Dr. Andy Lawson, BS, MS, PhD (Econ), CFP®
A Financial Advisor who is also a Financial Economist
"Having a financial plan and your investments managed the right way by focusing on diversification and cost-control substantially increases the likelihood you will achieve the retirement you want."
Andy was born in Liverpool, England. He developed an interest in finance and investments early on because his father was a professor of financial economics. After finishing high-school in the U.K., Andy moved to the U.S. and completed a Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics in 1990 and a Master’s Degree in Statistics in 1992 at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. Andy is also a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional.
In 1994, he started the doctoral program in financial economics at the University of Texas in Austin, Texas, specializing in investments. In addition to his doctoral studies, he worked with renowned economist Dr. James MacBeth, applying academic research to real-world investment problems including the implementation of risk-measurement methods developed by Professors Fama and French to evaluate the risk of mutual funds. Professor Fama went on to win the Nobel Prize in 2013 for this risk-measurement research and other work.
For his doctoral dissertation, Andy investigated stock prices, identifying the information investors use to value stocks by using an innovative statistical technique to measure the relationship between information and prices.
In 1999, he joined a hedge fund as VP of Quantitative Analysis and developed quantitative stock analysis tools with which the fund analyzed thousands of stocks to determine which stocks to invest in. Andy completed his doctoral dissertation and earned his PhD in 2003.
In 2004, he co-founded a Registered Investment Advisory firm which provided portfolio management and financial advice to individual investors.
In 2007, he joined an economics consultancy as Chief Economist. During his tenure he developed portfolio management software which implemented Professor Markowitz’s 1990 Nobel Prize-winning diversification theory. The theory provided the instructions for building an investment portfolio which gains the maximum benefit from diversification, namely the minimization of investment risk. He also helped analyze and advise many large pension funds and observed that these big, institutional investment portfolios had common characteristics—they were highly diversified, invested primarily in index funds and tightly controlled their investment costs.
In 2009, Andy founded Freshfield. He is its chief economist and investment manager. After more than 30 years of working with investments—carrying out scholarly research, advising institutional investors and managing portfolios for private investors—Andy understands that two fundamental principles almost entirely govern an investment portfolio’s performance: (1) diversification across asset classes and global regions and (2) the control of investment costs. He and his colleagues apply these principles in the provision of portfolio management and financial advice—including financial and retirement planning—to clients locally, nationally and internationally .
Andy is a member of the American Finance Association and the American Statistical Association and lives in Dallas, Texas.