C&B Notes

Investing is a discipline built on cumulative knowledge, and it requires a continuous evaluation and assessment of new information. The purpose of C&B Notes is to pass along the ideas, concepts, stories, and information that are informing, influencing, and updating our worldview. We use them to build on our “latticework of mental models” that help us make better decisions.

84 articles in list

Migration Motivations

These beautiful graphics provide a framework for the causes of global mass migrations over the last 50 years.  Since 1967, the percentage of migrants worldwide has held steady at 3%.

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Cohort vs. Age Effects

In November, we shared a paper by the Federal Reserve that reported some of its research on the oft-maligned millennial generation. The report’s major thrust: millennials have more in common with other generations than not.  This xkcd comic is a great complement to the Fed’s paper….

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Not So Different

For millennia, people including Socrates have been concerned about the behavior of future generations.  A new paper by the Federal Reserve suggests what we have always suspected: millennials have more in common with other generations than not.  To be clear,…

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Spurious Correlation

Tyler Vigen’s book, Spurious Correlations, highlights the absurdity of drawing causation from information where only correlation exists.  Reminders that correlation ≠ causation are always useful given our natural instincts to build narratives to explain data and anecdotes we encounter. This spurious correlation…

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“I Love Capitalism”

Ken Langone, who pulled together funding for a 1979 startup called Home Depot, shares his thoughts on the importance of capitalism in his aptly titled autobiography, “I Love Capitalism.”  In other news, here is what socialism currently looks like in…

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The Psychology Behind Unloved

In our latest quarterly letter, we wrote about the two types of businesses that tend to yield opportunities for us — undiscovered and unloved.  A recent article in MOI Global explores the behavioral economics (neuroeconomics) that support the search for…

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Democratizing Admittance

The more information a school can gather about applicants, the better the admissions department can assess fit for a particular program.  It also removes the necessity to rely on shortcuts — GRE scores, schools attended, etc. — that may or…

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Incentives Matter: Dolphin Edition

A dolphin named Kelly at the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies responded to incentives in an extraordinary way by demonstrating a pronounced ability to delay gratification and think ahead to the future. All the dolphins at the institute are trained…

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Progress in Six Acts

We have shared from Max Roser’s site ‘Our World in Data’ before, and we found his recent summary of worldwide progress striking.  By broadening the view beyond the immediate — in terms of time, location, etc. — he demonstrates just…

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Olive Garden Wisdom

Buried in a reflection that may be a tad overwrought, the author of this Olive Garden “review” hits on an enduring truth.  Olive Garden’s success lies in its ability to fulfill the needs of its core consumer — not by…

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Bargain Hunting

While a portion of a recent article by Jason Zweig is excerpted here, the entire article is well worth the 10 minutes it takes to read the whole story.  Zweig draws on a few memories from his (unique) childhood to…

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Fooling the Man in the Mirror

Richard Feynman was right, “…you must not fool yourself and you are the easiest person to fool.”  We think a lot about the cognitive biases that can cause us to make poor decisions, and we have intentionally structured our funds…

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