IT’S ALIVE! (The Most Awesome Evidence-Based Infographic Ever)

A Wendy’s Wednesday Whimsy

Hey, remember about a month ago, when I teased you with a nearly ready – and free – Evidence-Based Investment infographic/poster Mineral and I were putting together for you? Today, we are delighted to announce actual availability.

Order It!

There’s additional information to be had by clicking on “Order It!” But to summarize a few key points:

  • You can order a high-resolution, print-ready version of the infographic/poster for free.
  • Mineral will even add your logo and disclaimers before sending it your away (allow a week or so for delivery).
  • The default primary color is blue, or you can request a different primary color to complement your branding.
  • If you’d like a printed version of the same, you can order that too. $30 USD to cover costs will score you a big, beautiful 24″x 36″ poster size to display proudly on your office wall ($10 USD more if shipping internationally).

Suggested Use

You know evidence-based investing can dramatically improve investors’ expected outcomes. But it can be hard to convince your clients and prospects of that, especially when the markets are acting up. Our clear infographic (with your branding added) will help you explain why you do, what you do, with a simple comparison between evidence-based and traditional active investing.

What’s the Catch?

Seriously, there is none. I’m as passionate about the benefits of evidence-based investing as you are, and I wanted to do my bit to help. If you’d like to stay in touch with me or Mineral, there will be check-boxes you can click to start (or keep) receiving ongoing news from us. But that’s entirely optional. (You can also sign up for my Content-Sharing Library to keep receiving more goodies at reasonable rates.)

Don’t Be Me (Go To the June EBI Conference)

A Wendy’s Wednesday Whimsy

True story. When I was in my teens, my mother, brother and I went to see the Indy 500 world-class motorsports race. Through a family connection, we had darn good seats. But in case I got bored, I brought along a book to read. It was hard to ignore all the commotion, but I managed. Let’s just say I was not this kid.

 

 

In stark contrast to this delightful child (with the best laugh ever), here I am at 10 years old, impatiently waiting for my dad to finish his photography, so I can get back to it.

 

 

Then and now, if I’m not reading, I’m mostly writing. That might explain why, other than even thicker glasses, not much has changed. (I do wish I still had those awesome bell-bottoms!)

It’s also why I don’t get out much, especially to conferences where people gather and (gasp) speak to one another. Most of the time, I’d rather be writing, reading, or reading about writing.

Continue reading “Don’t Be Me (Go To the June EBI Conference)”

Financial Security and Modern-Day Pirates

© Can Stock Photo / AlienCat

Pirates may be jolly when they’re Johnny Depp in a costume, but the real renditions aren’t amusing at all … as the world is being reminded of recently in the form of a global Microsoft ransomware outbreak. If you’ve not yet seen the news, all you have to do is Google “ransomware attack 2017” and you’ll get caught up pretty quickly. You might want to have a paper bag handy, to breathe into.

Bottom line, to help shore up the security of your virtual ship, there’s one important step you and your clients should be taking if you’ve not yet done so: Make sure all updates and patches to your Windows operating system have been completed – like, yesterday. (As in, stop whatever else you’re doing, and do that now.)

By the way, I’ve just added a short email to the Content-Sharing Library, which you can use to reach out to your clients about this simple but important step. And, as incredibly excellent timing would have it, just last Friday, I also happened to load a quick-reference guide and a longer report on the subject of protecting against financial fraud and identity theft (U.S. and Canadian versions of the same).

If my timing were always this impeccable, I’d become an active investor! It’s not, and I won’t.

As they used to say on Hill Street Blues, let’s be careful out there.

“They” Said It Was Okay: New Use of Gender-Neutral Pronouns

© Can Stock Photo / scanrail

A Wendy’s Wednesday Whimsy

March 24, 2017 may have seemed like an ordinary day to you. But for U.S. journalists and the rest of us word-nerds who mostly use the Associated Press (AP) Stylebook as our guide, it was the day the organization finally threw in the towel on a long-standing gender identification debate.

The AP has stopped insisting we match singular subjects with singular pronouns, even when the gender could be either/or (or these days, “neither,” or “all of the above”).

At least with respect to the grammar of things, I was singularly delighted to hear the news. On the one hand, perpetuating stereotypes by defaulting to male or female pronouns has long left me cold. Who’s to determine whether that indeterminate doctor, nurse, advisor or architect is a “he” or a “she” on second reference? Continue reading ““They” Said It Was Okay: New Use of Gender-Neutral Pronouns”

More Free Stuff From Me and Mineral – Coming Soon

A Wendy’s Wednesday Whimsy

For almost 20 years, I’ve been writing about evidence-based investing (aka, passive investing). I’ve been at it since Humberto Cruz was a familiar syndicated columnist, nationally reporting the passive news as well. Remember him? Cruz retired in 2010 after this final column, but check out how timely his reflections remain:

“Just as investors piled into tech stocks in late 1999 and early 2000, and went into hock to flip condos in 2005-2006, they will flock to whatever investment is ‘hot’ in 2011, increasing the risk of getting burned. Through the years, this self-destructing investor behavior has never changed.”

Before I embarked on my current career, I was a tech-head writer for computing facilities at Washington University in St. Louis, Ralston Purina, and a library software developer you’ve never heard of unless you’re a librarian. Even when I was at BAM Advisor Services, we developed a lot of in-house tech toys, which generated the usual questions about how – and when – to talk about them.

If there’s one rule I learned, it’s that you DO NOT talk up next releases until they’re actually released. With Murphy’s Law in force right up until you flip the switch, anything that can go wrong, probably will. So predicting publication dates and final features is about as wise as forecasting next month’s stock prices, and about as safe as sharing client testimonials (at least here in the U.S.).

So you can understand why I don’t usually announce any goodies before they’re fully baked.

Today, I’m going to break the rules. My boss said it was okay. Continue reading “More Free Stuff From Me and Mineral – Coming Soon”

Canadian Bank Bloopers: Have You Heard the News?

© Can Stock Photo / gleighly

A Wendy’s Wednesday Whimsy

Have you heard the news? First there was that little Wells Fargo dust-up down here in the states. Now, ALL of Canada’s big banks – or at least some 1,000 of their employees – have reportedly been deluging CBC News investigative reporter Erica Johnson’s inbox, anxious to talk about the pressures they’ve felt to place customers’ best interests second.

The story broke in early March with a bank teller confessing, “I will do anything I can to make my goal.” I wonder if Johnson had any notion that this chink in the wall was soon to be split wide open with a flood of “me too” mea culpas sent her way. She reported on them in this incredible, mid-March follow-up piece, “We are all doing it.”

Incredible to me, anyway. Usually, the popular press loves nothing more than a juicy financial scandal. Except, apparently, if it’s going down up in Canada. What, have we got too many of our own to report on? Unless I’ve missed it, I haven’t seen a peep in the major U.S. media outlets.

Continue reading “Canadian Bank Bloopers: Have You Heard the News?”

Evidence-Based Connections Between Flossing and Finance

© Can Stock Photo / andreykuzmin

A Wendy’s Wednesday Whimsy

One of the best lessons from last fall’s Evidence-Based Investing Conference in NYC didn’t take place at the conference itself. It happened in the train station, where I met up for a couple of hours with “Annie,” a high school friend I hadn’t seen since the late 70s.

Had Facebook existed then, maybe we would have been better at staying in touch. It didn’t, and we weren’t. Fortunately, the bear hug Annie gave me when we reconnected promptly eliminated any time and distance between us. We jumped right back in where we left off, talking about nothing in particular and everything at once.

One of the things we talked about was this “evidence-based investing” jones that had brought me to the East Coast to begin with. Annie, who is a palliative care senior social worker at a major medical center, said something at the time about the comparative challenge of evidence-based medicine, controlled studies and practical treatments.

Continue reading “Evidence-Based Connections Between Flossing and Finance”

Corporate Communications Can Be a Super Pain

A Wendy’s Wednesday Whimsy

With the torrent of political news we’re awash in at the moment, I’ve had a hard time finding my whimsy of late. We could all use something especially whimsical this week, don’t you think?

Exhibit A: No matter how carefully your marketing pros plan your company’s consistent branding, one worker-bee with a misplaced label can cause it all to come crashing down. What a super pain.

 

Then again, that front-line worker-bee better captured my actual sentiment about house painting. Perhaps there are lessons to be learned from that.

Enough said.

Breaking News: Your Blogging Life Just Got Easier

You know it’s good for you and your community: blogging. Especially if it’s good stuff, accessible and informative, without sucking away too much of your client-service face time.

What would you say to a new service to help you achieve just that? Consider it done!

It all started when husband/wife team Jud and Kim Mackrill of Mineral reached out to me recently with an intriguing idea. Here’s the overview: Continue reading “Breaking News: Your Blogging Life Just Got Easier”

Wise Wording: More Accurate or More Approachable?

© Can Stock Photo/Birchside

A Wendy’s Wednesday Whimsy

Continuing to explore some of the questions I raised in my post-EBI Conference post, Questioning … Processing … Evidence-Based Investing, today I’ll touch on another question I posed, but left unanswered:

When describing investing to the general public, is it better to go with terminology that is more accurate or more familiar?

To be honest, I’m still not sure I have an easy answer.

More Accurate?

Clearly, the term evidence-based investing is more accurate. It’s closer to the essence of how most advisors with whom I collaborate are serving their investor clients.

After all, if the best available evidence suggested that stock-picking skills and market-timing reflexes generated true alpha over time and after costs … that’s what we’d be doing. Some might call that “active,” but the justification would still be evidence-based. Continue reading “Wise Wording: More Accurate or More Approachable?”