One of my favourite quotes is by George Box: “All models are wrong, but some are useful“. If you work with models and understand their place in the universe, you may already agree with this too. However, there is more than one type of wrong, and while it is not always possible to tell which […]
I haven’t discussed measurable marketing initiatives yet, which is a shame because it’s one of the most important “fuzzy business decisions” that most companies assume don’t require hard analysis, measurement and good business judgement. There is a long-standing (and important) debate around whether creative advertisements achieve the stated objective of the advertising campaign. I don’t […]
The book, “Freakonomics”, has become something of a pop icon amongst certain groups. The Stevens (well, Steven and Stephen, Levitt and Dubner respectively) cleverly show how economic analysis can shed light on some interesting everyday (and not so everyday) problems and observations. I thoroughly enjoyed it while not agreeing with each and every word. Entertaining, […]
When should companies hedge their exposure to financial and commodity risks? Is it always wrong or always right or somewhere in between? This topic arises every now and again when a goldmine is found to have made losses (and we’ll distinguish shortly between different types of “losses”) as a result of gold price increases when […]
Life insurers in South Africa have been stumbling over each other to issue long-term debt. The reason? Ostensibly to reduce their WACC and generate greater value for shareholders. Common sense tells us that this is a sensible thing to do. Companies all over the world have been using debt capital to reduce their WACC by […]
Not quite rockstar material yet, but my fame is spreading, at least in The Actuary, the magazine of the UK’s actuarial profession. Check out the mention of my involvemet in the launch of the South African version of the Actuarial Modelling course (CA2) in Pretoria during July. Overall, it went pretty smoothly – results are […]
Welcome to my blog. Only just set up the system and getting to know how it all fits together. Check back soon for my first post.