Bearing a bear market is tough work. Downward trajectories are not an excuse for getting off the ball , and here’s what you can do to prepare for the inevitable return of the bulls.
When I wrote about what to do when the inevitable crypto-winter blew over us I had no idea that bitcoin-meltdown was so very imminent. I had even less of an idea that it would be accompanied by a feisty bear market that has sent return expectations deep into the red across the board.
If shorting and defensive hedging isn’t your thing bear markets offer little to do apart from waiting for the headwinds to subside. This in turn leaves many anxious hands burnt by playing with capricious instruments like VIX (haven’t we all…) or left all too idle for their owner’s comfort.
If you’re tired of hunkering down I have great news: there’s never been a better time to take a deep dive into fintech and catch up with the hottest industry trends such as data (de)commodification, radical automatization and independent advisory services.
Here’s my complimentary syllabus for any and all interested in making the best of the downtime.
Class 1: Blink and you’ll miss it – the rise of independent advisory and radical automatization
As the fintech industry matures we’re seeing increasingly sophisticated products and platforms hit the market.
Although machine learning and AI are by no means new to portfolio management, truly scalable portfolio personalization and intelligent AI concierge platforms that curate instead of simply index are few and far between.
The field is rapidly developing however and now’s your time to catch the train before it’s left the station.
If you’re looking for a place to start you can check out Vise which has been around since 2016 and offers automated investment customization management for financial advisors. Brooklyn Investment Group is a newer entrant to the market but their Bespoke AI platform is already making the right kind of waves.
After you’re done with the demos it’s time to embark on your first homework assignment of the day and see how the sausage is really made.
If you’re up for the challenge, Udemy offers courses such as The AI Stock Trading System Course and AI automated Investing using Robo advisors that’ll get you up and conversational within days and down-right dangerous with the underlying tech at the end of the course.
Code at your own peril – you might end up liking it.
Class 2: Brushing up on industry trends: DeFi and ESG investing
By now you should already be familiar with DeFi and what all those alt-coins, ape-faced NFTs and smart contracts are all about. If not, I strongly recommend taking e.g. MIT’s Economics of Blockchain and Digital Assets ex-ed course which starts in October.
Another unmissable trend of our times is the recently rehashed intellectual feud between profit and the planet, previously played out by Friedman and Freeman.
As of today, the opposing corners are now represented by Larry Fink and Vivek Ramaswamy and the fight is looking to be entertaining.
Class 3: Next big bet: (de)commodification of data
A few years ago every attorney and their uncle were getting into data privacy, and for good reason. The legal side of the industry has matured to a point where even the certifying bodies and auditors are well-fed, but on the finance end things remain in an exciting state of flux.
The broad industry trend here is the (de)commodification of data, and what you really should keep your eye on is end-user empowerment and access to retail data markets.
As the overall sentiment on data privacy is tightening the jig is all but up for Facebook and co. who have successfully hoarded end-user data without offering user-facing methods for control and commercialization.
Given the saliva-inducing size of the markets involved you can bet your bottom dollar that countless grad-school-drop-outs-to-be are coding away in hopes of becoming the go-to platform for end-users in commercializing their data.
For extra credit, be sure to catch up on the recent developments in data privacy and fintech and reflect on what solutions are right behind the adjacent possible. A+ for everyone who creates a MeetUp group to strategize and share ideas.
Let me know once your seed round starts so we can all get in on the ride, and whatever you do remember not to simple stand on the sidelines.