Level Financial Advisors bases its investment strategy on sound and rigorous academic and financial research that has been ongoing for over 40 years and which has been subject to real world tests and discussion and criticism among top researchers (that’s the way science works). Here is a list of influential research papers that we rely on and that have stood the test of time. We use the insights in these papers in forming your portfolios. You will find these papers cited over and over again in the literature. We have included links to the articles but beware: unless you have a sound basis in statistical math and financial concepts you will find them slow going! (Note: You will notice many of the studies look at mutual fund manager performance. There are two good reasons. One, they are among the highest paid and presumably the brightest professional investors, and, two, their performance numbers are publicly available and audited).


Brown, Stephen J. and William N. Goetzmann. 1995. Performance persistence. Journal of Finance 50:679- 698

Carhart, Mark M. 1997. On persistence in mutual fund performance. Journal of Finance 52: 57-82.

Fama, Eugene F., and Kenneth R. French. 1993. Common risk factors in the returns on stocks and bonds. Journal of Financial Economics 33:3-56

——- Luck versus Skill in Mutual Fund Performance, Nov. 30, 2009.

———– Why Active Investing Is a Negative Sum Game, June 30, 2009.

French, Kenneth R. The Cost of Active Investing. Working Paper, April 2008

Goetzmann, William N., and Roger G. Ibbotson. 1994. Do winners repeat? Journal of Portfolio Management 20:9-18.

Malkiel, Burton G. 1995. Returns from investing in equity mutual funds 1971-1991. Journal of Finance 50:549-572.

Odean Terrance. 1999. Do investors trade too much? American Economic Review. 89:1279-1298

——– 2000. Trading is hazardous to your wealth: The common stock investment performance of individual investors. With Brad Barber, Journal of Finance. 55: 773-806.

Sharpe, William F. 1991. The Arithmetic of Active Management. Financial Analysts Journal 47: 7-9