Spicer Capital's Blog - Unafraid to Challenge the Traditional Paradigms

Otelco: Undervalued with Great Upside Potential

Otelco: Undervalued with Great Upside Potential

A year ago I submitted my first contribution to Seeking Alpha. I covered a micro-cap company called Otelco. Their business model wasn't exciting, but the asymmetric opportunity was too great to pass up. I found the stock to be incredibly undervalued, a catalyst that could lead to quick and substantial gains, and very little downside risk.

Since that time, Otelco's share price has risen over 100%, and I don't believe the ride is over. The asymmetric upside potential of this small telecom company still exists--another 100% or so.

Cinedigm: A Unique, Steeply Discounted Technology Play With Surprisingly High Growth Potential

Cinedigm (CIDM) Seeking Alpha Contribution

I believe Cinedigm (NASDAQ: CIDM) is a rare opportunity for investors to realize asymmetric returns--substantial upside potential outweighing the downside risk.

It is a very small company (roughly $20MM market capitalization, a "nano-cap")​, and small companies are inherently more volatile. In my most recent contribution to Seeking Alpha, I make a case for the possibility of a more than $1B future CIDM valuation.

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Incorporating Alternative Investments

Incorporating Alternative Investments

If you had invested $1,000 in a 60/40 stock/bond portfolio at the beginning of 1997, it would have been worth $3,756 at the end of 2016. If you had been able to invest that money in Princeton’s endowment, it would have been worth $10,078--168% more!

The biggest difference?

Princeton has over 70% of their portfolio allocated to alternative investments.

Although alternative investments (alts, for short) may seem elusive to the everyday investor, that is simply not the case. Many alt strategies are affordable and accessible to almost anybody interested in the enhanced diversification they can bring!

Why, then, don’t you see them in your portfolio?

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How to Select a Financial Advisor–Step 1: Find Out Who They’re Working For [Infographic 2]

Choosing a financial advisor is difficult. Be sure you align their interests with your goals.

Infographic 1 explored the pros and cons of some of the most common financial advisor compensation arrangements.

Even armed with all that information, the decision can prove complicated and overwhelming. I created a flowchart to assist your selection process (find it at the bottom of this post!).

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How to Select a Financial Advisor–Step 1: Find Out Who They’re Working For [Infographic 1]

Choosing a financial advisor can be difficult. You first need to understand how all their different compensation structures work...

We all need money: for food, for clothes, for shelter, for our lifestyles.

You have a job to make money. When you go to work, you do whatever you’re supposed to do to continue getting paid.

If your employer incentivizes you with a bonus, you are likely to do everything within your power to hit their targets and bring home that extra cash.

When you choose a financial advisor, remember: this is their job. They, too, need to make money. They, too, will be tempted and influenced by their incentive structure.

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3 Reasons Fee-Only Is the Only Way

Fee-only advisors should be unencumbered by any temptation to recommend a product based on their potential compensation.

When deciding to work with a financial advisor, you know to avoid the commission-hungry bears and their brethren—the proverbial bears in sheep’s clothing.

Who, then, can you trust?

Your best bet is to start your search among the ranks of “fee-only” advisors.

Fee-only status is by no means a panacea. It should, however, be a requirement in your advisor search.

Below are three reasons supporting my claim. The second may surprise you!

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Beware Investment Advice from a Broker-Dealer: Part 1

Investment advice from commission-based financial reps can be influenced by factors other than your best interest...

2 Observations that Should Lead You to Seek Advice Elsewhere

After months working as a commission-based financial representative, I was excited to receive my first retirement statement in the mail. I opened it to find a few cents invested in a Vanguard fund. What caught my attention (more than the pitiful starter sum) was the fund selected by my employer: Vanguard.

I had not been given the option to chose my allocation; my company chose for me. The reason their selection stood out is that Vanguard was not a fund company I was allowed to recommend to my clients.

My employer deemed it the best option for my retirement, yet it was not in my advisory arsenal!

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How Do Good People Become Commission-Based Financial Representatives?

The financial industry is good at making it very difficult to leave, even if the rep is uncomfortable with its sales culture...

I've been pretty hard on commission- and fee-based financial representatives. After as many candid and unsettling conversations with reps as I have experienced, I think most people would be (whether they are vocal about it or not).

Like seeing how sausage is made peeking behind the financial services scenes can be upsetting

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What About the Good Ones?

There are some goods eggs in the bunch - after all, I counted myself in those ranks. Yet I sat complacently in that ruthless world for almost six years before my epiphany came.

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