Tag: real estate

Book Review: The Big Short

the big short

The Big Short is more technical and more entertaining than I had expected. When it comes to coverage of the 2008 financial crisis, there are few in books or media who do an adequate job of explaining the mortgage-backed securities, collateralized debt obligations, credit default swaps, and other technical finance concepts involved. Michael Lewis manages to make sense of a complex system of debt speculation that the people who were responsible for understanding didn’t seem to understand. It is exactly what one might hope to get out of this book, but it’s not the thing that makes this book truly special.

What is really surprising about this book is its tone. Wall Street investors can be very brash. The investors covered by Lewis are outsiders. They share many characteristics with Wall Street stereotypes, but for various reasons they don’t fit in to those social circles. They are rogue investors, searching for any niche they can find, striving to be contrarian. They speak with a colorful vernacular; Lewis doesn’t bowdlerize. In fact, Lewis adopts a bit of the voice of his characters to better tell their story.

As the story progresses, the tone drastically changes. The events that unfold have huge implications for capitalism, democracy, and the history of the world going into a new century. Seeing how the men who predicted it profited from it and eventually reacted to it is what The Big Short is really about.

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Sector Study Session

Let’s explore some potential investing strategies in 4 different stock sectors: technology, healthcare, energy, and real estate. We’ll start with tech, which had a huge drop today worth serious examination. Continue reading “Sector Study Session”

Which Stock Sector Does the Most to Diversify a Portfolio?

If you are trying to diversify a portfolio by sector, exposure to certain sectors may have more effect than others. This examination of correlations between SPDR Sector Select funds over the last 10 years shows that certain sectors do, in fact, have less correlation than others. Continue reading “Which Stock Sector Does the Most to Diversify a Portfolio?”