You can’t buy better publicity than this: Writer Michael Lewis in Portfolio on why Santa Monica fund manager Dimensional Fund Advisors rules.
The day I arrive at D.F.A.’s offices, I find 150 financial advisers in a glass box, waiting to be educated in a seminar that lays out the D.F.A. way. The coffee and pastries are free, the men and women wear suits, and the conference room has the antiseptic feel of any other 21st-century firm. But the atmosphere is entirely different from Wall Street. Thereâ€™s no chitchat about the market, even though it has been bouncing around wildly. Instead, two speakers discuss how, knowing what we now know, anyone could present himself as a stock-picking guru. “If you put a thousand people in barrels and push them over Niagara Falls,” one of them says, “some of them will survive. And if you take those guys and push them over again, some of them will survive. And theyâ€™ll write books about how to survive being pushed over Niagara Falls in a barrel.”
The other speaker paces back and forth in the well at the front of the room. “Have you seen the show Mad Money?” he says. “It’s repulsive.”