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RyanCarey comments on EA Funds - An update from CEA - Effective Altruism Forum

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Comment author: Ben_Todd 08 August 2018 06:04:37AM 4 points [-]

I agree that would be ideal, but it doesn't seem like a high priority feature. The risk-free 1yr interest rate is about 2% at the minute (in treasuries), so even if the money is delayed for a whole year, we're only talking about a gain of 2%, and probably more like 1% after transaction costs.

You could invest in the stock market instead, but the expected return is still probably only 1-5% per year (as I argue here: https://80000hours.org/2015/10/common-investing-mistakes-in-the-effective-altruism-community/). Plus, then you have a major risk of losing lots of the money, which will probably be pretty hard to explain to many of the users, the press etc.

I expect the staff time spent adding and managing this feature could yield much more than a couple of percent growth to the impact of the funds in many other ways (e.g. the features Marek lists above).

Comment author: RyanCarey 08 August 2018 06:30:30AM 3 points [-]

Agreed. You could get a higher effective ROI by mission-hedging -- investing AI-risk funds in things like Google. But even then, the returns seem like a pretty second-order issue.

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 08 August 2018 05:06:31PM *  0 points [-]

The benefits from mission hedging are far lower. If your stocks go up 10%, you get 10% more money. If Google stock goes up 10%, then money spent on AI risk goes up in importance by, I don't know, 0.5%, so you now have 10.5% more impact.