Articles by Astor Investment Management

Rob Stein - CEO

Rob Stein
Rob Stein

Rob Stein began his career as a project analyst for the Federal Reserve, then under the chairmanship of Paul Volcker. From there, he went on to hold senior trading or portfolio management positions with Bank of America New York, Harris Bank Chicago and Bank of America Chicago. Beginning in 1991, Mr. Stein served as the Managing Director of Proprietary Trading for Barclay’s Bank PLC New York. Returning to Chicago in 1994, he formed Astor Financial, Inc., an investment and brokerage firm. Later, Mr. Stein formed Astor Asset Management LLC, a registered investment adviser, for the purpose of providing his economic based tactical strategies to clients. In 2010, Astor Asset Management was acquired by Knight Capital Group, Inc. and operated as a wholly-owned subsidiary until 2014 when operations continued as Astor Investment Management LLC, a registered investment adviser owned by Lakewood Investment Management LLC for which Mr. Stein is the sole beneficial owner. Mr. Stein is one of the creators of the Astor Economic Index™ (“AEI”), which is used to determine the strength of the economy and identify stages of the business cycle. Stein’s proprietary methods and analysis are the cornerstone for the Dow Jones ETF 100 index. Mr. Stein has received numerous accolades in his career such as being recognized in 2003 as one of the best unknown managers by BusinessWeek and in 2009 cited Stein’s tactical ETF portfolios as one of the best performers during the financial crisis. Mr. Stein is the author of three books, including Inside Greenspan’s Briefcase (McGraw Hill) and Finding The Bull Inside the Bear (John Wiley & Sons, 2009). He appears regularly in the media on CNBC, FOX, and Bloomberg. Mr. Stein is the founder of the I-CARE Foundation which gives an annual grant to Northwestern Hospital to enhance patient experience. He is also Vice Chairman of Glenkirk, an organization that supports the mentally challenged to lead more productive lives. Mr. Stein graduated from the University of Michigan with a BA in Economics.

John Eckstein, Chief Investment Officer

John Eckstein
John Eckstein

John Eckstein joined Astor in 2011 and serves as Chief Investment Officer. As Vice Chairman of the firm’s investment committee, he is responsible for international global macro strategies. In 1995, Mr. Eckstein founded Cornerstone Quantitative Investment Group, a global macro hedge fund with peak assets of $600 million. At Cornerstone, Mr. Eckstein was responsible for all aspects of the firm’s operations including fixed income, currency, commodity and equity portfolios. Prior to Cornerstone, Mr. Eckstein was a researcher for Luck Trading Company, a commodity trading adviser. Mr. Eckstein is a co-author of Commodity Investing (John Wiley & Sons, 2008) and is a frequent speaker at industry events. He holds a Bachelor of Science from Brown University and a Masters in Public Administration (International Economic Policy) from Columbia University.

Bryan Novak, Senior Managing Director

Bryan Novak

Bryan Novak joined Astor in 2002 and currently serves as Senior Managing Director. Mr. Novak has been involved in the research and development of the trading and investment strategies at the firm. He was instrumental in the launch of the firm’s mutual fund family in 2009 and has served as part of the portfolio management team since 2004. Prior to Astor, Mr. Novak was an equity options trader for Second City Trading, LLC at the CBOE in Chicago. He has been quoted by numerous financial media outlets and is a regular panelist at ETF industry events. Mr. Novak earned his Bachelor of Science in Financial Management from the Ohio State University. Mr. Novak is a CAIA charter holder.

Deepika Sharma, Director of Investments

Deepika Sharma
Deepika Sharma

Deepika Sharma is a Portfolio Manager and a Managing Director of Investments at Astor Investment Management LLC, a $2B asset management firm, where she co-manages their multi-asset portfolios and is also a member of the Investment Committee. Deepika joined Astor in 2012 on the Portfolio Management team and helped overhaul the firm's sector rotation fund (S.T.A.R.), which is now rated five stars and ranks in the top percentile in its category on Morningstar. She began her career as an Analyst on the EMEA Fixed Income desk at Lehman Brothers (acquired by Nomura), later working in macro-strategy at Roubini Global Economics. She became a CFA charterholder in 2014.

Brian Durbin, Chief Compliance Office, Director of Operations

Brian Durbin
Brian Durbin

Brian Durbin joined Astor in 2011 and currently serves as the Chief Compliance Officer and Director of Operations and a member of the Investment Committee. Mr. Durbin manages the trading and account services for Astor’s clients while also providing support for investment research and marketing. Prior to joining Astor, Mr. Durbin was a staff auditor at the National Futures Association where he conducted regulatory audits within the futures industry. Mr. Durbin earned Bachelors of Science in Finance and Accountancy at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

All information contained herein is for informational purposes only. This is not a solicitation to offer investment advice or services in any state where to do so would be unlawful. All opinions expressed are as of the date of publication and subject to change. Astor and its affiliates are not liable for the accuracy, usefulness or availability of any such information or liable for any trading or investing based on such information. There is no assurance that Astor’s investment programs will produce profitable returns or that any account will have similar results. You may lose money. Past results are no guarantee of future results.

The Astor Economic Index® is a proprietary index created by Astor Investment Management LLC. It represents an aggregation of various economic data points: including output and employment indicators. The Astor Economic Index® is designed to track the varying levels of growth within the U.S. economy by analyzing current trends against historical data. The Astor Economic Index® is not an investable product. When investing, there are multiple factors to consider. The Astor Economic Index® should not be used as the sole determining factor for your investment decisions. The Index is based on retroactive data points and may be subject to hindsight bias. There is no guarantee the Index will produce the same results in the future. The Astor Economic Index® is a tool created and used by Astor. All conclusions are those of Astor and are subject to change.

Astor Investment Management

111 S. Wacker Dr
Suite 3950
Chicago, IL 60606


Platforms Available

  • Sitfel Nicolaus
  • RBC
  • Wells Fargo Advisors
  • RW Baird
  • Charles Schwab
  • TD Ameritrade
  • Envestnet
  • FolioDX
  • LPL Financial
  • Morgan Stanley
  • Pershing
  • UBS Financial Services
  • Argentus
  • Sawtooth
  • Fidelity
  • Folio Institutional