With more than thirty years following capital markets, Frank Barbera has served as the CIO for a boutique L.A. based wealth management firm, served as co-portfolio manager and strategist for two mutual funds, managed two hedge funds, and managed the capital market investments for a large Los Angeles-based family office. With many years of experience in bonds, equities and commodities, over time his focus has shifted toward rules-based, “Absolute Return” oriented investment programs. Within this absolute return space, the focus has been on the twin goals of satisfying total returns, while at the same time maintaining high levels of risk-mitigation. These programs are highly tactical, liquid alternative strategies that can help investors reduce the psychological stress that can develop during prolonged periods of downside market risk.
After working at Financial News Network in the mid-1980s and then following up with a ten year career on business television (as the market analyst for “The Business Channel”), Barbera started managing money in 2000 after correctly predicting the NASDAQ top above 5000 in March 2000. Shortly thereafter, Barbera joined a hedge fund in Santa Monica which was a satellite of Bel Air Capital in Century City, which itself was closely aligned with Goldman Sachs in New York. Paired up with a legendary senior trader, Barbera helped co-manage the fund successfully which sold-short technology stocks during the tech bust of 1999-2002. During that same time, Barbera consulted with a very large Los Angeles-based family office, which he eventually joined full-time. At the family office he managed a hedge fund very successfully over nearly a decade with no significant down years while also helping to guide that organization's capital market strategy.
Later on, Barbera exited the hedge fund space and returned to his early roots by joining Sierra Investment Management and a former mentor (from Bateman Eichler Hill Richards), Dave Wright. Between 2010 and 2015, Barbera helped Sierra launch two mutual funds, and build a sales team that was able to raise over $1.5 billion in assets in the first three years. The first fund, the Sierra Core Retirement Fund, was tactical and employed sophisticated risk mitigation techniques. Over that same period of time, Mr. Barbera penned a long series of weekly articles on FinancialSense.com, which focused on many of the gross financial excesses of that period and highlighted the GSE and Sub-Prime Mortgage/Banking crisis.
Early on in his career, in 2003, Barbera was featured in the popular book published by the New York Institute for Finance entitled “Master Traders: Strategies for Superior Returns from Today’s Top Traders” for his work on sector rotation strategies. From 1994 to 2014, Barbera edited the bi-monthly newsletter, “The Gold Stock Technician” which focused on the technical outlook for gold and silver mining stocks and metals markets with unique work on mining stocks. For a number of years, Barbera was a regular guest on CNBC with Bill Griffith, Ron Insana and Susan Herrera and has been widely quoted in the financial press including Fox Business News, CNBC, The Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, Money Magazine, The Washington Post, the New York Times and Barron’s. Mr. Barbera has also been a frequent guest speaker at investment conferences across the United States speaking on global macro-economics and the outlook for capital markets.