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The NFL and Your Investment Portfolio

March 12, 2004
Mark P. Bodett, Andrew J. Hixson

The other day, I was scrolling through some of the earlier Beyond “Average Life” Letters (now known as the Disciplined Investor®) and came across the B.A.L.L. Volume 3, Number 18, titled “Ditka, the Fridge and Modern Portfolio Management,” dated May 13, 1996. The original B.A.L.L. compared assembling a football team to managing a bond portfolio. And, since we are in the midst of the NFL free agency period, I thought this might be the appropriate time to revisit the topic. Mark Bodett, a co-author of the original article and a Chicago Bears fan, assisted me with the update.

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The Matrix

March 4, 2004
Kurt A. Fritz

Have you ever had one of those ideas that hit you like a ton of bricks? I was reading an article about a business principle called the J–curve (Growth curve), and one such idea hit me. The general idea of the J–curve made me think of the movie, “The Matrix” (more on that later), but first let me briefly explain what a growth curve represents. The principle can be illustrated by a picture similar to the one below in which two different experiences are in force: positive (smiley) and negative (frowney). In business management, this curve is used for a variety of purposes, but usually it is used to describe productive change within an organization.

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