Shiller Says There Are No Genius Investors in the Long Run

While some investing approaches can work for long periods of time, over the long run, “without deep expertise, it makes little sense to veer much from a simple market portfolio—one that seeks to match the overall performance of the market, and not beat it.” This according to Yale professor Robert Shiller in a recent New York Times article. Using the example of Warren Buffett’s investing prowess, Shiller underscores that investors who have attempted to mirror his strategy don’t “understand exactly how he makes his decisions, they don’t have his edge,” and, he adds, “must come to the party late and […]

Shiller Says Bull Could Run for a While

When asked for his outlook on the market in a recent CNBC interview, Nobel Laureate Robert Shiller says investors should keep some stocks in their portfolio because the market “could go up 50 percent from here.” The economist, who helped develop the cyclically-adjusted price-to-earnings ratio (CAPE) market valuation measure, says that although the current CAPE (29) is above the 17-year historical average, he isn’t calling for a market decline. That said, he notes that diversification outside the U.S. would avail investors of lower valuations. “You can go practically anywhere else in the world and it’s lower,” he argues. The CAPE […]

Shiller Says Market Valuations Warrant Caution

Nobel Laureate Robert Shiller writes in a recent New York Times article that “today’s CAPE is sending a troubling message,” noting that the market valuation ratio he developed (which now stands at nearly 30) was higher only in 1929 and around 2000 (when it hit 33 and 44, respectively). In both instances, Shiller writes, “market declines followed those very high readings.” He qualifies his comments, however, by clarifying that the CAPE “suggests a dim outlook for the American stock market over the next 10 years or so, but it does not tell us for sure nor does it say when […]

Robert Shiller Shares Insights on the Trump-Bump

In a February interview with Bloomberg, Yale University professor Robert Shiller says, “I think the Trump effect is really important.” While Shiller, winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics, says he can’t speak authoritatively on what’s ahead because that would be “guessing human psychology,” he says that the current Shiller P/E ratio (also referred to as the CAPE) of 29 is “very high” and could spell trouble. It’s not at the level it was in 1929, he says, but it’s close. Shiller recalls that the CAPE was at a similar level in 1997 and “held on for 10 years.” While […]

Shiller on Behavioral Economics

An interview with Robert J. Shiller, the recipient of the 2013 Nobel Prize in economics, was recently published in Pacific Standard magazine. The discussion centered on the advent of behavioral economics—the introduction of other social sciences into the field of economics. “It’s a revolution in economics that has taken place over the past 20 years or so. It’s bringing economics into a broader appreciation of reality,” says Shiller. While traditional economics has focused on the workings of a market based on “ideally rational” individuals, Shiller says that behavioral economics introduces the notion that we don’t always behave in our own […]

Is Shiller’s CAPE as Scary as it Seems?

In the 1990’s, economists Robert Shiller and John Campbell created a valuation metric called the “cyclically adjusted price-earnings” ratio, or CAPE. A Wall Street Journal article from earlier this month examines whether this metric might be sending a false signal that the market is overheated. The CAPE ratio values shares based on 10 years rather than one year of earnings which, the article explains, “smooths out periods like just prior to the housing bust, when unusually strong earnings made stocks look reasonably priced, and post-recession recoveries, when weak earnings make stocks look expensive.” The CAPE is now at 27, about […]

Are Stocks Cheap or Expensive?

Yale’s Robert Shiller and Penn finance professor Jeremy Siegel have long dueled over whether stocks are cheap or expensive, and Daniel Fisher, of Forbes, reviews the arguments in his recent post. Shiller devised CAPE by measuring the inflation-adjusted earnings per share for the S&P over the trailing 10 years, instead of just the most recent quarter or year, and compared that number to long-run averages since 1871. The results showed a strong tendency for CAPE to revert to the mean — meaning when it was high, stocks tended to underperform going forward, and when it was below the long-term mean, […]

Jeremy Siegel’s Critique of the Shiller P/E Ratio and His Market Outlook

Financial Advisor reports on Wharton School of Finance Professor Jeremey Siegel’s comments at the annual Inside ETFs conference, where he critiqued the widely used Shiller P/E Ratio. Siegel did not necessarily attack the original logic of the Shiller P/E (which won its creator, Robert Shiller, a Nobel Prize). Instead, he noted that changes to the definition of generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) earnings by Standard & Poor’s in 1990 have had an effect. Following the Financial Accounting Standards Board requirements, the GAAP change required mark-to-market accounting, which means companies mark down their assets when they have a loss but can only […]

Shiller Voices Concerns Over Market

Prof. Robert Shiller is voicing concerns over multiple factors right now, including the high CAPE ratio (the P/E of the market using 10 years’ worth of earnings) and the increased volatility in stocks. The large downward moves recently in equities have led many investors to pay much closer attention to the market’s daily movements, especially on down days. This hyper-attention to downside volatility could result in another move down as investors sell or react to what is transpiring. In addition, earnings growth has been strong over the last few years and Shiller warns that growth could start to slow and […]

Have Computer Algorithms Eliminated Alpha?

Today’s markets are dominated by computer-based trading and complicated algorithms that can profit from very small inefficiencies in the market over split second periods of time. Many argue that these computer systems have made outperforming the market considerably more difficult. Yale professor Robert Shiller looks at this argument in his latest article for Capital Finance International. Shiller looks at the recent book “The Incredible Shrinking Alpha”, which argues that ““the hurdles to achieving alpha [returns above a risk-adjusted benchmark – and thus a measure of success in picking individual investments] are getting higher and higher”, and examines whether alpha may […]

Is It A Bond Bubble? Shiller Weighs In

Nobel Prize-winning economist Robert Shiller — who called both the technology bubble and the housing bubble — says the bond market is not currently fitting the traditional definition of a bubble. But he says that long-term bonds are a risky choice right now.