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Weekend reading: Sex, love, funds, and finance

Weekend reading

Good reads from around the web.

I am grateful to a Monevator reader who tipped me off about this new TED video on the “psychological bias in financial decision making”.

It’s much more fun than it sounds. Watch and see!

It’s not a classic, but it is a very enjoyable walk through psychological flaws (except when he pronounces “buoy” as boo-y instead of boy).

And anything that warns you about bouncing giddily into marriage as well as financial bubbles is fine by me.

p.s. Want to win £100,000 by larking around in an active trading experiment? With only eight rivals, the odds for anyone who makes the final cut are pretty good – even if you believe all outperformance is random! Apply at City Index by 29 September.

From the money blogs

  • Beware of bogus backdated performance figures – Rick Ferri
  • Is it convenient? Would I enjoy it? The wrong questions! – MMM
  • What makes something an alternative asset class? – Kitces
  • Do individual investors learn over time? – CXO Advisory
  • On “shareholder yield”: Dividends plus buybacks – Dividend Monk
  • Cheap ETFs provide an almost free lunch – Abnormal Returns
  • UK house value versus UK house affordability – RIT
  • Retired? Get an instant 25% return! – DIY Income Investor
  • Top-down versus bottom-up investing – UK Value Investor
  • Is gold cheap or expensive? – The Big Picture
  • Why the 4% rule is too simplistic – Wade Pfau

Book of the week: I enjoyed Stephanie Flanders’ introduction to Keynes on the BBC the other night, though like all TV it was drawn-out, overly picturesque, and favoured trivia. If you want more John Maynard, try the recent Robert Skidelsky deep dive Keynes: The Return of the Master.

Mainstream media money and investing

  • Passive fund costs falling, but watch the TER – CityWire
  • The Workspace 6% retail bond evaluated – Fixed Income Investor
  • Larry Swedroe: Investors worry while the markets rally – CBS
  • America’s richest hedgies – Forbes (plus a riposte from T.R.B)
  • Olive oil, drizzle, and drought – The Economist
  • A plea for a dividend-counting index – Motley Fool
  • Michael Mauboussin on decision making Motley Fool
  • Flanders: How the coalition is failing to cut the deficit – BBC
  • US stocks future return, according to dividend model – WSJ
  • Felix Salmon: Was US housing a bubble or not? – Reuters
  • Fresh uncertainty over UK state pension – FT
  • Clouds ahead for farmland investors – FT
  • Merryn: The long-term price you pay for yield – FT
  • Martin Lewis: Stop calling student loans “debts” [I disagree!]Telegraph
  • Study: Athletes do better when they make a fist of it – The Atlantic

Product of the week: Santander is about to launch a 1% cash back mortgage, which is a pretty unusual beast. However it will be capped at £10 a month, or £120 a year, and you’ll need to use its current account. (FT report).

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{ 3 comments… add one }
  • 1 Faustus September 24, 2012, 3:01 pm

    Great weekly round-up. Thanks for the effort that goes into the blog – even if I don’t often comment you do a fantastic service providing financial education to novice investors such as yours truly.

  • 2 The Investor September 24, 2012, 4:23 pm

    @Faustus — Thanks for that… I was feeling a little lonely following this post and the like of comments/likes.

    Looking forward to “The Accumulator” returning from his holiday next week. It’s been getting lonely around here.

    Re: The work, it can be (especially Saturday mornings!) but you’re more than welcome, of course.

  • 3 Davy Jones September 26, 2012, 4:36 pm

    Hello Investor

    Have been interested in this area of behavioural finance recently so enjoyed the video clip you posted , i do like sir john templetons approach of stepping away from all the commotion going on in the markets , infact i think he became a more succesful investor when he moved out of the city to the bahamas.

    From a psychological standpoint..if we understand what we are getting into before we invest & we don’t overpay then we should be happy to ride out the storm..especially as assets become more attractively valued..in these situations the experienced investors take advantage of the inexperienced.

    A person could construct a believable representation of a market crash well in advance of one happening to test their response , would this not be as valuable a tool as a simulator is to an air pilot.

    There is so much great stuff out there to read & listen to & i think it’s important to learn from many different areas & keep an open mind , keep making your contribution !

    And as Faustus said..we appreciate it.

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