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Bitcoin discussion / Investor Behavior
« on: August 05, 2022, 10:26:44 AM »
Investor Behavior
In 2001, Dalbar, a financial-services research firm, released a study entitled "Quantitative Analysis of Investor Behavior," which concluded that average investors consistently fail to achieve returns that beat or even match the broader market indices. The study found that in the 17-year period to December 2000, the S&P 500 returned an average of 16.29% per year, while the typical equity investor achieved only 5.32% for the same period—a startling 9% difference!2 It also found that during the same period, the average fixed-income investor earned only a 6.08% return per year, while the long-term Government Bond Index reaped 11.83%.
In a 2015 follow-up of the same publication, Dalbar again concluded that average investors fail to achieve market-index returns. It found that "the average equity mutual fund investor underperformed the S&P 500 by a wide margin of 8.19%. The broader market return was more than double the average equity mutual fund investor’s return (13.69% vs. 5.50%)."2 Average fixed income mutual fund investors also consistently underperformed—returning 4.81% less than the benchmark bond market index.
Why does this happen? Behavioral finance provides some possible explanations.
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Fear of regret, or simply regret theory, deals with the emotional reaction people experience after realizing they've made an error in judgment. Faced with the prospect of selling a stock, investors become emotionally affected by the price at which they purchased the stock.3 So, they avoid selling it as a way to avoid the regret of having made a bad investment, as well as the embarrassment of reporting a loss. We all hate to be wrong, don't we?
What investors should really ask themselves when contemplating selling a stock is: "What are the consequences of repeating the same purchase if this security were already liquidated and would I invest in it again?" If the answer is "no," it's time to sell; otherwise, the result is regret in buying a losing stock and the regret of not selling when it became clear that a poor investment decision was made—and a vicious cycle ensues where avoiding regret leads to more regret.
Regret theory can also hold true for investors when they discover that a stock they had only considered buying has increased in value. Some investors avoid the possibility of feeling this regret by following the conventional wisdom and buying only stocks that everyone else is buying, rationalizing their decision with "everyone else is doing it."
Oddly enough, many people feel much less embarrassed about losing money on a popular stock that half the world owns than about losing money on an unknown or unpopular stock.
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Humans have a tendency to place particular events into mental compartments, and the difference between these compartments sometimes impacts our behavior more than the events themselves.
Say, for example, you aim to catch a show at the local theater and tickets are $20 each. When you get there, you realize you've lost a $20 bill. Do you buy a $20 ticket for the show anyway? Behavior finance has found that roughly 88% of people in this situation would do so.4 Now, let's say you paid for the $20 ticket in advance. When you arrive at the door, you realize your ticket is at home. Would you pay $20 to purchase another? Only 40% of respondents would buy another. Notice, however, that in both scenarios, you're out $40: different scenarios, the same amount of money, different mental compartments. Pretty silly, huh?
An investing example of mental accounting is best illustrated by the hesitation to sell an investment that once had monstrous gains and now has a modest gain. During an economic boom and bull market, people get accustomed to healthy, albeit paper, gains. When the market correction deflates investor's net worth, they're more hesitant to sell at the smaller profit margin. They create mental compartments for the gains they once had, causing them to wait for the return of that profitable period.
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Prospect Theory and Loss-Aversion
It doesn't take a neurosurgeon to know that people prefer a sure investment return to an uncertain one—we want to get paid for taking on any extra risk. That's pretty reasonable. Here's the strange part. Prospect theory suggests people express a different degree of emotion towards gains than towards losses. Individuals are more stressed by prospective losses than they are happy from equal gains.5
An investment advisor won't necessarily get flooded with calls from her client when she's reported, say, a $500,000 gain in the client's portfolio. But, you can bet that phone will ring when it posts a $500,000 loss! A loss always appears larger than a gain of equal size—when it goes deep into our pockets, the value of money changes.

Bitcoin discussion / Psychological Traps
« on: July 26, 2022, 09:36:45 PM »
Psychological Traps

1. Anchoring Trap
First, there is the so-called anchoring trap, which refers to an over-reliance on what one originally thinks. Imagine betting on a boxing match and choosing the fighter purely by who has thrown the most punches in their last five fights. You may come out all right by picking the statistically more-active fighter, but the fighter with the least punches may have won five bouts by first-round knockouts. Clearly, any metric can become meaningless when it is taken out of context.
For instance, if you think of a certain company as successful, you may be too confident that its stocks are a good bet. This preconception may be totally incorrect in the prevailing situation or at some point in the future.
Take, for example, electronics retailer Radio Shack. Once a thriving seller of personal electronics and gadgets in the 1980s and 1990s, the chain was crushed by online retailers such as Amazon (AMZN). Those trapped in the perception that Radio Shack was there to stay lost a lot of money as the company filed for bankruptcy multiple times and shrinking from its heyday size of 7,300 stores to 70 outlets by the end of 2017.1
In order to avoid this trap, you need to remain flexible in your thinking and open to new sources of information, while understanding the reality that any company can be here today and gone tomorrow. Any manager can disappear too, for that matter.
#2. Sunk Cost Trap
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The sunk cost trap is just as dangerous. This is about psychologically (but not in reality) protecting your previous choices or decisions — which is often disastrous for your investments. It is truly hard to take a loss and/or accept that you made the wrong choices or allowed someone else to make them for you. But if your investment is no good, or sinking fast, the sooner you get out of it and into something more promising, the better.
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If you clung to stocks that you bought in 1999 at the height of the boom, you would have had to wait a decade to break even, and that is for non-technology stocks.2 It's far better not to cling to the sunk cost and to get into other assets classes that are moving up fast. Emotional commitment to bad investments just makes things worse.
#3. Confirmation Trap
Similarly, in the confirmation trap, people often seek out others who have made and are still making, the same mistake. Make sure you get objective advice from fresh sources, rather than consulting the person who gave you the bad advice in the first place. If you find yourself saying something like, "Our stocks have dropped by 30 percent, but it’s surely best just to hang onto them, isn’t it?" then you are seeking confirmation from some other unfortunate investor in the same situation. You can comfort each other in the short run, but it’s just self-delusion.
#4. Blindness Trap
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Situational blindness can exacerbate the situation. Even people who are not specifically seeking confirmation often just shut out the prevailing market realities in order to do nothing and postpone the evil day when the losses just have to be confronted.
If you know deep down that there is a problem with your investments, such as a major scandal at the company or market warnings, but you read everything online except for the financial headlines, then you are probably suffering from this blinder effect. 
#5. Relativity Trap
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The relativity trap is also there waiting to lead you astray. Everyone has a different psychological make-up, combined with a unique set of circumstances extending to work, family, career prospects and likely inheritances. This means that although you need to be aware of what others are doing and saying, their situation and views are not necessarily relevant outside their own context.
"I think a lot of people tend to equate their self worth with their income, or they think that social media, these days puts pressure on people to make it look like they're doing better than they are. And because of that, people feel bad," said Amy Morin, Verywell Mind’s editor-in-chief. "We look at somebody else who has a new car or somebody else whose house looks beautiful and think, 'Oh, why don't I have that?' And those emotions that get stirred up, I think for a lot of people are really difficult. Then how do you decide what you really value in life and what's most important?"
Be aware, but beware too! You must invest for yourself and only in your own context. Your friends may have both the money and the risk-friendliness to speculate in pork belly futures (as in the movie Trading Places), but if you are a modest earning and nervy person, this is not for you.
#6. Irrational Exuberance Trap
When investors start believing that the past equals the future, they are acting as if there is no uncertainty in the market. Unfortunately, uncertainty never vanishes.

eCommerce and general business / Common Retracements
« on: July 01, 2022, 04:17:07 PM »
Common Retracements
The Fibonacci Retracements Tool at StockCharts shows four common retracements: 23.6%, 38.2%, 50%, and 61.8%. From the Fibonacci section above, it is clear that 23.6%, 38.2%, and 61.8% stem from ratios found within the Fibonacci sequence. The 50% retracement is not based on a Fibonacci number. Instead, this number stems from Dow Theory's assertion that the Averages often retrace half their prior move.
Based on depth, we can consider a 23.6% retracement to be relatively shallow. Such retracements would be appropriate for flags or short pullbacks. Retracements in the 38.2%-50% range would be considered moderate. Even though deeper, the 61.8% retracement can be referred to as the golden retracement. It is, after all, based on the Golden Ratio.
Shallow retracements occur, but catching these requires a closer watch and quicker trigger finger. The examples below use daily charts covering 3-9 months. Focus will be on moderate retracements (38.2-50%) and golden retracements (61.8%). In addition, these examples will show how to combine retracements with other indicators to confirm a reversal.
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Fibonacci retracements are often used to identify the end of a correction or a counter-trend bounce. Corrections and counter-trend bounces often retrace a portion of the prior move. While short 23.6% retracements do occur, the 38.2-61.8% zone covers the most possibilities (with 50% in the middle). This zone may seem big, but it is just a reversal alert zone. Other technical signals are needed to confirm a reversal. Reversals can be confirmed with candlesticks, momentum indicators, volume or chart patterns. In fact, the more confirming factors, the more robust the signal.
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Fibonacci Retracements are ratios used to identify potential reversal levels. These ratios are found in the Fibonacci sequence. The most popular Fibonacci Retracements are 61.8% and 38.2%. Note that 38.2% is often rounded to 38% and 61.8 is rounded to 62%. After an advance, chartists apply Fibonacci ratios to define retracement levels and forecast the extent of a correction or pullback. Fibonacci Retracements can also be applied after a decline to forecast the length of a counter-trend bounce. These retracements can be combined with other indicators and price patterns to create an overall strategy.
The Sequence and Ratios
This article is not designed to delve too deep into the mathematical properties behind the Fibonacci sequence and Golden Ratio. There are plenty of other sources for this detail. A few basics, however, will provide the necessary background for the most popular numbers. Leonardo Pisano Bogollo (1170-1250), an Italian mathematician from Pisa, is credited with introducing the Fibonacci sequence to the West. It is as follows:
0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144, 233, 377, 610……
The sequence extends to infinity and contains many unique mathematical properties.
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After 0 and 1, each number is the sum of the two prior numbers (1+2=3, 2+3=5, 5+8=13 8+13=21 etc…).
A number divided by the previous number approximates 1.618 (21/13=1.6153, 34/21=1.6190, 55/34=1.6176, 89/55=1.6181). The approximation nears 1.6180 as the numbers increase.
A number divided by the next highest number approximates .6180 (13/21=.6190, 21/34=.6176, 34/55=.6181, 55/89=.6179 etc….). The approximation nears .6180 as the numbers increase. This is the basis for the 61.8% retracement.
A number divided by another two places higher approximates .3820 (13/34=.382, 21/55=.3818, 34/89=.3820, 55/=144=3819 etc….). The approximation nears .3820 as the numbers increase. This is the basis for the 38.2% retracement. Also, note that 1 - .618 = .382
A number divided by another three places higher approximates .2360 (13/55=.2363, 21/89=.2359, 34/144=.2361, 55/233=.2361 etc….). The approximation nears .2360 as the numbers increase. This is the basis for the 23.6% retracement.
1.618 refers to the Golden Ratio or Golden Mean, also called Phi. The inverse of 1.618 is .618. These ratios can be found throughout nature, architecture, art, and biology. In his book, Elliott Wave Principle, Robert Prechter quotes William Hoffer from the December 1975 issue of Smithsonian Magazine:
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….the proportion of .618034 to 1 is the mathematical basis for the shape of playing cards and the Parthenon, sunflowers and snail shells, Greek vases and the spiral galaxies of outer space. The Greeks based much of their art and architecture upon this proportion. They called it the golden mean.
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Bitcoin discussion / What Is a Technical Indicator?
« on: June 18, 2022, 06:03:27 AM »
What Is a Technical Indicator?
A technical indicator is a series of data points that are derived by applying a formula to the price data of a security. Price data includes any combination of the open, high, low or close over a period of time. Some indicators may use only the closing prices, while others incorporate volume and open interest into their formulas. The price data is entered into the formula and a data point is produced. For example, the average of 3 closing prices is one data point [ (41+43+43) / 3 = 42.33 ].
However, one data point does not offer much information and does not make for a useful indicator. A series of data points over a period of time is required to create valid reference points to enable analysis. By creating a time series of data points, a comparison can be made between present and past levels. For analysis purposes, technical indicators are usually shown in a graphical form above or below a security's price chart. Once shown in graphical form, an indicator can then be compared with the corresponding price chart of the security. Sometimes indicators are plotted on top of the price plot for a more direct comparison.
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What Does a Technical Indicator Offer?
A technical indicator offers a different perspective from which to analyze the price action. Some, such as moving averages, are derived from simple formulas and the mechanics are relatively easy to understand. Others, such as Stochastics, have complex formulas and require more study to fully understand and appreciate. Regardless of the complexity of the formula, technical indicators can provide a unique perspective on the strength and direction of the underlying price action.
A simple moving average is an indicator that calculates the average price of a security over a specified number of periods. If a security is exceptionally volatile, then a moving average will help to smooth the data. A moving average filters out random noise and offers a smoother perspective of the price action. Veritas (VRTSE) displays a lot of volatility and an analyst may have difficulty discerning a trend. By applying a 10-day simple moving average to the price action, random fluctuations are smoothed to make it easier to identify a trend.
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Why Use Indicators?
Indicators serve three broad functions: to alert, to confirm and to predict.
An indicator can act as an alert to study price action a little more closely. If momentum is waning, it may be a signal to watch for a break of support. Alternatively, if there is a large positive divergence building, it may serve as an alert to watch for a resistance breakout.
Indicators can be used to confirm other technical analysis tools. If there is a breakout on the price chart, a corresponding moving average crossover could serve to confirm the breakout. If a stock breaks support, a corresponding low in the On-Balance-Volume (OBV) could serve to confirm the weakness.
According to some investors and traders, indicators can be used to predict the direction of future prices.
Tips for Using Indicators
Indicators indicate. This may sound straightforward, but sometimes traders ignore the price action of a security and focus solely on an indicator. Indicators filter price action with formulas. As such, they are derivatives and not direct reflections of the price action. This should be taken into consideration when applying analysis. Any analysis of an indicator should be taken with the price action in mind. What is the indicator saying about the price action of a security? Is the price action getting stronger? Weaker?
Even though it may be obvious when indicators generate buy and sell signals, the signals should be taken in context with other technical analysis tools. An indicator may flash a buy signal, but if the chart pattern shows a descending triangle with a series of declining peaks, it may be a false signal.
On the Rambus (RMBS) chart, MACD improved from November to March, forming a positive divergence. All the earmarks of a MACD buying opportunity were present, but the stock failed to break above the resistance and exceed its previous reaction high. This non-confirmation from the stock should have served as a warning sign against a long position. For the record, a sell signal occurred when the stock broke support from the descending triangle in March-01.
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As always in technical analysis, learning how to read indicators is more of an art than a science. The same indicator may exhibit different behavioral patterns when applied to different stocks. Indicators that work well for IBM might not work the same for Delta Airlines. Through careful study and analysis, expertise with the various indicators will develop over time. As this expertise develops, certain nuances, as well as favorite setups, will become clear.

Bitcoin discussion / Multi-currrency travel card
« on: June 07, 2022, 02:25:23 PM »
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Bitcoin projects / Moving averages
« on: May 23, 2022, 06:42:48 PM »

Moving averagesThe advantages of using moving averages need to be weighed against the disadvantages. Moving averages are trend following, or lagging, indicators that will always be a step behind. This is not necessarily a bad thing though. After all, the trend is your friend and it is best to trade in the direction of the trend. Moving averages ensure that a trader is in line with the current trend. Even though the trend is your friend, securities spend a great deal of time in trading ranges, which render moving averages ineffective. Once in a trend, moving averages will keep you in, but also give late signals. Don't expect to sell at the top and buy at the bottom using moving averages. As with most technical analysis tools, moving averages should not be used on their own, but in conjunction with other complementary tools. Chartists can use moving averages to define the overall trend and then use RSI to define overbought or oversold levels.
Price Crossovers
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Moving averages can also be used to generate signals with simple price crossovers. A bullish signal is generated when prices move above the moving average. A bearish signal is generated when prices move below the moving average. Price crossovers can be combined to trade within the bigger trend. The longer moving average sets the tone for the bigger trend and the shorter moving average is used to generate the signals. One would look for bullish price crosses only when prices are already above the longer moving average. This would be trading in harmony with the bigger trend. For example, if price is above the 200-day moving average, chartists would only focus on signals when price moves above the 50-day moving average. Obviously, a move below the 50-day moving average would precede such a signal, but such bearish crosses would be ignored because the bigger trend is up. A bearish cross would simply suggest a pullback within a bigger uptrend. A cross back above the 50-day moving average would signal an upturn in prices and continuation of the bigger uptrend.
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The next chart shows Emerson Electric (EMR) with the 50-day EMA and 200-day EMA. The stock crossed and held above the 200-day moving average in August. There were dips below the 50-day EMA in early November and again in early February. Prices quickly moved back above the 50-day EMA to provide bullish signals (green arrows) in harmony with the bigger uptrend. MACD(1,50,1) is shown in the indicator window to confirm price crosses above or below the 50-day EMA. The 1-day EMA equals the closing price. MACD(1,50,1) is positive when the close is above the 50-day EMA and negative when the close is below the 50-day EMA.
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Moving averages smooth the price data to form a trend following indicator. They do not predict price direction, but rather define the current direction, though they lag due to being based on past prices. Despite this, moving averages help smooth price action and filter out the noise. They also form the building blocks for many other technical indicators and overlays, such as Bollinger Bands, MACD and the McClellan Oscillator. The two most popular types of moving averages are the Simple Moving Average (SMA) and the Exponential Moving Average (EMA). These moving averages can be used to identify the direction of the trend or define potential support and resistance levels.

Bitcoin discussion / Head and Shoulders reversal
« on: May 04, 2022, 02:27:47 AM »
Head and Shoulders reversal
The pattern contains three successive peaks, with the middle peak (head) being the highest and the two outside peaks (shoulders) being low and roughly equal. The reaction lows of each peak can be connected to form support, or a neckline.
As its name implies, the Head and Shoulders reversal pattern is made up of a left shoulder, a head, a right shoulder, and a neckline. Other parts playing a role in the pattern are volume, the breakout, price target and support turned resistance. We will look at each part individually, and then put them together with some examples.
Prior Trend: It is important to establish the existence of a prior uptrend for this to be a reversal pattern. Without a prior uptrend to reverse, there cannot be a Head and Shoulders reversal pattern (or any reversal pattern for that matter).
Left Shoulder: While in an uptrend, the left shoulder forms a peak that marks the high point of the current trend. After making this peak, a decline ensues to complete the formation of the shoulder (1). The low of the decline usually remains above the trend line, keeping the uptrend intact.
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Head: From the low of the left shoulder, an advance begins that exceeds the previous high and marks the top of the head. After peaking, the low of the subsequent decline marks the second point of the neckline (2). The low of the decline usually breaks the uptrend line, putting the uptrend in jeopardy.
Right Shoulder: The advance from the low of the head forms the right shoulder. This peak is lower than the head (a lower high) and usually in line with the high of the left shoulder. While symmetry is preferred, sometimes the shoulders can be out of whack. The decline from the peak of the right shoulder should break the neckline.
Neckline: The neckline forms by connecting low points 1 and 2. Low point 1 marks the end of the left shoulder and the beginning of the head. Low point 2 marks the end of the head and the beginning of the right shoulder. Depending on the relationship between the two low points, the neckline can slope up, slope down or be horizontal. The slope of the neckline will affect the pattern's degree of bearishness—a downward slope is more bearish than an upward slope. In some cases, multiple low points can be used to form the neckline.
Volume: As the Head and Shoulders pattern unfolds, volume plays an important role in confirmation. Volume can be measured as an indicator (OBV, Chaikin Money Flow) or simply by analyzing volume levels. Ideally, but not always, volume during the advance of the left shoulder should be higher than during the advance of the head. Together, the decrease in volume and the new high of the head serve as a warning sign. The next warning sign comes when volume increases on the decline from the peak of the head, then decreases during the advance of the right shoulder. Final confirmation comes when volume further increases during the decline of the right shoulder.

Neckline Break: The head and shoulders pattern is not complete and the uptrend is not reversed until neckline support is broken. Ideally, this should also occur in a convincing manner, with an expansion in volume.

Support Turned Resistance: Once support is broken, it is common for this same support level to turn into resistance. Sometimes, but certainly not always, the price will return to the support break, and offer a second chance to sell.
Price Target: After breaking neckline support, the projected price decline is found by measuring the distance from the neckline to the top of the head. This distance is then subtracted from the neckline to reach a price target. Any price target should serve as a rough guide, and other factors should be considered as well. These factors might include previous support levels, Fibonacci retracements, or long-term moving averages.

Bitcoin discussion / Value Investing
« on: April 06, 2022, 08:25:51 PM »
Value Investing
Value investors are bargain shoppers. They seek stocks they believe are undervalued. They look for stocks with prices they believe don’t fully reflect the intrinsic value of the security. Value investing is predicated, in part, on the idea that some degree of irrationality exists in the market. This irrationality, in theory, presents opportunities to get a stock at a discounted price and make money from it.
It’s not necessary for value investors to comb through volumes of financial data to find deals. Thousands of value mutual funds give investors the chance to own a basket of stocks thought to be undervalued. The Russell 1000 Value Index, for example, is a popular benchmark for value investors and several mutual funds mimic this index.
Warren Buffet: The Ultimate Value Investor
But if you are a true value investor, you don't need anyone to convince you need to stay in it for the long run because this strategy is designed around the idea that one should buy businesses—not stocks. That means the investor must consider the big picture, not a temporary knockout performance. People often cite legendary investor Warren Buffet as the epitome of a value investor. He does his homework—sometimes for years. But when he’s ready, he goes all in and is committed for the long-term.
Consider Buffett’s words when he made a substantial investment in the airline industry. He explained that airlines "had a bad first century." Then he said, "And they got a bad century out of the way, I hope."2 This thinking exemplifies much of the value investing approach. Choices are based on decades of trends and with decades of future performance in mind.
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For those who don’t have time to perform exhaustive research, the price-earnings ratio (P/E) has become the primary tool for quickly identifying undervalued or cheap stocks. This is a single number that comes from dividing a stock’s share price by its earnings per share (EPS). A lower P/E ratio signifies you’re paying less per $1 of current earnings. Value investors seek companies with a low P/E ratio.
While using the P/E ratio is a good start, some experts warn this measurement alone is not enough to make the strategy work. Research published in the Financial Analysts Journal determined that “Quantitative investment strategies based on such ratios are not good substitutes for value-investing strategies that use a comprehensive approach in identifying underpriced securities.” 3 The reason, according to their work, is that investors are often lured by low P/E ratio stocks based on temporarily inflated accounting numbers. These low figures are, in many instances, the result of a falsely high earnings figure (the denominator). When real earnings are reported (not just forecasted) they’re often lower. This results in a “reversion to the mean.” The P/E ratio goes up and the value the investor pursued is gone.
What's the Message?
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The message here is that value investing can work so long as the investor is in it for the long-term and is prepared to apply some serious effort and research to their stock selection. Those willing to put the work in and stick around stand to gain. One study from Dodge & Cox determined that value strategies nearly always outperform growth strategies “over horizons of a decade or more.” The study goes on to explain that value strategies have


Bitcoin discussion / Financial Advisors Were Grateful
« on: February 28, 2022, 09:34:40 PM »
Financial Advisors Were Grateful
ging year, as financial advisors and their clients have had to navigate unprecedented issues. We asked several of our top advisors to share what had been most meaningful for them during 2020 and how it has shaped their professional outlook.
“I'm incredibly grateful for a supportive team of colleagues, amazing clients, and the ability to continue to use creativity when it comes to inspiring people to make smarter choices with their money. The best moments with my clients have been sprinkled throughout the year. Many clients checked in on me as often as I've checked in on them throughout the pandemic. Some of my favorite moments have come when I've been able to educate about the benefits of donor-advised funds and how they can be leveraged in a family gifting strategy. There really have been bright moments throughout all of this. —Mary Beth Storjohann, Founder of Workable Wealth
“Professionally, I am most grateful to be a symbol of possibility for the many people across continents—regardless of race, region, or creed—that with faith, work, and discipline, you can design the life of your dreams. Onward.” —Dasarte Yarnway, Founder & Managing Director of Berknell Financial Group
“I'm most grateful for the health of our clients, team, and families during this challenging year. I'm also grateful for gaining confidence to get more personal and vulnerable with clients—something I've always struggled with. As a result, one of my favorite moments with clients was the overwhelming support for my three-year-old son who had to have emergency surgery during the first wave of the pandemic. There is no better profession in the world and I'm feeling extra thankful this year for being a part of it.” —Taylor Schulte, Founder & CEO of Define Financial
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 “I appreciate the amazing clients that have placed their trust and confidence in me and the financial planning process. I am grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with such special people and help them navigate challenging times while planning for their important milestones.” —Marguerita Cheng, CEO of Blue Ocean Global Wealth
“Professionally, I am most grateful for an amazing staff and partnerships that have helped make an inherently challenging year easier. They say business is about your people and that if you take care of them, they will take care of you. I find this to be especially true in 2020. The best moments with my clients have been the ones where we didn’t talk about finances and shared stories of raising kids during a pandemic. I can’t think of a better way to have connected with them.” —Douglas Boneparth, President of Bone Fide Wealth
“Despite the craziness of 2020, there is plenty to be thankful for. I'm thankful that my family, my team, and my clients have all remained healthy during the pandemic. Professionally, I'm thankful for my peers—without The AGC™ and my friends from around the profession, navigating the year would have been lonely and much harder. This year has provided time for reflection, which I've found has allowed clients to really examine what is most important to them. I've had numerous conversations with clients where we've refocused their financial plans to allow them to align their values with their plan—these conversations are always fun and lead to a financial plan that will have a greater impact on their lives.” —Justin Castelli, CEO of RSL Wealth Management
“I’m most grateful for the wonderful community of financial advisors who have kept me sane through a challenging year through their support and camaraderie. I’m in a coaching program, two masterminds, and also tap into the #Fintwit community on Twitter—they all made this year better. This year, I primarily met with clients via Zoom. To my surprise, instead of creating distance with clients, Zoom seemed to create an atmosphere for more sharing and conversation. I feel closer to my clients than pre-COVID and feel like I know them even better than before.” —Cathy Curtis, Founder & CEO of Curtis Financial Planning
Judging by these moments of gratitude, it’s clear that the financial advisor community is as strong as ever and that advisors have had a significant impact on your clients’ lives during the unprecedented turmoil of 2020.

Bitcoin discussion / RIA Benchmarking Study Means
« on: February 13, 2022, 03:52:06 PM »
RIA Benchmarking Study Means

 In our recent webinar, we spoke with Lisa Salvi, vice president of Business Consulting and Education for Schwab Advisor Services, to discuss the findings of the 2020 RIA Benchmarking Study and highlight the factors underlying that growth.
The Importance of a Strategic Plan
Currently in its 14th year, the RIA Benchmarking Study is one of the leading studies in the industry and features findings from 1,010 advisory firms representing $1.1 trillion in AUM.
Conducted between January and March of 2020, the study found that advisors started the year in a position of strength following the longest bull market in recent history. Surprisingly, many firms continued to see ongoing growth even during the worst periods of volatility in March.
“Advisors are used to innovating... and I think that’s one of the things in this COVID world that has helped to set them up for success,” explains Salvi, emphasizing that a keen focus on client experience has made a crucial difference during a period of extreme uncertainty. “We saw people pivot their business model very rapidly and serve their clients extraordinarily well throughout this time period.”
One of the biggest predictors of success for many firms has been a clear and actionable strategic plan. In fact, 75% of the top-performing firms in the study had these plans in place before the start of the pandemic and have been able to adapt to challenges more effectively as a result. According to Salvi, a comprehensive strategic plan should include a long-term vision, SWOT analysis, a purpose, and a value proposition. She also emphasizes that firms of all sizes can benefit from having one.
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Persona Targeting Can Yield Significant Results
To create those personas, firms need to take into account the demographic and psychographic characteristics of their ideal clients and understand what matters to those clients and what they value. For firms that are still in the early stages of growth, Salvi suggests that it’s okay to take on clients outside of those ideal personas, as long as there is some overlap with the key demographic they aim to serve.
A focused business model that focuses on ideal client personas and a strategic plan can give your firm a clear sense of direction and a predictable growth trajectory. Best of all, it can help you navigate periods of volatility and still come out on top.

Bitcoin discussion / What is a class c share
« on: January 26, 2022, 05:21:29 PM »
What Is a Class C Share
In comparison, a front-end load carries charges paid when the shares are bought and a back-end load assesses charges when the investor sells shares; and no-load funds contain no commission charges at all, with the fees simply calculated into the net asset value (NAV) of the fund.
Class-C mutual fund shares charge a level sales load set as fixed percentage assessed each year.
This can be contrasted with front-load shares that charge investors at time of purchase and back-end loads that charge at time of sale.
Because the annual fee can compound investor cost over time, this class of fund is best-suited for those looking to hold fund shares for periods of 3 years or less.
The Basics of Class C Shares
Compared to other mutual fund share classes, class C shares often have lower expense ratios than class B shares. However, they have higher expense ratios than class A shares. Expense ratios are the overall annual management costs of running a mutual fund. As a result, Class C shares may be a good option for investors with a relatively short-term horizon, who plan to keep the mutual fund for just a few years.
The ongoing charges that constitute the C-share level load are officially known as 12b-1 fees, named from a section of the Investment Company Act of 1940. Total 12b-1 fees are capped at 1% annually. In this 1% fee, distribution and marketing expenses can be up to 0.75%, while service fees max out at 0.25%. Although designated for marketing, the 12b-1 fee primarily serves to reward intermediaries who sell a fund's shares. In a sense, it's a commission paid by the investor to the mutual fund every year, instead of a transactional oneOther mutual fund share classes come with 12b-1 fees too but to different degrees. Those fees charged to class A shares usually are lower, compensating for the high upfront commissions this category pays. C-shares tend always to pay the maximum 1% and, since 12b-1 fees figure into the mutual fund's overall expense ratio, their presence can push that annual expense ratio above 2% for the class C-shareholder.
Unlike A-shares, class C shares do not have front-end loads, but they often carry small back-end loads, officially known as a contingent deferred sales charge (CDSC), just as class B shares carry. However, these loads for C shares are much smaller, typically only around 1%, and they usually vanish once the investor has held the mutual fund for a year.
Who Should Invest in Class C Shares?
Because of the back-end load charged on short-term redemptions, investors who plan to withdraw funds within a year may want to avoid C-shares. On the other hand, the higher ongoing expenses associated with C-shares make them a less-than-ideal option for long-term investors.
The differences in final values of investments with varying fees can be immense when held for a substantial period—say, in a retirement fund. For instance, take a $50,000 investment in a fund that returns 6% and charges annual operating fees of 2.25%, that is held for 30 years. The final amount the investor will receive will equal $145,093.83. A fund with the same amount invested and the same annual returns, but with yearly operating fees of 0.45% will offer the investor significantly more, with a final value of $250,832.55.
Class C shares would work best for investors planning to keep the fund for a limited, intermediate period, optimally more than one year but less than three. That way, you hold on long enough to avoid the CDSC, but not so long that the high expense ratio will take a major toll on the fund's overall return.

Bitcoin discussion / Commingled Fund
« on: January 14, 2022, 08:00:07 PM »
Commingled Fund
A commingled is when an investment manager accumulates money from several investors and combines it into one fund.
Like mutual funds, commingled funds are overseen and managed by portfolio managers who invest in a range of securities.
Unlike mutual funds, commingled funds are typically not regulated by the SEC.
Commingled funds do not trade publicly and are not available for individual purchase; instead, they feature in institutional accounts such as pensions, retirement plans, and insurance policies.
Understanding a Commingled Fund
Commingling involves combining assets contributed by investors into a single fund or investment vehicle. Commingling is a primary feature of most investment funds. It may also be used to combine various types of contributions for various purposes

Bitcoin discussion / Tips for Diversifying Your Portfolio
« on: January 05, 2022, 08:12:35 PM »
Tips for Diversifying Your Portfolio
Investors are warned to never put all their eggs (investments) in one basket (security or market) which is the central thesis on which the concept of diversification lies.
To achieve a diversified portfolio, look for asset classes that have low or negative correlations so that if one moves down the other tends to counteract it.
ETFs and mutual funds are easy ways to select asset classes that will diversify your portfolio but one must be aware of hidden costs and trading commissions.
What Is Diversification?
Diversification is a battle cry for many financial planners, fund managers, and individual investors alike. It is a management strategy that blends different investments in a single portfolio. The idea behind diversification is that a variety of investments will yield a higher return. It also suggests that investors will face lower risk by investing in different vehicles.
5 Ways to Help Diversify Your Portfolio
Diversification is not a new concept. With the luxury of hindsight, we can sit back and critique the gyrations and reactions of the markets as they began to stumble during the dotcom crash and again during the Great Recession.
Here are five tips for helping you with diversification:
1. Spread the Wealth
Equities can be wonderful, but don't put all of your money in one stock or one sector. Consider creating your own virtual mutual fund by investing in a handful of companies you know, trust and even use in your day-to-day life.
But stocks aren't just the only thing to consider. You can also invest in commodities, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), and real estate investment trusts (REITs). And don't just stick to your own home base. Think beyond it and go global. This way, you'll spread your risk around, which can lead to bigger rewards.
People will argue that investing in what you know will leave the average investor too heavily retail-oriented, but knowing a company, or using its goods and services, can be a healthy and wholesome approach to this sector.
Still, don't fall into the trap of going too far. Make sure you keep yourself to a portfolio that's manageable. There's no sense in investing in 100 different vehicles when you really don't have the time or resources to keep up. Try to limit yourself to about 20 to 30 different investments.
2. Consider Index or Bond Funds
You may want to consider adding index funds or fixed-income funds to the mix. Investing in securities that track various indexes makes a wonderful long-term diversification investment for your portfolio. By adding some fixed-income solutions, you are further hedging your portfolio against market volatility and uncertainty. These funds try to match the performance of broad indexes, so rather than investing in a specific sector, they try to reflect the bond market's value.

These funds are often come with low fees, which is another bonus. It means more money in your pocket. The management and operating costs are minimal because of what it takes to run these funds.
One potential drawback of index funds is their passively managed nature. While hands-off investing is generally inexpensive, it can be suboptimal in inefficient markets. Active management can be very beneficial in fixed income markets, especially during challenging economic periods.
3. Keep Building Your Portfolio
Add to your investments on a regular basis. If you have $10,000 to invest, use dollar-cost averaging. This approach is used to help smooth out the peaks and valleys created by market volatility. The idea behind this strategy is to cut down your investment risk by investing the same amount of money over a period of time.
With dollar-cost averaging, you invest money on a regular basis into a specified portfolio of securities. Using this strategy, you'll buy more shares when prices are low, and fewer when prices are high.
4. Know When to Get Out
Buying and holding and dollar-cost averaging are sound strategies. But just because you have your investments on autopilot doesn't mean you should ignore the forces at work.
Stay current with your investments and stay abreast of any changes in overall market conditions. You'll want to know what is happening to the companies you invest in. By doing so, you'll also be able to tell when it's time to cut your losses, sell and move on to your next investment.
5. Keep a Watchful Eye on Commissions

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