Canadian Investment Review

Global Featured Speaker, Gerald Smith

Written by Jennifer Hughey on Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010 at 8:51 am

story_images_headshot-Gerald-SmithPlans sponsors have been inundated with a raft of new strategies claiming to offer the perfect solution to their asset structure. Has the investment world really changed or are the traditional ways of investing still as rewarding as ever? Why not return to a traditional approach to investing?

At the 15th Annual Global Investment Conference, Gerald Smith, Deputy Chief Investment Officer with Baillie Gifford, will discuss how the following still apply. That markets are not efficient and genuine active management works in the long run; volatility is not risk – plan sponsors should focus on businesses with good fundamentals and maintain a sensible level of diversity; and investment is not physics and that most purely statistical approaches are self defeating. The key, according to Smith, is to maximize the likelihood of investing in a few big winners because most companies will still underperform.

Gerald graduated with an Masters in Philosophy from St. Andrews University (including University of California, Berkeley in 1982/83) and bachelor of philosophy from Brasenose College, Oxford. He joined Baillie Gifford in 1987 and worked in the North American, Continental European and Japanese investment departments before moving to head up the Asia Pacific department in 1995.

He headed the emerging markets investment department, since its creation in 2001 until 2009. He is a member of the firm’s general Investment Policy Committee and is chairman of the Emerging Markets Investment Policy Committee. Gerald became a partner of the firm in 1998 and was promoted to Deputy CIO in 2009 and is currently involved in their global opportunities strategy.

For more information about the conference, please visit Global Investment Conference.

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