Many value investors have a very particular view of when things are cheap and when they're expensive and they should hold cash. They portray holding cash as a riskreduction method. My view is that's just taking on a different risk. You're betting there is going to be regular cyclicality and things are going to get [...]
We practice the Taoist wei wu wei, the “doing not doing' as regards our portfolio. We are mostly inert when it comes to shuffling the portfolio around, with turnover that has averaged in the 15 to 20 percent range. Many funds have turnover in excess of 100 percent per year, as they constantly react to [...]
It's not exactly reducible to a bumper sticker, but the key to our approach is free-cashflow total return. We look at free cash flow yield plus expected growth in free cash flow, compared to the market-implied rate of return. Take Amazon: the free cash flow yield is around 5 percent, but the free cash flow [...]
In markets, everyone tends to see the same things, read the same newspapers and get the same data feeds. The only way to arrive at a different answer from everybody else is to organize the data in different ways, or bring to the analytic process things that are not typically present. One research source of [...]
The hardest thing is to find management that actually objectively behaves in shareholders' interest as opposed to their own long-term interest. It's not what they say, it's what they actually do. A lot of people tell a good story on shareholder value, but their behavior belies that. Take SPX Corp., the industrial company that came [...]
Time arbitrage just means exploiting the fact that most investors institutional, individual, mutual funds, or hedge funds tend to have very short-term time horizons, have rapid turnover, or are trying to exploit very short-term anomalies in the market. So the market looks extremely efficient in the short run. In an environment with massive short-term data [...]
When I was starting out in the business, I was pitching a stock as a buy to an account in Boston. It was a conglomerate trading at 4x earnings. My pitch was that it was really cheap and was going to go up a lot over the next couple of years. When I finished, the [...]
Most people say they want to stay within their circle of competence, and that’s smart. But there’s no reason to say “Here’s my circle of competence and, guess what, it’s never getting any bigger because I’m not going to learn anything new.” We’re trying to understand new things if we can.