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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Further reading:

  1. Weekend reading: Monevator nominated for Best International Personal Finance blog award
  2. Weekend reading: Should personal finance be taught in school?
  3. Weekend reading: How will hedge funds sell their rotten performance?


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