05/21/2015

The Best-Seller for Equity Analysts to Master Their Profession

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The most highly acclaimed and comprehensive learning tool available, Best Practices for Equity Research Analysts is an on-the-job reference filled with the practical knowledge and specific tasks buy-side and sell-side equity analysts need to claim their place among the most highly regarded in their industry.

Most equity research analysts learn their trade on the job, by apprenticing under a senior analyst or portfolio manager. However, these senior producers often have little time to train new analysts. Those who do have the time may not have developed research skills worth emulating (after all, over half of money managers underperform their benchmarks). Furthermore, in modern day equity research, analysts without a mentor don’t have time to learn on their own through trial and error because the stakes are too high.

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CFA Exam Taking Tips

June is near and CFA candidates all over the world are counting down the days until exam day. All of us at NYSSA wish the best of luck, strong composure, and laser focus to those members of the NYSSA community who took our weekly or condensed review courses, problem solving or essay writing workshops, bootcamps and mock exams!

Because luck is not always enough, here are some easy to remember exam-taking strategy tips from our Lead CFA instructor, O. Nathan Ronen, CFA for you to internalize before exam day:

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05/20/2015

Lower Earnings, Higher Stock Prices: The Voting Machine

 “The stock market is a voting machine rather than a weighing machine. It responds to factual data not directly, but only as they affect the decisions of buyers and sellers.”- Graham and Dodd, Security Analysis

Earnings drive stock prices, so says investing lore. As earnings rise, stock prices move higher. As earnings fall, stock prices move lower. If it were only that simple.

Continue reading "Lower Earnings, Higher Stock Prices: The Voting Machine" »


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05/14/2015

Canisius College Team Wins International Competition in Financial Analysis

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From left, Golden Griffin Fund financial team members Carl Larsson, Ryan Zimmer, Matt Coad, Kevin Monheim and Stephen Miller (not shown) won the CFA Institute Research Challenge Global Championship, emerging first among 4,000 students. Derek Gee/Buffalo News

Five students win international contest testing financial analysis skills

Commencement is around the corner and the real world is waiting, and now Ryan Zimmer can add an impressive credential to his résumé: world champion financial analyst.

Zimmer and four other Canisius College students recently won an international financial analysis skills competition that pitted them against 4,000 students from 865 colleges across the globe.

The Canisius victory marked the first time since 2007 that a team from the United States captured the CFA Institute Research Challenge Global Final title.

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05/06/2015

How 30 Minutes Wasted Could Cost You $5,000

By James Valentine, CFA

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We all have the same 24 hours in a day, but I find some analysts use it much more effectively than others. Based on my experience I don’t sense the level of a person’s time management skills has anything to do with their intelligence, professional experience or even their degree of ambition. It comes down to their level of self-discipline for staying focused.

To help get your attention, let me pose the issue this way: If an analyst is being compensated $100,000 per year, and he wastes just 30 minutes of a typical 10-hour day, that amounts to a loss of $5,000 per year. What would you do with an extra $5,000 a year?

To help frame the issue, let’s take a quiz.


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Beware! These Toxic Thoughts are Success Killers

No matter who you are or what you do I am willing to bet that if you are having any of these thoughts below, then you are holding yourself back from achieving great success. As an executive coach, I am fortunate to work with and get into the brilliant minds of the brightest and most successful executives on Wall Street and beyond. Like the rest of us, my clients have insecurities that we work on recognizing and banishing from their minds. Here is the list of thoughts that are surprisingly common and are the greatest offenders to our success.

Beware of these toxic thoughts.

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Are Equities Overvalued?

MspenceBy Michael Spence

Since the global economic crisis, sharp divergences in economic performance have contributed to considerable stock-market volatility. Now, equity prices are reaching relatively high levels by conventional measures – and investors are starting to get nervous.

The question is whether stock valuations are excessive relative to future earnings potential. The answer depends on two key variables: the discount rate and future earnings growth. A lower discount rate and/or a higher rate of expected earnings growth would justify higher equity valuations.

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04/23/2015

Museum Launches Book and Website Tracing the “Family Trees” of the 50 Largest US Banks

GoAF jacket_final_line_webThe Museum of American Finance and Columbia Business School Publishing today announced their collaboration on a new book featuring the genealogical “family trees” of the nation’s 50 largest banks alongside beautifully illustrated narrative histories of each bank. The book will officially be released on March 10, 2015.

Authored by renowned financial historians Dr. Robert E. Wright and Dr. Richard Sylla, Genealogy of American Finance explores how 50 financial companies came to dominate the US banking system and their impact on the nation’s political, social and economic growth. A story that spans more than two centuries of war, crisis and opportunity, it reminds readers that American banking was never a fixed enterprise but has evolved in tandem with the country.

Continue reading "Museum Launches Book and Website Tracing the “Family Trees” of the 50 Largest US Banks"»

04/22/2015

The Seven Challenges That Hold Back Great Stock Picking

By James Valentine, CFA

Imagine picking up your car after it’s been supposedly repaired and discovering it’s still not fixed. Then, after a second trip to the shop the problem is still not resolved. What if this issue was an industry-wide phenomena? How would you feel about auto mechanics?

According to the most recent SPIVA report, 60% of large-cap managers and 73% of small-cap managers in the U.S. under-performed their respective benchmarks for the prior 12 months. Furthermore, over 70% of domestic equity managers, across all capitalizations, failed to beat their benchmarks over a five-year period. 

Continue reading "The Seven Challenges That Hold Back Great Stock Picking"»

Four Ways to Follow up without Being a Nag!

No matter who you are and what you do, your success relies on your ability to effectively follow up with people. Do you dread having to follow up and make up excuses to avoid doing it? It’s time to stop!

If you are a salesperson in the midst of a deal – you have to follow up in order to close the deal. 

If you are looking for a new job you have to follow up to stay relevant and top of mind to the potential employers.

If your work requires you to collaborate with others in or outside your team – follow up is just part of the game.

Continue reading "Four Ways to Follow up without Being a Nag!" »

Should We Outlaw Advertising?

Megan McArdle, a libertarian-oriented commentator on economics, recently recalled her reaction to a proposed class-action suit of the early-2000s dealing with fast-food companies’ impact on public health.[1] McArdle challenged an author involved in the anti-obesity cause to point to any research demonstrating that the restaurant chains’ advertising induced children to increase their consumption of fast food. 

The question confused the author, who simply assumed that corporations would not spend millions of dollars on advertising unless it increased sales.  McDonald’s does not, however, advertise with an eye toward convincing kids to eat more fast food.   The goal is rather to persuade them to eat it at McDonald’s (NYSE: MCD) instead of Burger King or some other chain.  In general, advertising is better at stimulating specific demand (brand selection) as opposed to primary demand (the decision to consume).

This point was emphasized in the mid-20th century by critics of advertising, which at that time was mired in political controversy, much as the financial industry is today.  It became an article of faith among many economists that because advertising did nothing to increase overall consumption, it represented a waste of resources. 

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04/01/2015

Book Review: Inside the Crystal Ball

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This book is an invaluable resource for anyone striving for a command of the inner workings of the economy. The author details his impressively rigorous forecasting process, which draws on all major schools of macroeconomic thought. He also dives deep into the data to explain some of his expectations.

Beware of economic forecasters who achieve better-than-average accuracy in predicting extreme outcomes. They are less accurate than the average forecaster in predicting run-of-the-mill outcomes. Furthermore, it may not be by chance that certain prognosticators issue extreme forecasts with greater frequency than their peers. Those whose firms bear their own names depart from the consensus more often than other forecasters. Making a splash by “calling” a major setback can expand a forecaster’s following (and revenue base), even if the feat is achieved by acting as a “broken clock”—that is, predicting an economic decline year in and year out until it inevitably comes to pass as a function of the business cycle.

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How Finance Can Help Save Our Planet

The following post was adapted from a chapter I wrote for John G. Taft’s new book, A Force for Good,  published just this past week by Palgrave Macmillan.  John is the CEO of RBC Wealth Management, and I am proud to be in the illustrious company of individuals like Mary Schapiro, Robert Shiller, Sheila Bair, Roger Martin, and Dominic Barton, who were invited by John to contribute to this book.  I think you will find A Force for Good a fascinating read as it explores, from a variety of experienced perspectives, how the financial industry can marshall, for the long-term public good, the creative energies and brainpower it has deployed in the past to develop derivatives, high-frequency-trading technologies, and other engineering complexities.  

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03/31/2015

Do Not Do This in Banking Interviews

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Now that internal promotions are all the rage, investment banks are slower to invite people to interviews. Why hire externally when you can promote a junior with far less hassle? When you’re invited to a finance interview, it’s therefore become all the more important that you don’t mess up.

Below, we have a selection of real life interview disasters provided to us anonymously by finance recruiters who work inside and outside investment banks. Read and learn. On no account commit the same mistakes yourself.

Continue reading "Do Not Do This in Banking Interviews" »

03/25/2015

Insider Trading Law After the Newman Decision: What Does It Mean to Financial Industry Professionals?

In December 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit issued what has been described as a landmark decision in United States v. Newman.  In its decision, the Court vacated the insider trading convictions and sentences of Anthony Chiasson and Todd Newman, two hedge fund professionals convicted of insider trading after trial in federal court in Manhattan.  The decision has been greeted by the white collar defense bar as an important repudiation of the Government’s heavy handed pursuit of insider trading. 

Continue reading "Insider Trading Law After the Newman Decision: What Does It Mean to Financial Industry Professionals?" »

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NYSSA Career Chat™: How LinkedIn and Other Media Enhance our Network and Job Opportunities
Thursday, June 11, 2015

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CFA® EXAM PREP

CFA® Level I Problem Solving Workshop
Midtown

Monday May 18, 2015 – Wednesday May 20, 2015
Instructor: Carl Crego, PhD, CFA

CFA® Level III Essay Writing Workshop
Midtown

Saturday, May 23, 2015
Instructor: O. Nathan Ronen, CFA

CFA® Level II Item Sets Workshop
Midtown

Sunday, May 24, 2015
Instructor: O. Nathan Ronen, CFA

CFA® Level I Test Taking Strategy & Sample Class
Midtown

Thursday May 28, 2015
Instructor: O. Nathan Ronen, CFA

FREE CFA® Orientation 2015
Midtown

Tuesday June 23, 2015
Instructor: O. Nathan Ronen, CFA

FREE CFA® Level I Test Taking Strategy and Sample Class
Midtown

Thursday June 25, 2015
Instructor: O. Nathan Ronen, CFA

FREE CFA® Level I Test Taking Strategy and Sample Class
Midtown

Tuesday July 21, 2015
Instructor: O. Nathan Ronen, CFA

CFA® Level I Weekly Review - Session A Thursday
Midtown

Thursday July 23, 2015
Instructor: O. Nathan Ronen, CFA

CFA® Level I Weekly Review - Session B Tuesdays
Midtown

Tuesday July 28, 2015
Instructor: O. Nathan Ronen, CFA

FREE CFA® Level I Test Taking Strategy and Sample Class
Midtown

Wednesday September 2, 2015
Instructor: O. Nathan Ronen, CFA

CFA® Level I Weekly Review - Session D Wednesdays/Mondays
Midtown

Wednesday September 9, 2015
Instructor: O. Nathan Ronen, CFA

CFA® Level I 6-Week Sunday Condensed Review
Midtown

Sunday September 20, 2015
Instructor: O. Nathan Ronen, CFA

CFA® Level I 4-Day Boot Camp
Midtown

Thursday November 12, 2015
Instructor: O. Nathan Ronen, CFA


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