Meeting of Minds – September 2017

Published on: September 28th, 2017

Raoul examines how he identifies secular tailwinds for investment and navigates his asset allocation accordingly. Julian examines whether the FED can successfully shrink its balance sheet and extricate itself from a decade of market manipulation and balance sheet expansion.

Comments

  • SB
    S. B.
    29 September 2017 @ 10:48
    Raoul, I appreciate your thought process, but for some time your global framework has been more or less the same (as it probably should be). I just think there is not much information that you did not disclose previously in for example the few Macro Insider newsletters on Realvison Publications, Realvision interviews, and Twitter. I would really appreciate some more specific investable ideas. What are the best ways for a retail investor in invest in Emerging Markets? Are ETF’s in this space good enough? Some ETF’s in emerging markets have been vastly underperforming the Indexes of these countries (even when exchange rates are taken into account). Should specific companies be bought? I try to do my homework, but finding the best investment vehicles to play the themes remains very opaque. What are the best ways to invest in the Monsoon region/East Africa/India/Saudi Arabia? Is Poland still investable or is it too dependent on Germany? Is Malaysia still an opportunity?
    • SB
      S. B.
      29 September 2017 @ 14:17
      I don't mean to be too negative, there a lot of interesting data too.
    • DP
      Devraj P.
      30 September 2017 @ 19:17
      I totally agree with S.B on this. Like for Dollar trade there was an ETF - UUP
    • RP
      Raoul P. | Founder
      3 October 2017 @ 19:02
      Yes, but if I dont see a good trade set up, I cant recommend it. I only recommend things when I think the timing is right from various perspectives. Just because I talk about a market, doesn't mean Im recommending it... Im just talking about it, observing it, debating it..
    • DP
      Devraj P.
      9 October 2017 @ 02:16
      Thanks RP for reply.. It makes perfect sense.
  • AT
    A T.
    29 September 2017 @ 19:30
    Hi Raoul and everyone , would appreciate much can you pls tell how I can buy an IRAN ETF for a pension or ISA account (I am UK based ) . Many thanks for great piece .
    • GM
      Gerald M.
      29 September 2017 @ 23:17
      https://www.wsj.com/articles/investing-in-iran-frontier-market-opens-up-1457321015 (for non-US investors, UK partner)
    • AT
      A T.
      2 October 2017 @ 15:52
      Thanks but still not figure out any actionable source to buy IRAN ETF .
    • TM
      The-First-James M.
      6 October 2017 @ 00:53
      There is no IRAN ETF. You will have to find a way to be more inventive. ;)
  • LM
    Lawrence M.
    4 October 2017 @ 02:04
    Any chance we can get an audio recording by the moderator on these? This was jam packed with info and it would be awesome if I could re-listen while I'm on the run.
  • RI
    R I.
    3 October 2017 @ 12:32
    Raoul - regarding demographics, I'm sure you've considered opposing views and are up to speed on the evolving research on this important topic. Speaking of which, a recent working paper out of the BIS predicts that global population aging will reverse the following trends: (1) declining real interest rates; (2) declining returns to labor; and (3) increasing inequality within countries. They make a convincing case largely based on the assumption that governments will remain inept and do more of the same (somewhat ironic, but seems like a sure bet to me!). In case you haven't seen it, here is a link to the paper I'm referring to: http://www.bis.org/publ/work656.pdf. Thanks.
    • RP
      Raoul P. | Founder
      3 October 2017 @ 18:59
      Thanks. So far it hasn't worked in Japan. But yes, over time as the demographics work out, everything will change.
  • WD
    Wim D.
    2 October 2017 @ 11:51
    Great article! Next to India I was also thinking of Nigeria based on the same tailwind thinking.
    • GS
      George S.
      2 October 2017 @ 20:29
      Yeah, Nigeria is one of the best in that regard but it might take a decade (or 2) for them to sort it out. That country is a mess right now.
  • SJ
    Steven J.
    2 October 2017 @ 02:33
    Brilliant Piece - love the 3 D's and the illustrative sequential thought process and the contrast between headwinds and tailwinds. Wondering if either of you have thoughts on how your thesis impacts real estate investments?
  • DP
    Devraj P.
    1 October 2017 @ 19:44
    Bravo RP and JB. This issue alone is well worth the entire year cost of MI Subscriptions. Its not just about few trades instead its a life long process on how a sound/patience investor can build a robust and highly profitable framework with 10000% confidence in investments without worrying about day to day events. Truly a great work and ton of thanks for putting 3D together that alone is a years of work.
  • JM
    John M.
    30 September 2017 @ 06:06
    I like the idea of headwind versus tailwind economies. I wonder if historical data actually shows that stock market in tailwind economies outperforms markets in headwind economies - just wondering?
  • KA
    Kelly A.
    28 September 2017 @ 14:04
    I love you guys, but for me, on this one, you missed me. I could be a demographic of one, though, so if i'm the only one, please ignore! My thought is: I'm glad you are so smart. That is why i subscribe. Yet, i don't care HOW you do what you do, only that i get the benefits of the fruits of your labors. i do NOT want to become an expert. You are the experts. I do not want to learn/know what you know how to do. So, this report, except for the last page of investment thoughts, was of no value to me. AND, RAOUL, what happened to your views on oil. Still below 40? And in what time frame? Thanks, and keep the hits coming!
    • TM
      The-First-James M.
      28 September 2017 @ 15:00
      Personally I'd rather be taught to fish than be given fish, but each to his/her own.
    • CY
      C Y.
      28 September 2017 @ 15:17
      I care how you do what you do. Great work.
    • LD
      Lance D.
      28 September 2017 @ 15:22
      ERRR plz don't listen to the above comment to much . I kind of understand the comment however this is NOT something i agree with.. i want the learning experience especially the "devil in the detail" if that detail can help me learn then I'm all for it . so please keep the information coming and the timely trades. from a happy subscriber . OTHER POSTER..... DONT YOU ROCK MY BOAT !! heheheheheh
    • LD
      Lance D.
      28 September 2017 @ 15:23
      at the time there was only one other comment so a correction ... the comment above the one above lol
    • LD
      Lance D.
      28 September 2017 @ 15:24
      oh ffs and obviously the one above my original comment . HEHEE
    • LD
      Lance D.
      28 September 2017 @ 15:26
      OK comments are just coming in thick and fast ... so to be clear ignore Kelly A comment please
    • JM
      James M.
      28 September 2017 @ 15:54
      [Rolling my eyes] ...You can please some of the people all of the time, OR all of the people sum of the time. BUT you'll never please all of the people all of the time.
    • CD
      Cheryl D.
      28 September 2017 @ 15:56
      I'm with CY - I care how you do what you do too. Keep it coming - very informative...
    • BT
      Bryan T.
      28 September 2017 @ 18:27
      I'm not sure I could disagree with Kelly A. more than I do. I need the education in order to both broaden my investing chops and to fully understand what it is I'm being presented with. I'd hope that its not an either/or proposition...why be so limiting? I wouldn't want only opinion nor would I want only a trade recommendation. Providing trade ideas and the background for reaching the conclusion provides a rich experience especially at the level of expertise and experience I have come here to expect. Certainly the reasons for my subscription.
    • TA
      The A.
      28 September 2017 @ 20:26
      When I first started investing (I was around 15 years old) I wanted to know what Buffett was buying. When an interviewer asked him what his best investment was, Buffett answered the investment in himself, his education on the markets. I found this the most stupid answer ever. However now, I see that it was amazing advice. I can now decide, based on my own research, if I make a trade or investment. I don't need to rely on anyone else, I educated myself and after all those years I can now profit from it. I've got a feeling that Kelly A. will feel the same in a few years.
    • MG
      Miguel G.
      29 September 2017 @ 11:27
      Nice write up guys the amount of macro Ive been learning here is well worth the sticker price for this service. I love surrounding myself with people of your caliber thats the only way I'll ever reach my personal goals. If you guys ever need a coffee bean grinder in the mornings for the privilege of soaking up your guys wisdom, I'm your man :). Julian your piece made me really think about a lot of things. If inflation now becomes the villain and not deflation doesnt that essentially mean the end of being able to do QE? Seems like you guys are at polar opposite views when it comes to what could possibly transpire next. Thanks again for thoughtful pieces, greatly appreciated!
    • IO
      Igor O.
      29 September 2017 @ 16:26
      How learning something new going to make you worse off?
  • TK
    Thomas K.
    29 September 2017 @ 13:34
    Great piece guys, the best so far. In his last piece on currencies Julian stopped short of discussing how EM currency moves can best be managed. A follow up piece that addressed that subject would be helpful and would tie in well with Raoul's Monsoon theme as, for me at least, not having a great handle on how currencies like INR or IRR will perform puts me off investing in these more exotic equity markets.
  • MG
    Miguel G.
    29 September 2017 @ 11:48
    Julian your piece assumes balance sheet reduction from the fed and rate hikes to continue at least as far as the eye can see. But we all know that any sign of trouble in equities the fed will begin to stop any kind of tightening and may even walk away from balance sheet reduction all together. Assuming we can agree that volatility coming back in to markets is all but certain at some point if the fed continues to raise rates AND reduce their balance sheet, how do you think the fed reacts in kind to a market that is falling? More QE? Or are they just helpless this time around to markets falling and we are finally forced to take our medicine? Thanks Julian your piece really has me thinking this morning. Love reading your content.
    • CY
      C Y.
      29 September 2017 @ 13:08
      I think the fed has your back narrative is at risk. Under severe stress they'll likely step up in but the incessant pumping of liquidity mentality is undergoing change, at least at the Fed. I think the market believes exactly what you're saying about this but watch out when they realize that in fact the fed is leaving the party first.
  • TH
    Thomas H.
    28 September 2017 @ 20:52
    Raoul, are you concerned about the recent drop in the market in India?
  • DW
    Dave W.
    28 September 2017 @ 20:28
    Excellent report. The 3-D framework is fantastic. This is the reason I subscribed to MI-- to learn solid macro frameworks with live examples to drive the concepts home. Also the trade update is a great add.
  • gg
    gurdeep g.
    28 September 2017 @ 19:18
    Raoul take a break for the year ...great piece guys!
  • AM
    Alonso M.
    28 September 2017 @ 18:05
    Found Raoul's framework very insightful and will look to apply it in my own process going forward. This is exactly the type of thing that made me want to subscribe.
  • RM
    R M.
    28 September 2017 @ 17:40
    Excellent report, maybe the best yet from MI. I am on board with the overall thesis as presented. A couple of future requests: 1. Can MI do regular coverage of the tailwind economies like India? I have invested, but I don't want to overdo it as the US cycle may negatively impact tailwind economies, as discussed in this report. 2. I cannot help think that China, because of the size of it's economy also needs watching closely by MI. China clearly impacts overall markets for commodities, as well as influences tailwind economies across the globe. Thanks Julian and Raoul!
  • JM
    James M.
    28 September 2017 @ 15:59
    Another great In Focus report. Thank you Julian & Raoul.
  • NH
    Neil H.
    28 September 2017 @ 15:01
    macro insiders keeps getting better if that is possible. keep it coming.

Mark Yusko

Morgan Creek Capital Management, Co- Founder, CEO, & CIO

Mark Yusko is the Founder, CEO and Chief Investment Officer of Morgan Creek Capital Management. He is also the Managing Partner of Morgan Creek Digital Assets.

Morgan Creek Capital Management was founded in 2004 and currently manages close to $2 billion in discretionary and non-discretionary assets. Prior to founding Morgan Creek, Mr. Yusko was CIO and Founder of UNC Management Company (UNCMC), the Endowment investment office for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Before that, he was Senior Investment Director for the University of Notre Dame Investment Office. Mr. Yusko has been at the forefront of institutional investing throughout his career. An early investor in alternative asset classes at Notre Dame, he brought the Endowment Model of investing to UNC, which contributed to significant performance gains for the Endowment. The Endowment Model is the cornerstone philosophy of Morgan Creek, as is the mandate to Invest in Innovation.

Mr. Yusko is again at the forefront of investing through Morgan Creek Digital Assets, which was formed in 2018. Morgan Creek Digital is an early stage investor in blockchain technology, digital currency and digital assets through the firm’s Venture Capital and Digital Asset Index Fund.

Mr. Yusko received a BA with Honors from the University of Notre Dame and an MBA in Accounting and Finance from the University of Chicago.

Anthony Scaramucci

SkyBridge Capital, Founder & Co-Managing Partner

Prior to founding SkyBridge in 2005, Scaramucci co-founded investment partnership Oscar Capital Management, which was sold to Neuberger Berman, LLC in 2001. Earlier, he was a vice president in Private Wealth Management at Goldman Sachs & Co. In 2016, Scaramucci was ranked #85 in Worth Magazine’sPower 100: The 100 Most Powerful People in Global Finance. In 2011, he received Ernst & Young’s “Entrepreneur of the Year –New York” Award in the Financial Services category. Anthony is amember of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), vice chair of the Kennedy Center Corporate Fund Board, a board member of both The Brain Tumor Foundation and Business Executives for National Security (BENS), and a Trustee of the United States Olympic & Paralympic Foundation. He was a member of the New York City Financial Services Advisory Committee from 2007 to 2012. In November 2016, he was named to President-Elect Trump’s 16-person Presidential Transition Team Executive Committee. In June 2017, he wasnamed the Chief Strategy Officer of the EXIM Bank. He served as the White House Communications Director for a period in July 2017. Scaramucci, a native of Long Island, New York, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from Tufts University and a Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School.

Michael Saylor

MicroStrategy, Co-Founder

Mr. Saylor is a technologist, entrepreneur, business executive, philanthropist, and best-selling author. He currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors and Chief Executive Office of MicroStrategy, Inc. (MSTR). Since co-founding the company at the age of 24, Mr. Saylor has built MicroStrategy into a global leader in business intelligence, mobile software, and cloud-based services. In 2012, he authored The Mobile Wave: How Mobile Intelligence Will Change Everything, which earned a spot on The New York Times Best Sellers list.

Mr. Saylor attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, receiving an S.B. in Aeronautics and Astronautics and an S.B. in Science, Technology, and Society.

Alex Saunders

Nugget's News, Founder & CEO

Alex Saunders is the founder and CEO of Nugget’s News, a digital media company focused on all things crypto. Alex has been captivated by cryptocurrency since 2012 and in 2017 he began educating globally on the benefits of cryptocurrency and how to safely acquireit. Nugget’s News has been listed as a top-20 podcast by Business Insider, ShapeShift and Lifehacker and has over 120k YouTube subscribers with 9 million total views.Alex is also heavily focused on his cryptocurrency education platform Collective Shift which currently serves over 4,500 members. provides his unique perspectives by utilising his expertise in fundamental analysis, technical analysis and market sentiment. He is working towards his mission of making it easier for everyone to understand the financial world.

James Putra

TradeStation Crypto, Inc., Sr. Director of Product Strategy

James helped launch TradeStation Crypto’s offering which utilizes a true online brokerage model that self-directed investors and traders have come to expect for equities, futures, and foreign currency markets. He is a reputed crypto asset specialist and blockchain thought leader focused on helping people find innovative ways to participate in this space. He is active in the blockchain community with speaking engagements, TV appearances and mentoring. James has over 15 years of experience in the Fintech industry.

Raoul Pal

Real Vision, Co-Founder & CEO

Raoul Pal is the Co-Founder and CEO of Real Vision, the world’s pre-eminent financial media platform, which helps members understand the complex world of finance, business, and the global economy.

Real Vision members also have access to Real Vision Crypto, a cryptocurrency and digital assets video channel watched by over 80,000 people. In addition, Raoul has been publishing Global Macro Investor since January 2005 to provide original, high quality, quantifiable and easily readable research for the global macro investment community hedge funds, family offices, pension funds and sovereign wealth funds. It draws on his considerable 31 years of experience in advising hedge funds and managing a global macro hedge fund. Global Macro Investor has one of the very best, proven track records of any newsletter in the industry, producing extremely positive returns in eight out of the last twelve years.

He retired from managing client money at the age of 36 in 2004 and now lives in the tiny Caribbean island of Little Cayman in the Cayman Islands. Previously he co-managed the GLG Global Macro Fund in London for GLG Partners, one of the largest hedge fund groups in the world. Raoul moved to GLG from Goldman Sachs where he co-managed the hedge fund sales business in Equities and Equity Derivatives in Europe. In this role, Raoul established strong relationships with many of the world’s pre-eminent hedge funds, learning from their styles and experiences.

Other stop-off points on the way were NatWest Markets and HSBC, although he began his career by training traders in technical analysis.

Peter McCormack

What Bitcoin Did, Journalist

Peter McCormack is a full time journalist/podcaster covering topics such as Freedom, Human Rights, Censorship and Bitcoin. Peter created and hosts the What Bitcoin Did Podcast, a twice-weekly Bitcoin podcast where he interviews experts in the world of Bitcoin development, privacy, investment and adoption. Launched in November of 2017, the podcast has grown to over 100 episodes with a guest list that is a testament to the diversity of knowledge and opinions that represent the broader Bitcoin community. Expanding his growing list of human interest recordings, documentaries and films Peter has recently launched the Defiance podcast and DefianceTV.

Caitlin Long

Avanti Financial Group, Founder & CEO

22-year Wall Street veteran who has been active in bitcoin and blockchain since 2012. In 2018-20 she led the charge to make her native state of Wyoming an oasis for blockchain companies in the US, where she helped Wyoming enact 20 blockchain-enabling laws. From 2016-18 she jointly spearheaded a blockchain project for delivering market index data to Vanguard as chairman and president of Symbiont, an enterprise blockchain start-up. Caitlin ran Morgan Stanley’s pension solutions business (2007-2016), heldsenior roles at Credit Suisse (1997-2007) and began her career at Salomon Brothers (1994-1997). She is a graduate of Harvard Law School (JD, 1994), the Kennedy School of Government (MPP, 1994) and the University of Wyoming (BA, 1990).

Hunter Horsley

Bitwise Asset Management, CEO

Hunter Horsley is Chief Executive Officer of Bitwise Asset Management. Prior to Bitwise, he was a product manager at Facebook, working on advertiser products including the multibillion-dollar sponsored content ecosystem and ad breaks in videos. Before Facebook, Horlsey was a product manager at Instagram, responsible for multiple advertising products generating several hundred million dollars of revenue. He is a graduate of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, with a B.S. in economics. Recently, Horsley was named a member of Forbes’ 2019 “30 Under 30” list.

Luke Gromen

Forest For The Trees, Founder & President

Luke Gromen has 25 years of experience in equity research, equity research sales, and as a macro/thematic analyst. He is the founder and president of macro/thematic research firm FFTT, LLC, which he founded in early 2014 to address and leverage the opportunity he saw created by applying what clients and former colleagues consistently described as a “unique ability to connect the dots” during a time when he saw an increasing “silo-ing” of perspectives occurring on Wall Street and in corporate America.

FFTT caters to institutions and sophisticated individuals by aggregating a wide variety of macroeconomic, thematic and sector trends in an unconventional manner to identify investable developing economic bottlenecks for his clients. Prior to founding FFTT, Luke was a founding partner of Cleveland Research Company, where he worked from 2006-14. At CRC, Luke worked in sales and edited CRC’s flagship weekly thematic research summary piece (“Straight from the Source”) for the firm’s clients. Prior to that, Luke was a partner at Midwest Research, where he worked in equity research and sales from 1996-2006. While in sales, Luke was a founding editor of Midwest’s widely-read weekly thematic summary (“Heard in the Midwest”) for the firm’s clients, in which he aggregated and combined proprietary research from Midwest with inputs from other sources.

Luke Gromen holds a BBA in Finance and Accounting from the University of Cincinnati and received his MBA from Case Western Reserve University. He earned the CFA designation in 2003.

Meltem Demirors

CoinShares, Chief Strategy Officer

Meltem Demirors is Chief Strategy Officer of CoinShares, an investment firm that manages billions in assets on behalf of a global investor base, and is a trusted partner to investors and entrepreneurs navigating the digital asset ecosystem. Meltem oversees the firm’s managed strategies group and its New York office and leads corporate development.

Previously, she was part of the founding team of Digital Currency Group. As a veteran investor in the digital currency space, she has invested in over 250 companies in the ecosystem.

Meltem is passionate about education and advocacy, and teaches the Oxford Blockchain Strategy Programme and co-chairs the WEF Cryptocurrency Council.