About Erik Lehr

Erik graduated from the University of Oregon with a Bachelor of Economics and Mathematics degree. His background includes master’s degree in economics and a Master of Science in Computational Finance and Risk Management from the University of Washington. Erik also holds the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA®) designation.

Bank Loans: Cutting Through The Hype

Bank loans (also known as senior or leveraged loans) have become an increasingly popular investment in the past year or two.  On the surface, these securities seem to offer the best of both worlds; a high current yield along with a built-in protection against rising interest rates.  However, as is the case with all investment […]

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Liquid Alternative Funds: Hedge Funds for the Rest of Us?

Have you ever heard a pitch like this?  “We’ve got a fund that incorporates the best of both worlds: Hedge fund like strategies and return potentials without the high fees and loss of liquidity!”  Well, maybe.  Let’s take a look at these vehicles — liquid alternative funds – alternative strategies in mutual fund form, that […]

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Emerging Market Bonds – An Analysis of the Debt of Developing Countries

With interest rates near historic lows, investors have started to explore more exotic options to increase portfolio yield.  One common area that has seen large amounts of interest over the past several years is emerging market debt, which refers to any debt securities issued in countries considered to be “emerging” such as China, South Korea, […]

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Are Markets Rigged? A Look at High-Frequency Trading and Market Microstructure

With the recent release of author Michael Lewis’ book Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt and its assertion that markets are rigged, there has been a huge wave of interest in high-frequency trading (HFT) and its effect on stock markets.  Along with members of the financial media, interested parties include market participants, both retail and […]

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Private Equity: Venture Capital and Mezzanine Debt – Part 3

The previous article in this series described leveraged buyouts — where a private equity firm initiates a purchase of a public company with the intention of increasing the value of that company and selling for a profit in a short period of time.  Another often referenced form of private equity is venture capital.  Venture capital […]

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Private Equity: Leveraged Buyouts – Part 2

When people use the term “private equity,” they are most likely referring to buyouts.  A buyout is the process by which an investor or group of investors purchases the equity of a company in order to gain control of that company.  Buyouts tend to come from one of three groups; current management (of the company […]

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Alternatives: Market Neutral Strategies – Part 3

The previous post on alternative investment styles discussed directional equity investment strategies, meaning funds that attempt to provide excess returns both through stock selection and through the use of short selling.  This Investment Product Review will highlight a specific type of long/short strategy: market neutral investing.  This style of investing focuses on producing “pure alpha” […]

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Smart Beta: The Future Of Investing Or Another Sales Tactic?

The passive versus active investment management debate continues to rage on, although the recent momentum appears to be on the side of passive managers promoting index linked funds.   In fact, equity index funds now comprise 21% of the equity mutual fund universe (as of the first quarter of 2013), up significantly from 12% in 2004.  […]

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