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Warren Buffet: Wisdom from the Worlds Richest Investor
In light of the dominant mindset overshadowing the market these days, a breath of fresh air might be welcome. This month, we're devoting this space to wisdom from Warren Buffett, the world's richest investor. Buffett is a renowned value investor who follows Benjamin Graham's timeworn principles, a standard not unlike our own focus. Alas, in times like these, value investing has fallen out of favor; a sad situation, as these times are ideal for value hunters. Buffett writes prolifically every year in his company's annual report, and provides tidbits of long-lasting wisdom. Here are some excerpts that may help bring perspective to today's investor:
"2000. We purchased several companies whose earnings will almost certainly decline from peaks they reached in 1999 and 2000. The declines make no difference to us, given that we expect all of our businesses to now and then have ups and downs. (Only in the sales presentations of investments banks do earnings move forever upward.) We don't care about the bumps; what matters are the overall results. But the decisions of other people are sometimes affected by the near term outlook, which can both spur sellers and temper the enthusiasm of purchasers who might otherwise compete with us.
1990. The term "earnings" has a precise ring to it. And when an earnings figure is accompanied by an unqualified auditor's certificate, a naïve reader might think it comparable in certitude to pi, calculated to dozens of decimal places. In reality, however, earnings can be as pliable as putty when a charlatan heads the company reporting them. Eventually truth will surface, but in the meantime a lot of money can change hands. Indeed, some important American fortunes have been created by the monetization of accounting mirages. Funny business in accounting is not new. For connoisseurs of chicanery, I have anunpublished satire on accounting practices written by Ben Graham in 1936. Alas, excesses similar to those he then lampooned have many times since found their way into the financial statements of major American corporations and been duly certified by big-name auditors. Clearly, investors must always keep their guard up and use accounting numbers as a beginning, not an end, in their attempts to calculate true "economic earnings" accruing to them.
2001. Two years ago, reporting on 1999, I said that we had experienced both the worst absolute and relative performance in our history. I added that "relative results are what concern us," a viewpoint I've had since forming my first investment partnership on May 5, 1956. Meeting with my seven founding limited partners that evening, I gave them a short paper titled "The Ground Rules" that included this sentence: "Whether we do a good job or a poor job is to be measured against the general experience in securities. "We initially used the Dow Jones Industrials as our benchmark, but shifted to the S&P 500 when that index became widely used. Some people disagree with our focus on relative figures, arguing that "you can't eat relative performance." But if you expect? As Charlie Munger, Berkshire's Vice Chairman, and I do? That owning the S&P 500 will produce reasonably satisfactory results over time, it follows that, for long-term investors, gaining small advantages annually over that index must prove rewarding. Just as you can eat well throughout the year if you own a profitable, but highly seasonal, business such as See's (which loses considerable money during the summer months) so, too, can you regularly feast on investment returns that beat the averages, however variable the absolute numbers may be.
1994. Thirty years ago, no one could have foreseen the huge expansion of the Vietnam War, wage and price controls, two oil shocks, the resignation of a president, the dissolution of the Soviet Union, a one-day drop in the Dow of 508 points, or treasury bill yields fluctuating between 2.8% and 17.4%.
But, surprise none of these blockbuster events made the slightest dent in Ben Graham's investment principles. Nor did they render unsound the negotiated purchases of fine businesses at sensible prices. Imagine the cost to us, then, if we had let a fear of unknowns cause us to defer or alter the deployment of capital. Indeed, we have usually made our best purchases when apprehensions about some macro event were at a peak. Fear is the foe of the faddist, but the friend of the fundamentalist.
A different set of major shocks is sure to occur in the next 30 years. We will neither try to predict these or to profit from them. If we can identify businesses similar to those we have purchased in the past, external surprises will have little effect on our long-term results.
Stock prices will continue to fluctuate sometimes sharply and the economy will have its ups and down. Over time, we believe it highly probable that the sort of businesses we own will continue to increase in value at a satisfactory rate.
The future is never clear, you pay a very high price in the stock market for a cheery consensus. Uncertainty actually is the friend of the buyer of long-term values."
To send comments or to learn more about Scott Pearson's Investment Advisor Services, visit http://www.valueview.net
Scott Pearson is an investment advisor, writer, editor, instructor, and business leader. As President and Chief Investment Officer of Value View Financial Corp., he offers investment management services to a wide variety of clients. His own newsletter, Investor's Value View, is distributed worldwide and provides general money tips and investment advice to readers both internationally, and in the U.S.
One Pipeline Is Worth A Thousand Paychecks
It is with great pleasure of having you here at this hour. Let me get it straight and be honest with you at the very outset. First of all, I'm not going to sell you anything here. And second of all, if you are hoping that you could learn some tricks to earn Quick & easy Money, you are definitely in a wrong place.
Building Wealth: Its An Inside Job ? Part 1
Whenever we read about building wealth or even attend a seminar for that purpose, we usually begin by assessing our present financial status. We're asked to calculate our assets and liabilities followed by a determination of where we'd like to be in a certain period of time. Being armed with this data along with assessing our present earning and saving power, we then set out to structure our financial goals. Although we try to be realistic, we still want to stretch ourselves a little bit ? after all, that's one of the purposes of setting goals, isn't it? To achieve more than we normally would if we didn't have goals in the first place. And also, goals are supposed to give us direction.
WARNING: The Biggest Lie About Social Security
Like I said, If you are poor and on social security do not, and I repeat do not read this article.
Create Tax Savings And Transfer Wealth To Your Child With A Roth IRA
Parents must give serious thought to protecting their family through estate tax planning. While life insurance and trusts should be a part of every plan, Roth IRAs can be a simple tool for passing money to your child on a tax-free basis.
Real Estate Stories that Show You How!
Let's begin easing you out of the pits. I mean, comfort zone! I'm going to slowly and methodically give you as many little sparks and insights to the relatively simple ways that ordinary people use real estate to achieve extraordinary results.
Want Money? You Got It!
Six out of six people who were asked to list their highest priority in life said, "I want money". Maybe not in those exact words, but that was the gist of the request. Understand, when you ask the Universe for something the Universe must help provide it. All six of these people are getting exactly what they asked for. They are 'wanting money'.
What it Means to be Rich
Many people have a false understanding of what it actually means to be rich. If you were to ask a stranger what makes a person rich, he or she would say "A person is rich if they have a lot of money and can buy whatever they want!". But that isn't what it means to be rich. This is what it means when a person is rich: The person's assets create enough cashflow every month, to cover his or her expenses. So basically being rich means that whether you work or not, money will still be flowing into your pockets.
The Top 10 Steps to Becoming a Millionaire
There is perhaps no more important decision than to take charge of your own financial future. We live in a world of opportunity, and yet most Americans are buried in credit card and other debt. We are surrounded by people who are getting rich, but most of us are running in place. If you can read this, you are literate, have a computer, you are part of the "wired generation". You can become as financially independent as you wish to be. Here are the Top 10 keys to your financial success:
Simple Strategies to Making Financial Gain
Now is a great time to make it a habit to manage your resources instead of your resources managing you. What is meant by that when we are stating that "Your money manages you"? Here is a well known example:
Steps to Financial Freedom
Financial freedom is the power to do what you will with your life without being forever bound by lack of money and over burdened by debt. This worthwhile goal can be achieved by anyone through careful planning and persistence. Just follow these steps:
Trustees: Who Can You Trust?
Early in my legal career I represented two young women in their early 20s.
Does the Moon Have Covers?
Recently, one late winter night, my four-year old son and I counted stars with one another. After a few minutes, he pointed to the bright moon and asked, "Why doesn't the moon have covers?"
Financial Intelligence - Natural Marketing For Lone Rangers
"Ooooooh," you may say, "I could NEVER be good at marketing, I'm just not that sort of person. I'm just not pushy enough".
Retirement Planning the Offshore Way
Retirement Planning the Offshore Way Why do so many of us constantly push the thought of retirement planning to the back of our minds? Reluctance?! 1 Reluctance to save for an event that seems so far off 2 Reluctance to tie in to an inflexible pension scheme 3 Reluctance to put a large portion of our current income out of reach for the long term But in terms of retirement planning, putting off until tomorrow that which you could get done today will end up costing you very dearly. Every month you delay your retirement savings planning, you significantly reduce the value of your future potential retirement fund.
The Predicament of the Newly Rich
They are the object of thinly disguised envy. They are the raw materials of vulgar jokes and the targets of popular aggression. They are the Newly Rich. Perhaps they should be dealt with more appropriately within the academic discipline of psychology, but then economics in a branch of psychology. To many, they represent a psychopathology or a sociopathology.
The Underlying Belief System
Many of us do not consider the underlying belief system about money to be of any importance. You think it does not matter, because what matters is what you do now. Right, at one level, but not complete. All ideas that we have learned about money in the past are colouring our actions today.
Lesson 1 - Why Arent You Wealthy?
We will start the Financial Fitness System with the assumption that you are out of shape financially or you would not have decided to subscribe to the course. So, again, why aren't you wealthy? There are some exceptions, but for the majority of the world it's the same reason. You did not choose to be wealthy, that's it, end of story. We told you this would be simple!
What Do You Mean By Diversity?
The word 'diversity' is a unique one. It can represent many things, depending upon its context. To work in a diverse workplace is to have all genders and ethnicities represented. In another example, people strive for diversity within their leisure activities, while at the same time seeking consistency (yes, that is strange).
10 Ways To Find The Money Hiding In Your Paycheck
No matter how tight things are financially for you; no matter how bleak you think that 2005 might be, if you are earning a paycheck then there's extra money hiding in it. You just need to know where to look. Here are 10 ways to bring that money out into the open.
Spiritual and Emotional Money Goals: The Keys to a Financially Free Future
Are you setting the right money goals?
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