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Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch - Socratic Arguments

Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch is a semi-retired investment banker who spent most of his career at Bank of America and Merrill Lynch. He remains active pursuing investment strategies independently, and also does some consulting.

Brodie Johnson double majored in English and Philosophy at Amherst College, and this is reflected in some of his writings. In writing about the famous trial of Socrates, when the philosopher was sentenced to death, he says that “the central argument being made by Socrates was that he should not fear death, nor should his friends and family grieve for him, since his soul would live on after his body was dead. The arguments are poignant because Socrates was going to have to drink hemlock whether he wanted to or not, so his belief in immortality seems likely to have been strengthened by a motivation to give him the courage to face death calmly, and to ease the feelings of those around him.” His arguments are so profound, he writes, that they are still studied some 2,500 years later.

“The arguments are susceptible to a number of criticisms, the fundamental one being that analogies are not proofs,” Brodie Johnson wrote. “However Socratic philosophers would counter that their theories actually subsume all beliefs, in other words they are similar to a religious view through which all questions can be answered.”

The proof of the soul's immortality, Brodie Johnson concludes, remains elusive. “Belief in it is as well grounded in intuition and religion as it is in mathematics, physics, or logic.”

While at Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner and Smith, Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch served as Head of Residual Training.

Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch - Affordable Bordeaux


Brodie Johnson is a semi-retired investment banker who spent many years with Bank of America and Merrill Lynch. He now pursues independent business interests.

“I have unique insights into certain derivative markets,” he says. “I have creative solutions and know how to implement them.” He is credited with spearheading a Collateralized Mortgage Obligations (CMO) proposal that helped to restore liquidity to that market, in the aftermath of the 2008 financial meltdown.

He is able to devote some of his time now to his interest in wine, and has tasted a range of Bordeaux and evaluated them with the approach of a sommelier. “A sensible question,” he declares, “is, what is the best wine available from any of the major regions for less than twenty dollars?”

In the New York area, he says, only St. Emilion and Graves produce wine that is available for less than twenty dollars per bottle. “Only three inexpensive wines from Graves seem to be regularly available – Chateau Le Pavillion de Boyrein, Chateau Haura, and Clos Floridene,” he writes. “The first is somewhat harsh and acidic. Chateau Haura has very little in the way of tannins, fruit, or spice. Clos Floridene is about eighteen dollars for the 2011 and 2013 vintages and twenty-six dollars for the 2012.” This last one, he adds, received a 91 rating from Wine Spectator magazine.

The Clos Floridene 2013 vintage shows some vanilla and spice, he says. It isn’t bitter or acidic and doesn’t show much fruit, though there are hints of ripe plum. “Clos Floridene is arguably the best value in Cabernet from Bordeaux.”

Before he came to Bank of America and Merrill Lynch, Brodie Johnson attended Amherst College, from which he graduated with honors in 1980.

Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch - Creative Solutions

Brodie Johnson spent thirty-five years as an investment banker, and was a Director and Head of Residual Training for Bank of America, and later for Merrill Lynch. Bank of America acquired Merrill Lynch & Co, Inc., in 2009.

Brodie Johnson has always had unique insights and creative solutions. He developed the Reverse REMIC, a technique in which the holder of Collateralized Mortgage Obligations (CMOs) can exchange certain CMO classes for a Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae Mortgage-Backed Security. These are then eligible for delivery into the To-Be-Announced market.

“The introduction of this technique was a significant step in restoring liquidity to the CMO market following the financial crisis of 2008,” he says. The TBA market is among the world’s most active markets. Investors are able to trade Mortgage Backed Securities (MBS) before they take delivery of the bonds.

With improved CMO trading, investors can buy into those markets that influence funding for the housing market in the United States. “By broadening the investor base,” Brodie Johnson told Reuters in January of 2009, “banks will be able to originate more mortgages because they will not have to hold them in their own portfolios.” By then, the market for CMOs had already begun to improve, and he expressed confidence that the market would “come fully back to life in several months.”

Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch retired from Merrill Lynch and now pursues his own investment strategies independently. He also does some consulting.


Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch - The Soul’s Immortality

Brodie Johnson is a semi-retired investment banker who enjoyed a long career at Merrill Lynch. He now has the time to focus his restless intellect on his many interests, including philosophical matters.

Phaedo, Brodie Johnson has written, was an Athenian citizen who was present at the time of Socrates' death in the fifth century BC. Phaedo later met with Plato and recounted his story of the arguments made by Socrates immediately prior to his death, which resulted from his conviction by the Athenian authorities on charges of corrupting the morals of the young (because Socrates' philosophy contradicted some of the Athenians' religious beliefs). Plato wrote The Phaedo, which records Phaedo's account of the debate which took place between Socrates and the others present with him. The central argument being made by Socrates was that he should not fear death, nor should his friends and family grieve for him, since his soul would live on after his body was dead. The arguments are poignant because Socrates was going to have to drink hemlock whether he wanted to or not, so his belief in immortality seems likely to have been strengthened by a motivation to give him the courage to face death calmly, and to ease the feelings of those around him. However, the arguments are sufficiently brilliant to have been studied and analyzed for the last two thousand and five hundred years.

Socrates mode of argument is by use of analogies. The breadth of these analogies is striking, as he uses the nascent disciplines of arithmetic, geometry, and physics to try to prove something eschatological. The arguments proceed by using multiple pairs of opposites. Life is contrasted with death; the soul is contrasted with the body; the single is contrasted with the dual; the short is contrasted with the tall; and finally heat is contrasted with cold. For humans, he asserts that the soul brings life to the body. In algebra, the single, or the "monad" brings the property of oddness (i.e. not being evenly divisible by two) to odd numbers. In physical space, the property of tallness makes physical objects tall. Heat itself is what bring hotness to some objects but not to others. He argues that the properties which result in a thing having a particular quality – when abstracted from that object – cannot admit the opposite of what they bring. The monad cannot bring evenness to an odd number – only the dyad or pair can bring evenness – and the monad cannot itself be dual. Tallness in a thing cannot be brought by shortness, and tallness itself cannot accept the quality of shortness. And heat cannot be brought to something by cold, or accept cold. Finally, he believes that the soul, which brings life to the body, cannot accept death, because death is the opposite of what the soul brings to the body – life.

The arguments are susceptible to a number of criticisms, the fundamental one being that analogies are not proofs. However Socratic philosophers would counter that their theories actually subsume all beliefs, in other words they are similar to a religious view through which all questions can be answered. If you accept the over-arching theory of Ideas then the analogies fit neatly into place as though they were proofs. Other tactical objections would be that the concept of an opposite is fluid – how hot is the opposite of cold? How tall is the opposite of short? The algebraic argument is the best since one and two are well-defined and easily understandable. That argument seems the most convincing of the three. An objection is that heat and length are the properties of real object in themselves alone, while number never pertains to a single object – it is the relationship of one object to others that constitutes its being "numbered". One could also question whether the soul is alive in the sense that the body is alive – this supports the view that the soul cannot die, but in a somewhat empty and unsatisfying way.

The proof of the soul's immortality remains elusive. Belief in it is as well grounded in intuition and religion as it is in mathematics, physics, or logic.

While at Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner and Smith, Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch served as Head of Residual Training.

Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - Using Excel for Your Investments

Excel is a highly useful tool for investors who want to streamline and organize the presentation of their investments. Having worked as the Head of Residual Trading for firms such as Bank of America and Merrill Lynch, Brodie Johnson knows the value of a well-designed spreadsheet with relevant information easily accessible. By using the necessary formulas and fully understanding what Excel can do, he observed that investors can make the most informed decisions and diversify their portfolios while minimizing risk.

In Excel, the degree of complexity involved in storing, comparing, and analyzing information is fully dependent on the investor’s preference. With a few basic functions, investors can calculate profit, loss, percent return, and with a little more effort, standard deviation of returns. Standard deviation is how the portfolio’s volatility is measured. By using the Bloomberg function CORR with the Excel function MMULT, this quantity can be calculated quickly and efficiently without actually putting the price histories of the portfolio securities into Excel. This calculation will reveal important information about the risk of the investment; the risk is low when the standard deviation is low (making the courageous assumption that the past price relationships will be persistent).

A diversified portfolio is the key to investment success, reducing the overall risk of loss. An Excel-based portfolio risk tool enhances decision-making and can easily be mastered with a minimal amount of technical expertise. Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch has over 30 years of experience in the investment banking field and always looks forward to meeting with investors.

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Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - Philosophical Discussions

Brodie Johnson, an investment banking professional who served over 30 years in the field with Bank of America and Merrill Lynch, observed that responsible and transparent business is rooted in ethics, philosophy, and sociology. A deeper questioning and study of these topics informs everything, from how we raise our children to how we run businesses. As a former student of philosophy, the Phaedo continues to remain deeply relevant to this perspective.

The Phaedo is a dialogue written by Plato, the world-renowned classical Greek philosopher, recording the last moments before the death of his teacher, Socrates. Socrates had been sentenced to death by drinking hemlock as a result of disbelief in the gods of the state, and as he was dying, he shared different analogies and arguments to illustrate his belief that the soul is immortal. A student named Phaedo was present at his death and shared these arguments regarding the immortality of the soul later with Plato, and it continues to be regarded as one of his greatest works. The conversation presents a number of ideas that continue to resonate today.

In short, the body is contrasted with the soul. The body and the soul function on two different planes of existence, the tangible and the intangible. In Socrates’ view, the immortal soul brings life to the mortal body. Because the soul is the bringer of life, he asserts it is immortal.

Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch is currently seeking out new proprietary investment strategies.



Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - Residual Phantom Income Explained

Mortgage-backed securities (MBS) are a major component of successful investment strategies. MBSs are often securitized in a real estate mortgage investment conduit (REMIC), an entity that issues interests from both residential and commercial mortgages to investors. Brodie Johnson, the former Head of Residual Trading at Merrill Lynch, shared the following regarding REMIC residual phantom income.

Suppose cash flow from an MBS is split into 2 parts. Bond A is a short-term bond (let’s assume 5 years to maturity) that is sold at a premium with lower interest rates. Additionally, Bond B is a long-term bond (say 10 years to maturity) that is sold at a discount because of its higher interest rate. The discount on Bond B is recognized as income to the holder and expense to the issuer (the REMIC). For example, the investor in Bond B might initially pay $49 but receive $50 in principal, a $1.00 gain. For Bond A, the opposite occurs, with the premium creating a loss to the investor with the investment of $51 and the receipt of only $50 in principal. The REMIC (issuer) has a $1 gain with respect to bond A and a $1 loss (expense) with regard to Bond B, since a gain to the investor is a loss to the issuer and vice-versa.

Because this deal is taxable, the residual holder will take expense or income into account. In the first 5 years, the REMIC will have more income than expense because Bond A has a faster rate of amortization of its bond premium (since it has to all be amortized over a shorter time period). During the life of the REMIC the residual holder will not receive any cash flow even if there is positive income. Because the residual holder receives no cash flow, all the income is “phantom income.” After five years, the residual holder may take deductions to offset that income, which is “phantom loss”

After a successful career with Merrill Lynch, Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch is semi-retired and interested in new consulting opportunities.

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Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - Three Important Facts about Investment Banking

Investment banking is a broad industry. Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch had a successful career in investment banking that spanned more than three decades. He worked with Merrill Lynch as well as Bank of America. He is highly knowledgeable in investment banking and has a unique understanding of certain derivative markets. Investment banking is an important facet of the finance industry, and there are several important facts to consider about investment banking.

There are several major US investment banks.  Prior to the enactment of Gramm Leach Bliley Act in 1999, Investment banking was dominated by the “Bulge Bracket”, which was comprised of Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs, Lehman Brothers, Credit Suisse, and Morgan Stanley. The GLBA allowed banks with FDIC insured deposits to participate more actively in investment banking. As a result, JP Morgan and Bank of America gained market share in investment banking.  Foreign banks such as Deutsche Bank and UBS also gained market share.

Investment banks also are involved in trading stocks and bonds, as well as derivatives and commodities.These trading activities may be speculative or undertaken to provide liquidity to customers.

There are several types of securities and derivatives. One ubiquitous type of security is a Mortgage-backed security (MBS). This instrument involves lending money to home buyers and then pooling mortgages together. MBS may be relatively simple or more complex.
Brodie Johnson is a successful finance professional who has spent more than 35 years in the industry. After entering partial retirement, he began to develop his own investment strategies as a consultant and entrepreneur. Brodie Johnson had a successful career with major well known banking institutions including Merrill Lynch and Bank of America.

Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - The Value of Education

Acquiring a quality education is an important step in building a successful career. Brodie Johnson graduated from Amherst College in 1980. He then entered the finance industry and strove to build a career by working with companies such as Merrill Lynch. He is a successful finance professional who has over three decades of experience and a vast knowledge. Aquality college education is increasingly essential in the finance industry for many reasons.

Earning a college education shoulddevelop important communication skills. Most industries require professionals to have good verbal and written communication skills. College courses routinely teach students how to write properly. Students are also exposed to public speaking, which enhances verbal communication skills.

Take advantage of the opportunity to network. Students are exposed to professors and other professionals in their field of study. This is an excellent time to begin networking and develop professional connections. For example, if a student wants to become an investment banker, he or she can attend conferences and seminars with his or her class, and reach out to alumni who can serve as mentors.

A fineeducation is a great starting point for any professional. While in college, students can begin building their knowledge of an industry. Successful educational experiences can help individuals begin a career in the industry of their choice.

Brodie Johnson is a successful finance professional who spent more than 35 years building a successful career. After Amherst Brodie Johnson went on to work for prominent companies such as Merrill Lynch and Bank of America.

Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - How to Build a Career in the Finance Industry

The finance industry is a competitive and tough field. Brodie Johnson is a successful professional who was the Head of Residual Trading for Merrill Lynch and Bank of America. He spent more than 30 years in investment banking and built a successful career. After entering partial retirement, he chose to embark on a new career as an independent entrepreneur. He is consulting and pursuing his own investment strategies. He is an experienced professional who has a vast knowledge of this industry. If you are interested in building a career in this industry as well, there are a few steps that you should follow.

The first and most challenging step is to earn a great education. You should aspire to attend a good college and earn a finance-related degree. You should consider earning a degree in business administration, finance, accounting, or another related field. If you earn a degree in a different field, you can still pursue a finance career, but you will need some good fortune to “get in the door”. If you know that you want to become a finance professional, you should seriously consider interning while you are a student. Find a company that operates in the field you wish to enter, and apply for an internship. Work experience is a great way to launch your career and an internship may help you develop a well-rounded education. Interning is also a great way to network.

Networking is an important key to building a successful career in the finance industry. You should take every opportunity to make business connections and to develop professional relationships. Start networking while you are a student by interning and getting to know your professors. You should also attend conferences and seminars in your industry. These events can help you meet the major players in your field and allow you to reach out to potential employers. You should continue to network throughout your career. The more connections you make, the more successful you can be.

Developing a strong knowledge base is also an important part of building a career in finance. Formal education and experience can help you accomplish this, however, you should also study independently. Learn about the major players in your industry and take the time to read about your industry. These are all important steps in building a knowledge of your field. Also, always take the time to learn and develop new skills, such as computing and presentation skills. If you continually advance your knowledge, you will have more opportunities to advance your career.

The finance industry can be a prosperous career choice for diligent and dedicated individuals. Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch worked hard to build a successful career as an investment banker and bond trader with companies such as Merrill Lynch and Bank of America. He earned a great education and then dedicated himself to succeeding in his field.

Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - Starting a Business in Semi-Retirement

Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch , formerly of Merrill Lynch, is a semi-retired professional who has worked in the financial industry for decades. After leaving Merrill Lynch, Brodie Johnson launched his personal entrepreneurial endeavors to support himself in semi-retirement rather than opting for full retirement. Semi-retirement is becoming an increasingly-popular option among those who wish to retire early or those who did not start saving for retirement during their youth. If you’re considering semi-retirement, the points below will help you better understand the process of starting a business after leaving your career:

  • Solidify Your Business Plan – Before you leap into semi-retirement and entrepreneurship, you’ll want to solidify your business plan. Nothing is worse than sinking money into a poorly-planned business after retirement, only to watch it crash and burn. Consider consulting a professional for assistance with the final touches on your business plan.
  • Consider Your Time – Think about how much time your business will require you to devote to it. Most people do not want to spend eighty hours each week working after retiring from a forty-hour-per-week position just to get their business off the ground. Opt for something less time-intensive so that you can enjoy your semi-retired life.
  • Plan Finances Carefully – When you start a business, you’ll want to carefully consider the finances involved. The best way to plan for startup financing is to turn to a professional who will be able to tell you if you’ve considered everything that you need to manage.

Brodie Johnson is relishing his life after decades of working for companies like Merrill Lynch. The freedom to pursue his own endeavors and to have more time for his hobbies has improved his life, just as they might improve yours.

Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - About Investment Banking

Brodie Johnson, formerly of Merrill Lynch, has worked in investment banking for several years and he is experienced in helping institutional clients manage their wealth. Investment banking is sometimes misunderstood by those who wish to grow their wealth, but if you understand it, the industry can be of great use to you. By working with a company like Merrill Lynch, you can manage your fund and grow your wealth with the assistance of investment banking. The following points will help you understand how:

  • Increase Your Positive Cash Flow – Investment banking helps the investor increase positive cash flow by giving him or her an agent to issue or acquire securities such as stocks and bonds. The investment banker acts as an intermediary between the company and a wealthy client so that both parties can profit from the endeavor.
  • Mergers and Acquisitions – Investment bankers often handle mergers and acquisitions, or M&A. The exact M&A services provided by the investment banker varies depending on the structuring, pricing and negotiation of transactions required for the account. Firms interested in M&A can approach an investment bank with a transaction in mind or the investment banker will pitch ideas to potentially-interested parties.
  • Sales and Trading – Investment banks help to match buyers and sellers of stocks, bonds and other securities. This allows the clients to profit and the businesses to grow.

Brodie Johnson, previously of Merrill Lynch, is now semi-retired, but is still knowledgeable in investment banking, in particular the securitization of esoteric assets like life insurance policies.

Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - Paying Off Debt Before Investing

Brodie Johnson is a financial specialist who spent several decades working with large companies like Merrill Lynch. After he retired from his positions with these companies, he continued to work as a financial professional using his own assets. While he never worked as a stockbroker on behalf of individual investors, Brodie Johnson worked with hundreds of institutional investors during his time at companies like Merrill Lynch. Though there is much debate on the topic, most financial professionals agree that it’s best to pay off your debt before you begin investing your money. If you’re eager to invest, but you still have loans and credit cards to pay off, consider these points before you get started:

  • Increase Your Positive Cash Flow – Paying off your debts will increase your positive cash flow by eliminating bills. Positive cash flow refers to how much money you have left after your monthly expenses. For example, if you presently have just $200 in positive cash flow, and you pay $200 in loan and credit card payments each month, you can double your positive cash flow by paying off your debt. Without your loan and credit card payments, you’ll have $400 positive cash flow each month instead.
  • Avoid False Security – If you have money invested, but you’re still paying off your debts, you’re not as secure as you might feel. Falling on hard times while you’re in debt can throw your life out of balance and damage your credit score if you can’t make your payments on time. Plus, most credit cards and loans have high interest rates, which means that they’re always costing you more money. If your investments earn one percent interest while your debt loses fourteen percent, you’re making less money than you think.
  • Don’t Lose Money – When you owe money to a lender, the lender needs to make a profit off of you. If the lender wasn’t profiting, the company wouldn’t loan you money. This is the purpose of interest rates and it can cause you to spend up to twice as much as you need to if you skim by on minimum payments. The earnings on investments will rarely negate the losses caused by debt.
  • Find Balance – In some situations, finding a balance between paying off debt and saving money can be the best option. This combination approach can start to systematically build a small amount of savings while still paying down your debt. This method retrains your spending habits, which is the primary benefit to setting aside a bit of your positive cash flow to savings while you are still in debt.

If you can’t decide whether you want to invest or pay off your debt first, speak with a professional advisor or work with a company like Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch for help. Trust someone with decades of financial experience to give you solid advice on your personal wealth-building situation.

Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch - Unique Insights

Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch is an independent entrepreneur who spent thirty-five years as an investment banker. He is currently pursuing his own investment strategies, and also doing some consulting.

“I have unique insights into certain derivative markets,” Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch says. “I have creative solutions and know how to implement them.”

Investment banking is made up of three distinct areas: asset management, sales and trading, and investment banking division (IBD). Large global banks usually offer all three of these services, while smaller ones usually focus more on the IBD side covering advisory and mergers and acquisitions.

Investment banks are categorized as either a bulge bracket bank, a regional bank, or a boutique. Bulge brackets consist of major institutions like Bank of American and Morgan Stanley. Boutique banks are smaller and tend to specialize in an industry or a specific product.

Investment Banking Division, also known as corporate finance, consists of two sectors, products and industries. Both provide advisory on transactions, and mergers and acquisitions, and to arrange for or provide financing for these transactions. The main functions of investment banks include raising capital and security underwriting, mergers and acquisitions, sales and trading and equity research, and retail and commercial banking.

The financial industry is still rebounding from the economic crisis that began in 2008. That crisis led to a prolonged global economic recession and to the collapse of major financial institutions, including AIG and Lehman Brothers.

Brodie Johnson served as Director, Head of Residual Training for Merrill Lynch and for Bank of America.


Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - How to Read a Bond Table?

Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch has been in the finance industry for over thirty-five years. He developed and implemented the “reverse REMIC” security that helped bring liquidity to the collateralized mortgage obligation market, and restore value to clients. Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch graduated cum laude with a double major in English and Philosophy from Amherst College in 1980. He is currently semi-retired but is pursuing his business interests. Here’s how you should read a bond table.

There are five different columns in a bond table and each represents a different thing.

Column 1 – The first column represents the company, province/state or country that is issuing the bond.

Column 2 – The second column represents the “coupon” and refers to the fixed interest rate the issuer will pay the lender or holder of the bond.

Column 3 – The third column represents the date when the bond will mature. It is the date when the bond issuer will repay the investors the entire principal. The figure in this column shows the date and year when the bond will mature.

Column 4 – The fourth column represents the bid price. The bid price is what people are willing to pay for the bond and is quoted in relation to 100, irrespective of its par value.

Column 5 – The fifth column represents the yield. It indicates the annual return until the bond matures. It refers to the yield to maturity and not the current yield.

Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch developed the Conditional Stratified Sampling algorithm, which helped in increasing the speed of Monte Carlo simulations used to value path-dependent options.

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Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - Global Warming – What You Need to Know

Brodie Johnson, formerly Head of Residual Trading at Merrill Lynch, and Bank of America is currently semi-retired and pursuing his own business interests. He has over three decades’ experience in investment banking and bond trading.

Though Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch held a busy position at Merrill Lynch, he regularly spent time pursuing his interests in global warming. Global warming may not be exactly what has been portrayed on the screen through blockbuster movies. This article reflects his considered beliefs about global warming.

Writing as a guest blogger on the What’s Up With That? web site, Dr. Tim Ball called the Paris Climate Conference of the Parties (COP21) “the biggest display of failed leadership in history from 195 countries.” The talks were held from November 30 to December 11, 2015, and were billed as the “international political response to climate change” which began at the Rio Earth Summit in 1992.

But Dr. Ball says that organizers established incorrect and misdirected policy, based on failed and falsified science. “It is as classic circular argument on a global scale,” he wrote in his What’s Up With That? post, which was dated December 27th, 2015, some two weeks after the end of the Paris conference. They invented the false problem of anthropogenic global warming/climate change and now they want to resolve the problem, he said, but with a more disastrous solution.

Most participating countries, Dr. Ball argued, were puppets that aspired to lead the deception, but didn’t have the political power they needed. “So they contributed by serving as lackeys.” The cooperation and support of most of these countries was purchased with promises of money, he said, adding that all of them now have an excuse for imposing new taxes on their citizens.

Dr. Ball saved some of his harshest criticisms for United States political leaders. President Barack Obama “used the Paris [talks] to advance his personal agenda regardless of the evidence. [Secretary of State] John Kerry said this when he admitted the agreement was not binding. Rules or agreements are meaningless without enforcement mechanisms. Kerry said it was unenforceable because Congress would not approve it. This allowed Obama to blame Congress when it was Russia, India, and China who wanted a non-binding agreement. Kerry knows Congress wouldn’t approve it because as a Senator he voted against the Kyoto Protocol, arguing it would cost jobs and hurt the economy. Of course that did not prevent him claiming the Paris Agreement would create jobs and economic opportunity against all evidence.”

In the end, Dr. Ball wrote that signees to the conference agreement will “take money from a few developed nations and give it to the developing nations.” It is a charade based on false science. “But the problem is worse than that because the money is to offset warming when all the natural mechanisms of climate change indicate the world is cooling and will get colder.”

Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch, formerly of Merrill Lynch, has a keen interest in global warming, a topic that is being pursued vigorously by scientists, educational institutions, and governments all across the world.


Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - Fitness Tips for Busy Professionals

Brodie Johnson an experienced investment banker and bond trader served as the Director and Head of Residual Trading at Merrill Lynch. He grew up in Princeton, New Jersey and graduated cum laude with a double major in English and Philosophy from Amherst College in 1980. Though Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch is a busy professional, he likes exercising and staying fit. Here are some tips you can use to stay fit if you are a busy professional.

Being a busy professional does not mean that you have to forfeit your exercise routine. There are several things you can do to stay fit while you work with your busy schedule.

  • If there is a gym near your office, you might want to get a membership and head over to the gym either on your way to work or after work.
  • If there is no gym near the office, no problem, all you need to do is park your car two blocks away and walk to work. You might want to also jog or ride a bicycle to work if possible.
  • Use your lunch break to head out for a quick jog or a workout at the gym (if there is one nearby). You don’t have to eat lunch at the lunch hour, you can get some exercise and have a light salad or shake instead of a heavy lunch.
  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Of course in the beginning, it will leave you a bit breathless, but as you go it will become easier.
  • Find others in the office who like to workout and spend about 30-minutes exercising after work.
  • If you are in the habit of eating lunch out, don’t eat at your regular restaurant. Find a restaurant that is located a 15-minute walk away and go there for lunch. The walk back and forth will help you stay fit.

Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch is a responsible, hard-working and successful investment banker.


Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - Three Basic Characteristics of Bond Trading

Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch is experienced in bond trading and investment banking. He was born and raised in Princeton, New Jersey and graduated with a double major in English and Philosophy from Amherst College in 1980. Brodie Johnson former Head of Residual Trading at Merrill Lynch is currently semi-retired but is working with his independent business interests.

A bond is a type of loan taken out by companies, governments, and other entities. When investors buy bonds from a particular company, they are lending the company money, and will receive interest at predetermined intervals. The principal loaned to the company will be returned on the maturity date thereby ending the loan. Bonds are different from stocks based on the terms of a bond’s indenture. Here are three basic characteristics of bond trading.


The maturity date of a bond is the date when the face value will be paid to the investor, and the company’s bond obligation will cease.

Secured and Unsecured

A bond can be either secured or unsecured. Secured bonds are where specific assets are guaranteed to investors in case the company cannot repay its obligation. Unsecured bonds are where the coupon and return of principal are guaranteed only by the credit of the issuing company.

Liquidation Preference

In the event of bankruptcy, the firm will pay back its investors in a particular order. After selling off all its assets, the firm will pay its senior debt, followed by its junior debt. Investors or stockholders will only get paid from what is left over.

Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch former Director of Residual Trading at Merrill Lynch developed and implemented the new security, “reverse REMIC” after the 2008 financial crisis.


Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - Understanding the Face Value of a Bond

Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch has assimilated over three decades of experience in investment banking and bond trading. He served as the Head of Residual Trading at Bank of America. After the financial crisis in 2008, Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch developed and implemented “reverse REMIC”, a new security that helped improve liquidity in the collateralized mortgage obligation market.

Anatomy of a Bond

All types of bonds have three main characteristics: face value, coupon, and maturity date. There is a fourth character called “duration”, it is a calculated value that helps assess interest rate risk. Here is a brief description of the face value of a bond.

Face Value

In simple terms, “face value” is the amount of money you will receive from the issuer when the bond reaches its maturity date. However, the face value may not be the amount of money (principal) you will pay for the bond. Bonds are issued with even-denomination values such as $1,000, $10,000 etc. and bond prices are shown in units of $100. If a $1,000 bond is trading at $98.575, you will pay 98.575% or $985.75 of the face value. The amount or percentage you pay is the face value of the bond.

Bonds could trade above or below its face value, and during its lifespan the value will fluctuate due to various factors such as prevailing interest rates, issuer’s credit rating, etc. The face value is also called the “par value” of the bond. The term can be used interchangeably, so don’t get confused if you find the term “par value” being used.

Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch worked at Merrill Lynch and has been in the bond trading business for several years.



Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - Reasons to Invest 

Brodie Johnson, formerly of Merrill Lynch, is a financial professional with decades of experience. Financial experts like Brodie Johnson, regardless of whether they work for a company like Merrill Lynch, often have large investment portfolios to support them in retirement. Investing can seem intimidating to the uninitiated, or it might seem pointless, but the truth is that it can benefit almost everyone who wishes to build and manage wealth. If you’re unsure of whether you’d like to invest, or if you’re still in the middle of paying off debt before you begin building wealth, reasons like those below might convince you to begin your financial profile as soon as possible:

  • Not Investing is Also a Risk – Life and finances are both full of risks. It’s true that investing is a risk, but not investing is also a risk. Losing the money that you invest isn’t any bigger of a threat than risking outliving your savings during retirement. Considering the risks of long-term inflation versus the risk of investing your money so that it can grow often puts things into perspective. Investing mitigates the damage that inflation can cause, particularly if you have a diversified portfolio.
  • Planning Reduces Risk – When you work with a financial professional and truly think about your investments, you’re able to reduce the risks of investment with planning. Asset allocation strategy, meaning the plan of how you will divide your invested money, allows you to control how volatile your portfolio is. If you’ve already invested money when you start working with a financial professional, he or she can help you decide if you need to employ a tactical shift in asset allocation or if you’ve balanced your investments well thus far.
  • Timing Isn’t as Essential as You Think – Experienced investors know that timing the market is far less important than time in the market. This means that it’s less beneficial to wait to invest your money and more beneficial to start investing now so that your portfolio can begin growing. Working with a financial professional will help you enter the market regardless of your timing.  
  • The Market Isn’t as Rigged as You Think – Though it is true that the market is subject to scams and scandals, this is no reason to not invest. The average investor will not usually be impacted by the shadier parts of the market, and failing to invest is far worse on your wallet.

Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch is presently an entrepreneurial professional living in semi-retirement while continuing to build wealth. This is yet another great reason to save and invest your earnings. The ability to live a comfortable, retired or semi-retired life is much more accessible if you build a strong financial profile for yourself when you are young.


Brodie Johnson of Merrill Lynch - Everything you Ought to Know About Derivative Markets

Brodie Johnson has a unique insight into certain derivative markets. He is an investment banking professional who has worked for companies such as Merrill Lynch and Bank of America. He has more than three decades of experience and is highly knowledgeable in his field. After graduating from Amherst College in 1980, he began building his career in the finance industry. He played an important role in restoring liquidity to the mortgage securities markets after the 2008 financial crisis, and had a long and successful career. After more than 35 years, he went into a partial retirement and began working as an independent entrepreneur in the investment industry. Derivatives markets are a major part of the investment industry.

A derivative is “a security with a price that is dependent upon or derived from one or more underlying assets.” Underlying assets can include market indexes, stocks, bonds, currencies, interest rates, and commodities. Derivatives can also be described as contracts that are made between two or more parties who are involved in the investment industry.

The next step in understanding derivative markets is learning about how these securities are traded. Some derivatives are traded on an exchange. An exchange is a marketplace that facilitates the trade of commodities, derivatives, securities, and more. An exchange ensures that these financial instruments are being traded fairly and in an orderly fashion. Exchanges also allow companies and governments to sell securities to the public. An exchange can be an electronic space or a physical space. Other derivatives are traded over-the-counter (OTC), which refers to a context outside of the exchange. Small companies often sell and trade their stock over-the-counter. This process involves a broker or a dealer, who negotiate the sale or trade.

When discussing derivatives, it is important to remember that there is a wide variety of derivative markets. Derivatives are a category of securities, and can be used is several different ways. For example, some derivatives can be used for hedging. There are two common forms of derivatives. One type is called a futures contract. This type of derivative is based on an agreement for the sale of an asset at a set price. A second type of derivative is called a swap contract. This type of derivative is only traded over-the-counter.

Derivatives are an important part of the investment industry because they are a major part of risk management for investors. Derivatives such as future contracts, forward contracts, swaps, and options can increase returns while managing or reducing risks. Brodie Johnson Merrill Lynch has more than three decades of experience in investment banking. While working with Merrill Lynch and Bank of America, he developed a thorough knowledge of certain derivative markets.