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Sustainable Investing

WARNING: This is more of a philosophical posting rather than a hard-core research piece!

Sometimes Weather Happens

As the Northeast recovers from a record breaking heatwave last week and we are starting to get early news about Hurricane Chris off of Cape Hatteras, it is only natural to think of what our world will be like when our time on this planet is complete. One of the movies I recently watched that caught my eye was named Interstellar. It highlights the fierceness of our environment and the frailty of the human species. We are often at the will of Mother Nature and seemingly have little influence on our own future. But, we still have time and means with which to make a positive difference - as long as we think past the next quarterly earnings report.

Sustainability Research Matters

Those of you who have sailed with me know that I often highlight strong parallels between my adventures out on the water and the financial markets. There is risk and there is reward. There is luck and there is skill. There are wind oscillations and their are persistent shifts. The list goes on and on. The key point is that experienced sailors go through a systematic checklist to make sure they are adequately prepared for what may lie ahead of them on the horizon.

Another aspect of competitive sailing is the attempt to maximize our velocity made good (VMG) toward a turning mark or a beautiful harbor. This is an optimization process that almost exactly parallels the benefits/costs trade off for every action in the investment process. A pioneering firm named Northfield Information Services recently conducted a research project showing some of the investment benefits to long-term thinking. In his Really Sustainable Long-Term Investing presentation, Dan diBartolomeo quantifies the statistically significant effects of including sustainable factors in the investment process. 

Make A Difference

This is the call to action part of the posting. When I started JQR Capital almost four years ago, I made a conscious decision about several major features to my firm. Firstly, I decided that I would invest heavily into the technology to run my firm and serve my clients with a world class digital experience. Secondly, I felt so strongly about commuting distances and the effects they had on our own well being and the health of our planet that I choose a small office within walking distance of my humble abode. Finally, I decided to serve clients who have not yet accumulated significant assets in their investment portfolios. They are often the ones who need the most guidance as they make important life decisions. These statistically younger investors are also the people who care as much about how they make their money as they do about how much wealth they accumulate over their lifetime. They are our future ... and I am optimistic!

RELAX: I will get off of my soapbox now. Help us do something impactful together. Happy Wednesday!

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