Misleading Models

There are many investment myths floating about that can be harmful to investors. One of the most dangerous we’ve heard recently: because bonds are likely to be a terrible investment going forward, stock performance should be great. After all, investors have been trained to treat the two asset classes as Yin and Yang. A recent […]

The Importance of an Absolute Return Focus

At Balentine, we espouse focusing on an absolute return benchmark over a full market cycle to measure investment results. After all, as we counsel clients, “you cannot eat relative returns.” The Barron’s article “Chasing Goals Rather than Benchmarks” discusses this shift in thinking. Citing “the industry’s efforts to reframe the conversation with investor away from how much […]

Muni Mess: What are the Implications of the Detroit Bankruptcy Filing?

On July 18, 2013 Detroit filed Chapter 9 bankruptcy, seeking to restructure more than $18 billion in debt. The eighteenth largest city in the United States, Detroit is the largest municipality ever to take this kind of action (New York City famously became insolvent in the mid-1970s but averted an actual bankruptcy with a Federal […]

The Safety of Safe

Financial markets have been particularly volatile in the last several weeks, with both stocks and bonds declining. This turmoil was largely triggered by Federal Reserve Chief Ben Bernanke’s comments regarding the eventual end of quantitative easing, as investors questioned the Fed’s credibility. As evidenced in 1994, a change in the Fed’s course can significantly disrupt […]

The behavior gap

The Behavior Gap

Research firm DALBAR’s “Quantitative Analysis of Investor Behavior” has because somewhat famous for showing that in terms of performance results, investors tend to be their own worst enemy. For instance, for the 20-year period ending in 2010, the annualized return of the S&P 500 was 9.14%, while the average equity fund investor gained only 3.83% per […]

The Great Migration of China

Balentine’s Investment Strategy Team has regularly looked to China and other emerging market economies as part of our Art and Science approach to investment management. From housing bubbles to commodities markets, China has loomed large in our discussions. As we examined each of these issues in search of opportunities, we have found that China’s Great Migration […]

Investing in Private Capital

Private capital is an asset class that generally includes venture capital (financing new or young businesses with equity), buyouts (financing the sale or recapitalization of an existing business with more debt, usually part of a transaction) and mezzanine financing (providing equity and high yield bond financing to existing companies). As an asset class, private capital […]

The Internet of Things

In his 2008 book The Internet of Things, technology innovator and entrepreneur Kevin Ashton spoke of the next evolution of the Internet – from the world’s loose data network of personal computers and servers to a platform that connects to and alters our physical world and behaviors. The phenomenon of the “Internet of Things” has been […]

The Great “Ifs” of Investing

“If you can keep your head when all about you / Are losing theirs and blaming it on you …” ~ Rudyard Kipling, “If” This rhetorical questioning has certainly resonated over the last six months. Just as we found ourselves soothing fears that the world was not ending through politicians driving us over the “fiscal […]

Manager Skill and Market Outcomes

Academics, economists and thought leaders in our industry agree: diversification across traditional asset classes simply is not enough to grow – or even sustain – assets over the long term. At Balentine, we use a distinctive Building Blocks approach to asset management to help bridge the gap between what is possible in the markets and […]