A Conversation with Jordan Belfort, The Wolf of Wall Street.

My conversation with Jordan Belfort, The Wolf of Wall Street who- in the 1990’s – built one of the most dynamic and successful sales organizations in Wall Street history. During that time, he soared to the highest financial heights, earning over $50 million a year, a feat that coined him the name “The Wolf of Wall Street.” As the owner of Stratton Oakmont, Belfort employed over 1,000 stockbrokers and raised over $1.5 billion and started more than 30 million-dollar-companies from scratch. Along the way, he succumbed to some of the traps of the high-flying Wall Street lifestyle, going through a spectacular—and well-publicized—fall from grace. Taking invaluable lessons from the mistakes he made and the prices he paid, he has re-emerged as a globally recognized potent force behind extraordinary business success.

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The End of Paper Money

It’s quite conceivable that the grandparents (or even parents) of the future will be  made to feel even more archaic as the young of that generation look at them quizzically and state “…are you serious? You used to use bits of paper as money?!” Money is a cultural abstract.   It is the social, cultural and legal consensus of what a given society- at a given time- considers as being money.    When economies are working well-…

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The Truth About Executive Pay

Guest article written for AllAboutAlpha.com – the official publication of the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association Originally Published at: http://allaboutalpha.com/blog/2013/06/17/the-truth-about-executive-pay/ There is little doubt that we are facing tough times for the economy.  Rising unemployment, austerity and many other factors have meant that the average person feels considerably worse off than at any other time in recent history.  It is unsurprising therefore,  that we are witnessing a backlash against senior executives (in many industries) who…

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The LIBOR Scandal – What Next?

Guest article written for AllAboutAlpha.com – the official publication of the  Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association Originally posted at: http://allaboutalpha.com/blog/2012/11/08/andrew-lo-on-the-libor-scandal-and-whats-next/ Finance is a world where your input, output, and value-add are the same, money… and after a while in the  markets, everything becomes just-a-number.   Traders may start their careers excited at the prospect of handling millions, but soon- even billions become just a number, a number that you play with to meet your own- or…

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The Sub Prime Lessson

Guest article written for AllAboutAlpha.com – the official publication of the  Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association Originally posted at: http://allaboutalpha.com/blog/2012/08/05/the-sub-prime-lesson/ It’s difficult to downplay the severity of the sub-prime mortgage crisis. Between June 2007 and the end of summer in 2008- American’s lost over a quarter of their net-worth.  Home equity in the USA  dropped (over the period) by over $4 trillion, with retirement, savings and investment assets losing a further $8 trillion. Financial institutions…

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An Interview with Nobel Prize Winning Economist – Prof. Michael Spence

Guest article written for AllAboutAlpha.com – the official publication of the  Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association Originally posted at: http://allaboutalpha.com/blog/2012/06/24/michael-spence-nobel-laureate-on-information-and-momentum/   Analysis of any economic and financial system requires an understanding of two key factors; information and momentum. Understanding the information content of a system means having knowledge relating to the fundamental nature of what is being observed and its context.  What are you seeing? why does it behave as it does? what influences its…

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The Mobile Payments Opportunity

Guest article written for AllAboutAlpha.com – the official publication of the  Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association Originally posted at: http://allaboutalpha.com/blog/2012/06/13/alpha-hunters-the-mobile-payments-opportunity/ The mobile payments market is one of the fastest growing segments of the digital economy.  Research by Gartner shows that the total value of global mobile payments will surpass US$171.5 billion in 2012, a 61.9 percent increase from 2011 values of US$105.9 billion.  The research firm Yankee Group develops on this by predicting the…

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The Secrets of The World’s Greatest Traders

Guest article written for AllAboutAlpha.com – the official publication of the  Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association Originally posted at: http://allaboutalpha.com/blog/2012/05/31/the-secrets-of-the-worlds-greatest-traders/   Traders and investors have made (and lost) some of the world’s most significant pools of wealth.  It’s no coincidence that many of the wealthiest individuals in the world today (and through history) have been successful investors.  Names like Warren Buffet, George Soros, John Paulson, David Einhorn, Bill Gross and John Templeton have become synonymous…

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A Life Changing £600 Million

Guest article written for AllAboutAlpha.com – the official publication of the  Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association Originally posted at: http://allaboutalpha.com/blog/2012/04/30/a-life-changing-600-million/ Impact Investments are a maturing asset class.  These are investments that go beyond financial return to deliver a measurable positive social or environmental impacts for the beneficiaries they affect.  JP Morgan estimate that over the next decade, this asset class will constitute an investment opportunity of between US$400 billion and US$1 trillion, generating profits of…

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Generating Alpha in Alternative Markets

Guest article written for AllAboutAlpha.com – the official publication of the  Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association originally posted at: http://allaboutalpha.com/blog/2011/11/03/generating-alpha-in-alternative-markets/ Even against the backdrop of a global recession, the top 50 fastest growing companies in the USA averaged growth rates between 3,893% and 40,882% in the three years to the start of 2011.  These are rates of return which more than compensate the investor for the risk of making high-growth-young-company-investments.  For some investors, alternative…

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