What’s in your small-cap fund? Try Boeing or Pfizer

What’s in your small-cap fund? Try Boeing or Pfizer

8:01am EDT

By David Randall

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Investors in small-cap funds may be in for a big surprise. Many portfolio managers hold heavyweight stocks like Verizon Communications, Boeing and Pfizer in funds that claim to focus almost exclusively on shares of small-capitalization companies. Overall, 211 out of the 476 actively managed small-cap funds tracked by Lipper own companies with market capitalizations of $10 billion or more. That is more than twice the size of companies that Lipper defines as the focus of small-cap funds. Investors in these actively managed funds – which include those from such well-known firms as Gabelli, Charles Schwab and T. Rowe Price – have several reasons to worry, fund experts and financial advisers say. Read more of this post

Three Differences Between Managers and Leaders: Counting value vs Creating value; Leading people vs Managing work

Three Differences Between Managers and Leaders

by Vineet Nayar  |  10:01 AM August 2, 2013

A young manager accosted me the other day. “I’ve been reading all about leadership, have implemented several ideas, and think I’m doing a good job at leading my team. How will I know when I’ve crossed over from being a manager to a leader?” he wanted to know. I didn’t have a ready answer and it’s a complicated issue, so we decided to talk the next day. I thought long and hard, and came up with three tests that will help you decide if you’ve made the shift from managing people to leading them.

Counting value vs Creating value. You’re probably counting value, not adding it, if you’re managing people. Only managers count value; some even reduce value by disabling those who add value. If a diamond cutter is asked to report every 15 minutes how many stones he has cut, by distracting him, his boss is subtracting value. By contrast, leaders focuses on creating value, saying: “I’d like you to handle A while I deal with B.” He or she generates value over and above that which the team creates, and is as much a value-creator as his or her followers are. Leading by example and leading by enabling people are the hallmarks of action-based leadership. Read more of this post

China Policy Lender Reprimands Bankers for Playing Golf during work hours

China Policy Lender Reprimands Bankers for Playing Golf

China Development Bank Corp., the world’s largest policy lender, reprimanded bankers for playing golf during work hours as the Communist Party cracks down on extravagance by officials and state-owned company executives.

The lender investigated the issue after receiving tips from the public, according to an article by the Communist Party’s official People’s Daily newspaper that was posted to China Development Bank’s website. The bankers involved have been “solemnly criticized,” it said. Read more of this post

South Africa’s Post-Apartheid Failure in Shantytowns

South Africa’s Post-Apartheid Failure in Shantytowns

Cecily Ghall speaks with pride about the neat, whitewashed two-room shack she built in an acquaintance’s backyard using scrap wooden planks and asbestos plates. It’s warm and — important in the midst of a wet South African winter — dry, she says. But it isn’t hers. Ghall, 47, has waited for a government-provided home since 2008, when she and her daughter Deonie, then 13, moved to Kurland Village, a predominantly mixed-race settlement of about 2,000 residents. Less than 10 miles (16 kilometers) away is Plettenberg Bay, a seaside resort where homes selling for more than 15 million rand ($1.5 million) are common. “I don’t know how they decide who gets a house,” said Ghall, who works part-time as a domestic servant. “I’ve been on the waiting list all this time, but I never hear anything. In the meantime, I have to live in someone’s backyard and I can get kicked out at any time.” Read more of this post

South Korea’s students rank among the best in the world, and its top teachers can make a fortune. Can the U.S. learn from this academic superpower?

August 2, 2013, 7:05 p.m. ET

The $4 Million Teacher

South Korea’s students rank among the best in the world, and its top teachers can make a fortune. Can the U.S. learn from this academic superpower?



Kim Ki-Hoon, who teaches in a private after-school academy, earns most of his money from students who watch his lectures online. ‘The harder I work, the moreImake,’ he says. ‘I like that.’

Kim Ki-hoon earns $4 million a year in South Korea, where he is known as a rock-star teacher—a combination of words not typically heard in the rest of the world. Mr. Kim has been teaching for over 20 years, all of them in the country’s private, after-school tutoring academies, known as hagwons. Unlike most teachers across the globe, he is paid according to the demand for his skills—and he is in high demand. Mr. Kim works about 60 hours a week teaching English, although he spends only three of those hours giving lectures. His classes are recorded on video, and the Internet has turned them into commodities, available for purchase online at the rate of $4 an hour. He spends most of his week responding to students’ online requests for help, developing lesson plans and writing accompanying textbooks and workbooks (some 200 to date). “The harder I work, the more I make,” he says matter of factly. “I like that.” Read more of this post

Japan has not learnt the lessons of its lost decade

August 1, 2013 4:20 pm

Japan has not learnt the lessons of its lost decade

By Peter Tasker

Success is more likely if monetary and fiscal policy pull together, writes Peter Tasker

Debate is heating up in Tokyo about the advisability of increasing Japan’s consumption tax. Which should come first – economic growth or fiscal reconstruction? The prime minister must decide in a matter of weeks. I’m sitting in a Roppongi bar discussing the subject with a knowledgeable Japanese bureaucrat. “It’s essential to raise taxes,” he says, cradling a well-aged Islay malt. “If we don’t, investors will lose confidence and our bond market will collapse.” “Aren’t you risking a serious recession?” I asked. He replied: “A temporary blip, maybe. But the strengthening of public finances will be good for future growth.” The year was 1997. The Asian crisis was already in full swing. Japan’s own banking system was on the brink of collapse. Yet officials had convinced the prime minister of the day, the popular and dynamic Ryutaro Hashimoto, that raising taxes on consumers was a priority. Read more of this post

Indonesia’s consumer and natural resources boom falters

Last updated: August 2, 2013 12:53 pm

Indonesia’s consumer and natural resources boom falters

By Ben Bland in Jakarta

Mitra Adiperkasa, the retail group that operates Burger King, Zara and a host of other international food and fashion brands in Indonesia, has ridden the wave of middle-class consumption that transformed Southeast Asia’s biggest economy into one of the world’s hottest emerging markets. But the group is scaling back its expansion plans and capital expenditure next year, for the first time since 2009, as Indonesian companies contend with problems including rising inflation and slowing Chinese growth. “The main challenge for us is rising costs,” says Fetty Kwartati, head of investor relations at Mitra Adiperkasa, with salary and rental expenses increasing more quickly than sales. The company plans to open 60,000-70,000 square metres of new space next year, down from 90,000 square metres this year. Read more of this post

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