Category Archives: Accounting

Post 2500: What is the Aleph Blog About?

Every hundred or so posts, I take a step back, and try to think about broader issues about blogging about finance.  Tonight, I want to explain to new readers what the Aleph Blog is about. There have been many new followers added to my blog recently,  through e-mail, RSS, and natively.  This is because of […]

Questions from Readers

Miscellaneous questions post — here goes: Thank you very much for your blog! I am hooked since I found it and have been getting smarter by the day! I like Safety Insurance Group, found it through your blog, noticed you were no longer long. They don’t do life insurance, just cars and houses – I […]

Book Review: What’s Behind the Numbers?

This is an ambitious book.  It tries to draw together financial statement analysis, value investing, short-selling, technical analysis, market timing, and portfolio management into one slim book of 254 pages. It spends the most time on financial statement analysis, going over revenue recognition, inventories, and all of the squishier areas of accounting that most industrial companies […]

Book Review: Why Stocks Go Up and Down, Fourth Edition

This is a good book to help the inexperienced learn about investing.  It begins by teaching the rudiments of accounting through the adventures of a man and his company who have built a better mousetrap. He starts the business on his own, but needs more capital.  In the process of growing, he taps bank loans, […]

With Jeremy Siegel at CFA Institute Baltimore

At the CFA Institute at Baltimore, we had the pleasure of having Jeremy Siegel come speak to us this past Thursday.  He was lively, engaging, and utterly convinced of his theses.  Thanks to Wisdom Tree for helping fund the endeavor. He openly asked us to poke holes in his theories.  This article is an effort […]

On Principles-Based Accounting for Financials

I may lose some friends in the industry for writing this.  Accounting bases vary for three reasons at minimum: Accurate portrayal of the change in value of the firm (GAAP, IFRS) Assuring solvency of financial institutions (Statutory) Making sure taxes get paid (Tax) Here’s the problem: when assets or liabilities get complex, accounting rules have […]

The Rules, Part XXXVIII

There is probably money to be made in analyzing the foibles of money managers, to create new strategies by taking on the opposite of what they are doing. What errors do most money managers make today? Chasing performance Over-diversification Benchmarking / Hugging the index Over-trading Relying too heavily on earnings growth Analyzing the income statement […]

The Rules, Part XXXVII

The foolish do the best in a strong market “The trend is your friend, until the bend at the end.”  So the saying goes for those that blindly follow momentum.  The same is true for some amateur investors that run concentrated portfolios, and happen to get it right for a while, until the cycle plays […]