Understanding Brexit

In Great Britain you can bet on almost anything through authorized bookmakers.  Currently, the odds on Brexit happening are now, for the first time, no better than even. Trying to explain Brexit is almost impossible.  Perhaps the most interesting effort comes from Jeff Lafferty, a Scottish comedian.  “So the way I understand it is that … Continued

Retirement Planning

How and when to retire may be the most complicated financial decision that most of will have to face.  There are a number of variables, many of which require estimates that are subject to unexpected future events.  Perhaps the most difficult factors include, estimating your (and a partner’s) life expectancy, inflation and investment returns over … Continued

Scarcity Versus Shortage

Scarcity and shortage are not synonyms.  Scarcity is the simple concept that, while some resources may be limited, supply equals demand.  Shortage, on the other hand, occurs when markets are out of equilibrium and demand exceeds supply. Investors should understand the differences between scarcity and shortages before making a portfolio decision.  Just because a product … Continued


Wikipedia defines work-to-rule as an industrial action in which employees do no more than the minimum required by the rules of their contract, and precisely follow all safety or other regulations, which may cause a slowdown and/ or a decrease in productivity.  Such action is considered to be less disruptive than a strike or lockout, … Continued

Elections Have Consequences

Now that we are in the midst of the normal turmoil leading to the quadrennial presidential elections, it is important to remember that elections do have consequences and that we should all take the time to understand the issues before casting our ballots. Investors should also be diligent in reviewing and voting proxies.  For the … Continued

Markets Work

For the last several years, there has been an increase in the political rhetoric relative to wages, and more specifically, the national minimum wage of $7.25 per hour, which was last changed in 2008.  However, there has been some movement by state and municipal governments to establish local minimum wage rates at levels well above … Continued

Is Labor-Force Participation Improving?

We have previously discussed the importance of labor-force participation (see blogs from 09 Jan 2018 , 16 Mar 2018 and 18 May 2018 ). Recent data suggests that the labor-force participation rate has started to improve, probably thanks to a strong economy and significant increases in the de facto minimum wage, to approximately $15 per … Continued

Subsidy Risk

Dependence on subsidies entails significant, and potentially existential, risk factors.  A case can be made in favor of subsidizing new technology, for limited periods, in order to mitigate early, low volume related costs, as potential participants seek to reach critical mass.  However, subsidies are generally of limited duration, as the long term costs are not … Continued