Category Archives: Economics

Why Bitcoin is Not (And Can Never Be) “Digital Gold”

When faced with criticism, one of the most common responses from fans of Bitcoin is that its detractors just “don’t understand”. But this is a puzzling stance for them to take, because Bitcoin really isn’t that hard to make sense of. Simply put, it’s a digital token that grants access to digital transactions. Those transactions are permanently recorded […]

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Where are the fairly priced assets? Hiding in plain sight.

The S&P 500, priced in ounces of gold.

There are a lot of people who work in financial fields who have a hobby in music. It may be somewhat more rare to find the opposite: People who work in music who have a (reasonably lucrative) hobby in finance, but hey, I’m weird like that. Lately, I’ve been finding more and more crossover in […]

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Investing Strategies for Tumultuous Times

I get some great emails about the investing strategies I’ve talked about on this blog. Here’s one that came in just this morning. Hi Justin, I enjoy reading your blog and feel like you offer wonderful insights in posts like “The Independent Musician’s Guide to Not Going Broke” from 2013, and “How to Tell When […]

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A Few Thoughts on Brexit. (And Why Not to Fear It.)

The EU started with great intentions, as a free trade zone meant foster cooperation and connectedness within Europe. Over time, it has become the opposite: A giant bureaucratic regulatory boondoggle that helps some Europeans at the expense of others. As bureaucracies often do, it helps those closest to power while harming those furthest from it, […]

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The Interplay Between Giving and Getting (What Say’s Law Really Means)

If you want to get something, the best question you can ask is: “What can I give?” Once you have determined what you can give, you would be right to ask yourself: “Does anybody want it?” If the answer is “No”, then it may be wise to ask yourself whether you know what “giving” really […]

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How to Tell When Stocks are Overpriced (It’s Easier Than You May Think)

In “The Independent Musician’s Guide to Not Going Broke“, I made a strong case for what is now the conventional wisdom in finance: That putting away a good chunk of money every month into broad stock market index funds is one of the safest, surest and simplest ways to build wealth over long periods of […]

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What is the Point of Gold?

I have to admit that I never really understood gold. I never even cared much for the look of it—though I’m well aware that many billions of people have for many thousands of years. It just never seemed particularly beautiful—or useful—to my eye. But I’m not everybody. For most of my life, I tended to […]

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Good Profit: In Life, Business and Art, Are You Investing, Trading or Speculating?

The word “investment” is often misused, both in finance and in our daily lives. You are either investing, trading or speculating at all times, and in all areas of your life, whether you realize it or not. This is as true in your art and in your relationships as it is in your work, and […]

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“Objective Merit”, Subjective Values, and Arguing About Taste

It’s easy to forget that there is really no such thing as “objective merit”. At some level, all judgements of merit are based on human preferences, and driven by individual tastes. There is no other way. While I would quickly agree that some preferences—and some systems of judging merit—may be “better” than others, I’d have […]

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Featured on “The Investor’s Podcast”

Over the weekend, some my thoughts on current market conditions were featured on one of the most popular business & finance podcasts on all of iTunes, The Investor’s Podcast. If you manage your own savings and investments, I strongly recommend you check it out! It really is one of the very best. (And of course, […]

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