Jason Kelly is the author of The 3% Signal (3Sig), which introduced the technique that pushed dollar-cost averaging aside as the stock market’s new best practice. His nine other books include The Neatest Little Guide to Stock Market Investing, a BusinessWeek best seller now in its fifth edition; and its companion volume, Stock Market Contest.

Every Sunday morning he sends out The Kelly Letter. It highlights the latest coin-toss forecasts being foisted on the unsuspecting by “z-vals,” a shorthand introduced in 3Sig for zero-validity pundits, proven to be wrong half the time but still blathering on a regular basis. The letter also runs the original 3 percent signal plan and two permutations, providing subscribers with a clear (and usually humorous) look at financial markets. Yes, 3Sig is still running circles around the z-vals with just a single quarterly rebalance to its famous signal line, no forecasting required — or desired.

He graduated from the University of Colorado in 1993 with a BA in English, but not before a professor told him that he would never succeed as an author because he “lacked a basic command of the English language.” Luckily, IBM disagreed and hired Jason as a technical writer at its Silicon Valley Laboratory in San Jose, California. Once income from his freelance writing matched his income from IBM, Jason left corporate life to become a full-time freelance writer. About IBM hiring him for the only “real” job he’s ever had, Jason wrote in his book Financially Stupid People, “I keep a special smile for Big Blue because of that break. It was the only company that believed in me. I never knew the meaning of the term ‘competing offer.'”

One of Jason’s Japanese publishers, Shueisha, brought him to Tokyo on book tour in 1999. He took that opportunity to visit his old high school exchange student friend, and wrote a funny article about the experience. That article remains one of Jason’s most widely read. It’s still on his site. Japan went straight to Jason’s heart, and he decided to live there. He rented out his home in California and moved to Sano, Japan in 2002 for what he thought was going to be a one-year stay. This many years later, he still lives and works there.

After the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, he started Socks for Japan, a volunteer organization that hand-delivered 160,000 care packages from around the world to survivors. See photos and read reports about the effort here.

In addition to writing new books and The Kelly Letter, he’s an investor in Red Frog Coffee in Longmont, Colorado, a delightful shop managed by his sister and business partner, Emily. It was voted Longmont’s Small Business of the Year in 2014.

He divides his time between Japan and Colorado’s Rocky Mountains.

You can contact Jason on the contact page.

Elsewhere Online

Jason is on LinkedIn and Twitter, but your best bet for timely investing info is a subscription to The Kelly Letter.


  1. Dane Robertson
    Posted October 25, 2016 at 5:18 am | Permalink

    Aloha Jason,

    We are currently using the 3% signal. Since this strategy requires “shuffling” funds between an index and a bond, how do we avoid the commission fees that go with it every quarter? Also, if the index is “pretty close” to the 3% signal line, should we just skip the signal for that quarter?


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