History’s Limits

I’m a big fan of studying market history. But the reason it interests me is not so I can predict how history will repeat, but rather to empathize with the difficulties market participants dealt with in different market regimes. Whether those difficulties lie in trying to stay optimistic in a bear market, or figuring out…

Investing In A Flat Market

You’ve probably noticed that stocks haven’t gone anywhere in a while. The S&P 500 is unchanged over the last 371 days, which has happened just 119 times since 1928, or 0.54% of the time. Below is a chart showing all these instances where stocks were flat over the previous 371 days. If you’re frustrated with…

The Worst Bear Market That Nobody Ever Talks About

The longest bear market didn’t begin in 1929 or 2007, but rather on January 11, 1973 [i].  The 437 days from peak-to-trough gave birth to many well-known value investors and also left in its wake a generation of brokers that would never return to Wall Street. Roger Lowenstein described how this period is remembered forgotten…

Don’t Feel Too Bad

Apple’s stock is set to tumble 8% at the open. At $98, it will be trading at the same price it was all the way back in July 2014. But despite the recent setback, it’s hard to feel too bad for Apple share holders, who have enjoyed one hell of a ride. Below are a…

Young Bulls And Old Bears

“Two things have always been true about human beings. One, the world is always getting better. Two, the people living at that time think it’s getting worse” – Penn Jillette What do Bill Gross, Sam Zell, Jeremy Grantham and Carl Icahn have in common? They’re all old, they’ve all had brilliant careers, and they’re all bearish on the stock…

Factors Affecting the Buying and Selling of Equity Securities

In 1955, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average was at prices not seen since 1929, a nervous Congress called a hearing to discuss “Factors affecting the buying and selling of equity securities.” They interviewed the father of value investing, Benjamin Graham, to get his take on why the market climbed so fast, where it might…

A Hilarious Commentary

Earlier today, Goldman Sachs reported just awful earnings. In fact, this was the worst quarter of the Blankfein era. This morning, the Wall Street Journal (MoneyBeat) did a really cool live analysis of what was Goldman experienced in Q1. Below are some of the points from their analysis (emphasis mine). Goldman Sachs just had its…

The Man in The Arena

This Saturday marks the 106th anniversary of an amazing speech Teddy Roosevelt made in Paris on April 23rd, 1910. Below is an excerpt in which Roosevelt has some words for those who comment from the stands without having played on the field. It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out…

The Perfect Asset Allocation

The arrival of the auto industry changed the way we lived, however like any new technology, it did not come without a cost. In 1917, Detroit had 65,000 cars on the road, which resulted in 7,171 accidents and 168 fatalities.  Advances in financial technology has exploded over the last few years, and like the birth…

Lifelong Learning Is Where It’s At

Sam Hinkie was an undisputed failure as General Manager of the Philadelphia 76ers.  But today he went out with class as he penned a beautifully written letter, chock full of wisdom. In May of 1969, a 38-year-old Warren Buffett sat down at a typewriter to inform his investors that he was closing his fund (then…