FOOD FOR THOUGHT
My friend Skip sent me a copy of a research paper from the University of Chicago titled “Brokers vs. Retail Investors: Conflicting Interests and Dominated Products.” The abstract noted:

“Brokers utilize the space of available products to price discriminate across consumers, selling high fee products to unsophisticated investors and low fee products to sophisticated investors… I find that holding brokers to a fiduciary standard over the period 2008-2012 would have increased investor returns by as much as 2.73% per annum.” https://economics.sas.upenn.edu/events/brokers-vs-retail-investors-conflicting-interests-anddominated-products

SAME SONG, SECOND VERSE
From my partner, David G. Over the 15-year period ending December 2016, 95.4% of U.S. midcap funds, 93.2% of U.S. small-cap funds, and 92.2% of U.S. large-cap funds trailed their respective benchmarks, according to the latest S&P Indices Versus Active funds scorecard. The analysis, known as SPIVA, is published semiannually by S&P Global using a methodology that includes funds that have been liquidated or merged out of existence.

BIG $ BILL
From AARP — Our nation’s health care bill: $3.2 trillion annually Health care spending increased 5.8 percent from 2014 to 2015.

FRAMING — ALSO FROM AARP
What can $3.2 trillion buy?

12,800 Hope diamonds
820 One World Trade Center buildings
533 one-way manned missions to Mars

WELL, AT LEAST I HAVE COMPANY
My friend Tom posted this National Council on Aging table on Facebook:

ONE MORE GURU BITES THE DUST
From the Wall Street Journal, “A Wall Street Whiz Loses His Mojo.” “Jack Meyer trounced rivals when he ran Harvard University’s endowment in the 1990s. But as a hedge-fund manager, he is struggling.

“His Complexity Capital Management LP has lost $1 billion of its clients’ money over the past few years as once reliable options trades backfired. Investors pulled more than $3.5 billion from the bond shop last year, its fifth down year in a row.”