Die Zeit, da man sich in Österreich mit Hedgefonds oder Managed-Futures-Produkten an normal verdienende Privatkunden wenden konnte, ist lange vorbei. Vielfach enttäuschte Anleger und strengere Regularien gestalten jeden Neuzugang im Massengeschäft schwierig bis unmöglich. Hinzu kommt, dass Trendfolgestrategien seit der Finanzkrise relativ schwach abgeschnitten haben, weshalb das Interesse daran stark nachgelassen hat. Wer also heute mit Alternative-Investment-Konzepten startet, kann sich allenfalls an Vermögensverwalter, Dachfondsmanager oder Family Offices wenden, die sich darüber im Klaren sind, dass der Bullenmarkt bei Aktien nicht ewig weiterlaufen wird.
Professor Andrew Lo of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) says he wants to be like Harvey Lodish and help save the life of a relative one day. Lodish, a molecular and cell biologist at MIT, helped develop a drug to treat a rare genetic disorder known as Gaucher disease. Little did Lodish know at the time that later his grandson would be diagnosed with this disorder and Lodish’s pioneering work would save his grandson’s life. Lo’s goal may seem lofty considering he is a financial economist, not a doctor or a scientist. Like many of us, he has watched helpless as family members and friends are diagnosed with cancer. But sitting in the waiting room of a doctor’s office one day, Lo decided to follow in Harvey Lodish’s footsteps and take the first step towards saving a life.
Patients with a rare, chronic disease can find themselves in a conundrum when seeking treatment: Researchers can’t find enough patients to enroll in a statistically rigorous clinical trial and there is uncertainty in the regulatory path. Frustrated by the lack of treatment options on the market, patients may be willing to accept a certain level of risk that device manufacturers normally shy away from.
Nowadays, it’s a rare selloff that isn’t blamed on the growing heft of a strategy called risk parity. But to a 52-year-old quant who helped develop it, the problem isn’t that risk parity is too big, but too small. From his office on Boston Harbor, Edward Qian of PanAgora Asset Management has made it his life’s work trying to prove that the strategy — more popularly associated with Ray Dalio’s Bridgewater Associates — isn’t just a tool for divvying up stocks and bonds in hedge funds. Nor is it the destructive force that critics say could ruin markets. Pointing to three small photos of star clusters propped up at the edge of his desk, Qian says its principles are to investing what gravity is to the universe.
Professionals from the finance and technology sectors convened in New York City on 16 September to learn about how recent technology innovations are transforming banking and the stock market as well as credit cards, loans, and other financial products and services. The theme of the event, hosted by MIT Sloan, was “FinTech (Financial Technology) and the Disruption of Finance.” The speakers made it clear that machine learning and other new technologies are certain to bring big changes to the financial industry.
From her office overlooking the sprawling trading floor of a major bank, a risk manager sits before a bank of computer monitors. Suddenly a buzzer sounds and a red message flashes on a screen: Biometric alert, trader # 37. With a few mouse clicks, she’s looking at the data. Blood pressure – elevated. Heart rate – elevated. Adrenaline – elevated. Cortisol – elevated. When she ponders this information, she notes that none of the dozens of other traders on the floor are showing elevated readings. Leaving her office, she walks quickly down a long row of desks, traders and flashing screens until she arrives at station # 37. There, a man in his early thirties, tie loosened at his neck, his foot tapping, sits staring intensely at the screen in front of him.
A Cowlar for every employee: Have you heard about the Cowlar? It’s a smart collar that dairy farmers can strap around the necks of cows to monitor their herds. It promises improved milk production, early disease detection, heat detection, and real-time monitoring and alerts. How would you feel about wearing one? I ask because it seems like it’s a question that more and more employers are asking their employees.
An employee ID badge that can track workers’ movements and listen in to their conversations is in the works to be available for companies to use starting very soon, according to a Washington Post article published on September 7. Critics of the new device are calling it “Orwellian” in nature, meaning it sounds like something that would take place in the book 1984 by George Orwell, which depicts an extreme totalitarian society where the government always has its eye on you, and freedom is nowhere to be found for the average citizen. In the book, the government is referred to by its citizens as “Big Brother,” and there are signs everywhere repeatedly reminding people that “Big Brother is watching you.”
Do you hog office conversations? Or not talk enough? Does your voice squeal? Do you sit very still at your desk all day? Or do you fidget under stress? Where do you go in the office? How much time do you spend there? To whom do you talk? An employee badge can now measure all this and more, all with the goal of giving employers better information to evaluate performance. Think of it as biometrics meets the boss.
"The trader was in deep trouble. A millennial who had only recently been allowed to set foot on a Wall Street floor, he made bad bets, and in a panic to recoup his losses, he’d blown through risk limits, losing $4.9 million in a single afternoon.
"It wasn’t a career-ending day. The trader was taking part in a simulation run by Andrew Lo, an MIT finance professor. The goal: find out if top performers can be identified based on how they respond to market volatility..."