Marc Roth founded JMR Capital Management as an independent Registered Investment Advisor in 1994.  After working in the securities industry in London in the 1980’s, working with a mix of high net worth individuals and British institutional investors, it became very clear that the best path for an individual investor was to be treated along the same lines as an institutional client:  creating value through excellent research, fair pricing for your services and eliminating conflicts of interest through compensation that put the advisor on the same side of the table as the client.

After returning to San Francisco, I proposed this arrangement to the Wall Street brokerage firm where I was employed and was essentially laughed out of the room.  Our business, I was told is the creation and distribution of high-margin investment products and the generation of trading commissions, known in the trade as “gross production.”

A few years later following several lawsuits, Wall Street reluctantly began to allow their retail brokers to charge asset based management fees but they are still very much in their core business of creating and distributing their own investment products.

Independent thinking and understanding the importance of unbiased research is something that came out of my prior career in academia before entering the investment business in 1982.

After seven years on the faculty teaching literature and drama at UC Berkeley, Marc left academe for the investment business and have gained valuable experience by going through several market cycles and learning from some of the best minds in the field.

From 1987 to 1990, Marc was a Vice President, Institutional Equity Sales at Mabon Nugent International in London where he was responsible for research relationships and business growth with investment funds in the UK and Europe. From 1990 to 1995, Marc was a Vice President in the Investment Services Group of Donaldson, Lufkin and Jenrette in San Francisco and London where he advised both institutional investors and private clients.

Marc was fortunate to have worked for a leading US investment firm in London during and immediately following the 1987 stock market crash.  His clients were investment managers based in London and Scotland who had been long-term value investors in the US and Europe.  They did their own independent analysis with input from sources they trusted. Quite often they were small shops—one portfolio manager perhaps with an associate and they had remained small by design.  As one client said at the time:  “I don’t need to spend too many hours of my day attending meetings.”

These were some of the first investment managers who saw the 1987 stock market crash as a buying opportunity.  In this regard a very astute observation from a prominent US investment banker assessing an earlier similar financial dislocation comes to mind:

Considering your question whether it is advisable to start buying stocks now, I shall answer you as I should very few others.  Naturally good stocks are cheap if one has the patience to stick to them.  The market may still drop slightly but the quotations towards the end of the year will be much higher. Keep away from all trash though; more money can be made with greater security in intrinsically good securities.

Jacob Schiff, Kuhn Loeb and Co., in a letter to the financial advisor to King Edward VII, May 1884

At JMR Capital Management, this brand of independent thinking governs the process of doing what is right for each and every client.

Contact Us