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James Cloonan

author Image James B. Cloonan is founder and chairman of AAII.


Articles by this Author


  1. A Matter of Opinion »

    Asset Allocation and Risk: How to Build Your Own Portfolio

    There are two steps to developing a truly diversified portfolio that meets your personal needs: Set a level of risk you can live with, and pick the individual assets and classes that will provide the highest return within that risk level.

    November 2002 | Journal

  2. A Matter of Opinion »

    Asset Allocation Approaches: Building From the Bottom Up

    To reduce risk, an investor needs to add to his portfolio holdings that have both good prospects and low correlations with other holdings. Whether those assets belong to a particular class is not important.

    October 2002 | Journal

  3. A Matter of Opinion »

    Popular Allocation Approaches Put the Cart Before the Horse

    Allocation may be helpful, but the key to risk control is the selection of the individual assets in the portfolio. Choose individual investments first, allocate weightings later.

    September 2002 | Journal

  4. A Matter of Opinion »

    Introducing Our New Service: AAII's Stock Superstars Report

    The concept is to select stocks that will appreciate more than the market, but with less risk. It goes beyond any single approach by integrating the work of investment superstars into a complete portfolio management system.

    August 2002 | Journal

  5. A Matter of Opinion »

    Measures of Portfolio Risk and How You Can Apply Them

    Risk measures are only meaningful when looking at a complete portfolio. The risk of a single stock can be reduced by diversifying among different kinds of stocks, so that the overall portfolio risk is much lower.

    July 2002 | Journal

  6. A Matter of Opinion »

    Evaluating the Research on Historical Performance

    While all honest research helps to shed light on successful approaches, there are weaknesses in research methods that you need to take into account. In some cases, flawed research may be used to intentionally lead you astray.

    May 2002 | Journal

  7. A Matter of Opinion »

    Bear Market Lessons: The Advantage of Micro-Caps

    Another lesson to be learned from recent down markets is that there is a weakness in index funds. Virtually all indexes give the most weight to the largest companies. That makes the index fund only moderately diversified.

    April 2002 | Journal

  8. Features »

    When Markets Turn Bad the Basics Remain Fundamental

    Feature: The year 2001 has been an example of the need for diversification across styles as well as industries. And the entire bear market should emphasize the need for a long-term commitment.

    November 2001 | Journal

  9. Features »

    The AAII Beginner's Portfolio: An Annual Performance Review 2001

    Feature: While new Nasdaq rules and the switch to decimal pricing have reduced the bid-ask spread, the spread continues to be signficant for smaller-cap stocks, particularly those that have low volume.

    August 2001 | Journal

  10. Features »

    The AAII Beginner's Portfolio--2000 Review

    Feature: An annual update of our experimental portfolio of small stocks reviews the performance over the past seven years.

    July 2000 | Journal

  11. Features »

    The Internet and Its Impact on Investing in Collectibles

    Opinion: Investors face high transaction costs to invest in art and other collectibles. The Internet, however, has introduced the possibility of reducing these costs for many collectibles, and this change may migrate even to very expensive areas.

    May 2000 | Journal

  12. Features »

    A Concession on 'Small Caps' as Micro Caps Stage a Comeback

    Opinion: Through much of 1999, it looked as if large-cap stocks would outperform, but the micro-cap stocks came back and beat the S&P 500. Over the long term, micro-cap stocks continue to outperform large-cap stocks by 2% a year.

    February 2000 | Journal

  13. Features »

    The Election Cycle and Next Year's Stock Market

    Opinion: Is the election-year cycle theory meaningful or just a statistical game? You can make a reasonable argument for it, but specific events during a given year will have a much greater market impact.

    January 2000 | Journal

  14. Features »

    The AAII Beginner's Portfolio--1999 Review

    Feature: An annual update of our experimental portfolio of small stocks reviews the performance over the past six years.

    July 1999 | Journal

  15. Features »

    Increasing Chance of Success Based on Election-Year Cycle

    Opinion: Historical returns indicate you can increase the chance of investment success if you follow a strategy in which you purchase stocks during the third year of the election cycle if the market is below its high.

    November 1998 | Journal