is This One Different?

With the Dow opening above 26,000 yesterday morning, I was all set to continue down the same path of my Dow 24K and Dow 25K posts. Alas, it wasn’t to be. Although markets are up, the Dow is below the magic number as I write this, which is certainly okay.

Raising the Stakes

Retail sales figures for December showed a relatively strong trend in 4Q17, although part of that reflects a rebound from hurricane effects in 3Q17. Core CPI inflation was a bit higher than anticipated in December, but that doesn’t mean that the low inflation trend is over.

To Be (20)17 Again

Like much of 2017, politics remained keenly in focus at the end of the year. Tax reform took center stage in the U.S., and President Trump wrapped up this major legislative victory just in time for the holidays. The sweeping tax overhaul moved quickly through both chambers of Congress after the House and Senate drafted amended versions from the separate ones each had previously passed.

Defense in Motion: Three Strategies to Protect Your Equities

Changing market conditions over the last five years have taught us a few things about managing risk. The most important lesson? Delivering downside protection constantly requires refining and adjustment.

Use “Labeling” To Overcome Objections

While the trend is toward passive investing, it’s still common to face resistance from prospects who believe they can “beat the market,” often with the guidance of their broker. The use of “labeling” may overcome this objection.

The Big Four Economic Indicators: Industrial Production Up 0.9% in December

Today's report on Industrial Production for December shows a 0.9% increase month-over-month, which was better than the consensus of 0.4%. December's figures represent a new peak, overtaking the November 2014 peak. The year-over-year change is 3.56 percent, up from last month's YoY increase.

When Partners Disagree Politically

My partner and I are at a crossroads in our advisory firm. For years we have been in sync about our values and culture, how we should grow and even the people we have hired to join our team. In the last few months, though, he has become aligned with some radical political philosophies.

Weekly Poll Results: Best ways to reach advisors

Here are our poll results to the question: Which of the following US actively managed funds offers the best prospects for long-term alpha? We will launch topical polls every week, if you have suggestions for future polls please email

To discuss this poll, click "COMMENT ON" in the top right of this page to discuss on APViewpoint.