I first learned about the CFA Program as an undergrad finance major in the mid-1980s. I had always had an interest in the stock market, and would frequently read through the stock tables in the local newspaper and in the copy of Barron’s at the school library.
As an investor, I’ve always fancied myself as a contrarian who goes against the crowd, someone who can detect patterns and notice minutiae where others can’t. Perhaps that’s why at the age of 27, while my friends and peers were content with gifting one of their two monthly paychecks to their landlord, I became a first-time homebuyer.
You spend six months ignoring your family, blowing off close friends’ weddings, and generally being an irritable pain in the butt. When your friends see you, the first question they ask is, “How’s CFA studying going?” because they know you have nothing else more important going on in your life. At least all your hard work pays off, right?
As Benjamin Graham, one of the investing world’s original greats, said, “The essence of investment management is the management of risks, not the management of returns.” Regrettably, too many investors worry about the risks when it’s too late.
I am passionate about behavioral economics (behavioral finance is behavioral economics applied to finance problems; it is thus a subset of behavioral economics). I teach it in my classes and have written a book about it.
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