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“Austrian” Investment Themes

This category contains 28 posts

What are Alternative Investments?

  These days the mention of alternative investments within the investment community is a bit like brining up the presidential election; an interesting topic for sure but you are likely to run into some pretty strong opinion or resistance, no matter where your personal opinions lie.   Before diving into the debate of who (if … Continue reading

Top Ten Investment Books for Austrian School Economics

The following are books that have had the greatest impact on my investment philosophy. Though that philosophy is heavily influenced by a belief in Austrian School Economics only two of these books deal with Austrian Economics specifically. What they do provide however is education and wisdom on how real world markets work, which has allowed … Continue reading

Chinese Currency Manipulation and the New “Giant Sucking Sound”

As Barron’s Up and Down Wall Street columnist Randall Forsyth wrote this weekend “for the currency markets, seven Chinese Yuan to the U.S. Dollar has become a milestone that seems as inevitable as Dow 20,000.” For decades Chinese officials worked to keep the Yuan artificially cheap in an effort to boost an export driven economy. … Continue reading

Yield Shopping: The Most Expensive Shopping You’ll Ever Do

(this post originally publisehd on December 8, 2011) In an environment of what seems to be perpetually low interest rates, what is an investor looking for income to do? A recent cover story in Barron’s Magazine “How to Get Safe Annual Payouts of 7%”  illustrates some of  today’s challenges in the fixed income world. The … Continue reading

Doug Dachille on CNBC – Perhaps the Best Investment Mind You Haven’t Heard Of

  One of the best investment minds you have probably never heard of is Doug Dachille. Mr. Dachille is currently the Chief Investment Officer for AIG, who bought his firm to bring him aboard back in June of 2015. Read: 6 Things That Have Happened Since the Last Time the Fed Raised Rates I first … Continue reading

Is the Gold Trade Back?

One of the longer running and at times nastier debates among the investment community may be set to ignite again. For some reason the debate on whether or not one should own some gold triggers emotions like few others – at least when it comes to finance. Indeed gold enthusiasts or gold bugs are called … Continue reading

What is a Core – Satellite Investment Strategy?

The Core – Satellite investment approach is a strategy that dictates a significant allocation in a portfolio to “Core” type investments or funds, and reserves a smaller allocation for investments and strategies considered to be satellites to the core portfolio holdings.   Typical core investments might be a portfolio of blue chip stocks or funds, … Continue reading

Bill Gross a.k.a. The Bond King on Negative Interest Rates

  While Legendary fund manager Bill Gross a.k.a. The Bond King could be the subject of a modern day Shakespearian epic; a Decemeber 2014 Bloomberg story chronilicing his exit from PIMCO, managed to capture the relevant themes in about 998 fewer pages.   The Bond King has long penned a monthly Investment Outlook that is … Continue reading

Fund Review: Manager Change for Ivy Asset Strategy

As noted in a previous fund review the Ivy Asset Strategy Fund has for nearly twenty years been a great actively managed fund for investors who are concerned with investment red flags raised by a belief in Austrian School Economics.   An early foray into gold (circa 2003), a willingness to move quickly to cash as … Continue reading

ETF Yearly Returns

Yearly Total Return of Select  Exchange Traded Funds tracked by Barnhart Investment Advisory Yearly Total Return 2015 2014 2013 S&P500 SPY 1.24% 13.46% 32.31% Dow Jones DIA 0.09% 9.72% 29.64% Nasdaq 100 QQQ 9.43% 19.19% 36.63% S&P Midcap MDY -2.51% 9.40% 33.06% Rusell 2000 IWM -4.48% 5.03% 38.70% Dow Transports IYT -16.92% 25.37% 41.17% 10 … Continue reading

Q&A: The Collapse of Oil Prices

By Ted Barnhart The recent plunge in oil prices, poses a number of questions.  The Austrian School of Investment Thought Blog answers a few of them here. Q: Is the price of oil dropping because of deflationary forces i.e. an anticipated economic slowdown. A: No, but a couple of side bar discussions should go along … Continue reading

Fund Review : Ivy Asset Strategy Fund

  By Ted Barnhart Note: please see disclaimer and disclosure following this post. A Fund For “Austrians” If followers of Austrian School Economics were to get together to construct a mainstream equity based mutual fund that addressed their concerns, they would create the Ivy Asset Strategy Fund. The fund is categorized by Morningstar as a … Continue reading

CFA Magazine: Vienna Calling, Can Austrian Economics Give Investors an Advantage?

Barnhart Investment Advisory is quoted on the second page of this article by Stephen Mauzy, CFA. CFA Magazine Article Copyright 2011, CFA Institute.  Reproduced and republished from CFA Magazine with permission from CFA Institute.  All rights reserved. Click to request an introductory phone call with Barnhart Investment Advisory   DISCLAIMER: Nothing in this article should  be … Continue reading

Shave and a Haircut For Munis?

By Ted Barnhart Anyone who considers themselves an accomplished skeptic, should  be familiar with an  often used quote attributed to  German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer: “All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.” No doubt Meredith Whitney is quite familiar with  the … Continue reading

Inflation: And The Winner Is…

Is wealth disparity the cause of economic problems, or are economic problems the cause of wealth disparity? From Murray Rothbard’s What Has the Government Done To Our Money? Courtesy of the Ludwig von Mises Institute: To gauge the economic effects of inflation, let us see what happens when a group of counterfeiters set about their … Continue reading

Taking a Look at: TIP – Treasury Inflation Protected Bond ETF; an underappreciated workhorse

TIP data by YCharts By Ted Barnhart Today we look at the iSharesBarclays TIP  Bond ETF, ticker symbol TIP. Followers of the “Austrian School of Economics” naturally fear the return of a 70’s style (or worse) inflation, but at the same time understand the deflationary risks associated with the bursting of a credit bubble.  Balancing … Continue reading

Did Warren Buffett Really “Destroy” the Case for Gold?

By Ted Barnhart Last month, Warren Buffett, in his annual letter to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders, along with a preview for Forbes.com titled Why Stocks Beat Gold and Bonds, took aim at the gold “fondlers” and explained to the world why investors would be better of purchasing investments that are already held by Berkshire Hathaway, such … Continue reading

Yield Shopping: The Most Expensive Shopping You’ll Ever Do

In an environment of what seems to be perpetually low interest rates, what is an investor looking for income to do? A recent cover story in Barron’s Magazine “How to Get Safe Annual Payouts of 7%”  illustrates some of  today’s challenges in the fixed income world. The article offers that “yields of 5% and 7% … Continue reading

When J. Kyle Bass Talks…People Listen

By Ted Barnhart Those of us playing in the over forty league, no doubt remember the iconic commercials from the 70’s for brokerage firm E.F. Hutton.  Two executives discussing the stock market, as the world goes on around them.  Invariably one of them delivers the payoff line:  “My broker is E.F. Hutton, and E.F. Hutton … Continue reading

Tax Gain Harvesting?

In an earlier post, I discussed the potential drawbacks of the annual investor rite of passage know as Tax Loss Harvesting. I am sure many people would politely disagree with such thinking.  That same group of people would thus surely think I have completely lost my mind when I suggest the next topic:  The idea … Continue reading

A Second Opinion on Tax Loss Harvesting

General investment wisdom holds that the fourth quarter is the time to start looking at realizing investment losses, so as to offset realized gains in an effort to lower the current year tax burden. The problem with this practice is that it is possible to actually increase your long term tax burden by engaging in … Continue reading

Muni’s Gone Wild

With New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and embattled Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker leading the charge of public union pension reform, the subject of municipal finances, at least at the state level, has received no shortage of attention throughout the last year. But the question remains, where does it all end?  Who will ultimately feel the … Continue reading

OIL: Prices May Not Be as High as You Think

(This article is also available at Morningstar.com  and Safe Haven.) There is no question that with gas prices at or near $4.00 a gallon,  a trip to the pump these days is a painful experience.  That said with oil prices (WTI vintage) hovering near  $100 per barrel things are not as bleak as 2008 when … Continue reading

Beyond Gold: ETF’s for “Austrian” Investment Themes

Followers of Austrian School Economics are often labeled as Gold Bugs, Gold Nuts, Gloom and Doomer Nuts, or just plain “nuts.” Visit any Austrian themed website and you are likely to see numerous advertisements for gold, as in physical gold. While I certainly wouldn’t discourage anyone from holding physical gold, like anything it does have … Continue reading

Energy ETF’s: Are They Really Among The “Worst Investments On The Planet?”

Recently on the Yahoo finance blog Breakout: Jeff Macke and Matt Nesto interviewed energy trader and author Dan Dicker, who’s new book “Oil’s Endless Bid” is set for release this month. During the discussion Dicker describes the Energy ETFs as the “worst investment on the Planet.”    Now,  there is no doubt that the flaws  of … Continue reading

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