Thursday links: sticking to beta

Quote of the day

Barry Ritholtz, “We all know the old adage, if you want a friend, get a dog. Perhaps an amended version should be, if you want alpha, get into a top-tier hedge fund; if you can’t, then stick to beta.”  (Bloomberg View)

Chart of the day

XLU 0414 390x420 Thursday links:  sticking to beta

Hard to ignore the recent strength in utility stocks.  (Afraid to Trade)

Markets

Why you should be worried by the surge in profitless IPOs.  (MoneyBeat)

Bullish sentiment has ebbed in the face of the market pullback.  (Bespoke)

This model predicts zero excess returns on risky bonds going forward.  (House of Debt)

The stock market has risen despite punk inflation expectations.  (Capital Spectator)

Bonds vs. Stocks

People often forget that bonds make up a majority of the global market portfolio.  (Meb Faber)

Is the equity risk premium still worth the bother?  (FT Alphaville)

Strategy

A look at how story stocks play out.  (Finance Trends Matter)

Good reasons to streamline your portfolio.  (Morningstar)

Backtesting requires a lot more rigor that commonly used today.  (Focus on Funds, FT)

Is there any investment value in collectibles?  (Rick Ferri)

Companies

Can Facebook ($FB) successfully evolve into a “multi-app” platform?  (NYTimes, Daily Ticker)

Why does Apple ($AAPL) keep subsidizing competitor Google ($GOOG)?  (Recode, Pando Daily)

Why the valuation disparity between Twitter ($TWTR) and Weibo ($WB)?  (Quartz)

IBM ($IBM) analysts are confused.  (Herb Greenberg)

The case for the fixer-upper that is Micron Technology ($MU).  (Vitaliy Katsenelson)

Finance

How long should a CEO stay? The case of GE ($GE).  (FT)

Banks are ramping up business lending.  (WSJ)

Can IEX capitalize on its 15 minutes of fame?  (Buzzfeed)

Can robo-advisors survive in their current form?  (ETF)

ETFs

John Rekenthaler, “I don’t know why an investment-management firm would wish to buy Nuveen.”  (Morningstar)

Inside the business of starting an ETF.  (Meb Faber)

How active ETFs make sense for taxable investors.  (Evolution Trading)

Global

Eurozone stocks are trading, valuation-wise, at the top of their recent range.  (Dr. Ed’s Blog)

Another sign that investors are interested in Africa.  (NetNet)

Economy

Weekly initial unemployment claims continue to trend lower.  (Calculated Risk, Bespoke)

The Philly Fed is pointing toward a stronger economy.  (Bespoke)

Walter A. Friedman’s Fortune Tellers: The Story of America’s First Economic Forecasters is a “darned good read.”  (Reading the Markets)

Markets in everything: sneakers.  (NYTimes)

Earlier on Abnormal Returns

What you may have missed in our Wednesday linkfest.  (Abnormal Returns)

Mixed media

How The Wirecutter and The Sweethome upended the idea of a comparison shopping site.  (The Atlantic)

Om Malik, “Most publishing companies in particular cannot say what they are and what purpose they serve.”  (GigaOM)

Capital is rushing into the news business. Disappointment awaits.  (Justin Fox)

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  • Tadas ViskantaAbnormal Returns has over its seven-year life become a fixture in the financial blogosphere. Over thousands of posts we have striven to bring the best of the financial blogosphere to readers. In that time the idea of a “forecast-free investment blog” remains as useful as it did six years ago. More »

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