Q: Pat, here and there I’ve read about “activist investors” involved with certain companies and wonder how beneficial, if at all, they are to smaller shareholders. They strike me as likely focused on shorter-term gains for that company in order to reflect positively on their own bottom lines. What do you think? Thanks and cheers!

A: In general, activist investors are individuals or groups buying a company’s shares with the intention of boosting shareholder value and ultimately pushing up its share price.

Activist investing has surged in the past decade, led by a relatively small but powerful group of hedge funds… Read More

How ‘alternatives’ can fit into a portfolio

“Alternative investments” is the collective name for a diverse group of assets that do not fall into one of the traditional asset classes of stocks or bonds. Alternative assets can include real estate, private equity investments, commodities, infrastructure, hedge funds, collectibles, and even art and… Read More

Activists offers clues not certainty

Hedge funds often act as activist investors, and some have successfully pushed companies to make moves that increase shareholder returns. For example, Elliott Management, led by Paul Singer, is now one of the world’s largest activist funds with $35 billion in assets under management.
Elliott, and… Read More

It pays to be cautious with alternative ETFs

Direct investment in private equity, hedge funds and so on was once just for institutional and high-net-worth individuals. However, alternative assets are now also available through a limited number of ETFs. While they focus on high-risk investments, many aim to use strategies to cut some… Read More

This holding company is primed for a spinoff

CHEMED CORP. $319 (New York symbol CHE; Manufacturing sector; Shares outstanding: 16.1 million; Market cap: $5.1 billion; Dividend yield: 0.4%; Takeover Target Rating: Medium; www.chemed.com) operates two wholly owned subsidiaries: VITAS Healthcare and Roto-Rooter. The two subsidiaries are in distinctly different businesses and have completely separate operations.
VITAS is… Read More