Paul Smith, CFA, President and CEO of CFA Institute.
Paul Smith joined CFA Institute in 2012 as managing director for Asia Pacific, overseeing its expansion into China and India. He later assumed the leadership of its Institutional Partnerships division, which is responsible for engagement with key firms, groups, and associations in the global investment industry. He was appointed president and CEO in January 2015.He brings extensive leadership experience in the investment management industry, having held a variety of positions in major financial centers over 30 years. Smith started his career in asset management at Ermitage International, an alternative funds management company, progressively taking up roles of increasing responsibility across Europe (London, Paris, and Dublin) over 11 years — the last seven as the firm’s CEO. He has also pursued entrepreneurial roles, most recently as founder and CEO of the Hong Kong-based hedge fund investment management firm Asia Alternative Asset Partners for six years prior to joining CFA Institute. Asian Investor magazine named him one of the 25 Most Influential People in Asian Hedge Funds. With over 18 years of experience in Asia, Smith is active in the region’s investment community as an Executive Committee member of the Alternative Investment Management Association in Hong Kong. He has also served on the board of a number of Asia-based funds over the years. Aside from being a CFA charterholder, he is also a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales, and worked as an auditor at Pricewaterhouse in London for four years early in his career. He holds a master’s degree in history from Oxford University.
Mr. Richard C. Koo is the Chief Economist of Nomura Research Institute. He is best known for developing the concept of balance sheet recession which is now widely used around the world to explain post-1990 Japanese and post-2007 Western economies. He has also advised successive prime ministers on how best to deal with Japan's economic and banking problems.
Before joining Nomura in 1984, Mr. Koo, a US citizen, was an economist with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (1981-84). Prior to that, he was a Doctoral Fellow of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (1979-81).
Author of many books on Japanese economy and economics in general, his 2008 book “The Holy Grail of Macroeconomics - Lessons from Japan’s Great Recession” (John Wiley & Sons) has been translated into and sold in six different languages. His latest book “The Escape from Balance Sheet Recession and the QE Trap” (John Wiley & Sons) was published in October 2014.
Mr. Koo holds BAs in Political Science and Economics from the University of California at Berkeley (1976), and MA in Economics from the Johns Hopkins University (1979). From 1998 to 2010, Mr. Koo was a visiting professor at Waseda University in Tokyo.
Currently he is serving as a Senior Advisor to Center for Strategic and International Studies (Washington D.C.). He is also an Advisory Board Member of Institute for New Economic Thinking (N.Y.C.).
Mr. Harold de Boer is a Managing Director at Transtrend B.V., responsible for Research and Development. He is the architect of Transtrend's Diversified Trend Program (DTP), one of the world's leading managed futures programs.
He was born and raised on a dairy farm in Drenthe (a province in the northern part of the Netherlands). He graduated in 1990 with a Master's degree in Applied Mathematics from the University of Twente in the Netherlands. In the final phase of his studies, while working on what would later become Transtrend, he became fascinated by the concept of leptokurtosis – or 'fat tails' – in probability distributions, a topic which has inspired him throughout his career.
Mr. de Boer has led the research effort on DTP over the past 25 years and has successfully navigated the many financial crises and technological evolutions over this period.
His great passion for mathematics is also evidenced by his involvement in the Dutch Mathematics Olympiad and his work to promote mathematics among high school students.
His approach to markets is best described as a combination of a farmer's common sense and mathematics. You can get a boy out of a farm, but you will never get the farm out of the boy. Surely not in Harold's case. ("De boer" is Dutch for "the farmer".) In every marketplace he recognizes a hen house, or a herd of cows. He tends to use farm-related analogies to describe and explain complex processes. Especially those with a behavioural aspect.
In previous presentations, Mr. de Boer has shared his views on a wide range of topics such as risk management, liquidity, flash crashes, high frequency trading and the shortcomings of commonly applied methodologies like VaR. His presentations are characterized by his direct and unconventional style, putting things in perspective.
Janneke Willemse is a presenter, journalist and a keen investor. She presented broadcast WNL on Sunday and Money on 7 Ditches TV and frequently moderates seminars and debates. In 2014 Janneke was nominated for the Upcoming Talent Award at Gouden Televizier-Ring.
Janneke started out in 2000 as a financial journalist at GPD. From 2007 on, she was the editor in chief of Belegger.nl. In 2013 Janneke started the successful website BlondjesBeleggenBeter.nl , a nod to the many studies showing that women invest better than men.