David Harper

David Harper, CFA, FRM, is the founder of Bionic Turtle, which he uses to help students and aspiring professionals prepare for financial certification exams - and develop career-related skills - with his unique movie tutorials.


He's been a loyal "Investopedian" since 2003 and he helped to create the very first (and very successful) Investopedia Advisor portfolios.


He occasionally conducts in-depth research on small cap technology companies and rents himself out for valuation work or as an expert witness. He enjoys spreadsheets and derivatives, but if he is required to work with attorneys, he charges extra.


Before he started his own gig, he consulted for lots of public company boards, where he learned that companies look entirely different from the inside.


His first rule of investing? "Do lots of homework, dig deep or seriously consider not playing. But digging deep only earns you into ignorance, more or less. Don't forget: You'll never know what's really going on. Dragons be thar but, alas, nobody draws them on the map for you."


He writes a little bit of code and fancies himself handy with CSS, ActionSript, XML and Visual Basic. He is inspired by e-learning ("the next big thing - bigger than robots"), open source, Adobe's Flash ("AJAX is a temporary fix - unless complexity turns you on"), good design, and newspapers ("because you cannot easily replace a seasoned storyteller filtered by a professional editor").

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  1. Markets

    Using Historical Volatility To Gauge Future Risk

    Use these calculations to uncover the risk involved in your investments.
  2. Markets

    The Uses And Limits Of Volatility

    Check out how the assumptions of theoretical risk models compare to actual market performance.
  3. Accelerating Returns With Continuous Compounding
    Bonds & Fixed Income

    Accelerating Returns With Continuous Compounding

    Investopedia explains the natural log and exponential functions used to calculate this value.
  4. thinkstock|istock
    Economics

    Understanding Supply-Side Economics

    Does the amount of goods and services produced set the pace for economic growth? Here are the arguments.
  5. Options & Futures

    Getting To Know The Stock Exchanges

    Here are the answers to all the questions you have about stock exchanges but are too afraid to ask!
  6. Bonds & Fixed Income

    Corporate Bonds: An Introduction To Credit Risk

    Corporate bonds offer higher yields, but it's important to evaluate the extra risk involved before you buy.
  7. Fundamental Analysis

    Find The Right Fit With Probability Distributions

    Discover a few of the most popular probability distributions and how to calculate them.
  8. Options & Futures

    Contango Vs. Normal Backwardation

    Learn about the futures curve and what its shape means for hedgers and speculators.
  9. Active Trading

    Understanding Liquidity Risk

    Make sure that your trades are safe by learning how to measure the liquidity risk.
  10. Charts & Patterns

    Introduction To Counterparty Risk

    Unlike a funded loan, the exposure from a credit derivative is complicated. Find out everything you need to know about counterparty risk.
  11. Active Trading

    What Is Warren Buffett's Investing Style?

    Learn the main principles that Warren Buffet uses in assessing a company. His take on value investing may surprise you.
  12. Home & Auto

    How To Analyze Real Estate Investment Trusts

    REITs are much like dividend-paying companies, but analyzing them requires consideration of the accounting treatment of property.
  13. Active Trading

    How Companies Use Derivatives To Hedge Risk

    Derivatives can reduce the risks associated with changes in foreign exchange rates, interest rates and commodity prices.
  14. Options & Futures

    Calculating The Equity Risk Premium

    See the model in action with real data and evaluate whether its assumptions are valid.
  15. Options & Futures

    An Introduction To Value at Risk (VAR)

    Volatility is not the only way to measure risk. Learn about the "new science of risk management".
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