The Classroom

We believe strongly that education can improve long-term investment success.

The investment world can be confusing and intimidating. We all should have received a course in school about investing to help us understand it better. Most of us never did.

So we created our own “continuing education course” for investors that explores:

  • the fundamentals of investing (offers advice on “how-to” and “how-not-to”)
  • the investment landscape (provides context for investment decisions)
  • the behavioral aspects of investing (the goal is control and confidence)

The information provided is:

  • clear and concise—anyone can understand it
  • objective—the goal is to educate, not sell
  • in both written and video form—people learn in different ways

We hope you find The Classroom useful and informative. If you do, please come back and visit us again. We add new lessons on a regular basis.

See our Position Paper, “Can a Robot Be a Fiduciary?”

Investor Education Series Introduction

May 3, 2016

Make It Personal, Investor Education Series

May 3, 2016

Understanding Risk-Investor Education Series

May 3, 2016

The Forum

We believe strongly that good communication is the foundation of good relationships. The following information will help you understand who we are and how we see the world.

Advisor Perspectives

July 10, 2017

Do you get more by paying more? Is bigger really better?


June 21, 2017

If you're thinking about outsourcing, read this first.

Financial Advisor

June 1, 2017

We sometimes forget Robos are not technology companies.


February 28, 2017

Robos no doubt are tireless machines that perform tasks like tax-loss harvesting at a higher frequen


February 10, 2017

Advisors who truly aspire to be part of a respected profession need to oppose the furious efforts to

Financial Advisor

February 1, 2017

The world, as usual, is rapidly changing and we must change with it or be left behind.


January 30, 2017

A new regulatory model is needed for today's—and tomorrow's—robo-advisors.


January 23, 2017

Enough feeble excuses and convoluted rationalizations for delaying DOL rule.


December 15, 2016

Don't fumble your retirement.


December 8, 2016

Building a solid portfolio is only half the battle

Financial Advisor

December 1, 2016

Financial illiteracy is a big problem in America, and it has huge ramifications for advisors.


November 22, 2016

You should be able to demonstrate a reasonable relationship between your fees and the services you d

Advisor Perspectives

September 6, 2016

All investment decisions involve uncertainty. No matter how hard we try, we can’t make it go away.


August 17, 2016

The key to investment success is helping clients understand their environment.

Investment News

August 2, 2016

Instead of giving them a performance edge, we may be digging a performance hole that clients have to

Financial Advisor

July 14, 2016

The traditional AUM fee schedule is a dinosaur.

Advisor Perspectives

June 24, 2016

A blueprint for building the "perfect little portfolio".

Financial Advisor IQ

June 20, 2016

First Ascent’s fee schedule is an eye-catcher.

Advisor Perspectives

June 7, 2016

Learn about the flaws in current risk tolerance assessment practices.

May 10, 2016

How we turned a collection of groundbreaking ideas into a client-focused investment management firm.

May 10, 2016

What happens when you start by asking, "What's best for our clients?"

May 10, 2016

We questioned everything. The result is simple, but elegant portfolios for long-term investors.

May 10, 2016

Meet the team at First Ascent, and hear their stories.

May 10, 2016

Low fees give investors a performance edge.

May 10, 2016

First Ascent's educational program equips investors for success.

Advisor Perspectives, Inc.

April 26, 2016

Learn about common portfolio management practices that harm clients.

Financial Advisor

August 4, 2014

What a fine French restaurant can teach us about serving clients.

Advisor Perspectives

October 22, 2013

A closer look at how “science” and reality are not the same thing in the investment world.

Financial Advisor

July 3, 2013

A lesson in why it is important to continuously examine our most fundamental assumptions.

Financial Advisor

February 20, 2013

Don't let gloom and doom in the headlines drive your investment decisions.

Financial Advisor

February 6, 2013

The problem with trend-following investment systems.

Financial Advisor

January 4, 2013

Academic studies about active managers don't pass the "real world" test.

Financial Advisor

March 30, 2012

To build good portfolios you need the right tools and you must use them correctly.


March 11, 2012

MPT is not broken. It's just used ineptly by many practitioners.

Financial Advisor

February 14, 2012

Tongue-in- cheek commentary about the lack of cooperation among our political leaders.

Financial Advisor

February 3, 2012

Ten rules to help you avoid investment disasters.

Financial Advisor

December 2, 2011

Why it's important to continuously question “truth” in the investment world.

Advisor Perspectives

November 1, 2011

Why betting on the end of the world is a losing investment strategy.

Financial Advisor

September 2, 2011

New research that puts small cap stocks in proper perspective.

Financial Advisor

October 4, 2010

Every advisor who provides personalized financial advice should be subject to the fiduciary standard


January 1, 2005

Just as MDs promote health and wellness, advisors can foster wealth and well-being


December 1, 2004

There's a new approach to building portfolios that helps allay clients' fears.