Brent Esplin

It All Started With a Handful of Powdered Drink Mix: Entrepreneurs See Opportunities Others Miss

My father, Kent Esplin, was an entrepreneur. The word wasn’t much in style in his day, and I never heard him refer to himself as an entrepreneur, or even say the word.  Nevertheless, my father was an entrepreneur.  He grew up in Southern Utah during the Great Depression. His family lost their sheep ranch near…

Investment Costs Matter (Part III): Looking at Investment Costs from the Proper Perspective Changes Everything

Understanding the importance of investment costs requires understanding the difference between a percentage point and the percent that something is to a whole. My wonderful wife Alice and I learned this lesson in an unforgettable way recently when dealing with something far more important than investing.  In July Alice was diagnosed with breast cancer. It…

Investment Costs Matter (Part I): John Bogle, Vanguard, and the Cost Matters Hypothesis

An Investor with minimal curiosity will learn that the shortest and surest route to top-quartile performance is bottom-quartile expenses. – John C. Bogle, Vanguard founder and index fund pioneer The efficient market hypothesis (EMH) states that capital markets are highly efficient, and that any new information about a company’s stock is almost immediately reflected in…

Debt Elimination or Retirement Savings?: Gazelle Intensity vs. Humble Arithmetic

Gazelle Intensity Popular debt elimination evangelist Dave Ramsey teaches that, after setting aside $1,000 for emergencies, your only financial priority should be paying off all debt except your home mortgage.  Everything else, including saving for retirement, should be put on hold until your debts are paid.  Ramsey uses the term “gazelle intensity” to describe the…

Asset Allocation: Putting It All Together (Bill O’Reilly Case Studies)

We have been discussing the asset allocation decision, which in its simplest form consists of how much of your investments you should expose to the higher risks and potentially higher rewards of the stock market, and how much you should keep in safer investment such as bonds and cash.  First, we established that this decision…