FRDM - The Better Way To Invest In Emerging Markets

Last update on Oct. 14, 2019.

Image Credit: Rawpixel.com / Shutterstock.com

 

Owning emerging market stocks could benefit your investment portfolio in two ways. First and more obvious, owning emerging market stocks would make your portfolio more diversified, thereby lowering risk. Second, emerging market economies tend to grow much more quickly than developed economies, so many people assume that emerging market stocks will outperform developed market stocks.

Unfortunately, that second assumption has not held up in recent years. The following chart shows the comparative performances of the Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets ETF (VWO), and the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY), in the ...

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The Bias/Variance Trade-off And The Limits of Machine Learning Models

Last update on Sept. 30, 2019.

Image Credit: pathdoc / Shutterstock.com

 

A Machine Learning model is a bit like a marriage - no matter how hard you try, it's never going to be perfect. The same way every marriage has its issues, so does every machine learning model. Real world data is like real world people: unpredictable. Real world events don’t conform precisely to a perfectly predictable pattern, so no matter how clever your algorithm, there will always be some irreducible error. The trick is to focus on the things you can change - the reducible error. If you’re in a marriage where there ...

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Is Passive Investing A Bubble?

Last update on Sept. 16, 2019.

Image Credit: EtiAmmos / Shutterstock.com

 

Within each industry, there are certain topics that divide participants and make them battle each other with religious fervour. Among programmers, the topic might be Windows vs. *nix. Among physicists, I’ve heard of dissent against string theory.

There are several topics that similarly divide financial professionals. One such topic revolves around the issue of whether passive investing is harmful or beneficial to financial markets. Passive investing, in contrast to active investing, involves an attempt not to pick individual stocks. Instead, it diversifies as much as possible, owning every stock in an ...

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Outlier Detection: Border Security For Your Model

Last update on Sept. 2, 2019.

Image Credit:  zhu difeng / Shutterstock.com

 

You might not know it, but outlier detection is a big part of your life. The ability to notice  diseased or rotten food, or spot a person in a crowd who might be unstable or dangerous is a very important human skill. Many of us had extra detection-training as children

So can we reliably spot outliers? For extreme examples, we're pretty good. Say you ask 100 people, “what is the ideal indoor temperature?” and 99 of them answer, “somewhere between 16 and 22 degrees Celsius”, while the other ...

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Can Yield Curves Predict Stock Market Direction? - A Machine Learning Perspective

Last update on Aug. 19, 2019.

Image Credit: dani3315 / Shutterstock.com

 

Many investors are concerned about the yield curve today. Generally speaking, a positive sloping yield curve (i.e. where long term interest rates are higher than short term rates) portends future economic health. By contrast, negative sloping yield curves (a.k.a. “inverted” curves) have tended to precede recessions.

Today, the yield curve is the most inverted it’s been since before the financial crisis. This has led some investors to wonder: should they sell stocks today to protect their portfolios? Or should they hold onto them because, despite widespread belief, yield ...

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Discontinuing MoneyGeek's Portfolios

Last update on Aug. 5, 2019.

Image Credit: William Potter / Shutterstock.com

 

On the first Monday of every month (like today), I normally give an update on MoneyGeek’s portfolios. But as you can tell from the title, today is different. Today, I’ve decided to remove the model portfolios feature from this website.

I know that many of you have been using my model portfolios to invest real money, so I feel that I owe you a full explanation. 

Early last year, I started work on a successor website to the model portfolios’ page. I called it ‘Portfolio Expo’, and it was ...

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The Zeta Coefficient – A New Way to Forecast Returns Using Risk

Last update on July 29, 2019.

Image Credit: Debby Wong / Shutterstock.com

Risk comes from not knowing what you’re doing

Warren Buffett

As far as superhuman powers go, the ability to accurately forecast returns probably wouldn't be many people's first choice. It's not as sexy as super speed or laser eyes. But, imagine the edge you'd have as an investor if you could look at an opportunity and predict the returns with precision. You would essentially remove all of the risk from investing: you'd be playing the game on easy mode!

Risk and returns are inter-twined. If you can assess risk accurately ...

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Why Decision Trees Work Well For Investment Analysis

Last update on July 22, 2019.

Image Credit: Boo-Tique / Shutterstock.com

 

What is the best machine learning algorithm? The answer is, unsurprisingly, “it depends.” There are many different types of machine learning algorithms, each with their own unique way of modelling the real world in some fashion.

 

Tradeoffs on Model Complexity

The best algorithm is generally one that most closely mirrors the real world. Think of each machine learning algorithm as a set of lego boxes, each containing different shapes of bricks. If you’re going to build an airplane, you’re going to do better with lego boxes containing wing shaped ...

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It's Not Just Hype - Why Machine Learning Holds So Much Promise

Last update on July 8, 2019.

Image Credit: Grigorita Ko / Shutterstock.com

 

In the book “MoneyBall”, author Michael Lewis documented the story of the Oakland A’s baseball team. Despite their shoestring budget, the A’s consistently contended with teams with far bigger budgets, such as the New York Yankees. The secret of the team’s success boiled down to one thing - the use of statistics. Instead of relying on the subjective judgements of scouts, the A’s made rational decisions on player acquisitions using data.

Unfortunately, the story doesn’t have a good epilogue. Not long after the book’s publication in 2004, the team’s standing began ...

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Gold Moves Up - But Will It Continue To?

Last update on July 1, 2019.

Image Credit: photo BC / Shutterstock.com

At the beginning of every month, I brief members on how MoneyGeek's Regular portfolios have performed and comment on the state of the financial markets. In this update, I’ll also share my thoughts on gold.

 

June Performance of Regular Portfolios

The performance of MoneyGeek's Regular portfolios for the month of June 2019 were as follows:

 

Last Month

Last 12 Months

Since Apr 2013

Aggressive

+3.4%

-5.5%

+90.2%

Growth

+3.0%

-4.2%

+76.0%

Balanced

+2.6%

-3.2%

+62.2%

Conservative

+2.2%

-2.2 ...

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