Robert Olstein is the manager of the Olstein All Cap Value Fund (OFALX). As of December 6, 2013 OFLAX had about $650 million of assets under management - an amazing figure given the fund's expense ratio of 2.3 percent. You would think that given that high an expense ratio that the fund must have generated great returns in order to justify the investment. And given the fee, it shouldn't come as a surprise that when Olstein was asked about index funds he angrily responded: "What do you mean I can't beat the market?"
In a December 7, 2013 interview with the New York Times Olstein stated that index funds give you mediocrity. And while he acknowledged that most active managers underperform, he aims for much better. He stated: "the rise of index funds is part of a trend toward sloppy investing - a willingness to follow the herd."
In case you've been out at the malls and haven't had time to keep up with the goings on in the stock market, it is safe to say that "taper talk" has been all the rage of late. Whenever a Fed official or a piece of economic data suggests that the Fed might need to start tapering the latest QE program before March of 2014, stocks fall. And then, as you might suspect, when the data or somebody from the FOMC implies that there won't be any "Dectaper," yep, you guessed it; stocks rise.
This "taper talk" dance has been going on for quite some time and has been largely responsible for the vast majority of the intraday volatility seen in the past couple of months. But the good news is that the volatility caused by Fed officials voicing their opinions on what ought to happen next is very likely