Emma Muhleman

Investing, Taxes, Small Business
“Emma Muhleman, Junior Portfolio Manager, combines her expertise in forensic accounting with her background in traditional long/short equity analysis to identify earnings shenanigans and deteriorating businesses ahead of the market.”

Ascend Investment Partners

Job Title:

Senior Investment Strategist and Junior PM


Emma Muhleman, CFA, CPA is a Junior Portfolio Manager and Macroeconomic Strategist at Ascend Investment Partners. Emma and her team specialize in understanding the dynamics that underlie and drive investment performance in today’s global financial markets. Following the global financial crisis, expansionary monetary policies of unprecedented scale implemented by major central banks across the globe (primarily those of the so-called “core economies”) have completely redefined the ways in which the global markets operate. At Ascend, it is precisely Emma and her colleagues' unique expertise in the “macroeconomics of today” that enables them to evaluate the domestic and global landscape through a lens misunderstood by the masses, leading to abundant investment opportunity.

Emma's professional experience to date includes working for several years picking stocks (long and short) according to a global macro, event-driven long/short equity strategy. She began her career performing business valuations for Deloitte's valuation consulting group, and thereafter worked as a stock picker for Allianz SE, one of the largest global investment managers with total AUM exceeding $1.7 trillion. She has also developed several client relationships of her own within the private equity (PE) and venture capital (VC) investment realm ranging from Roth Capital's Venture Group to KKR and several others, and has extensive experience performing investment analysis and due diligence, negotiation and deal structuring as part of the evaluation process associated with Leveraged Buyouts (LBOs), Early- and Growth-Equity Stage Venture investments, and potential buyouts of distressed loan portfolios and/or turnarounds of businesses under duress.


MS, Accounting and Finance, University of Notre Dame
MS, Taxation, University of Notre Dame
Harvard, School of Engineering & Applied Sciences (SEAS)


The opinion expressed represents the views of the author and should not be seen as the opinion or views of Ascend Investment Partners. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only and is not an offer to buy or sell or a solicitation of any offer to buy or sell any security or other financial instrument or to participate in any trading strategy. Past performance is not necessarily a guide to future performance.

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February 2017
    Banking, International / Global, Investing

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    Debt, Personal Finance
How will medical debt affect my credit score?
50% of people found this answer helpful

When it comes to medical related debt payments, whether incurred due to the fact that you are uninsured or because your insurance company refuses to pay anything until, say, you've already paid out the first $5K (a frequent tactic employed by health insurers, of which many policyholders are unaware), generally speaking, non-payment takes far longer to impact your credit when it comes to emergency medical expenses than if you were to, for instance, dodge your car payment for months or stop paying your rent.

But this is critical, YOU SHOULD TALK TO THE DEBT COLLECTOR, ASAP. Again, as it relates to debt incurred as a result of hospital bills for which you simply don't have the capacity (at present) to pay, debt collectors are far more generous with respect to the timing of payment. They'd rather get payment out of you than report the unpaid bills to the rating agencies and give up on ultimate collection of the bill. That said, the monies you owe are not going to disappear. What's most important to the debt collectors is that you communicate with them, let them know you are AWARE of the amount you owe, and that you intend to pay down the bills as soon as possible. As I have come to understand, if they know you intend to pay the bill, and you keep in connection with them, debt collectors will allow you significant time before it hits your credit score (if you stay in touch, they suggested they'd allow up to two years before they'd report anything). But if you simply ignore the bill, and ignore the debt collector, this will eventually come back to bite you on your credit report.

It's a little surprising in the first place that it took the hospital (or other medical agency) 18 months to sell the debts to a collector, but again, I can't stress it more, you need to contact the debt collection agency and let them know you're aware of the bill and intend to pay it down (as you really have no other choice, other than to allow it to damage your (currently stellar) credit score).

I strongly recommend you contact the debt collection agency, explain your current situation and indicate that you intend to work with them to get the bills paid off. This will prevent a hit to your credit score, which could happen tomorrow for all we know, you need to get in touch with them. Unlike what you might expect from a typical "debt collector," those pursuing individuals related to unpaid emergency medical expenses are surprisingly friendly and will work with you to eventually deal with the payment, get it off your books (so to speak) and move on. 

As an Insolvency & Reorganization/Turnaround specialist, I've stepped in at companies on the brink of an involuntary Chapter 11 bankruptcy situation (where the company's creditors, typically vendors, file bankruptcy on behalf of the company in an attempt to reclaim anything they can from the insolvent debtor). In these situations, I represented the debtor and had to deal with the other (DARK) side of the debt collection agencies. These debt collectors are RELENTLESS, will call and email several times daily, harassing you to death with threats of legal action. They'll even attempt to get the contact information of former employees at the firm, their relatives, it's insane. This is not what you should expect to encounter with regards to personal, medical-related debt collectors. They tend to be much easier to deal with, and will work with you.

So, in the end, don't be shy or intimidated by the fact that a debt collection agency is bothering you. Instead, address the issue head on by giving them a call (like, now), explaining the situation and your current capacity to pay, and work out a timeline for which you'll pay down the obligation. As to the extent to which you can negotiate the bills down, I am unaware but I suspect you'll find there's little wiggle-room to get concessions from the collection agency (especially without an attorney). And in your case, it's unlikely you'd be able to find an attorney willing to take the case since the dispute is over a mere $3,000, and you admittedly were not insured when the incident occurred.

So please, save your credit score, and contact the debt collector.

I really hope you take this advice, as so many make the mistake of allowing their credit to go awry early in life and don't understand the importance of maintaining a good credit score. In my view, your credit score is of utmost importance, so I can't stress it enough, work with the agency and get the bill paid down over time.

Hope this helps. I know your situation is unique, so if you want any further guidance, feel free to contact me. My details are on my profile.


Emma Muhleman, CFA, CPA

March 2017
How should I look to invest excess cash later in life without an immediate need for short-term gains?
33% of people found this answer helpful
March 2017
    International / Global
Can currency value be used to determine the development of a country?
67% of people found this answer helpful
March 2017
    ETFs, International / Global
Is there an Index or ETF that I can use a benchmark for foreign currencies?
March 2017
When a company buys back shares in a private deal, does it show up in the daily volume?
0% of people found this answer helpful
March 2017