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TOPIC: DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy

DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 5 months 1 day ago #1

  • ErikTownsend
    Erik Townsend
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We took this week (July 4th) off from our regular show format. We'll be back with our regular format next week.

To fill the gap, we're airing the first of a four-part series we're calling Accreditred Investor Academy this week. This four-part series will eventually be a stand-alone "timeless" content program, and will be available on the website separate from the regular weekly program. We also recorded Part II of the series in the same recording session, and we'll air that episode next time we have a holiday conflict or something else goes wrong with the regular weekly show format, such as a guest cancelling last-minute.

We expect this series to be of great interest for the audience for which it was created (high net worth individual accredited investors), but admittedly it will probably be of limited interest to others. I welcome feedback from all fronts, however. This first episode doesn't contain much in the way of "how-to" information - it's more of a personal war story about what can go wrong if one places too much trust in the "investment professionals" on Wall Street. The remaining three episodes will go into more depth on how to reinvent yourself from Entrepreneur to private investor, and the alternative investment vehicles only available to accredited investors, such as angel investing, hedge funds, venture capital, and private equity limited partnerships.

Thanks in advance for your feedback and suggestions. We'll certainly consider the feedback we receive here before proceeding with Parts III and IV, which are still on the drawing board at this time.

Erik
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 5 months 15 hours ago #2

  • Batman
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Erik. Thank you so much for telling your story!

Years ago I worked with several financial institutions (as an IT consultant) and witnessed things 'from the inside' that horrified me.
I have long struggled to reconcile the behaviour and attitudes that I have witnessed of people within these institutions with the idea that I should trust them (or their kind) with my modest savings.

Hearing your story is like seeing the other side of the actions of these people. You would hear them get off the phone with a client that they had just spoke so sweetly to and then talk about them with a colleague in the most disdainful manner, or the way seniors would coach their juniors about the language and tactics to use to pull the most money possible out of their clients pockets.

I couldn't understand how the process actually worked! Trusting your money to 'professionals' is 'what everybody does', but I wouldn't trust these people as far as I could throw them. Your story makes sense of all of this now.

Again. Thank you.
Ryan
Last Edit: 5 months 15 hours ago by Batman. Reason: to put my name to what I wrote
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 5 months 11 hours ago #3

  • pvlee
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Hi Erik,
Thank you for being so honest about your mistakes in dealing with the financial services industry. It's human nature to want to believe what so called experts are telling you and to trust them. You are not the first and wont be the last to lose money to these sharks. I have also lost money trusting investment experts and I now do all my own investing. I have never seen so many crooks in one industry as this, from bankers to trading mentors there is a huge percentage of liars and charlatans.

Looking forward to hearing the rest of this series which Is a 'must listen to' for any new investor.

Good luck,
Paul
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 5 months 5 hours ago #4

  • ErikTownsend
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@Batman, @pvlee

Thanks for the kind words, guys.

It's truly amazing how a given industry develops a culture, and the people in it all just seem to believe that it's normal and appropriate. My experience with the investment management business is that most people subscribe to the boxing analogy I described in the show. They are literally unaware that outside of the financial industry, most people don't do business that way. Pretty sad, really.

All the best,
Erik
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 1 week ago #22

  • kaveh
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Here are some definitions that I learnt.
"Account managers" : salemen/salewomen
Analysts: somebody is trying to move the stock. More money lost from listening analysts than anything else.
Retail investors: have no exit plan when stocks tank. They keep holding on losers and 'hope', a winning mentality.
Smart investors: have a plan -> when to buy/when to sell. play defense(how much to loose on a stock?). most important: hold on to winners and cut losers fast.
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 4 weeks ago #5

  • bigqueue
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Erik,

Thanks for the open and honest story of "being taken" to the cleaners.....I suppose we all suffer from that thing known as greed, and I suppose the saying that "if it seems too good to be true, it probably is" is alive and well.....but after your initial "success", I can see how you could take the bate hook line and sinker.....I suspect that Bernie Madoff probably had a smooth delivery and convincing "intro sampling" of his wares.

Anyways....I am far from a sophisticated investor, though I have saved a bit of money in my life being in my late 50's.....I hope to remain as conservative as I have been in the past.....but I happen to think that what we think of as traditional ways to finance might be at the end of existence.

Why do I say that...I am not sure. I can only say that just before the DOT-COM crash, we ALL felt the value of tech stocks was "not right (big time)" but we were told "the new economy is different"......and you know...that was NOT different and our "bad feeling" was correct.....ditto for the banks and lenders giving / taking NO-DOC (liar loans) and people using their homes as ATMs to take vacations or whatever.....they didn't feel right, but we were told "it is OK because housing never goes down" .....again, our bad feeling was correct.......so what do I have bad feelings about now......massive debt, massive money printing (QE), nation / economic interdependence, stagnant economies and lowered / negative interest rates. (and how we would NEVER be able to service our national debt if interest rates ever went up w/o great amounts of growth)......that is what does NOT feel right to me at this point......so what will bubble to pop be.....once we see it it will of course be "obvious".....

In the mean time.....I think I am trying to figure out how to convert any investment / saved wealth into some form of "productive capacity", for I don't think productivity will be "stripped" from people...in fact, it will be in great demand.

What is productive capacity....heck, it could be as simple as rental property for people working.....it could be a business with product or service that is in demand.....it could be ANYTHING that outputs a product or service that is needed.

So is my quest.....to figure out how to convert at least a portion of my amassed savings to a productive capacity. (defining and finding it first of course)

So I appreciate your Alpha Listed podcasts that talk about you experiences.....I suspect they will be helpful for me....perhaps give me some thoughts and ideas. (heck....your talk of your boat building even sparked some ideas......not that I am a boat builder, not even being able to swim, but my parents used to have a house up in Lubec Maine where there was a very interesting "old school" boat building school......and that leads me to the thought that sometimes it isn't important to be in the largest market.....but to be a solid supplier (even a legacy supplier) in a smaller, less competitive (yet faithful) market of customers.

I look forward to your podcasts.......oh, and I never considered the idea of naming my consulting company the name of the town I lived in, but I guess that is what you did.....i found your house for sale in Cushing.....sounds like a nice place......too bad I can't swim! (my wife would love it though :-) )

-Quentin
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 4 weeks ago #6

  • ErikTownsend
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Welcome to our forums, @bigqueue.

I know the of The Apprentice Shop, which I believe is the wooden boat building school in Lubec. Good work finding the house for sale in Cushing. I'm impressed!

Best,
Erik
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 4 weeks ago #7

  • bigqueue
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ErikTownsend wrote:
Welcome to our forums, @bigqueue.

I know the of The Apprentice Shop, which I believe is the wooden boat building school in Lubec. Good work finding the house for sale in Cushing. I'm impressed!

Best,
Erik

Thanks Erik,

I am a tech guy as well, having worked for computer companies most of my life (though as a H/W engineer)......so I suppose I know my way around the net and search. I love your podcast, and look forward to all your future shows since I think the economy is quite odd and will require some sharp eyes and good navigation skills.
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 4 weeks ago #8

  • ShindigHK
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Hi Eric,
Great piece, thank you. Your story is very familiar and I can personally relate. I have been through similar rabbit holes and outcomes, as a result, I am now managing my own portfolio. It has been a steep learning curve but found great resources such as Real Vision TV and now your service to give some general guidance. As an accredited investor, I am often offered investment products, in most cases I find myself more informed than "professional advisors". I have been recommending friends to do the same, get involved, educate yourself and take ownership.

I have lived in Hong Kong for over 20 years, I am a professional pilot and spend a great deal of time on the water sailing. Seems like we have a few common interests. Looking forward to the next parts of your series.

Best regards
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 3 weeks ago #13

  • ErikTownsend
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@ShindigHK

Indeed we seem to have quite a few common interests, although I sold my airplanes 10 yrs ago and haven't done much flying since.

You said it best: Get involved and take ownership. Ironically, investing seems to be the one place where it's nearly impossible to hire competent, honest, ethical "professionals" to do it for you. And as you say, it doesn't take long before you know more than most of the "professionals" who would have been within your reach.

All the best,
Erik
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 3 weeks ago #9

  • jgotobed
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Great story Eric,
I've enjoyed 40 years in Planetary Exploration IT. Without genuine mutual support & cooperation we'd get nowhere. Open source distributed software development is an amazing accelerant. I believe this is true for society as a whole. George Gilders' _Wealth_&_Poverty, _Knowledge_&_Power_ and Charles Koch's recent _Good_Profit_ detail these advantages nicely.

I much enjoy your podcasts & look forward to continued engagement. These Forums feel like a very supportive group. Caution always, but it may be that serious con&scammers will find the pickings here a bit too lean for their efforts :-)

Cheers,
Joe
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 3 weeks ago #10

  • jimbud
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Erik,

I enjoyed--well, at least listened to your podcast a couple of times describing your experiences with a large vampire squid. I had the good fortune to work for an energy and bandwidth trader in the early 2000s, so had already been through a second bust before 2002. After selling my business, I parked the bulk of the outcome in US real estate (with net positive demographics, and no state income tax) with a focus on passive cash flow. I am now experimenting at losing 15% or so of my net worth doing angel investing. We will see how that turns out.
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 3 weeks ago #14

  • ErikTownsend
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@jimbud

We'll be doing a show on Angel investing on July 27th.

By coincidence, my one and only angel deal (from 2007!) finally just paid off as a 15-bagger: $50k in, $850k out 9 yrs later. Could be worse...

Stay tuned... We're working on more content specifically for accredited investors.

Best,
Erik
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 2 months 2 weeks ago #24

  • jimbud
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Erik,

Not sure I ever wrote back--spent the summer traveling on both personal and business stuff. I really appreciated the angel investing discussion/accredited investor specials you have done on the podcast. Unlike (perhaps?) a bunch of your guests, I already subscribe to RVTV, so I'm not clamoring for the same guests they have. Your original content, whether Art Berman on oil or the podcasts y'all have done for accredited investors creates serious value for me.
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 3 weeks ago #11

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Having watched the realvisiontv interview with Albert Meyer & reflecting on my recent experiences...
I have to laugh at my post yesterday.

In the spirit of Eric's detailing his experience I'll offer the following;
Seeking to buy bullion I was offered "rare" coins from three sellers & market +premium from two. I split
my purchase between the later two.

I'll spare y'all three more irrational examples... bottom line.. take care. If it's too good to be true...
you know how to proceed.

Joe
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 3 weeks ago #15

  • ErikTownsend
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@jgotobed

Sorry you got taken down the numismatic coins path. Sadly there are thousands of stories like yours, all with sad endings. For the investor, anyway. The coin dealers always come out just fine. As does the world's most prestigious investment bank...

Best,
Erik
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 3 weeks ago #12

  • dbrubeck
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Thanks Erik for sharing your story and the lessons it provided. I'm starting to dabble in accredited investor private investment deals (real estate, oil, forex) and very much appreciate the opportunity to learn from someone with more experience. So far my track record is mixed with the oil deals doing poorly (for obvious reasons), the forex deal being a complete scam with criminal charges against the perpetrator, and the real estate deal is too early to tell. Can't wait for the next episode.
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 3 weeks ago #16

  • ErikTownsend
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@dbrubeck

Be sure to tune in July 27th for my interview with David S. Rose. Should be a good one about angel investing and private equity deals.

Best,
Erik
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 3 weeks ago #17

  • SO
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Great episode! Thanks. I hope you continue with parts 2-4.

Although this episode "made me" sign up, I have appreciated all the other ones as well. Back-listened to all episodes some time in April and have continued listening ever since.
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 3 weeks ago #18

  • simonhanglin
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Thanks for the great show Erik.

Perhaps in your future show, you can discuss about how to find a good investment advisers.

My thinking is with today's connected world, most of us can be "accredited" investor if we follow the right person, and some of them do need a good professional helps.

Thanks again.
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 3 weeks ago #19

  • ErikTownsend
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@SO Welcome aboard! Glad you signed up!

@simonhanglin Unfortunately, I don't know how/where to find good/trustworthy advisors for high net-worth investors. After my experience chronicled in Part I, I learned to do it myself. In general, that's my advice - regardless of whether you use the services of an advisor or not, you owe it to yourself to INVOLVE YOURSELF in the process as much as possible. This seems to be something that you simply cannot entrust blindly to others.

Best,
Erik
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 2 weeks ago #20

  • johnjohn
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Thank for this discussion Eric. It was the best discussion I've heard on MacroVoices so far!!!!

Never trust the big banksters like Goldman Sucks!!!!
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 4 months 1 week ago #21

  • ErikTownsend
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Thanks for the kind words, John! If you liked this one, you'll like tonight's show about Angel Investing with David S. Rose. Should be up by 9pm ET tonight.

Best,
Erik
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 3 months 2 weeks ago #23

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I just discovered your website and podcast a few days ago, and look forward to this content.

Being in the "accredited" range does make one ripe for the picking.

I've been OK with our own choices so far, but as we get closer to the age where we have to think about stability and withdrawals, we will need professional input for that.
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 1 week 5 days ago #25

  • ErikTownsend
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We posted AIA Part II in lieu of a regular show on Thanksgiving Day, and we'll be airing parts III and IV over the Christmas-New Year holidays.

Please keep the feedback coming here in this thread. I'm keen to hear how you guys like the series and any suggestions you may have for improvement. My goal here is simply to create a resource that people with newfound wealth can listen to in order to not get screwed over by the salesmen on Wall St. who prey on newbie HNWI's.

Thanks,
Erik
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 1 week 5 days ago #26

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:) :) :) Erik Just listened to AIA part ii. I have to say it was great. You provided the answers to the questions I have been asking myself. I am a freelance IT consultant and remember IBM mainframe/CICS (from my EDS days). I am now approaching the other end of the career path and have started to see the future in investing instead of doing IT. All your questions/answers about self educating/masters education/private client managers all these topics spoke to me directly. My answer has been Coursera/EDX courses in Economics and Finance and to manage my funds myself. On these platforms I can get education from Yale/MIT and from experts including Shiller and Geithner.

Thank you for this podcast, it was highly informative for me. The one area I have started to think about is Mentoring. Do you have any experiences from having a Mentor?

Regards ... Andy
Last Edit: 1 week 5 days ago by abcurtis. Reason: spelling
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 1 week 5 days ago #27

  • rlw
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You guys do a really excellent job, your Macrovoices is much appreciated.
Hoping you follow through with Parts III & IV, especially details and/or reliable strong source information for Hedge Fund(s).
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 1 week 2 days ago #29

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Hey Erik,
Thank you for your efforts to tell your story. It is very interesting and paired with other elements of your pod cast is improving my knowledge and capabilities as an advisor.

I have never heard detailed reference to indexing on a Macro Voices podcast, and I think it would be informative to hear your perspective on broad based, low cost index funds like VTI, VXUS, BND, BNDX as long term core positions in a diversified portfolio.
The context around the question is how over 10 year plus horizons index approaches tends to outperform the vast majority of their active management counterparts. Of course any of your thoughts on whether there is value in an index allocation would be appreciated.

Thank you!
Cole
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 1 week 2 days ago #28

  • bigqueue
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Hi Erik,

I really do appreciate the two shows (Alpha and Beta) in your Accredited Investor Academy as I will at some point find myself retiring and running my own money,. I fit into the accredited investor category currently, but I don't really have enough "FU" money to just up and leave....but being only a few years from retirement, this is becoming an ever-present thought for me.

I appreciate your insights into how I need to change my focus and in fact my entire approach....sort of re-learn how I approach the problem of "getting good" at invsting vs hardware engineering. (my current career)

I do hope you create the next two shows in this series, because I have found the first two to be very helpful!

Thanks,
-Quentin
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DISCUSSION THREAD: Accredited Investor Academy 1 week 1 day ago #30

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Hi Erik and Aaron,
despite all the great podcasts that you produce every week, AIA part I and II have definitely been the most useful and interesting content that I got from Macro Voices.
Please keep up the great work with parts III and IV.

I am especially interested in the resources that I can use to educate myself as well as the shift in mindset and habits that is required after crossing into the accredited camp.

ES
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