The Wall Street Journal this morning publishes an op-ed by Burton Malkiel arguing that U.S. investors should have 10% of their portfolios allocated to China. The Journal identifies him as follows: "Mr. Malkiel is a professor of economics at Princeton University. This op-ed was adapted from the upcoming 10th edition of his book "A Random Walk Down Wall Street," out this month by W.W. Norton."
What the Journal does not disclose to readers is that Mr. Malkiel is the chief investment officer of Alphashares, LLC, "an investment management firm dedicated to providing investors with strategies and products that allow them to participate in China's economic boom."
The Journal op-ed concludes, "Well diversified, relatively low-expense index funds that trade as ETFs should prove to be useful vehicles for individual investors to benefit from China's continued growth."
Conveniently enough, Alphashares is in the business of designing China indexes for fund companies to license.
Mr. Malkiel may be right about investing in China, or he may be wrong. The fact that he has a business interest may make his argument more credible — he's putting his money where his mouth is — or less credible — he's just "talking his book." But at the very least you'd think it's something that Journal readers might want to learn from the Journal itself rather than having to rely on an outside service like FutureOfCapitalism.com to provide the context.