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Examining the 2017 Surge in EM Equities

by: Lawrence Hamtil  on Friday, July 21, 2017

2017 has started off as a good year for equities around the world, with all major regions of the world rallying.  As measured by MSCI, the U.S. equity market has returned about 9.5% through June, while the non-U.S. developed market index, the "EAFE," has returned more than 14%.  However, emerging markets have been 2017's clear winner so far, with the MSCI EM index delivering returns approaching 19%.   Read More

Developed Market Scorecard

by: Lawrence Hamtil  on Monday, July 03, 2017

Credit Suisse's Global Investment Returns Yearbook is always fun to read, not least because it is always full of fascinating financial history for the various developed markets with lengthy track records.  While I am not attempting here to offer a competing analysis to their wonderful product, I do think it would be interesting to look at the major developed markets with only more recent data (MSCI's in this case), and to add one or two twists to the data for a slightly different perspective. Read More

The Impact of Cycles on Equal-Weighted and Market-Weighted Portfolios

by: Lawrence Hamtil  on Tuesday, June 27, 2017

It is fairly common knowledge in financial circles that equal-weighted portfolios tend to outperform portfolios weighted by market capitalization, whether the portfolio is composed of U.S. stocks, foreign stocks, or emerging market stocks.  As Tobias Carlisle has written (citing research by Joel Greenblatt), equal-weighted portfolios tend to outperform market-cap weighted portfolios because they avoid the main flaws of market-weighted portfolios, which are generally buying more of the same stocks as they become ever more expensive (thus leaving less exposure to cheaper stocks), and having greater exposure to hot sectors during bubble-type periods, such as the tech boom of the 1990s.  Furthermore, equal-weighted portfolios tend to have far more exposure to smaller companies which, as they grow, are more likely to outperform larger companies, which may have more limited growth opportunities. Read More