jerryking + investing   207

Mellody Hobson of Ariel Investments: ‘Capitalism Needs to Work for Everyone’
July 18, 2019 | The New York Times | By David Gelles.

Mellody Hobson was raised by a single mother and endured economic hardship as a child. The phone was shut off. The car was repossessed. Her family was evicted.

Today, Ms. Hobson is one of the most senior black women in finance. She serves on the boards of JPMorgan Chase and Starbucks, and this month was named co-chief executive of Ariel Investments, the largest minority-owned investment firm.......I was in the Woodrow Wilson School of international relations and public policy at Princeton. You have to apply to get in, and I did not originally get in. I lobbied really hard and called many people. I just would not take no for an answer.

I spent a lot of my years in the Woodrow Wilson School studying systems that really oppress people. I wrote my senior thesis on South Africa, and specifically on how children ultimately led to the end of apartheid because of their uprisings.........What do you tell people who are starting on their financial journey, wherever they might be?

I start off by explaining to them that it’s never too late, literally never. I also think the most important thing you can learn about money, and Warren Buffett talks about this, is compound interest. It’s the eighth wonder of the world. If you understand compound interest, you understand money working for or against you.

We talk about long-term patient investing, and that idea that slow and steady does win the race, that time can be your best friend when it comes to investing. That’s why we have a turtle as a logo at Ariel........ I believe in capitalism. It is the best system that has existed in the world. Show me a better one. I can’t find it. But I also believe that capitalism needs to work for everyone, and so I don’t begrudge those people who’ve done extraordinarily well in our society as long as it’s a fair fight.

It isn’t always a fair fight, though, and that’s what we need to fix. That could be anything from our tax bases and how that works, our tax rates, to other issues that occur in our society around fair opportunities for education.

I am a person of color who happens to be a woman as well, and I have firsthand dealt with inequality, despite having shown up with all of the credentials. I do not sit here believing that if you’ve just gone to a great school and this, that and the other, it’s all going to be fine. It just doesn’t work like that in our society. I think about those people who were like me and are like me. That goes into the boardrooms that I’m in. I also think about the people of color who are inside of those companies, making sure they get the same opportunity as those who are in the majority population....
African-Americans  alumni  Ariel  capitalism  CEOs  finance  inequality  investing  Mellody_Hobson  money_management  Princeton  women 
july 2019 by jerryking
5 Ways to Value Your Collection, Whether It’s Fine Wine or Shrunken Heads
March 1, 2019 | The New York Times | By Paul Sullivan.

Collectible assets include wine, spirits, coins, trading cards as well as more unusual items, like lighters, belt buckles and even shrunken heads. These collections cost money and time to assemble and certainly have a value to their owners, but can they be considered legitimate investments? That depends on the market.

For many collectors, the only option to buy, sell or even value these assets is through online auction platforms like eBay or enthusiast sites, but for others, their possessions are treated as fine art.......the market for collectibles, which are often valued in the millions of dollars, may not always be so easy to weather. It can experience sudden surges that put desired items out of the reach of true collectors or it can collapse, wiping out the gains speculators thought they had made.

In an economic slowdown, how these investments are treated depends on supply and demand as well as unpredictable forces like fashion and popularity.....Collectibles can be broken into categories determined by provenance, rarity and even a moment in time. Here are five issues to consider when weighing the investment potential of your collection.....
(1) The standouts in the crowd - Leading the pack are high-quality items that have broad name recognition.
(2) High risk, high reward -
(3) Not all collectibles are investments- jewelry is not an investment....because the market is driven too much by changing fashion.
(4) Obscure and difficult to sell - establish the value of esoteric collections by using third-party appraisers. But insurance companies like A.I.G. value these collections by their replacement value, not by the price someone would pay for them.
(5) A market downturn - =hether it’s shrunken heads, 1,000 bottles of wine or sheets of trading cards, a ready buyer may not be available — or may want to pay much less (i.e. a step change in the valuation).
collectibles  collectors  high-risk  howto  obscure  valuations  AIG  auctions  assets  brands  eBay  economic_downturn  esoteric  fine_arts  high-end  high-quality  investing  investments  passions  step_change  unpredictability  wine  whisky  online_auctions 
march 2019 by jerryking
When Charlie Munger Calls, Listen and Learn
Jan. 25, 2019 | WSJ | By Jason Zweig.

Mr. Munger was calling to say that he had read the novel Mr. Taylor was about to self-publish, “The Rebel Allocator.” He was “surprisingly engaged,” recalls Mr. Taylor, 37, who had sent the book to Mr. Munger without much hope the great investor would read it. Mr. Munger proceeded to reel off roughly 20 minutes of unsolicited, detailed advice, mostly about plot and character.

In an interview, Mr. Munger tells me he tends to “skim” or “at least give some cursory attention” to any book that mentions Berkshire Hathaway......“The Rebel Allocator” is the opposite of most business novels. Here, the rich capitalist isn’t an evil genius using genetic engineering to hijack the brains of newborn babies. Instead, he is a hero: an investing mastermind who regards allocating capital as a noble calling that improves other people’s lives.

In the novel, a business student named Nick is on a field trip with his MBA class when he meets a 77-year-old billionaire, Francis Xavier, a restaurant mogul also known as “the Rebel Allocator” and “the Wizard of Wichita.”

Blunt and bristly, with zero tolerance for stupidity, Mr. Xavier spouts proverbs and zingers. A mash-up of Mr. Munger and Mr. Buffett, he often invokes their ideas.

Taking a shine to Nick, Mr. Xavier asks him to write his biography. Like many young people today, Nick wonders if becoming a billionaire is inherently immoral when poverty is still widespread.

Mr. Xavier teaches Nick what separates great businesses from good and bad ones. He uses three drinking straws, labeled “cost,” “price” and “value,” to demonstrate: When a business can charge a higher price than its goods or services cost, the difference is profit. When the value its customers feel they get is greater than price, that difference is brand or pricing power—the ability to raise prices without losing customers.

As Mr. Xavier moves the straws around, Nick learns that investing decisions can make the world a better place: “Good capital allocation means doing more with less to create happier customers,” says Mr. Xavier. “Profit should be celebrated as a signal that an entrepreneur provided value while consuming the least amount of resources to do so.”
asset_management  Berkshire_Hathaway  books  capital_allocation  Charlie_Munger  fiction  intrinsic_value  investing  investors  Jason_Zweig  novels  Warren_Buffett 
january 2019 by jerryking
How the 0.001% invest - Investing and the super-rich
Dec 15th 2018

Global finance is being transformed as billionaires get richer and cut out the middlemen by creating their own “family offices”, personal investment firms that roam global markets looking for opportunities. Largely unnoticed, family offices have become a force in investing, with up to $4trn of assets—more than hedge funds and equivalent to 6% of the value of the world’s stockmarkets. As they grow even bigger in an era of populism, family offices are destined to face uncomfortable questions about how they concentrate power and feed inequality......Every investment boom reflects the society that spawned it. ....The rise of family offices reflects soaring inequality......But since the financial crisis there has been a loss of faith in external money managers. Rich clients have taken a closer look at private banks’ high fees and murky incentives, and balked......Family offices’ weight in the financial system....looks likely to rise further. As it does, the objections to them will rise exponentially....that family offices have created inequality. They are a consequence, not its cause. Nonetheless, there are concerns—and one in particular that is worth worrying about: (1) The first is that family offices could endanger the stability of the financial system. (2) The second worry is that family offices could magnify the power of the wealthy over the economy.(3) that family offices might have privileged access to information, deals and tax schemes, allowing them to outperform ordinary investors.

The answer is vigilance and light. Most regulators, treasuries and tax authorities are beginners when it comes to dealing with family offices, but they need to ensure that rules on insider trading, the equal servicing of clients by dealers and parity of tax treatment are observed. And they should prod family offices with assets of over, say, $10bn to publish accounts detailing their workings. In a world that is suspicious of privilege, big family offices have an interest in boosting transparency. In return, they should be free to operate unmolested.
diversification  family_office  finance  financial_system  investing  investors  money_management  the_One_percent  upper_echelons  high_net_worth 
january 2019 by jerryking
The Oracle of Boston - Seth Klarman
Jul 7th 2012 | Boston

A scanned version of “Margin of Safety: Risk-Averse Value Investing Strategies for the Thoughtful Investor” has been circulating around trading floors. One hedgie likens Mr Klarman's book to the movie “Casablanca”: it has become a classic......Mr Klarman still runs Baupost like a family office. He is extremely risk averse; his primary goal is not stellar returns but preservation of capital.......He has deliberately maintained a sticky investor base composed almost entirely of endowments, foundations and families, which understand his investment philosophy and will not redeem after a few negative quarters.
Boston  hedge_funds  investors  investing  margin_of_safety  Seth_Klarman  value_investing/investors  books  Baupost  family_office 
january 2019 by jerryking
Passive investing is storing up trouble
August 2, 2018 | Financial Times | by Megan Greene.

I was recently informed by the owner of an artificial intelligence fund that markets do not listen to economists any more. .....A fundamental shift in market structure towards rules-based, passive investing over the past decade means a lot of trading is no longer based on fundamentals. But just because some markets do not pay attention to economists, it does not mean economists should not pay attention to these markets........AI quant funds are not waiting on tenterhooks for analysis of every non-farm payrolls report, Fed press conference, Donald Trump tweet, or earnings report. Instead, they look for trading strategies that are succeeding and adopt those strategies until a better one comes along, regardless of the underlying fundamentals. But what happens when the strategy suddenly becomes to sell everything? Will the computers find the buyers they need?.......ETFs, often set up to mimic an index, have to buy more of equities rising in price, sending those stock prices even higher. ETFs similarly ignore fundamentals.....This creates a piling-on effect as funds buy more of these increasingly expensive stocks and less of the cheaper ones in their indices...Risks of a bubble arise when there is no regard for underlying fundamentals or price. It is reasonable to assume a sustained market correction would lead to stocks that were disproportionately bought because of ETFs and index funds being disproportionately sold.

But again, in a crisis will the ETF managers find liquid markets? ....Passive investors and quant funds could also threaten the economy by making markets vastly more complex, noisy and opaque. They send mixed signals to active investors about what the fair value of a stock is. That could cause a significant misallocation of capital.

The danger is exacerbated by the speed at which trading is now done. The average holding period for a security on the New York Stock Exchange has fallen from two months in 2008 to just under 20 seconds today.......Systemic failures, misallocation of capital and dried up liquidity could cause a bear market, dragging on growth when the economic backdrop is already lacklustre......So even though passive investors ignore economists, economists should pay attention to risks posed by the shift in market structure they represent....This is not to say that index funds, ETFs and AI quant funds are necessarily bad. But the real test will come when there is a sudden crisis followed by a sustained bear market.
active_investing  artificial_intelligence  bear_markets  economists  ETFs  holding_periods  index_funds  investing  liquidity  misallocations  NYSE  passive_investing  piling_on  risks  systemic_failures  rules-based  bubbles  quantitative  market_fundamentals  crisis  dark_side  pay_attention 
august 2018 by jerryking
How Financial Products Drive Today’s Art World
July 20, 2018 | The New York Times | By Scott Reyburn.

How does one invest in art without going through the complications of buying and owning an actual artwork?

That is the question behind financial products for investors attracted by soaring art prices but intimidated by the complexity and opacity of the market..... entrepreneurs are trying to iron out the archaic inefficiencies of the art world with new types of financial products, particularly the secure ledgers of blockchain...... “More transparency equals more trust, more trust equals more transactions, more transactions equals stronger markets,” Anne Bracegirdle, a specialist in the photographs department at Christie’s, said on Tuesday at the auction house’s first Art & Tech Summit, dedicated to exploring blockchain......blockchain’s decentralized record-keeping could create a “more welcoming art ecosystem” in which collectors and professionals routinely verify the authenticity, provenance and ownership of artworks on an industrywide registry securely situated in the cloud...... blockchain has already proved to be a game-changer in one important area of growth, according to those at the Christie’s event: art in digital forms.

“Digital art is a computer file that can be reproduced and redistributed infinitely. Where’s the resale value?”.....For other art and technology experts, “tokenization” — using the value of an artwork to underpin tradable digital tokens — is the way forward. “Blockchain represents a huge opportunity for the size of the market,” said Niccolò Filippo Veneri Savoia, founder of Look Lateral, a start-up looking to generate cryptocurrency trading in fractions of artworks.

“I see more transactions,” added Mr. Savoia, who pointed out that tokens representing a percentage of an artwork could be sold several times a year. “The crypto world will bring huge liquidity.”......the challenge for tokenization ventures such as Look Lateral is finding works of art of sufficient quality to hold their value after being exposed to fractional trading. The art market puts a premium on “blue chip” works that have not been overtraded, and these tend to be bought by wealthy individuals, not by fintech start-ups.....UTA Brant Fine Art Fund, devised by the seasoned New York collector Peter Brant and the United Talent Agency in Los Angeles.

The fund aims to invest $250 million in “best-in-class” postwar and contemporary works,...Noah Horowitz, in his 2011 primer, “Art of the Deal: Contemporary Art in a Global Financial Market,”.... funds, tokenization and even digital art are all investments that don’t give investors anything to hang on their walls.

“We should never forget that in the center of it all is artists,”
art  artists  art_advisory  art_authentication  art_finance  auctions  authenticity  best_of  blockchain  blue-chips  books  Christie's  collectors  conferences  contemporary_art  digital_artifacts  end_of_ownership  fin-tech  investing  investors  opacity  post-WWII  provenance  record-keeping  scarcity  tokenization  collectibles  replication  alternative_investments  crypto-currencies  digital_currencies  currencies  virtual_currencies  metacurrencies  art_market  fractional_ownership  primers  game_changers 
july 2018 by jerryking
The AI arms race: the tech fear behind Donald Trump’s trade war with China | Financial Times
Shawn Donnan in Washington YESTERDAY

While the headlines about the Trump administration’s trade war with Beijing often focus on raw materials such as steel, aluminium and soyabeans, the underlying motivation of the new protectionist mood is American anxiety about China’s rapidly growing technological prowess.......
At a time when the US is engaged in a battle for technological pre-eminence with China, the ZGC project is exactly the sort of state-backed Chinese investment that American politicians across the political spectrum view with scepticism.

“China has targeted America’s industries of the future, and President Donald Trump understands better than anyone that if China successfully captures these emerging industries, America will have no economic future,” .....US tariffs on $34bn in imports from China that are due to take effect on Friday as part of a squeeze intended to end what the US says has been years of state-endorsed Chinese intellectual property theft. But it is also part of a broader battle against what the White House has labelled China’s “economic aggression”......Viewed from America, President Xi Jinping’s Made in China 2025 industrial strategy is a state-led effort to establish Chinese leadership in the technologies of the next generation of commerce and military equipment — notably AI, robotics and gene editing.

Many US officials are now questioning one of the basic assumptions about how the American economy operates: its openness to foreign investment....While some technology executives extol the potential for co-operation in areas such as AI, the Washington establishment increasingly sees them as central to a growing geopolitical competition....Many Chinese investors are looking for US companies that they can help move into China. .....Even though Mr Trump’s focus on Chinese technology has strong bipartisan support in Washington, its tactics have been heavily criticised. The biggest blunder, many critics argue, has been the Trump administration’s willingness to wage concurrent trade wars. The IP-driven tariffs push against China has been accompanied by one that has hit allies such as Canada and the EU that might have joined a fight against Beijing.

........“We’re treating the Chinese better than we are treating our friends,” says Derek Scissors, a China expert at the conservative American Enterprise Institute, who sees the tariffs Mr Trump is threatening against European car imports as a similar bit of malpractice.
arms_race  artificial_intelligence  China  CFIUS  Donald_Trump  economic_warfare  economic_aggression  FDI  geopolitics  international_trade  investors  investing  intellectual_property  industrial_policies  protectionism  politicians  robotics  One_Belt_One_Road  security_&_intelligence  Silicon_Valley  SOEs  start_ups  theft  U.S.  venture_capital  Washington_D.C. 
july 2018 by jerryking
Ten Lessons from Michael Batnick’s Book ‘Big Mistakes’ – Ivanhoff Capital
The best way for investors to learn from mistakes is to let others make them, then read about it

In his first book, Michael Batnick outlines the big investing and trading mistakes of some of the most successful investors and brightest minds that are known to humankind. Most mistakes revolve around the same themes:
– being overleveraged and building too big positions in assets that were illiquid or suddenly became illiquid;
– venturing outside of expert zone when having to manage a much bigger amount of capital;
– overconfidence and hubris;
– normal mistakes that cannot really be prevented; they are part of the investing process;
– fear of missing out.
lessons_learned  mistakes  investing  investors  overconfidence  books  book_reviews  personal_finance 
june 2018 by jerryking
The Psychology of Money · Collaborative Fund
“Investing is not the study of finance. It’s the study of how people behave with money… It helps, I’ve found, when making money decisions to constantly remind yourself that the purpose of investing is to maximize returns, not minimize boredom. Boring is perfectly fine. Boring is good. If you want to frame this as a strategy, remind yourself: opportunity lives where others aren’t, and others tend to stay away from what’s boring.......few things in money are as valuable as options. The ability to do what you want, when you want, with who you want, and why you want, has infinite ROI.”

The finance industry talks too much about what to do, and not enough about what happens in your head when you try to do it.

This report describes 20 flaws, biases, and causes of bad behavior I’ve seen pop up often when people deal with money.
biases  personal_finance  psychology  boring  optionality  investing 
june 2018 by jerryking
An unusual family approach to investing
May 30, 2018 | FT | John Gapper.

JAB’s acquisition of Pret A Manger resembles private equity but with a long-term twist.

Warren Buffett’s definition of Berkshire Hathaway’s ideal investment holding period as forever. ....Luxembourg-based JAB, owned by four heirs to a German chemical fortune, takes a family approach to investing. It is unusual in that this holding company seeks to retain its portfolio companies for at least a decade. These include Panera Bread, Krispy Kreme and Keurig Green Mountain coffee, which it merged with Dr Pepper Snapple in an $18.7bn deal in January 2018. This week JAB acquired the UK sandwich chain Pret A Manger for £1.5bn, continuing its buying spree of cafés and coffee, mounting a challenge to public companies such as Nestlé.

**These companies are acquired not to be traded but to be invested in and expanded.**

JAB is an innovative combination of ownership and investment in a world that needs challengers to stock market ownership and private equity. It is family controlled, but run by veteran professional executives. When it invests in companies such as Pret A Manger, it deploys not only the Reimann family’s wealth but that of other entrepreneurs and family investors.......Some of the equity for its recent deals, including Panera and Dr Pepper, came from funds raised by Byron Trott, the former Goldman Sachs investment banker best known for being trusted by the banker-averse Mr Buffett. Mr Trott’s BDT banking boutique specialises in advising founders and heirs to corporate fortunes, including the Waltons of Walmart, and the Mars and Pritzker families.

This is investment, but not as most of us know it. By definition, the world’s companies are mostly controlled by founders and their families — only a minority become big enough to be floated on stock markets and need to disclose much of their workings to outsiders. Family fortunes also tend to remain as private as possible: there is little incentive to advertise how much wealth one has inherited......As [families'] fortunes grow in size and sophistication, more of the cash is invested in other companies rather than in shares and bonds. That is where JAB and Mr Trott come in.

Entrepreneurs and their families tend to be fascinated by their own enterprises and bored by managing their wealth. But they want to preserve it, and they often like the idea of investing it in companies similar to their own — industrial and consumer groups that need more capital to expand. It is not only more interesting but a form of self-affirmation for the successful....Being acquired by JAB is appealing. The group turns up, says it will not take part in an auction but offers a good price (it bought Pret for more than its former owner Bridgepoint could get by floating it). It often keeps the existing executives, telling them they have to plough their own money into the company, and invests in long-term growth provided the business is efficiently run.

This is more congenial than heading a public company and contending with a huge variety of shareholders, including short-term and activist investors. It is also less risky than being bought by 3G Capital, the cost-cutting private equity group with which Mr Buffett teamed up to acquire Kraft Heinz. While 3G is expert at eliminating expenses it is less so at encouraging growth.
coffee  dynasties  high_net_worth  holding_periods  investing  investors  JAB  long-term  Nestlé  Pritzker  private_equity  privately_held_companies  Unilever  unusual  Warren_Buffett  family  cafés  Pret_A_Manger  3G_Capital  discretion  entrepreneur  boring  family_business  heirs 
may 2018 by jerryking
BlackRock’s Larry Fink Wants to Become the Next Warren Buffett
Feb. 7, 2018 | WSJ | By Sarah Krouse.

BlackRock’s new vehicle, known within the firm as a “long-term private capital” vehicle, is part of that push to emphasize alternative investments. The firm already manages $145 billion in higher-fee investment strategies that include private equity and hedge funds of funds, real assets and private credit. But it doesn’t have a buyout fund of its own.
BlackRock  Laurence_Fink  asset_management  Warren_Buffett  long-term  investors  investing 
february 2018 by jerryking
Should You Buy Bitcoin? Ask a Different Question First
JAN. 5, 2018 | The New York Times | By CARL RICHARDS.

Goals >> Process >> Investments

asking if we should all buy Bitcoin is the wrong question, and that we should ask a different one instead. The question we should be asking ourselves is this: Does buying Bitcoin fit into my investment plan?

That is a much more important question and one that we can all answer much more easily. It places the attention on the process of investing correctly and not on the outcome of events that we have no control over.
Bitcoin  investing  personal_finance  questions  Philip_Mudd  problem_framing 
january 2018 by jerryking
Knowing what we don’t know is an important investing skill,
DECEMBER 19, 2017 | The Globe and Mail | Scott Barlow, Globe and Mail market strategist.

"Making short-term predictions about how a price chart reflecting the actions of millions of people will fluctuate is more than just hard. The word Mandelbrot uses is "unpredictable" rather than difficult. Again: not predictable… Mandelbrot is not saying that investors should throw their hands in the air and quit, but rather that they should use the tools of probability in a more refined and nuanced way… Risk comes from now knowing what you are doing and avoiding those areas [that are inherently unpredictable] is a very good thing."

Mr. Mandelbrot's concepts do not make for easy reading and I don't pretend to understand even a majority of their implications. It is important, I think, for investors to have a general understanding of his findings nonetheless.

For one thing, Mr. Mandelbrot's work throws a huge wrench into Modern Portfolio Theory, the highly popular efficient frontier investing strategies that use distribution curves and standard deviation as a measure of risk. As Berkshire Hathaway's Charlie Munger said, "if you think [distribution curves] apply to markets, then you must believe in the tooth fairy. It reminds me of when I asked a doctor at a medical school why he was still teaching an outdated procedure, and he replied, 'It's easier to teach.' "
investing  risks  financial_markets  investors  Charlie_Munger  unpredictability  pretense_of_knowledge  unknowns 
december 2017 by jerryking
Five unpopular personal finance truths
November 15, 2017 | The Globe and Mail | by RYAN MODESTO SPECIAL TO THE GLOBE AND MAIL.

* You need to invest!!!! This element gets overlooked--Saving alone won't cut it. If saving is the workhorse to get you somewhere, investing is at least the reins that help to steer you to your destination. .... Investing is only going to become more important as pensions get leaner and less prominent and living costs rise while wages stay stagnant. Investing those savings is how one can bridge the gap. So if you are saving money, give yourself a pat on the back, but don't stop there – you are only part of the way through the journey.

* You need to be able to save. Spending is fun; saving usually less so. The issue is one of delayed gratification. really is the crux of why people prefer to spend today than save for tomorrow.... trim unnecessary costs....and remember the power of compound interest.

* Personal finance is not fun (for most). Personal finance is boring....even a daunting topic.

* Personal finance is rarely black and white.....Different financial strategies work for different people. ...While the numbers can offer a guideline, the answers to personal finance questions are rarely black and white....The second part of this is the willingness to save, which is more psychological. You need to be both willing and able to save money to be able to help yourself in the first place. There are no silver bullets when it comes to finance. At the end of the day, you need to be willing and able to save money for anything else to matter.

* You have to treat yourself. At the end of the day, we make money so we can provide for those who rely on us, live a particular lifestyle and hopefully have a bit of fun. .... Personal finances are a life-long grind, and as long as the little things stay under control, they are not going to be what makes the difference in 80 years..... you can't take the money with you, so you have to spend some of it....But just some of it.
* A sixth rule might be: Don't blame "the world" for being not able to save. Look at what you are currently spending money on and think about whether you actually "need" to (vs "want") and also if there is any way to change to something that is less expensive.
* A seventh rule: Plan for financial shocks/emergencies. Keep some money in the bank (and invest it in something, of course) so if your car breaks down or you get laid off, you can keep the wolf from the door for at least a couple of months.
* An eight rule: If you go out shopping to 'cheer yourself up', stop doing it.
* A ninth rule : Just because a bank offers to give you tons of money doesn't mean it is a good idea for you to take it.
personal_finance  financial_literacy  investing  delayed_gratification  boring  personal_savings_rate  financial_shocks  emergencies 
november 2017 by jerryking
How I Avoid Confirmation Bias When Investing
Nov 8, 2017 | - The Experts - WSJ | By Ted Jenkin.

(1) Examine all evidence with equal rigor. If you have been sitting on cash during the stock market’s run this year or have been conservative with your investments choices, you may be feeling that you’ve missed out on big returns. And this could lead you to jump into some investments simply because you believe that the market highs will continue (and they have, after all), not because they are the right choice for your portfolio. I can remember a few years back when I thought I missed out on the 3-D printing run when those stocks were blazing.

You need to try to avoid such tendencies to accept confirming evidence without question by looking for real empirical data and evidence–and examining the evidence on both sides with equal rigor. For instance, consider whether the U.S. market is a better bet than international right now. Or, how the GOP tax plan will impact the markets. Make sure you ask yourself the tough questions.

In my case, I forced myself to first consider the downsides to investing in the emerging 3-D printing industry or what consolidation might happen along the way–and the effects it could have on the stocks I was considering. In the end, I took a pass.

(2) Get someone to play devil’s advocate. It has happened to the best of us, no matter our education or background in investing. You are at a dinner party or having a conversation in the kitchen at work when you hear someone say, “I just made 100% profit buying ABC stock, and this thing is just taking off.” When we hear of opportunities to make money, our interest is undoubtedly piqued. And if you hear a tip from a person you trust and like, chances are you will become convinced that it is, of course, a good idea.

Do yourself a favor and find someone you trust just as much to play devil’s advocate and argue the opposite. Ask the person to build a counter-argument using questions such as: What is the strongest reason to do something else? The second strongest reason? The third? What is the worst-case scenario? And can you live with it, if it happens? Then, consider this position with an open mind.

For me, it was a former boss. At times, I would grow frustrated with him because on the surface he would never agree with me when I presented an idea. Over the years, however, I realized it wasn’t really him challenging me as much as it was him challenging me to challenge my own thought process so I could be a better decision maker. His sage advice has made me a better investor today.

(3) Be honest with yourself about your motives. Have you ever heard the saying, “If you can see John Brown through John Brown’s eyes, you can sell John Brown what John Brown buys?” I think it applies to the way I’ve looked at investments in the past–and the motives behind my decisions. We often don’t realize the power of our own motives–and we aren’t honest with ourselves about what they are.

For instance, when I’ve made money in a stock in the past, I’ve felt that those gains justify holding onto to the stock for the long term–even if the stock isn’t performing as well as it once did. So now, when I start doing research about that stock’s prospects, I need to make sure that I am really gathering information to help figure me out the right time to sell the stock. This will help me to determine whether any long-held desire to keep an investment is rooted in sound financial reasoning or is just based on pride or another emotion.

(4) Don’t ask leading questions. One of the biggest mistakes you can make as an investor is to ask questions that set you up to get the answer you want–not the answer you need.....if you find that your financial adviser always agrees with your investment ideas, it may be time to find a different adviser. Healthy and heated debates with my adviser have allowed me to make better personal and business decisions over the years.
personal_finance  investing  confirmation_bias  questions  financial_advisors  worst-case  devil’s_advocates  biases  self-delusions  motivations  hard_questions  counter-arguments  red_teams  open_mind 
november 2017 by jerryking
My top 5 investing lessons after 30 years as an economist
September 25th | The Globe and Mail | DAVID ROSENBERG.

After 30 years of experience as a Street economist, you pick up a lot of learning lessons – especially from the mistakes made along the way. Here are my top five below:

* Don’t put all your eggs in one basket (concentrated portfolios but diversified geographically and across the asset classes);
* There is no such thing as a sure thing (the forecast is just a base case across a continuum of possibilities across a distribution curve);
* Marry your partner, not your forecast – it may not love you back (what gets economists into trouble is lack of humility; admitting you’re wrong is never easy);
* If you don’t have a Plan B, you don’t have a plan. If you are wrong, it is imperative to know in what direction – and delineate the new course of action;
* Anything that can’t last forever, won’t last forever.
concentration_risk  economists  investing  lessons_learned  Plan_B  diversification  Bay_Street  Wall_Street  market_corrections  bear_markets  mistakes  forecasting  economic_cycles  beyondtheU.S.  Gluskin_Sheff  David_Rosenberg  probabilities  humility  contingency_planning  never_forever  asset_classes 
september 2017 by jerryking
Ray Dalio and the Market’s Pulse
Sept. 24, 2017 | WSJ | By Andy Kessler

Has Ray Dalio lost the pulse? The founder of the $160 billion hedge fund Bridgewater Associates is all over the place spouting his management philosophy of radical transparency. .....The investment whiz lives and manages by a set of principles that employees have to memorize. ..... “Most problems are potential improvements screaming at you.” Or this reworked cliché: “While most others seem to believe that pain is bad, I believe that pain is required to become stronger.”.....Bridgewater is losing money this year. Through July its flagship fund is down 3%, while the market is up more than 10%. ......The core of investing is quite simple: Determine what everyone else thinks, and then figure out in which direction they are wrong. That’s it. No one tells you what they think. You’ve got to feel it. .....It’s all about figuring out what is priced into a stock right now. That’s the pulse of the market, the collective mind meld aggregated into stock prices. I know from experience this is the hardest part of running a hedge fund. You can find the greatest story ever, but if everyone already knows it, there’s no money to be made..... the pulse changes with each government statistic, each daily ringing of cash registers and satellite images taken of parking lots. That’s why stocks trade every day. Real-world inputs and the drifting pulse drive the psychotic tick of the stock market tape. ....How do you find that pulse? .....

It’s best to survey your own people......Dalio doesn’t care about employees’ opinions or ideas; he just wants to take their pulse to figure out what the market already knows. Or as he puts it: “The biggest mistake most people make is to not see themselves and others objectively.”....Too much capital is often a burden. There are only so many good investment ideas out there, and it’s late in this cycle.....“Truth—more precisely, an accurate understanding of reality—is the essential foundation for any good outcomes.” Here’s a truth: If Bridgewater has lost its mojo, Mr. Dalio would be smart to manage a much smaller pot of money rather than torture his employees.
Andy_Kessler  Ray_Dalio  Bridgewater  hedge_funds  investors  investing  biases  market_sentiment  pretense_of_knowledge  principled  transparency 
september 2017 by jerryking
A Quiet Giant of Investing Weighs In on Trump
FEB. 6, 2017 | The New York Times | Andrew Ross Sorkin

In his letter, Mr. Klarman sets forth a countervailing view to the euphoria that has buoyed the stock market since Mr. Trump took office, describing “perilously high valuations.”

“Exuberant investors have focused on the potential benefits of stimulative tax cuts, while mostly ignoring the risks from America-first protectionism and the erection of new trade barriers,” he wrote.

“President Trump may be able to temporarily hold off the sweep of automation and globalization by cajoling companies to keep jobs at home, but bolstering inefficient and uncompetitive enterprises is likely to only temporarily stave off market forces,” he continued. “While they might be popular, the reason the U.S. long ago abandoned protectionist trade policies is because they not only don’t work, they actually leave society worse off.”

In particular, Mr. Klarman appears to believe that investors have become hypnotized by all the talk of pro-growth policies, without considering the full ramifications. He worries, for example, that Mr. Trump’s stimulus efforts “could prove quite inflationary, which would likely shock investors.”.....“The big picture for investors is this: Trump is high volatility, and investors generally abhor volatility and shun uncertainty,” he wrote. “Not only is Trump shockingly unpredictable, he’s apparently deliberately so; he says it’s part of his plan.”

While Mr. Klarman clearly is hoping for the best, he warned, “If things go wrong, we could find ourselves at the beginning of a lengthy decline in dollar hegemony, a rapid rise in interest rates and inflation, and global angst.”...In his recent letter, he explained for the first time his decision to say something publicly. “Despite my preference to stay out of the media,” he wrote, “I’ve taken the view that each of us can be bystanders, or we can be upstanders. I choose upstander.”....How Mr. Klarman wants investors to behave in the age of Trump remains an open question. But here’s a hint: At the top of his letter, he included three quotations. One was attributed to Thomas Jefferson: “In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock.”
Seth_Klarman  investors  hedge_funds  Donald_Trump  investing  ETFs  value_investing/investors  money_management  Andrew_Sorkin  countervailing  the_big_picture  nobystanders  Thomas_Jefferson  quotes  stylish  principle 
february 2017 by jerryking
To Be a Great Investor, Worry More About Being Wrong Than Right - MoneyBeat - WSJ
By JASON ZWEIG
Dec 30, 2016

The stunning surprises of 2016 should have taught all of us that the unexpected will happen. To be a good investor, you have to be right much of the time. To be a great investor, you have to recognize how often you may be wrong. Great investors like Warren Buffett practice trying to disprove their investing assumptions to determine whether they are correct.

Techniques to combat these cognitive biases:

Shun peer pressure from social media or the Internet. If you reveal your opinion to a group that has strong views, the sociologist Robert K. Merton has warned, the ensuing debate becomes more “a battle for status” than “a search for truth.” Instead, get a second opinion from one or two people you know and can trust to tell you if they think you are wrong.

Listen for signals you might be off-base. Use Facebook or Twitter not as an amen corner of people who agree with you, but to find alternative viewpoints that could alert you when your strategies are going astray.

Write down your estimates of where the Dow Jones Industrial Average, oil, gold, inflation, interest rates and other key financial indicators will be at the end of 2017. If you don’t know, admit it. Ask your financial advisers to do the same. Next Dec. 31, none of you will be able to say “I knew that would happen” unless that’s what the record shows.

Book reference: Keith Stanovich, Richard West and Maggie Toplak point out in their new book, “The Rationality Quotient,” rational beliefs “must correspond to the way the world is,” not to the way you think the world ought to be.
==================================
Commenter:

What investors need to do is focus on their own investments, their strategies for each particular holding, long-term, income-oriented, speculative, etc. and stick to their plan without being distracted by peers and press looking for big headlines.
Warren_Buffett  biases  confirmation_bias  investors  books  Pablo_Picasso  personal_finance  investing  Jason_Zweig  pretense_of_knowledge  self-awareness  self-analysis  self-reflective  proclivities  warning_signs  signals  second_opinions  peer_pressure  DJIA  assumptions  mistakes  personal_economy  surprises  worrying 
january 2017 by jerryking
Some of the Wisest Words Ever Spoken About Investing - MoneyBeat - WSJ
By JASON ZWEIG
Nov 25, 2016

Investing is often portrayed as a battle between you and the markets. Instead, Graham wrote, “the investor’s chief problem — and even his worst enemy — is likely to be himself.”

Evaluating yourself honestly is at least as important as evaluating your investments accurately. If you don’t force yourself to learn your limits as an investor, then it doesn’t matter how much you learn about the markets: Your emotions will be your undoing....Nobel Laureate Daniel Kahneman with his book Thinking, Fast and Slow.
I’m especially grateful that he taught me this: “The most important question is, ‘What is the base rate?’”....Michael Mauboussin, a strategist at Credit Suisse, has taken that hint and compiled base rates for all sorts of corporate measures, so investors can readily check a company’s projections against reality.....From the economist and investing writer Peter Bernstein, who died in 2009, I learned about Pascal’s wager: You must weigh not only the alluring probabilities of being right, but the dire consequences of being wrong....Finally, Mr. Bernstein never tired of emphasizing that we can never know the future — least of all at the very moments when it seems most certain....Richard Dawkins pointed out in a lecture in 1996, many of us today know more about the world around us than Aristotle, the greatest mind of his age, did more than 2,300 years ago: “Science is cumulative, and we live later.”

Investing knowledge is also cumulative, and we all benefit from those who have already learned — and taught — how it works.
investing  investors  gratitude  Peter_Bernstein  wisdom  economists  Jason_Zweig  ETFs  books  Benjamin_Graham  pretense_of_knowledge  base_rates  Michael_Mauboussin  self-awareness  self-analysis  self-reflective  proclivities  probabilities  Pascal’s_wager  Daniel_Kahneman  delusions  self-delusions  emotions  Achilles’_heel  cumulative  Nobel_Prizes 
november 2016 by jerryking
Steven A. Cohen’s Newest Bet: Do-It-Yourself Computer Traders - WSJ
By BRADLEY HOPE
July 27, 2016

Steven A. Cohen is betting as much as as $250 million that mechanical engineers and nuclear scientists can come up with market-beating mathematical models in their spare time. He's investing in a hedge fund launched by Boston investment firm Quantopian that provides money to do-it-yourself traders who come up with the best computerized investing methods, giving a share of any profits to the creators.

Mr. Cohen, chief executive officer of Point72 Asset Management LP, is also making an undisclosed investment in Quantopian itself through his family-office venture arm Point72 Ventures.

The billionaire’s new commitments are part of a broader push in the money- management world to embrace quantitative investing, which relies mainly on math-based models to bet on statistical relationships or patterns in stocks, bonds options, futures or currencies......Point72 Asset Management oversees the personal wealth of Mr. Cohen, his family and employees. It already has an internal team devoted to computer-driven trading strategies......Quantopian says it has 85,000 users signed up from 180 countries who have created more than 400,000 algorithms on the company’s free web-based platform. So far, the firm has only selected 10 of those to trade a few hundred thousand dollars on behalf of Quantopian. The platform is only for U.S. equities trading so far, but Quantopian plans to expand to other asset classes.
algorithms  quantitative  Wall_Street  Steven_Cohen  beat_the_market  hedge_funds  DIY  SAC_Capital  money_management  investing  Point72  asset_classes  family_office 
july 2016 by jerryking
The Money Letter That Every Parent Should Write - The New York Times
By RON LIEBER JUNE 17, 2016

"....consider the old-fashioned letter. It’s long enough to tell some tales to bolster your advice, and if it’s written with enough soul, there’s a good chance the recipient will keep it for a long time. Plus, it’s a literal conversation piece, since the good letters will inspire more curiosity about how the writers oversee their own financial affairs....A good letter, according to Ms. Palmer, should include at least one story about a large financial challenge and another one about a big money triumph. Then, include a list of crucial habits and the tangible things they have helped the family achieve.

HEED YOUR IGNORANCE Quite often, the best stories and takeaways come from the biggest mistakes.
BEWARE OF GENIUS: Don’t trust the person who claims to be omniscient either.
STICK TO YOUR SELLING PLANS We can be blinded by flattery from the seats of power,” “Be aware of this in your business lives.” Selling something that is still valuable is the hardest part of any trade, he added. So if you can’t name three good reasons to continue owning something, then it’s time to sell.
BUDGETS ARE ABOUT VALUES. What you spend says a lot about what you stand for, and if you don’t like what your own notebook says about you, try to make it look different next month.
personal_finance  parenting  Communicating_&_Connecting  writing  investing  investors  mentoring  values  budgets  advice  self-discipline  lessons_learned  wisdom  habits  financial_planning  ownership  ignorance  origin_story  takeaways  family  storytelling  financial_challenges  family_office  generational_wealth  soul-enriching  coverletters  unsentimental 
june 2016 by jerryking
Thane Stenner: Here’s where the wealthy get their investment ‘edge’
Mar. 02, 2016 | The Globe and Mail | THANE STENNER.

They have clear investment goals: High-net-worth individuals are obsessive goal setters. They always know why they’re investing (beyond “to make money”). They reverse-engineer their return objectives to meet both long- and short-term goals.

They know when to delegate: High-net-worth investors are not “do-it-yourself” investors.

They think risk first: High-net-worth individuals are generally focused on wealth protection as much as wealth generation.

It’s business: In general, high-net-worth investors tend to be good at “segregating” their emotions from their investment decisions.

They keep the news in perspective: Most wealthy individuals are news junkies. Of course they listen to, digest, and consider a lot of financial news. But the focus of their attention is on long-term trends, not necessarily up-to-the-minute financial data. And they think very, very carefully before making any decision based on news.

They seize the opportunity in crisis: Most high-net-worth individuals are born contrarians.
high_net_worth  slight_edge  investing  investors  rules_of_the_game  Thane_Stenner  goal-setting  contrarians  reverse_engineering  wealth_protection  kairos  impact_investing  passions  passion_investing  calm  Carpe_diem  Michael_McDerment  thinking_deliberatively  thinking_backwards  work-back_schedules 
march 2016 by jerryking
February 2016 Report on Business
Invest like a legend: ROB Mag's annual dose of investing wisdom
Ex-CEO of Lululemon makes her new pitch: high-end frozen food
Slow plane to China: B.C.’s Harbour Air eyes massive market
Goldcorp’s CEO reflects on seven years at the helm
How Group of Gold Line serves its target customer: new Canadians
Coal comfort: Murray Energy Corp.’s CEO fights back
investing  magazines  Second_Acts 
january 2016 by jerryking
ETF pioneer Som Seif isn’t afraid of the competition - The Globe and Mail
CLARE O'HARA
TORONTO The Globe and Mail Last updated: Friday, Jan. 08, 2016

Education: Bachelor of Industrial Engineering from the University of Toronto
Best investment decision: “Investing in myself. I’ve always felt more comfortable investing in my future and career and I tell everyone that investing in their own career will always be their best investment.”
Worst investment decision: “Have several ‘lessons’ I have learned, all leading to avoid letting my emotions make my investment decisions.”

Favourite books: “I have lots but two of them are Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman and The Education of An American Dreamer by Peter G. Peterson.
financial_services  Som_Seif  Bay_Street  books  financiers  entrepreneur  profile  investing  ETFs  Daniel_Kahneman 
january 2016 by jerryking
How to Buy Art: A Beginner’s Cheat Sheet - NYTimes.com
MAY 7, 2015 | NYT| By WILLIAM GRIMES and ROBIN POGREBIN.

EDUCATE YOUR EYE Go see as much as you can — at galleries, museums and art fairs and by trolling online. The more art you see, the more you will develop clear judgment. Knowledge can help put things in context, but expertise isn’t a prerequisite. Marc Glimcher, president of Pace Gallery, says: “Go to a museum first and see what speaks to you. Identify which thread of art history is meaningful to you before heading to the galleries or the auction.”

Photo

THE LONG VIEW Budding collectors shouldn’t just buy what initially captivates them. “Ask yourself how something might look when you know more, how something might look over time,” said Amy Cappellazzo, co-founder of Art Agency, Partners, an art advisory firm. “The best thing to do is put yourself in a position where the first purchase actually challenges you a little — you’re not sure you like something, but you can’t stop looking at it. Imagine your smarter self looking at it in five years.”
auctions  art  artwork  art_galleries  museums  howto  self-education  judgment  Colleges_&_Universities  art_schools  students  contextual  long-term  collectors  collectibles  investing  investment_advice  pitfalls  mistakes 
may 2015 by jerryking
David Chilton’s rise from The Wealthy Barber to The Wealthy Dragon - The Globe and Mail
IAN MCGUGAN
TORONTO — The Globe and Mail
Published Friday, Jan. 23 2015,

Clips from the Wealthy Barber

On luck: “I’ve been incredibly lucky in life, and my health is my greatest gift. I don’t work out much, I love Nibs and Diet Pepsi, but I’m never sick a day, I never get a cold, I hardly ever sleep, and it’s all from my mom and dad. They’re in their early 80s and still have crazy energy.”

On the economy: “I try to be optimistic but you have to be concerned about debt levels just about anywhere in the developed world. I think governments are making promises they may not be able to keep. It would not shock me to see another financial crisis at some point over the next three to five years.”

On investing: “It’s shocking how badly many people manage their own investments. Mutual fund fees and expenses are part of that, but we also appear to have mastered the art of buying mutual funds that are just about to underperform.”

On mutual funds: “Paying 2 per cent [in mutual fund fees] doesn’t sound like much, because we still relate things to our high school marks. Losing 2 per cent off a mark of, say, 70 per cent is no big deal. But with mutual funds, you’re talking about losing two percentage points of an estimated 8 per cent or so return. That’s a quarter of your expected gain.”

On alternative investing: “If you’re going to get involved with hedge funds, don’t invest in them, run them.”

On entrepreneurship: “A lot of the people we see on Dragons’ Den have the naive idea that the biggest challenge in business is getting their product on the shelves. It’s not – it’s getting it off the shelves. Once it’s in the store, how do you create demand, how do you make it stand out among the competition?”

On perseverance: “No author in history did more interviews about a single book than I did about The Wealthy Barber. I did hundreds of interviews a year. For years and years and years.”
creating_demand  personal_finance  personal_branding  angels  entrepreneurship  luck  fees_&_commissions  perseverance  debt  investing  writers  authors  developed_countries  developing_countries 
january 2015 by jerryking
This Man's Job: Make Bill Gates Richer - WSJ
By ANUPREETA DAS and CRAIG KARMIN CONNECT
Sept. 18, 2014

Surprisingly, Mr. Gates has few technology-related investments. As of June 30, he held a 3.6% stake in Microsoft, worth about $13.9 billion based on Thursday's closing stock price.

Mr. Gates makes his own tech and biotech investments, which aren't held by Cascade. He started digital-image company Corbis Corp. in 1989. Smaller investments include stakes in nuclear-reactor developer TerraPower LLC and meat-substitute maker Beyond Meat.

Mr. Gates is updated on all the other investments every other month. "At the end of the day, all decisions go through Michael," says Mike Jackson, chairman and CEO of AutoNation, who considers Mr. Larson a friend. Mr. Larson is a director of the auto retailer, and Cascade owns a 14% stake in AutoNation valued at about $841 million.

Mr. Gates decided to hire Mr. Larson after the Journal reported in 1993 that the entrepreneur's money manager at the time had previously been convicted of bank fraud. ....After an extensive screening process, a recruiter invited Mr. Larson to meet Mr. Gates. The money manager had worked for a mergers-and-acquisitions firm and run bond funds for Putnam Investments, now a subsidiary of Canadian insurer Great-West Lifeco , Inc., before striking out on his own.
billgates  high_net_worth  money_management  AutoNation  family_office  wealth_management  real_estate  investing  personal_relationships  networking 
september 2014 by jerryking
White House to Begin $10 Billion Rural Investment Fund - NYTimes.com
By ALEXANDRA STEVENSON JULY 24, 2014

The White House Rural Council will announce plans on Thursday to start a $10 billion investment fund that will give pension funds and large investors the opportunity to invest in agricultural projects. Those include wastewater systems, energy projects and infrastructure development in rural America.

“We’re the eHarmony.com of infrastructure and business investment,”...The move comes as pension funds and institutional investors, faced with few investment opportunities that yield high returns in the face of low interest rates, have begun to shift large amounts of money into less traditional investments that promise bigger returns like hedge funds and private equity firms.
farmland  agriculture  agribusiness  rural  alternative_investments  private_equity  infrastructure  investing  energy  wastewater-treatment  institutional_investors  pension_funds 
july 2014 by jerryking
Incognito
October 2003 | Report on Business Magazine | by Doug Steiner.

"...He always seemed a step ahead, and he did it by working harder, thinking harder and trading harder—and in ways that the competition couldn't quite grasp."

Steiner's 10 rules for making serious money:

1. Economists say investing is a zero-sum game It isn't. Money moves to smart hands quickly, and lazy investors pay a price. Tiger Woods became the been golfer by practising a lot. How many prospectuses have you read in bed after the news?
2. Really good investors rarely crow. If there is $5 to be made from a trade, there will be loss than $2.50 after you've blabbed about how smart you are. There are traders who quietly take home $10 million a year. They live beside you in a modest house and drive a beat-up Nissan.
3. The best follow rules and they‘re patient. They may not invest for months. One great trader I know wanted to buy a house in a fancy neighbourhood. He spent more than a week in the registry office on his vacation, searching the title on each property in the neighbourhood to find what buyers paid and how much of that was mortgaged, going back 20 wars. He got a good deal. He does the same amount of homework investing.
4. Sharp traders never add to losing positions. Too many headaches.
5. Smart investors. when puzzled about when to sell. wonder if they should buy more. If they don’t think they should buy more,they sell.
6. The most information wins. If you like a company, phone some people who work there. Apply for a job. Try their products. Phone the shipping dock to find out if they're busy.
7. Get a Bloomberg terminal. Bloombergs have more information in them than you can use, but smart people use a lot of it.
8. Following really smart traders around the market is hard. Most have more money to invest in a position than the arbitrage or opportunity can handle. They leave few tracks.
9. Great investors an: like great athletes—they see opportunities that others don’t. Often you don't realize that what they've made the most money on is even fungible.
10. If you can't do it yourself, find someone who likes the foldouts in annual reports more than anything. Their management fees are usually worth it. And they usually don't have slick marketing brochures.
absorptive_capacity  arbitrage  Bay_Street  Bloomberg  dedication  Doug_Steiner  hard_work  hedge_funds  humility  idea_generation  investment_advice  investing  investors  money_management  obscurity  opportunities  overlooked_opportunities  patience  perception  primary_field_research  prospectuses  rules_of_the_game  self-discipline  sleuthing  slight_edge  smart_people  traders  training  unfair_advantages  zero-sum_games 
december 2013 by jerryking
INVESTING TAX PLANNING Tax traps to avoid when you borrow for investments Pitfall could hurt interest deduction
October 25, 1997 | The Globe and Mail B.20. |Tim Cestnick.

In [STEVE]'s case, he had borrowed $50,000 to invest. The investment increased in value to $80,000 over time, and Steve sold $20,000 of t...
personal_finance  taxation  tax_planning  investing  financial_planning  from notes
august 2013 by jerryking
Natural foods: A diet that could help your portfolio - The Globe and Mail
DAVID MILSTEAD

DENVER — Special to The Globe and Mail

Published Friday, Jun. 07 2013,
grocery  retailers  organic  investing  food  supermarkets  Whole_Foods 
june 2013 by jerryking
Africa’s stocks beckon, but there's a hitch - The Globe and Mail
Apr. 30 2013 | The Globe and Mail | DAVID BERMAN.

Mohamed El-Erian, best known as the chief executive of Pacific Investment Management Co. LLC, the $2-trillion (U.S.) asset manager, gushed over Africa in the latest issue of Foreign Policy.

He argued that the region is moving beyond its reputation as an operations base for multinational commodity producers and is now seeing economic diversification in the form of homegrown small-and medium-sized enterprises.

The World Bank, he noted, reckons that these firms add 20 per cent to Africa’s gross domestic product and generate some 50 per cent of new jobs in sub-Saharan Africa.

“These successful businesses are giving rise to internationally competitive companies, thereby providing access to global markets, new business models and technologies, and higher wages and salaries,” Mr. El-Erian said in the article.

Published
Tuesday,
Africa  commodities  investing  Mohamed_El-Erian  Nigeria  SMEs  stockmarkets  sub-Saharan_Africa 
may 2013 by jerryking
What are the first three questions you should ask before investing in a private company? - Institute for Individual Investors
February 22, 2008

1) What is the background of the key people in this business and what have they each accomplished in this type of business in the past? As part of that question, what is their best accomplishment and what is the worst mistake they have made in business?
2)What competitive advantages does the business have? The competitive advantages should be laid out in the business plan.
3)What could go wrong and prevent the start-up from achieving its goals? If the key people do not have a list of what could go wrong, you should not invest in the start-up, because they have not done a thorough job of planning to make the start-up successful.
angels  due_diligence  privately_held_companies  thinking_tragically  think_threes  team_risk  investing  investors  questions  competitive_advantage 
march 2013 by jerryking
Three Mistakes Novice Art Investors Fall Prey To - WSJ.com
February 25, 2013 | WSJ | By DANIEL GRANT.

(1) Buying what's in vogue.
(2) Shooting for the quick profit.
(3) Going it alone.

As art investing has gotten more popular, advisers have sprung up to offer guidance to would-be collectors, weighing the relative quality and importance of an artwork, researching provenance and sales history, and appraising current value.

Advisers, for instance, can help steer you away from second-rate pieces.
collectibles  collectors  art  art_advisory  investing  investment_advice  pitfalls  mistakes  artwork  provenance  second-rate  art_appraisals 
february 2013 by jerryking
Larry Fink: “We need confidence back”
Jan. 24 2013 | The Globe and Mail |

BlackRock is huge. Are you getting opportunities that individual investors are not?

That's such an open-ended question that it's kind of meaningless. Is the sky blue? I have offices worldwide. I talk to clients worldwide. That's information, but it's not inside information. It's knowledge from being an active participant. We are serving our clients better by doing that. Do I have a better understanding of what's going on in the markets than an individual? I would hope so.

What were the biggest lessons investors should have learned from the financial crisis?

There were many of them. There was way too much leverage in the system, and this is one reason that economies still are not fully out of their doldrums. Institutions really didn't have a good handle on their risk in 2008, either. You could argue that, rather than too big to fail, some of them were too big to understand, too big to manage. Also, when all that leverage was sucked out at once, the whole world became correlated. That aggravated things. Hedges that people thought would minimize their exposures did not. It took a lot of liquidity and capital supplied by central banks to steady things.

Look, from an equity investor's perspective, the beauty of the world right now, and the negative, is that there's so much uncertainty, such a lack of confidence.

How would you invest $100,000 right now?

It depends on your age. If you're 22 years old, I'd put all of that into stocks. But that's me. Before I'd even answer that question, I'd ask: Tell me, how neurotic are you? Can you live with short-term losses? Can you accept the need to hold? Is your holding period 10 years, 20 years? Are you frightened of volatility? It's a cardinal sin if we think that one size fits all. And if you're looking at your mobile device every day to see what the markets are doing, to see if your $100,000 is up or down, that's not good.
Laurence_Fink  BlackRock  investing  investment_advice  liquidity  market_intelligence  questions  cash_reserves  lessons_learned  mistakes  idle_funds  confidence  problem_definition  unfair_advantages 
january 2013 by jerryking
The Education of a Financial Columnist
November 17, 1998 | Wall Street Journal pg. C1 | Jonathan Clements

* Investing is 90% emotional
* Without good savings habits, there is nothing
* You shouldn't invest in a vacuum --non-financial decisions (e.g. about one's health or relationships) can have a financial impact
* There are no gurus
* Churn and get burned
* Diversification is a fair-weather friend
* Risk is in the eye of the beholder
personal_finance  investing  economizing  diversification  Jonathan_Clements  habits  churn  savings  psychology  risk-preferences  risks 
december 2012 by jerryking
Is There Pay Dirt in Farms? - WSJ.com
October 29, 2012 |WSJ| By AMY HOAK.

Investing in farmland isn't for everyone. Typically, investors in farmland are high-net-worth individuals or institutional investors—if they're not farmers looking to expand their property—and their goal is to diversify their portfolio and perhaps hedge against inflation, Mr. Halderman says.

Individual investors in farmland also often have a history of living on or near farms, and thus are comfortable with buying this asset

A Dirty Investment
It may be a good time to put your money in farmland
farmland  investing 
october 2012 by jerryking
How to make money from mass hysteria
July 16, 2011 | The Globe & Mail | by AVNER MANDELMAN.

If you do want to take a flyer on a stock, wait for a public panic in something likely to survive, such as a blue-chip stock, or the world as a whole. Risk only a very small amount of your capital (1 or 2 per cent, maximum) and put a stop-loss order below the purchase price to limit your losses. Finally, set a target above the purchase price - and a time limit.

These two elements - price and time - are as important for a successful speculation as the right panic. Here's why:

Price For most investors, the maximum loss that your stop-loss order should allow should be 5 to 8 per cent, and the target price should be at least double this amount. (If you're buying a $10 stock, and your stop-loss order kicks in at $9.50, your target should be $11 or so.)

What this means is that if your purchase continues to sink, your loss is limited, but if the price rises, your gain will be limited too.

The iron rule here is: If either of these two prices are reached, you're out. No debate.

Over time, a 2:1 gain-to-loss ratio will make you money even if your calls are correct less than half the time.
panics  Avner_Mandelman  contrarians  howto  investing  manias  discipline  blue-chips 
october 2012 by jerryking
Water, Water, Everywhere, Nor Any Drop to Drink
June/July 2007 | Canadian TREASURER | by David Dewan.

50% of water is lost in transmission in many U.S. cities because of poor infrastructure. That's just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. Clearly, demand will far exceed supply. However, we humans are a resourceful bunch, and necessity is the mother of invention. This is why we recommend investments in all facets of the global water industry. For example:
* water technology;
* filtration & purificatiun;
* environmental services;
* engineering;
* consulting:
* irrigation;
* packaged water;
* utilities;
* pipelines & distribution;
* hydroelectricity:
* water rights, and
* instrumentation & measurement components.
water  investing  commodities  infrastructure  environmental_services 
august 2012 by jerryking
Investing in Africa Can Be a Challenge -- But Good Deals Are on the Horizon - Knowledge@Wharton
March 09, 2005 in Knowledge@Wharton

Private-equity investors haven't fared much better than money managers who buy shares in public companies, according to Runa Alam, chief executive of Zephyr Management Africa, the South Africa-based subsidiary of a New York investment company. Like Oyeleke, she stressed that African companies have few venues for raising public money: "You have Johannesburg and London." Unlike Oyeleke, she argued that investors have plenty of deals to choose from. Her firm looked at more than 50 last year alone. But she pointed out that these deals tend to be concentrated in a few countries -- Nigeria, Egypt and South Africa -- and a few sectors, such as telecom, financial institutions and resource extraction.
Africa  challenges  economic_development  investing  investors  Kenya  Nigeria  resource_extraction  private_equity  funding  Egypt  South_Africa  telecom  financial_institutions 
june 2012 by jerryking
Why Panic Passes Him By - WSJ.com
October 15, 2008 | WSJ | By PAUL B. CARROLL who reviews
The Snowball
By Alice Schroeder
(Bantam, 960 pages, $35)

Why Panic Passes Him By
All you wanted to know about Warren Buffett – and more.

While much of Mr. Buffett's methods can't be duplicated -- genius is genius, after all -- "The Snowball" usefully emphasizes a few core Buffett imperatives: taking a close look at an investment's intrinsic value, making a brutal evaluation of its risks, and calculating a margin of safety. The book also underscores the importance of learning from failures. The Buffett-Munger approach is to "invert, always invert. Turn a situation or problem upside down. Look at it backward. What's in it for the other guy? What happens if all our plans go wrong? Where don't we want to go, and how do you get there? Instead of looking for success, make a list of how to fail instead."
Berkshire_Hathaway  book_reviews  books  Charlie_Munger  failure  genius  intrinsic_value  investing  investors  lessons_learned  margin_of_safety  off-plan  panics  Plan_B  post-mortems  risk-assessment  thinking_backwards  thinking_tragically  Warren_Buffett  worst-case 
june 2012 by jerryking
Note on Deal Making
1994 | The University of Western Ontario | Steve Suarez and Jim hatch
deal-making  Ivey  funding  finance  investing  frameworks  dealmakers 
may 2012 by jerryking
Investing Ideas That Stand Test of Time
April 25, 2000 | WSJ | Jonathan Clements

These days I find I am left with just three core investment ideas:
(1) Financial Success is a Sense of Control
If you ask folks about their financial goals, they will likely offer a laundry list of goods they want to buy or announce they want to accumulate as much money as possible. But in reality,
both goals are a prescription for unhappiness.
Sure it might be nice to purchase everything that catches your fancy. But nobody has unlimited wealth, so a focus on endless consumption inevitably results not in happiness, but in frustration and financial stress. Yeah, it would also be great to have heaps of money. But if all you want is an even bigger pile of cash, you will never be satisfied, because you will never reach your goal. So what should you
shoot for? A far more worthy goal, I believe, is eliminating the anxiety that comes with managing money. You want to reach that sweet spot where you feel your finances are under control, no matter what your standard of living and level of wealth.

(2)Investing is Simple
No doubts about it, there are lots of investments and investment strategies that are mighty complicated. But complexity usually means investors are running the risk of rotten results and Wall Street is getting the chance to charge fat fees. Investing is best when it is simple. In fact, if you want to accumulate a healthy nest egg, there
isn’t much to it. First, you have to save a goodly amount, preferably at least ten percent of your pre-tax annual income. Second, you should consider investing at least half of your portfolio in stocks, even if you are approaching retirement. Third, you should diversify broadly, owning a decent mix of large, small and foreign stocks. Fourth, you should hold down investment costs, including
brokerage commissions, annual fund expenses and taxes. Finally, you should give it time. A little humility also helps. Don’t waste effort — and risk havoc — by trying to pick the next hot stock, identify the next superstar fund manager or guess the market’s next move. Instead, your best bet is to buy and hold a few well-run mutual funds.

(3) We are the enemy
If successful investing is so simple, why do so many people mess up? It isn’t the markets that are the problem, it is the investors.
We make all sorts of mistakes. We fret about the performance of each investment that we own, so we don’t enjoy the benefits of diversification. We are often overly self-confident, which
prompts us to trade too much and bet too heavily on a single stock or market sector. We
extrapolate recent results, leading to excessive exuberance when stocks are rising and unjustified
pessimism when markets decline. We lack self-control, so we don’t save enough.

[All the points made immediately above are analogous to Jason Zweig's article on personal finance & investing. From Benjamin Graham --investing is often portrayed as a battle between you and the markets. Instead, “the investor’s chief problem — and even his worst enemy — is likely to be himself.”

Similarly, Nobel Laureate Daniel Kahneman wrote in his book Thinking, Fast and Slow. [that]evaluating yourself honestly is at least as important as evaluating your investments accurately. If you don’t force yourself to learn your limits as an investor, then it doesn’t matter how much you learn about the markets: Your emotions will be your undoing.... ]

If you are going to truly be a successful and happy investor, it isn’t enough simply to devise
strategies that allow you to meet your investment goals. Your strategies also must give you a
sense of financial control and fit with your risk tolerance, so that you stick with them through the
inevitable market turmoil.
That may mean keeping more of your money in bonds and money-market funds. It could mean
paying for an investment advisor. It might mean scaling back your financial goals and accepting
that the kids won’t be heading to Harvard and that you won’t be able to retire early.
These sorts of choices aren’t foolish. What’s foolish is settling on investment strategies without
considering whether you can see them through.
personal_finance  investing  howto  ideas  goal-setting  Nobel_Prizes  money_management  Jonathan_Clements  financial_literacy  biases  humility  mistakes  self-awareness  self-control  proclivities  overconfidence  financial_planning  delusions  self-delusions  emotions  human_frailties  Jason_Zweig  extrapolations  risk-tolerance  recency  unhappiness  human_errors  bear_markets  sense_of_control  superstars  Daniel_Kahneman 
may 2012 by jerryking
Hot Commodities
May 2004 | Robb Report Worth |by John Fried.

When you invest in say, copper, you have to determine whether there is too much supply of copper or too little. You have to figure out how many copper mines are being opened and how many are dpelted. Once you uncderstand those dynamics, you invest. If you inves tin the stock of a copper company, you have to look at those samle macro issues as well as corporate fundamentals. You have to worry about management, balance sheets, continuing practices, and how well the board of directors handles its pension plan . You have to worry about the overall mood of the stock market, the U.S. economy, and well as foreign economies. To me, cutting out the middle man is a lot easier....As a savvy commodities investor you must pay attention to the macro fundamentals--supply, demand, inventories--as well as the mood of the market in order to find your sell sign.
Jim_Rogers  commodities  investing  China  water  gold  market_sentiment  pay_attention 
may 2012 by jerryking
Can Greed Save Africa? -
November 29, 2007 | BusinessWeek | By Roben Farzad. Fearless investing is succeeding where aid often hasn't
Africa  private_equity  investing  emerging_markets  Nigeria  Mozambique  Zimbabwe  fearlessness 
may 2012 by jerryking
In China, a leap forward by Canada
Feb. 08, 2012| The Globe and Mail | Editorial on China and Canada committing to a foreign investment promotion and protection agreement with China....The two essential ingredients in a FIPA are that each country “shall accord to investors of the other [country] treatment no less favourable than that it accords ... to its own investors” and that there will be a dispute settlement mechanism.
investing  investors  investments  crossborder  China  FDI  editorials 
february 2012 by jerryking
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