Steven Jon Kaplan

Series 65
Personal Finance, Retirement, Investing
“As the CEO of True Contrarian, Steven Kaplan is committed to continually researching the latest developments in the global financial markets.”

True Contrarian Investments LLC

Job Title:



Steven Jon Kaplan began in August 1996 as a weekly blog and later expanded this to a daily newsletter with intraday updates in February 2006.  He has been trading his own account, and those of family and close friends, since 1981, and handles separately managed accounts for qualified clients. As a registered investment advisor, Steve charges a 20 % performance fee on net profits and no management fees.  He has been quoted in Barron's, Market Watch, Dow Jones Newswires, Seeking Alpha, Kitco, and elsewhere and has appeared on Market Watch cable TV with Stacey Delo.

Steven's goal is to identify those assets which are farthest away from the best estimates of their realistic fair-value levels. This is done through designing algorithms which examine the most reliable signals in the financial markets. These include insider buying relative to selling; investor inflows and outflows; media and advisors' sentiment; and intraday behavior especially near multi-decade tops and bottoms. He studies historical interrelationships to mathematically identify which divergences from typical behavior are pointing the way toward essential trend changes.

Steve enjoys running with the New York Road Runners Club, composing and performing on piano and voice, writing stories, and traveling to unique places.  He enjoys hearing from anyone about a wide range of topics, so please let him know what you think about the web site or whatever is on your mind.  You can find his music on ReverbNation.


BES, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, The Johns Hopkins University

Assets Under Management:

$24 million

Fee Structure:

20% of net profits; zero management fees.

CRD Number:


  • True Contrarian Investments LLC
  • Steven Jon Kaplan explains why investors repeatedly fool themselves.
  • Steven Jon Kaplan: April 2010 conference
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    Financial Planning, Retirement Savings
What bucket of money do I tap into first when I retire?
100% of people found this answer helpful

That sounds like a simple question, but the answer is complicated. It depends a lot on how much your total income varies from year to year. As a general rule, you will pay the lowest overall taxes if your income is exactly the same each year; they used to have a form called Schedule G where you could smooth out your income, but that was abolished in 1986. Therefore, you should attempt to do that yourself; when your income is lower than usual as you get into November and December, increase it by filling out your marginal tax bracket. For example, if you can withstand another 20 thousand in income in 2017 before you jump from the 15% to the 25% federal tax bracket, take 17 or 18 thousand out of your 401(k) or any other non-Roth retirement account during 2017. On the other hand, if your income is higher in a particular year and you are already in the 25% tax bracket, don't withdraw any money from a retirement account (you won't have to until you're 70-1/2).

By smoothing out your income and using up the lower tax brackets, you will save money on taxes in the long run, even if you pay more in any given year.

April 2017
    Investing, Stocks
What books do you recommend for security and market analysis?
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May 2017
    Personal Finance, Taxes
How should I prepare for the "biggest tax cut in history?"
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May 2017
    Banking, Investing, International / Global
What is the process of transferring funds from an offshore account to my US bank account?
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May 2017
    Financial Planning, Retirement Savings, Social Security
How do I maximize our savings and Social Security for retirement?
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May 2017