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Winning at Active Management


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Table of Contents

Preface xi Active Management is Not Dead Yet PART I Culture CHAPTER 1 Culture at the Core 3 The Original Organizational Culture: Commandand-Control 5 An Alternative Culture for Knowledge Businesses 8 The Partnership Culture Model 10 Justice and Fairness 17 CHAPTER 2 Culture in Investment Management 21 Values 22 Integrity 26 Trust 28 Culture and Clients 32 Firm Culture under Stress 34 Culture in Recruiting 35 Acquisitions 38 Evolution of Culture 41 PART II Philosophy and Methodology CHAPTER 3 The Nature of Equity Returns 49 Linkages: The Real Economy and the Financial Economy 49 Components of Stock Returns 51 Price-Earnings Ratios 53 The Historical Makeup of Stock Returns 59 CHAPTER 4 The Great Investment Debate: Active or Passive Management? 63 The Debate Is Timeless 65 An Elegant Theory: The Capital Asset Pricing Model 66 Further Elegance: The Efficient Market Hypothesis 68 Reality Intrudes 69 The Problem with MPT 71 CHAPTER 5 A More Human Description of Investors and Markets: Behavioral Finance 73 Loss Aversion 74 Mental Accounting 75 Minimizing Regret 76 Overconfi dence 77 Extrapolation and Reversal 78 Investor Behavior in Action 78 MPT Still Lives 80 CHAPTER 6 Active versus Passive Management: The Empirical Case 85 Market Regimes 87 Correlation and Dispersion 87 Company Quality 89 The Weight of Cash 90 Luck versus Skill 91 Investors Voting with Their Dollars 96 CHAPTER 7 The Case for Active Management 101 April 2015: Investment Giants Square Off in New York City 101 An Active-Passive Equilibrium 103 The Case for Active Management 105 CHAPTER 8 Debates on Active Managers' Styles and Methods 109 Manager Style 110 Free Cash Flow Is the Measure of Value 112 Depreciation 113 Accruals 114 Research and Development Costs 118 The CFO Perspective 120 CHAPTER 9 The Jump from Company Earnings to Stock Prices 125 Flaws in Traditional Valuation Measures 125 Accounting versus Finance: A Case Study 128 CHAPTER 10 Epoch's Investment Philosophy 133 The Starting Point: Generating Free Cash Flow 134 Choosing to Reinvest 135 Capital Investment: Returns and Capital Costs 136 Once More: Cash Flow-Based Measures Are Superior 139 Trends in Capital Allocation 142 Dividends 143 Share Repurchases 145 Debt Buydowns 150 Capital Allocation: What's the Right Mix? 151 PART III Technology CHAPTER 11 High-Speed Technology 159 Information Technology: Three Relentless Forces 162 CHAPTER 12 Technology in Investing 171 Information at Work 172 Order from Chaos: Applying Scientific Frameworks 172 Computers to the Rescue 174 A Virtuous Circle 176 Expansion of Index Funds 177 Betting Against the CAPM 177 Concurrent Developments 179 The Spread of Quant 181 Computing and Data, Neck and Neck 181 Big Data Beyond Bloomberg 183 Artifi cial Intelligence 187 CHAPTER 13 The Epoch Core Model 191 Factors in the Epoch Core Model 192 Results of the Epoch Core Model 196 CHAPTER 14 Racing with the Machine 201 Investing Is Too Important for Robots Alone 201 Racing with the Machine 202 Seeking High Return on Capital 204 A More Practical Study 206 Is Persistence Contradictory? 208 An ROIC Strategy 211 The Value of Judgment 214 Epilogue 219 Appendix A: Selected Articles and White Papers of Epoch Investment Partners 223 Appendix B: Financial Asset Valuation 273 Appendix C: Feathered Feast: A Case 285 Acknowledgements 295 About the Authors 297 Index 299

About the Author

WILLIAM W. PRIEST is Chief Executive Officer, Co-Chief Investment Officer, and a co-founder of Epoch Investment Partners, and a long-time advocate of free cash flow investing. His other books include Free Cash Flow and Shareholder Yield and The Financial Reality of Pension Funding Under ERISA. STEVEN D. BLEIBERG is a Managing Director and Global Portfolio Manager at Epoch Investment Partners. MICHAEL A. WELHOELTER is a Managing Director, Portfolio Manager, and Head of QuantitativeResearch and Risk Management at Epoch Investment Partners.


Praise for Winning at Active Management "In this highly accessible book, Bill Priest and his co-authors do a masterful job demonstrating the critical components of success for any investment manager: maintaining the right culture, developing a rigorous and effective investment philosophy, and embracing technologies that can capture greater value from fundamental insights. Investors interested in improving their results will benefit from the five decades of wisdom and experience that are so engagingly captured here, and come away with profound insights about the active/passive debate, how both culture and technology are underappreciated drivers of success, and the future of investing. Bill's highly successful career as an investor, innovator and industry leader give this work tremendous depth and perspective I strongly recommend it." - Blake Grossman, Managing Partner, CHJ Capital Management, Chairman of the Board of Directors, Financial Engines, Former Chief Executive Officer, Barclays Global Investors "While having the right corporate culture is essential for successful asset management, culture is surprisingly under-researched in finance. Winning at Active Management is a bold step forward in filling this gap." - Campbell R. Harvey, Ph.D., Professor of Finance, Duke University, Co-author, Corporate Culture: Evidence from the Field "Bill Priest and his co-authors expertly capture what's at stake in the debate about active versus passive investing. In Winning at Active Management, they identify the styles and traits in active management that outperform over the long term." - Fleming Meeks, Executive Editor, Barron's

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