Below is our “Top Podcast” episode with our new curator, Colby Donovan! Holler with any feedback!
Today we have the return of Corey Hoffstein’s podcast “Flirting With Models,” an interview with legendary venture capitalist Bill Gurley, and an interview with one of the best strength coaches in college basketball.
- Flirting With Models: Benn Eifert — Volatility Investing (S2E2). This was one of the most unique investing episodes I’ve listened to. Eifert is the founder of QVR Advisors, which specializes in managing option-based strategies, or what Eifert describes as volatility investing. They talk about the non-linear payoff of this strategy, which implies than any errors within models have non-linear impacts. He also believes buying volatility has become cheaper over time and the risk/reward is attractive going forward if the term structure remains flat. The episode ends with Eifert addressing some of the recent option-driven blow-ups (including LTCM), which he believes are due to leveraged firms selling tail risk, and provides some questions and ideas to consider when performing due diligence on these types of firms. [May 30, 2019–1 hour, 7 minutes] iTunes Podcast | Spotify | Overcast | Breaker | Website Link
- Flirting with Models: Jason Thompson — The Growth Factor (S2E6). Thompson is a portfolio manager at the William O’Neil family office and runs a highly concentrated discretionary portfolio of growth equity names. He begins the episode with addressing the idea that growth doesn’t necessarily equal expensive and can actually go hand-in-hand with value. He provides his definition of growth (20% earnings and sales growth) and explains his portfolio isn’t necessary high-beta/FANG names. He explains what his initial screen entails, which takes a 7,000 stock universe down to about 100 stocks. He typically only holds 5–10 stocks at a time, and he explains how he handles position sizing and risk management with such a concentrated portfolio. He finishes the episode by stating he believes as an active manager, 80% of what he does can be systematized, and he gets paid for the other 20%, which can be attributed to knowing what to weight his positions and when to adjust his positions over time. [June 11, 2019–1 hour, 17 minutes] iTunes Podcast | Spotify | Overcast | Breaker | Website Link
- Flirting with Models: Katherine Glass-Hardenbergh — All About Alternative Data (S2E9). Glass-Hardenbergh is an Associate Portfolio Manager at Acadian Asset Management, a firm that focuses on applying alternative data for the firm’s fundamentally-driven, systematic investment process. She defines alternative data as anything quants don’t traditionally work with (satellite imagery, geolocation, website traffic) and it is best to supplement, not replace, traditional financial data. She states there are over 1,000 alternative data vendors (found on www.alternativedata.org), which can make it very costly and difficult to ensure the data is both 1) representative of what you’re looking to analyze and 2) accurate and able to be trusted. She does a great job throughout the entire episode of providing examples of the different situations and applications of alternative that she discusses. [June 20, 2019–49 minutes] iTunes Podcast | Spotify | Overcast | Breaker | Website Link
- Invest Like the Best: Jesse Livermore — The Search for the Trust with the Anonymous Master. This episode is with someone who’s highly followed on finance twitter and writes anonymously, going by the pseudonym Jesse Livermore. It’s one of the most interesting episodes I’ve ever listened to. He talks a lot about economics, how depreciation and accounting values create overstated earnings over time, and his soon-to-be-released paper which discusses his creation of a CAPE-esque valuation feature based on retained earnings (Price to Integrated Equity — PIE), which he and O’Shaughnessy say is the best single predictor of equity returns they’ve discovered. He also discusses the importance of including FCF in your investing process to ensure a company’s earnings are of high quality. At 53:15, he talks about trend signals and what we can take from retail sales, housing starts, and other indicators, and why he thinks we will have longer economic cycles with fewer booms and busts going forward. He finishes by touching on a lot of topics — the effect of the supply of securities on their prices, his work with O’Shaughnessy on their Research Partners Program, and looking into how and why value and momentum work. [June 25, 2019–1 hour, 37 minutes] iTunes Podcast | Spotify | Overcast | Breaker | Website Link
- The Twenty Minute VC: Benchmark’s Bill Gurley. Gurley is a General Partner at Benchmark Capital, one of the most successful funds of the last decade with a portfolio including the likes of Uber, Twitter, Dropbox, WeWork, Snapchat, and more. He begins the episode explaining how he transitioned to becoming a VC from his position as a sell-side technology analyst. He addresses how venture firms are forced to deal with the cyclicality of the economy unlike equity and debt investors, how the burn rates of companies is now 2 order of magnitude greater than in 1999 and if capital becomes scarce, it could cause an issue. He also discusses a post he wrote about difficulties in predicting the total addressable market (TAM) of a market, how he’s evolved as a board member by listening more over the years, and why the biggest regrets he’s had are when he’s missed big winners, not decisions that led to a bad investment. [June 24, 2019–34 minutes] iTunes Podcast | Spotify | Overcast | Breaker | Website Link
- Rising Coaches Podcast: Preston Greene — Florida Strength & Conditioning. Preston is one of, if not the, best strength coach in college basketball. He has been at the University of Florida since 2011, first working for Billy Donovan and more recently for Mike White. He talks about telling Coach Donovan he wanted to become the first college program to perform blood analysis of the players after the 2014 Final Four, which allowed him to analyze the players sensitivity to nutrients and take a more personalized approach to health and wellness and injury prevention for the players. He also discusses running food panels to see what foods players negatively react to, and gives the example of now Dallas Maverick Dorian Finney-Smith having a massive change in energy as a result of this test. He finishes with why he’s mentoring strength coaches from around the world and some funny stories on the different coaches he’s worked for (Johnny Dawkins at Stanford and Brad Brownell at Clemson, in addition to the two at UF). [June 18, 2019–41 minutes] iTunes Podcast | Overcast | Breaker | Website Link
Episode #162: Chase Nobles, “I Think Other Ag Industries Are Going To Be Playing Catch Up With What We’ve Learned Through Hemp and Cannabis”