Jason Zweig - What Can We Learn from Neuroeconomics? How the Investing Brain Predicts the Future

Jason ZweigThis webcast is from CFA Institute. In this webcast, Jason Zweig discusses the following:

  • The prediction addiction: Why do you think they call it "dopamine?"
  • What happens in your brain when your expectations are confirmed — or shattered by surprise

This webcast comprises a 51-minute presentation and an 11-minute question-and-answer session.

Webcast Link.

Conversation with a Money Master - Bill Miller

Bill Miller"Conversation with a Money Master" - Bill Miller , CFA with Fred H. Speece Jr., CFA from Global Perspectives on Investment Management 2006.

John Neff - On Value Investing

John Neff"On Value Investing" John B. Neff, CFA with Fred H. Speece, Jr., CFA from From the 2006 Financial Analysts Seminar.

Michael Mauboussin - The Prime Directive, Sharks, and the Wisdom and Whims of the Collective

Michael MauboussinThis webcast link is from CFA Institute. In this webcast, Michael J. Mauboussin discusses the following:

  • The metrics of market efficiency: mean–variance efficiency and arbitrage opportunities.
  • Necessary conditions for an efficient market: diversity, incentives, and mechanisms for aggregations.
  • Diversity breakdowns and other market malfunctions.

This webcast comprises a 51-minute presentation and a 9-minute question-and-answer session.

Webcast Link

James Grant - Liquidity, Leverage, and Risks to Financial Markets (Podcast)

James GrantThis podcast link is from CFA Institute. In this podcast, James Grant discusses the following:

  • The effect of unprecedented leverage and easy credit on global financial markets and investor behavior
  • The rise of high-rated structured products and re-leveraging of corporate balance sheets
  • The ability of portfolios to weather potential financial storms
Audiocast Link.


2007 Thought Leader Forum

2007 Thought Leader Forum on Sep. 26-27, 2007 :

Direct Link - 2007 Thought Leader Forum Agenda.

Whitney Tilson on housing (Fox Biz News)

Whitney TilsonWhitney Tilson on housing, Fox Biz News, 12/18/07.

Video Link - Whitney Tilson on housing or watch directly below.

David Dreman : Seize The Day

David Dreman

Thomas Jefferson once said that banks are more dangerous than standing armies. Certainly with Chairman Alan Greenspan at the helm of the Federal Reserve this was the case. Under his leadership the Fed was instrumental in creating two bubbles. The dot-com bubble of 1995--99 was followed by a grand loosening of credit that resulted in a second bubble, the housing mania of 2001--05. Still, when a bubble implodes there are always good opportunities for folks who have the courage to take risks.
For all my recommendations in this column, I advise acquiring positions gradually. Who knows how close we are to the bottom of this very jumpy market? Still, those who buy bank stocks should be well rewarded over the next couple of years.

Direct Link - David Dreman : Seize The Day.

David Winters on Bloomberg

David WintersDavid Winters appeared on Bloomberg TV on Dec. 3, 2007. He talked about U.S. and Asian economies, his investment strategy and recommendation of Swire Pacific Ltd.

Video Link - David Winters on Bloomberg.

Bill Nygren's Update on Oakmark Select Fund

Bill NygrenBill Nygren's update on Oakmark Select Fund:

I wish I had better news to report, but The Oakmark Select Fund’s investment losses have continued since I last corresponded with you in September. Given this weak performance, I thought that reviewing why we own what we own might be helpful since many of you use year end as a time to re-evaluate your investments.

Direct Link - An update on Oakmark Select Fund.


Meet the Portfolio Manager - Bruce Berkowitz

Bruce BerkowitzInvestment News editors talked to Bruce Berkowitz about his outlook for the economy, stock selection criteria, portfolio construction formula, favorite stocks and more on December 11, 2007.

Bruce Berkowitz is president of Fairholme Capital Management LLC and manager of the $4.6 billion Fairholme Fund. He has recently been named a contender to win the Morningstar Mutual Fund Manager of the Year award in the Domestic-Stock Manager category.

Here is audio link or you can listen directly below.

Mauboussin on Strategy: Fat Tails and Nonlinearity

Michael MauboussinMichael Mauboussin's latest article about "Fat Tails and Nonlinearity : Diversity Breakdowns and Invisible Vulnerability".

Diversity Breakdowns and Invisible Vulnerability. For he who is acquainted with the paths of nature, will more readily observe her deviations; and, vice versa, he who has learned her deviations will be able more …

Direct Link - Fat Tails and Nonlinearity. (PDF)

Arnold Van Den Berg 2007 Client Presentation

Century Management's 2007 Client Update was held on November 10, 2007. Here is Arnold Van Den Berg's presentation :

Marty Whitman's Big Bets

Martin WhitmanA rare look inside the mind of one of this nation's most storied investors, with CNBC's Erin Burnett. He talked about capital infusion, MBIA, RDN etc.

Video Link - Marty Whitman's Big Bets.

Warren Buffett Watch's 8 Predictions for '08 - And Beyond

Warren BuffettHere are CNBC Warren Buffett Watch's "Eight for '08" .. and beyond.

  • Recessions can't be avoided forever.
  • We'll survive future recessions just as we've survived past problems.
  • Recessions will create opportunities.
  • All stocks won't be cheap.
  • The crowd will make mistakes.
  • Investors will mistakenly think falling stock prices are bad.
  • Good times will prompt bad decisions.
  • There will be more dancing at another wild party followed by another painful hangover.
Direct Link - Warren Buffett Watch's 8 Predictions for '08 - And Beyond

Investing Checklist from Charlie Munger

Charlie MungerGreat digest from From Poor Charlie's Almanack:

  • Measure risk - All investment evaluations should begin by measuring risk, especially reputational.
  • Be independent - Only in fairy tales are emperors told they're naked.
  • Prepare ahead - The only way to win is to work, work, work, and hope to have a few insights.
  • Have intellectual humility - Acknowledging what you don't know is the dawning of wisdom.
  • Analyze rigorously - Use effective checklists to minimize errors and omissions.
  • Allocate assets wisely - Proper allocation of capital is an investor's No. 1 job.
  • Have patience - Resist the natural human bias to act.
  • Be decisive - When proper circumstances present themselves, act with decisiveness and conviction.
  • Be ready for change - Accept unremovable complexity.
  • Stay focused - Keep it simple and remember what you set out to do.

Mark Sellers: Rational investors should rejoice

Mark SellersMark Sellers's latest article on FT's Inside Curve column. Here are a few more things Mr. Sellers have learnt about the stock market.

  • People can’t handle high returns.
  • Avoiding the big losers is more important than finding the big winners.
  • Even if you don’t use margin debt, you may be using leverage
  • It is irrational to wish for the stock market to rise

Direct Link - Rational investors should rejoice.


Mauboussin on Strategy: Death, Taxes and Reversion to the Mean

Michael MauboussinMichael Mauboussin's article about "ROIC Patterns: Luck, Persistence, and What to Do About It".

  • Analysts modeling future corporate financial performance should use past return on invested capital (ROIC) patterns, including a strong tendency toward mean reversion, as an appropriate reference class but rarely do. Full consideration of the difficulty in sustaining high returns should temper the optimism inherent in many models.
  • Some companies do post persistently high or low returns beyond what chance dictates. But the ROIC data incorporate much more randomness than most analysts realize.
  • We had little luck in identifying the factors behind sustainably high returns.
  • This analysis has concrete implications for modeling. We unveil some of the common errors in discounted cash flow models and offer some thoughts on how to improve them.

Bloomberg Interview with Michael Price

Michael Price, the billionaire value fund manager, raised his Sallie Mae stake after the company cut its profit forecast and said another buyer may emerge now that private-equity firm J.C. Flowers & Co. has ruled out a new bid.

Video Link

Anthony Bolton warns credit crisis will infect stock markets like a 'cancer'

Anthony Bolton

"I remember that the effects can take some time to work their way through, but when they do, they act like a cancer - starting in one area and then slowly spreading to others. I would expect the contagion to seep into most stock markets."

Grant and Eveillard on Reuters Investment 2008 Outlook Summit

  • Video clips
    • Jim Grant : Central banks keep fueling inflation
      • "The word liquidity is a phony word that sounds sophisticated," Grant told the Reuters Investment 2008 Outlook Summit. "It clearly means money, money that is being materialized out of thin air through the actions of central banks."
    • Eveillard eyes gold, Japan
      • Eveillard, who manages the First Eagle Funds, says his overseas fun has a position in gold "as insurance against 1 to 3 years of difficult economic and financial circumstances." Eveillard also believes "Japanese equities at large are undervalued."

TMF Interview with Mark Sellers

Mark Sellers

Emil Lee: How does your firm go about researching an investment idea?

Mark Sellers: The first thing we do is figure out what the problem is. Ninety percent of making money in stocks is not losing money, which has to do with knowing what the problem is and how it can be solved. Every company we buy has a problem with it, otherwise it wouldn't be cheap.


Lee: Do you have any other advice on how to judge a management team?

Sellers: If a company puts out a press release saying "Company XYZ Beats Guidance," then that company may be too promotional and too focused on "beating" earnings estimates. If another company puts out a press release saying, "XYZ Reports Third-Quarter Earnings," they're not being too promotional. You can tell a lot from just observing and reading.

Direct Link - Mark Sellers, Intelligent Investor.

Stock picks from a persistent bull - Leon Cooperman

Leon G. Cooperman

Markets may be in a turmoil, but hedge fund veteran Leon Cooperman still thinks equities are a buy, and shares some of his best picks.

In the days leading up to the August credit crunch, stock prices fell and prognosticators said the bull market had run its course. But Leon Cooperman wrote in an article for Fortune: "I view this market drop as a long overdue correction rather than the end of the bull market."

Direct Link - Stock picks from a persistent bull.

SmartMoney 2008 Roundtable

John Keeley Jr. of Chicago's Keeley Asset Management and Bob Olstein of Olstein Funds were on this Roundtable.

"We like to look under rocks — where no one else is looking," says Keeley, whose three sons help him run $6 billion in four funds.

Fox's Breakfast Buffett Video Clips

Warren Buffett

Wally Weitz letter to shareholders about market conditions and fund performance

Wally Weitz

  1. We are continually re-assessing each company’s prospects and financial strength, and we have made some portfolio changes that we believe reduce our exposure to future credit problems while maintaining considerable upside potential. We believe we are being realistic and willing to adjust to an evolving environment;
  2. While few financial company stocks have escaped unscathed (Berkshire Hathaway, our largest holding, being a notable exception), we believe that the market has over-reacted to the potential credit exposure of many good companies;
  3. Many stocks’ prices already appear to discount a recession that may or may not occur. We believe our companies are priced at discounts to their intrinsic values whether or not their earnings and cash flows are depressed for a few quarters by a weak economy.

Direct Link - A letter from Wally to shareholders about market conditions and fund performance.

Warren Buffett In San Francisco Series (CNBC)

Warren BuffettWarren Buffett In San Francisco - video clips & transcripts :

2007 Legg Mason Symposium

Bill MillerHear perspectives on some of the most timely issues facing the industry from our leading global investment managers.

  • Speakers
    • Bill Miller Chairman and CIO, Legg Mason Capital Management
    • Chip Mason Chairman, President and CEO, Legg Mason
    • Ken Leech Chief Investment Officer, Western Asset Management
    • Patrick Tan Chief Investment Officer, Legg Mason International Equities - Singapore
    • Isaac Souede Chairman and CEO, Permal

Whitney Tilson on Wealthtrack

Whitney Tilson

Two up-and-coming investment stars talk about their unusual routes to money management. Bridgeway Funds founder John Montgomery explains his quant approach and unusual corporate culture and value investor Whitney Tilson of the Tilson Funds discusses following Warren Buffett's style.

Here is video link and transcript. (Only available for 2 weeks)
Or you can download the video (MP4 Format) here (Right Click and Save as..).


Whitney Tilson: Look beyond generalisations

Whitney TilsonWhitney Tilson's latest article on FT's Inside Curve column.

  • To say that in the current environment shares of companies in the financial sector are “oversold” or “already discounting a recession” or “poised to fall much further” is a simplistic view that doesn’t reflect the diversity of businesses, companies and risks present among financial firms.
  • In times of uncertainty, the less discriminating the market is of such differences, the more opportunity for smart investors to take advantage.
  • “I’m not Warren Buffett and neither are you,” Lisa Rapuanosaid. “You have to think for yourself, be original, use your particular talents and learn.”

Direct Link - Look beyond generalisations.

CNNMoney Interview with Christopher Browne - The prince of value

Christopher Browne

Christopher Browne traces his investing approach directly back to Warren Buffett's guru, Ben Graham. Guess what? It still works.

Graham's buy-cheap discipline kept value funds, including Tweedy Browne's, out of tech stocks during the dotcom bubble; and while value funds have lagged lately, they still have the best five-year return of the major investing styles.

In a recent chat with managing editor Eric Schurenberg, Browne explained why.

Direct Link - The prince of value.

Nassim Taleb & Jason Zweig on Wealthtrack

Two unconventional thinkers help us to become better investors. Consuelo Mack talks to Nassim Taleb, author of the bestseller, The Black Swan, a must-read among Wall Streeters; and Jason Zweig, author of Your Money and Your Brain about the new field of neuroeconomics.

Here is video link and transcript. (Only available for 2 weeks)
Or you can download the video (MP4 Format) here (Right Click and Save as..).


2007 NYC Value Investing Congress Links

I consolidate some valuable links about the 3rd Annual New York Value Investing Congress on November 28 & 29, 2007.

Weitz Funds Conference Call Transcript

Wally WeitzThe Weitz Funds Conference Call Transcript - November 14, 2007.

This is Wally. I'm here with Brad Hinton and Tom Carney, and we welcome you to the call. I hear there are 48 people at this point. It's been a while since we did one of these calls. I think we felt like we got to the point where we didn't have much to say a year or two ago and now there does seem to be more to talk about and we invited questions. We got quite a few and the three of us will spend, we haven't timed this, but maybe 15 minutes or so talking about the things that seem to be of most interest. Strangely enough there is one stock that seemed to dominate the questions and most of them were politely worded.

At any rate, we're going to start right in with Countrywide Financial (CFC). I wrote some about it in the third quarter letter to shareholders. Things change daily in the mortgage world these days though, so here is a summary of where we are and how we got where we are and what we plan to do going forward.

Direct Link - Weitz Funds Conference Call Transcript.

Eddie Lampert Issues Letter to Sears Associates

Eddie LampertEddie Lampert's Letter to Sears Associates :

November 30, 2007

To our Associates:

Yesterday, Sears Holdings announced our results for the third quarter of 2007. While we were not pleased with these results, much of the commentary in the media and on Wall Street following the results ignores the strength of our company and the progress that we have made. In fact, over the past several years, we are one of the few retail companies that have actually reduced our overall debt levels, while at the same time investing over $1 billion on capital expenditures, making investments in inventory for our customers, contributing significantly to our pension plans for our past and future retirees and repurchasing over $3 billion of our shares.

Direct Link - Eddie Lampert Issues Letter to Sears Associates

CNBC Warren Buffett Going Global Series

Warren BuffettWarren Buffett Going Global Series - video clips & transcripts :

    • When CNBC Squawk Box co-anchor Becky Quick traveled with Warren Buffett to Asia, she took a video camera along for the trip. Some of the material she shot will be appearing in the one hour CNBC special Warren Buffett: The Billionaire Next Door - Going Global that premieres tomorrow night (Friday, November 30) at 9p ET. In this web-only video clip shot with my own trusty minicam, you'll see some additional footage from Becky's "video diary" as she tells us what really happens "behind-the-scenes."
  • Warren Buffett's Video Tour of Berkshire Hathaway Headquarters
    • PART ONE: CNBC's Becky Quick traveled to Omaha, Nebraska recently to shoot additional material for her one-hour special focusing on Warren Buffett's whirlwind tour of Asia. While she was there, Buffett gave Becky an on-camera tour of the Berkshire Hathaway offices. He talked about some of the mementos he's collected and their personal significance to him, and to his investing style. Here on Warren Buffett Watch, you can see the entire walk-and-talk with Buffett and Becky.
  • Warren Buffett's Video Tour of Berkshire Hathaway Headquarters Continues: Why 'Durable Competitive Advantage' Matters
    • PART TWO: CNBC's Becky Quick traveled to Omaha, Nebraska recently to shoot additional material for her one-hour special focusing on Warren Buffett's whirlwind tour of Asia. While she was there, Buffett gave Becky an on-camera tour of the Berkshire Hathaway offices. He talked about some of the mementos he's collected and their personal significance to him, and to his investing style. Here on Warren Buffett Watch, you can see the entire walk-and-talk with Buffett and Becky.

Morningstar Interview with David Katz, Matrix Advisors Value

Justin Fuller of Morningstar met with the CIO of the Matrix Advisors Value Fund, David Katz, to discuss some of his stock picks, spin-offs, thesis on the nation's three large money center banks, and one large-cap name etc.

Video Links :

James Grant - My Hero, Benjamin Grossbaum

On November 15 in Manhattan, the editor of Grant's spoke before the Center for Jewish History on the topic, "My Hero, Benjamin Grossbaum." Following is the edited text of his remarks.

It is a pleasure to be here this evening. I am under strict instructions from the rector of Grace Church, Brooklyn, not to let down the Episcopal side. Uphold the highest standards of the Episcopalian intellectual tradition, he told me. What that tradition might be, he couldn't say, and neither can I. But I'll do my level best.

My subject is Benjamin Graham: his life, his investment philosophy, his writings and his Jewishness. About his love life, I will say little, as my time this evening is limited—just three hours, I believe. Some years ago, Fortune Magazine, in a squib it published on the occasion of Graham's induction into the U.S. Business Hall of Fame, said that the thrice-married father of value investing "leaped from blonde to blonde like an Alpine goat springing from peak to peak."

I am a frankly worshipful admirer of Graham's. I love him for his heart as much as for his head. Between 1929 and 1932, his investment partnership lost 70% of its value. Not until 1936 did it recoup all it relinquished since the Crash. Yet Graham persevered and, along with his partner, Jerry Newman, went on to achieve a brilliant long-term investment record—not excluding those three disastrous years. We have all heard the platitude, "The first rule of investing is not to lose money and the second rule is not to forget the first." Very helpful. Well, Graham shows that a debilitating loss is no reason to give up. . . . Never quit.

Direct Link - My Hero, Benjamin Grossbaum.

Globe Investor Magazine Interview with Bill Miller - Man behind the streak

Bill Miller

The odds of beating the S&P 500 Index for 15 years running has been pegged 2.3 million to one. Bill Miller is the one.

NEVER, EVER TELL BILL MILLER HE'S a legend of Wall Street. He doesn't want to hear the word, think about it, or talk about it. "I am well aware, having been in the business a long time, that those sorts of labels can change very rapidly-from 'legend' to 'has-been,'" he says.

Direct Link - Man behind the streak.


Mark Sellers's FT Inside Curve Column

Mark SellersMark Sellers's articles on FT Inside Curve Column :

Mark Sellers: Investors, cast off your bonds

Mark SellersMark Sellers's latest article on FT's Inside Curve column.

After a brutal three-year bear market to begin the 21st century, US stock markets have done well for four consecutive years. Despite this fact, stocks (especially large-caps) remain a great buy.

Direct Link - Investors, cast off your bonds.

David Einhorn's Speech Excerpt on 2006 Ira W. Sohn Investment Research Conference

David EinhornDavid Einhorn's Speech Excerpt on 2006 Ira W. Sohn Investment Research Conference.

Direct Link - David Einhorn's Speech Excerpt.

Francis Chou's Speech at The Ben Graham Centre - 8/1/07

Francis ChouThis is Francis Chou's Speech to Value Investing Classes on August 1, 2007. His approach is to “find bargains and maintain discipline; if you can not find bargains stay in cash”.

Video Link - Francis Chou's Speech at The Ben Graham Centre - 8/1/07.

Digging for Value in the Real Estate Rubble by Zeke Ashton

Zeke AshtonThere is a terrific piece by Centaur Capital's Zeke Ashton on finding value in the sub-prime rubble that you can read right now! Zeke Ashton is the managing partner of Centaur Capital Partners, a Dallas area investment advisor that specializes in value-based strategies.

Direct Link - Digging for Value in the Real Estate Rubble.

David Dreman on WealthTrack

What more can the Federal Reserve do to limit the economic damage from subprime related bombshells? We'll ask PIMCO's Fed watcher and bond maven Paul McCulley. Plus find out where BlackRock's global investment star, Dennis Stattman is putting his money, and why value investing legend David Dreman believes some beaten down financials are becoming bargains.

Here is video link and transcript. (Only available for 2 weeks)
Or you can download the video (MP4 Format) here (Right Click and Save as..).


Warren Buffett's Statement to Congress on Estate Taxes

Warren BuffettVideo clip and transcript of Warren Buffett's opening statement before the Senate Finance Committee holding a hearing on estate taxes.

Graham and Doddsville Newsletter - Interview with David Winters, Richard Pzena

Graham and Doddsville Newsletter is an investment newsletter from the students of Columbia Business School.

First Eagle Funds Update Call featuring Jean-Marie Eveillard

Jean-Marie EveillardFirst Eagle Funds Update Call featuring Jean-Marie Eveillard.

Mark Sellers's Speech to Harvard MBA students - "So you want to be the next Warren Buffett? How's your writing?"

Here is Mark SellersMark Sellers's speech to Harvard MBA students - "So you want to be the next Warren Buffett? How's your writing?"

7 traits of great investors

  • Trait #1 - The ability to buy stocks while others are panicking and sell stocks while others are euphoric.
  • Trait #2 - A great investor is that he is obsessive about playing the game and wanting to win.
  • Trait #3 - The willingness to learn from past mistakes.
  • Trait #4 - An inherent sense of risk based on common sense.
  • Trait #5 - Great investors have confidence in their own convictions and stick with them, even when facing criticism.
  • Trait #6 - It's important to have both sides of your brain working, not just the left side (the side that's good at math and organization.)
  • Trait #7 - The most important, and rarest, trait of all: The ability to live through volatility without changing your investment thought process.
4 sources of "hard to duplicate" economic moats
  • Economies of scale and scope.
    • ex : Wal-Mart, Procter & Gamble or Home Depot and Lowe's.
  • Network affect
    • ex : eBay or Mastercard or Visa or American Express
  • Intellectual property rights
    • such as patents, trademarks, regulatory approvals, or customer goodwill
    • ex : Disney, Nike, or Genentech
  • High customer switching costs
    • ex : Paychex and Microsoft

Direct Link - "So you want to be the next Warren Buffett? How's your writing?" (PDF, Speech Transcript)

Investment Nuggets From Charlie Munger

Charlie MungerValuable investment insights from Charlie Munger :

  • To avoid envy from other, you should deserve your success.
  • Spend each day trying to be a little wiser than you were when you woke up. Discharge your duties faithfully and well. Step by step you get ahead, but not necessarily in fast spurts. But you build discipline by preparing for fast spurts… Slug it out one inch at a time, day by day, at the end of the day — if you live long enough — most people get what they deserve.
  • Never wrestle with a pig, for if you do, you will both get dirty, but the pig will enjoy it.
  • The ethos of not fooling yourself is one of the best you could possibly have. It’s powerful because it’s so rare.
  • The number one idea is to view a stock as an ownership of the business (and) to judge the staying quality of the business in terms of its competitive advantage. Look for more value in terms of discounted future cash flow than you’re paying for. Move only when you have an advantage. It’s very basic. You have to understand the odds and have the discipline to bet only when the odds are in your favor.
  • A single stock can make up 50 per cent of the value of the entire portfolio. Holding a concentrated number of stocks, that you know extremely well, will in the long term produce superior returns.
  • The mental habit of thinking backward forces objectivity. One of the ways you think a thing through backward is you take your initial assumption and say, Let’s try and disprove it. For example, if you were hired by the World Bank to help India, it would be very helpful to determine the three best ways to increase man-years of misery in India — and, then, turn around and avoid those ways. So think it backward as well as forward. It’s a trick that works in algebra and it’s a trick that works in life. If you don’t, you’ll never be a really good thinker.
  • Rationality is not just something you do so that you can make more money, it is a binding principle. Rationality is a really good idea. You must avoid the nonsense that is conventional in one’s own time. It requires developing systems of thought that improve your batting average over time.
  • The idea of caring that someone is making money faster (than you are) is one of the deadly sins. Envy is a really stupid sin because it’s the only one you could never possibly have any fun at. There’s a lot of pain and no fun. Why would you want to get on that trolley?

Direct Link - Investment Nuggets.

Whitney Tilson: Nothing to fear on the wild ride

Whitney TilsonWhitney Tilson's latest article on FT's Inside Curve column.

  • Panic and fear create buying opportunities; euphoria and complacency deliver great opportunities to sell.
  • Taking a proverbial deep breath before responding to short-term market moves goes a long way to avoiding panic-induced mistakes.
  • Also important are regular disciplines or checklists to follow in making any buy or sell decision.
Direct Link - Nothing to fear on the wild ride.

Whitney Tilson on Citigroup

Whitney TilsonWhitney Tilson's recent video clips :


Legg Mason Value Trust Releases 2007 Q3 Letter to Shareholders

Bill MillerLegg Mason Value Trust's Releases 2007 Q3 Letter to Shareholders :

The stock market can close down for a while and it really doesn't matter all that much. The primary function of the stock market is not to finance company operations, it is to price assets. Companies go public once, and most come to the equity market for capital sporadically, and then typically to finance long-lived projects or acquisitions.

Credit markets are different. They are the source of liquidity to fund operations. If they are not functioning, the economy is threatened. That is why the problems that began in US subprime but which have spread to encompass a wide swath of the mortgage market, as well as the commercial paper market, are so serious and have galvanized central banks and government financial authorities to move swiftly to try to restore those markets to normalcy.
We will likely reduce the weightings of many of our top 10 holdings. They will still be among our largest holdings, we will just have less of them. This is being done to reduce risk in the over-all portfolio, and to fund some of the new names we are buying.

This is the first time since 1990 we have had two calendar years behind the S&P 500. Perhaps not surprisingly, that was also a time of panic due to a housing market recession, soaring oil prices, banks and financials collapsing. We were able to take advantage of the values then offered to begin a pretty good period of excess returns.

While the past may not repeat itself, it does often rhyme, as Mark Twain once said. The chapters to come may be different, but the verses are likely to sound the same.

Whitney Tilson's recent video clips

Whitney TilsonWhitney Tilson's recent video clips :

Weitz Fund 2007 Semi-Annual Portfolio Manager Letter

Wally WeitzWeitz Fund released their 2007 Semi-Annual Report.

Over the years, our investors have gotten used to seeing our Funds zig while the market zagged. We write regularly, and with conviction, about our willingness to be "out of step" with the market. In the 3rd quarter of calendar 2007, we outdid ourselves.
  • Errors of omission. Energy, industrials and commodities bound for China attracted lots of investor capital. The stocks did not meet our investment criteria and they went up without us;
  • Errors of commission. Countrywide Financial was more vulnerable to a liquidity crisis than we had realized and it declined sharply;
  • "Good ideas that have not worked yet." Many of our businesses met or exceeded our expectations but their stocks lagged due to investor apathy or short-term concerns that we do not share;
  • Looking ahead, there are lots of things to worry about (there always are), but we feel very good about the prospects for the businesses we own and their stock prices.

Direct Link - Weitz Fund 2007 Semi-Annual Portfolio Manager Letter or Full Semi-Annual Report (PDF) .

Tom Russo on WealthTrack

Tom RussoThomas Russo, of Gardner Russo & Gardner, talked on WealthTrack.

Taxes can take a big bite out of investment returns. We look for ways to turn the pain into gain with Vanguard tax specialist, Joel Dickson, plus we strategize with noted global value investor, Tom Russo and Morgan Stanley’s asset allocation guru David Darst.

Here is video link and transcript. (Only available for 2 weeks)
Or you can download the video (MP4 Format) here (Right Click and Save as..).

Ron Muhlenkamp's 2007 Q4 Quarterly Letter

Ron MuhlenkampRon Muhlenkamp's review of events that impacted the markets during the past quarter.

The U.S. economy and the capital markets continue to work their way through the transition period which we’ve been discussing for nearly two years. We continue to believe that the economy will experience a “soft landing,” not a recession. Our mistake has been to believe that the markets would have a soft landing as well. That has been true for some industries but not for housing and financials, of which we’ve owned too much.
Bottom line: This transition has taken longer than we expected, but the pattern is familiar. We find it interesting that market participants alternate between despair and euphoria while the economy marches on and major market averages near all-time highs. We believe it’s a good time to put money to work.

Direct Link - Ron Muhlenkamp's 2007 Q4 Quarterly Letter.

Michael Mauboussin : Anatomy Of A Market Crash

Michael MauboussinMichael Mauboussin's article about market crash.

History shows crashes periodically arise from the market's inner workings. And crashes are not random--they tend to follow a distinct pattern, even if the assets or actors differ. However, psychology shows it is hard for investors to take advantage of the opportunities market crashes present. Awareness of these patterns and psychological pitfalls are the first step to succeeding in difficult markets.

Direct Link - Anatomy Of A Market Crash.


NBC's Tom Brokaw Interview with Warren Buffett

Warren BuffettThe Tom Brokaw piece on NBC Nightly News Monday night highlighting Warren Buffett's call for a higher tax rate on very wealthy Americans includes an excerpt from a sit-down interview with Buffett.

Warren Buffett's Trip to Asia Links

I consolidate related links about Warren BuffettWarren Buffett's trip to Asia :

Mohnish Pabrai's Mosaic Article Links - Poor Man's Mosaic from VIN

Mohnish PabraiVIN collects several chapters of Mohnish Pabrai's book, Mosaic: Perspectives on Investing. It's Poor Man's Mosaic !