July - September 2015 articles archive home
 
 
Benjamin's advice
From an interview with Benjamin Graham published in 1951: Let me suggest three such rules: (1) The individual investor should act consistently as an investor and not as a speculator. (2) The investor should have a definite selling policy for all his common stock commitments, corresponding to his buying techniques. (3) Finally, the investor should always have a minimum percentage of his total portfolio in common stocks and a minimum percentage in bond equivalents.
Wednesday, September 30, 2015 ... more
 
 
 
Latticework of mental models
The phrase ‘Latticework of Mental Models’ comes from Berkshire-Hathaway’s Charles Munger who has spent most of his life working out ways to, for lack of a better term, “think better.” Munger believes that in order to make better decisions in business and in life, it helps to understand the core principles of different disciplines.
Tuesday, September 29, 2015 ... more
 
Wordly wisdom
Organised common (or uncommon) sense – very basic knowledge is an enormously powerful tool. There are huge dangers with computers. People calculate too much and think too little.
Tuesday, September 29, 2015 ... more
 
 
If it was a person
If the stock market was a person, it would be: Rich. There’s a lot of money in the stock market. Having all that money doesn’t really make it any happier, though. Nervous. In fact, being so wealthy and privileged makes it incredibly anxious ....
Monday, September 28, 2015 ... more
 
 
 
Trees
I think that I shall never see a billboard lovely as a tree. Indeed, unless the billboards fall I'll never see a tree at all.
Friday, September 25, 2015 ... more
 
 
 
Work
“… that productive work is the process by which man's consciousness controls his existence, a constant process of acquiring knowledge and shaping matter to fit one's purpose, of translating an idea into physical form, of remaking the earth in the image of one's values - that your work is yours to choose, and the choice is as wide as your mind …
Thursday, September 24, 2015 ... more
 
 
 
Common errors
Adapted from A Dash of Insight, Jeff Miller’s list of frequent investor errors: They try to be traders. They don’t get the mix right. They think they are experts on world events. They confuse politics with investing. They wait too long – usually, for problems to be sorted. They fail to see what’s working.They don’t manage risk effectively. They react to news. They try to go "all in."
Wednesday, September 23, 2015 ... more
 
 
 
Contradictions
Economists, academics, research analysts, fund managers and individual investors often have different and even conflicting theories about why the market works the way it does. But these theories are really nothing more than opinions. Some opinions might be better thought out than others, but at the end of the day, they are still just opinions.
Tuesday, September 22, 2015 ... more
 
 
 
Own worst enemy
You’re smart, confident, and always on top of the latest investment news. If something’s hot, you’re buying. If something’s not, you dump it. In 1998 you bought into the listing boom. In 2007 you bought derivatives. In 2011, you bought gold. In each case, buying what was ‘going through the roof’ and afterwards selling after it fell. You can’t resist buying yesterday’s winners, and it’s cost you plenty.
Tuesday, September 22, 2015 ... more
 
 
 
Ourselves
Truly, not a single thing in all the world has so occupied my thoughts as this Self of mine, this riddle: that I am alive and that I am One, am different and separate from all others! And there is not a thing in the world about which I know less than about myself …” ― Hermann Hesse
Monday, September 21, 2015 ... more
 
 
 
Science in the media
While the increasing attention given to science by the media is a positive development— we want a scientifically-literate population, and research appearing only in obscure journals will not help in achieving this —we should be worried about the trend for at least two reasons.
Friday, September 18, 2015 ... more
 
 
 
Bad news
One of the most important lessons to be learnt is that it’s totally irrelevant to stock prices whether news is good or bad. Failing to understand this basic tenet causes investors to overreact to the news. To be a successful investor, you need to understand that what matters is whether the news is better or worse than already expected.
Thursday, September 17, 2015 ... more
 
 
 
Truth be told
Since having his “aha moment” while reading a Jack Bogle book, broker-turned-boglehead Rick Ferri has built a low-fee advisory business, authored several books and provided numerous insights into the ugly side of the wealth management business. Here are a few:
Wednesday, September 16, 2015 ... more
 
 
 
Time in the market
“Until recently we had gone several years without a double-digit decline in US stocks,” says Servo Wealth Management CEO Eric Nelson. “For long-term investors that length of time can lead to a false sense of security and entitlement—believing that stocks should always go up and they have a right to consistently-positive returns. But that has never been the case."
Tuesday, September 15, 2015 ... more
 
From the 2013 letter
From Warren Buffet’s 2013 Letter to Berkshire Shareholders: You don’t need to be an expert in order to achieve satisfactory investment returns; Focus on the future productivity of the asset you are considering; If you instead focus on the prospective price change of a contemplated purchase, you are speculating; Forming macro opinions or listening to the macro or market predictions of others is a waste of time.
Tuesday, September 15, 2015 ... more
 
 
The zombie problem
In a recent article at Bad Science Dr Ben Goldacre stated that, a psychic was called to investigate a reported zombie in underground tunnels at an Eastbourne sewage plant in England. “It’s not funny going to work and worrying that a zombie might be around the corner,” said one plant worker. “It’s even less funny for a consumer to be cynically exploited by a psychic,” said Goldacre.
Monday, September 14, 2015 ... more
 
Bragging rights
Self-promoters may continue to brag because they fundamentally misjudge how other people perceive them, according to a study published in the journal Psychological Science. "Most people don’t enjoy being on the receiving end of other people's self-promotion," says its co-author Irene Scopelliti, a behavioural scientist at the City University London.
Friday, September 11, 2015 ... more
 
 
Are emotions rational?
Findings in cognitive psychology and neuroscience provide evidence that rationality is not the result of a pure cognitive process but the result of an intimate and inseparable integration of both cognitive and emotional processing – shedding some light on why biases can sometimes be beneficial and sometimes detrimental. But if emotions are part of rationality, how should we understand “emotional biases”?
Thursday, September 10, 2015 ... more
 
Joshua's advice Wednesday, September 9, 2015
From Nedgroup Investments Tuesday, September 8, 2015
Dealing with Black Swans Tuesday, September 8, 2015
More from Charlie … Monday, September 7, 2015
Augmented Friday, September 4, 2015
Learning to sell Thursday, September 3, 2015
Barry's warning Wednesday, September 2, 2015
Risk Tuesday, September 1, 2015
Housel on risk Tuesday, September 1, 2015
A reminder Monday, August 31, 2015
The dead Friday, August 28, 2015
Corrections Thursday, August 27, 2015
Insights Wednesday, August 26, 2015
Don't know Tuesday, August 25, 2015
Beyond the bad news Tuesday, August 25, 2015
Winner's game Monday, August 24, 2015
More than one Friday, August 21, 2015
Broken window Thursday, August 20, 2015
Cro-Magnon Investor Man Wednesday, August 19, 2015
Complexity Tuesday, August 18, 2015
Foxes and hedgehogs in the market Tuesday, August 18, 2015
Charlie on EMT Monday, August 17, 2015
One rung up Friday, August 14, 2015
Gold Thursday, August 13, 2015
Nicolas Darvas’ advice Wednesday, August 12, 2015
Best done in isolation Tuesday, August 11, 2015
Tit for tat Monday, August 10, 2015
Vision Friday, August 7, 2015
Incentives Thursday, August 6, 2015
Eventually, they blow-up Wednesday, August 5, 2015
How does it help to know more? Tuesday, August 4, 2015
Livermore's insights Tuesday, August 4, 2015
Emotions: Right or wrong? Monday, August 3, 2015
Hair in soup Friday, July 31, 2015
Grand strategy Thursday, July 30, 2015
Volume Wednesday, July 29, 2015
Different models Tuesday, July 28, 2015
Investors, like engineers Tuesday, July 28, 2015
Smart Decision Monday, July 27, 2015
Self-righteous Friday, July 24, 2015
Why Johnny can’t sell Thursday, July 23, 2015
Charlie's list Wednesday, July 22, 2015
V&i+g Tuesday, July 21, 2015
Looking for yield Tuesday, July 21, 2015
How wrong? Friday, July 17, 2015
Where to look Thursday, July 16, 2015
Doesn't bode well Wednesday, July 15, 2015
Short sellers Tuesday, July 14, 2015
Contradictions Tuesday, July 14, 2015
Hard work Friday, July 10, 2015
Like beans in a jar Thursday, July 9, 2015
From the classics Wednesday, July 8, 2015
Greece, China & the US Tuesday, July 7, 2015
Backwards Tuesday, July 7, 2015
Why worry Friday, July 3, 2015
Premortems Thursday, July 2, 2015
From Steen Jakobsen ... Wednesday, July 1, 2015
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