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The End of Indexing

Six structural mega-trends that threaten passive investing

By Niels Jensen
Cover of The End of Indexing (Hardback) by Niels Jensen Cover of The End of Indexing (Mobile Phone) Cover of The End of Indexing (Tablet)

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About the Author

Niels Jensen

Niels Clemen Jensen has over 30 years of investment banking and investment management experience. He began his career in Copenhagen in 1984 before moving to Sherson Lehman in London in 1986. In 1989 he joined Goldman Sachs and became co-head of its U.S. equity business in Europe in 1992, a post he held until 1996, when he joined Oppenheimer to manage its European business. In 1999 he re-joined ... Read more on Niels Jensen

Contents Listing

About the author
Acknowledgements
Preface

Introduction
1. The Declining Everything
2. The Big Conundrum
3. The End of the Debt Super-Cycle
4. The Retirement of the Baby Boomers
5. The Declining Spending Power of the Middle Classes
6. The Rise of the East
7. The Death of Fossil Fuels
8. Mean Reversion of Wealth-to-GDP
9. The Perfect Storm
10. How to Improve Productivity
11. What's Next?
12. Why Index Investing Will Dwindle

Bibliography
About the author
Acknowledgements
Preface

Introduction
1. The Declining Everything
2. The Big Conundrum
3. The End of the Debt Super-Cycle
4. The Retirement of the Baby Boomers
5. The Declining Spending Power of the Middle Classes
6. The Rise of the East
7. The Death of Fossil Fuels
8. Mean Reversion of Wealth-to-GDP
9. The Perfect Storm
10. How to Improve Productivity
11. What's N ...

Jacket Text

Index-tracking is the flavour of the day - it accounts for around one-third of the total US mutual fund market, and is still growing rapidly. Indexing appears to be unstoppable.

But, in The End of Indexing, investment veteran Niels Jensen presents a different vision. In a forthright and compelling examination of the investment landscape, Jensen argues that the economic environment we are entering will be unsuited to index-tracking strategies.

Jensen identifies six structural mega-trends that are set to disrupt investors around the globe:

1. End of the debt super-cycle
2. Retirement of the baby boomers
3. Declining spending power of the middle classes
4. Rise of the East
5. Death of fossil fuels
6. Mean reversion of wealth-to-GDP

In conjunction, these six themes have the potential to create conditions resembling a perfect storm that will result in low economic growth for decades to come. Investment techniques and methodologies - including passive investing strategies - that have worked so well in the bull market of the last 35 years will no longer deliver acceptable results.

As a new investment approach is called for, The End of Indexing provides investors with a guide to the challenging environment ahead and a warning about the future decline of index-tracking.

Professional Reviews

The lessons learned in the stupendous global bull market of the last 40 years will serve us very poorly in the years ahead. With The End of Indexing, Niels Jensen offers a treasure trove of market insights, presented in a global context, that will help readers reach their goals despite the coming headwinds. Rob Arnott, founder and CEO of Research Affiliates

Niels Jensen is particularly well versed in not only the trends of the markets, but how to take advantage of them. I have worked closely with Niels for over 15 years and I rank him as one of the most astute investors I know. His book, The End of Indexing, it is not only a remarkable study of market trends and economic reasoning, it is done with his inimitable style and grace in writing that makes everything he writes so readable and immediately come to the front of my reading list when it shows up in my inbox. This is a book you're going to want to read more than once. And every time you do you will learn something new and important. John Mauldin, five times bestselling author and chairman of Mauldin Economics.

So often, it seems that analysts and investors are aware of important long-term issues but choose to discount them, and focus instead on short-term ones, that seem more concrete – retaining only a vague sense of concern that they might be missing something. Keynes taught us the dangers of being myopic. So, for example, it is important to consider both short-term ‘momentum’ and long-term ‘value’ when investing: they are, as it were, two sides of the same coin. Niels’ book, and the approach he takes to separating out key long-term structural issues and hammering home their importance, may help to redress the balance. And it may well help a number of investors to improve upon their own approaches. Sushil Wadhwani, Founder of Wadhwani Asset Management

How apt that I just finished “The End of indexing” by Niels Jensen in the midst one of those chilling tropical downpours in Asia. It is indeed a highly readable rainy-day read that pours cold water on the future of passive investing. Niels takes the reader on a comprehensive tour of some depressing megatrends affecting the global economy and asset markets. You don’t even need to buy into every aspect of these to sympathise with his intelligent interpretations. Niels’ vast market experience shines through in his clear translation of trends into investment strategies. His conclusion — that passive investment strategies expose investors to the wrong type of risk at the wrong side of the megatrends, is accompanied by some convincing suggestions regarding where to maintain risk exposures. Gabriel Sterne, Head of Global Macroeconomics, Oxford Economics

An eye-catching title to grab your attention, and the book certainly does not disappoint. Niels Jensen avoids trotting out the old pros and cons of passive investing but instead pursues several big picture, important, interesting themes, focusing on structural mega-trends he says are set to disrupt investors around the world. Nick McBreen, FT Advisor


Media Coverage

Seeking Alpha

Niels Jensen's The End of Indexing: Six structural mega-trends that will threaten passive investment (Harriman House, 2018) is a wonderfully thought-provoking book. It tackles macro issues that ...

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Informed Choice Radio

My guest on the show today has written an excellent new book which takes a look into the future for investors, predicting six structural mega-trends that threaten passive investing.

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Master Investor

... This book is essential reading for anyone interested in getting a head start on the investment trends of tomorrow... Perhaps the most interesting trend covered is the demographic phenomenon of ...

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ValueWalk's ValueTalks hosted by Raul Panganiban

In this episode we discuss his recent book, The End of Indexing: Six Structural Mega-Trends That Threaten Passive Investing.... I encourage everyone to check out his fantastic newsletters and also ...

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FT Adviser

An eye-catching title to grab your attention, and the book certainly does not disappoint. Niels Jensen avoids trotting out the old pros and cons of passive investing but instead pursues several big ...

Read more

MarketWatch

Indeed, passive, indexed investing will at best deliver 0%-5% annually (inflation-adjusted) over the next few decades. Returns for the U.S. are at the lowest end of that forecast range, partly ...

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Citywire.co.uk

Today I would like to share one of the key conclusions I make in my new book The End of Indexing; that ageing of society is going to have a massive impact on all of us in the years to come.

Across ...

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Money Week

The End of Indexing is a thought-provoking read. At the very least, it will force you to reassess your investment strategy and should dissuade you from assuming that the current bull market will last ...

Read more

Stocks & Commodities

Index tracking accounts for around one-third of the total US mutual fund market and is still growing rapidly. However, this author argues that the economic environment we are entering will be ...

Read more

Stocks & Commodities

Index tracking accounts for around one-third of the total US mutual fund market and is still growing rapidly. However, this author argues that the economic environment we are entering will be ...

Read more

MoneyWeek

The End of Indexing is a thought-provoking read. At the very least, it will force you to reassess your investment strategy and should dissuade you from assuming that the current bull market will last ...

Read more

Money Life Show

"I thought this book was fascinating... indexing is taking over the world."

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Forbes.com

If you think holding an S&P 500 Index fund through thick and thin will produce attractive long-term results, you might feel otherwise after reading this well-researched, common-sense book.

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