Thursday, May 28, 2020

Value Investing World Announcement

After 13+ years of running this blog, I’ve decided to turn Value Investing World into a fee-based newsletter. There will still be free editions of the newsletter, but the majority of the material will be for subscribers. Further details are below.

But first, let me thank everyone for reading this blog over the years. Thank you! I’ve met many of you in person and appreciate you coming here as a way to help you filter through all the great content there is to read out there.

Going forward…

The new landing page for Value Investing World is:

By signing up, you'll be added to the free distribution list, and will then have the option of subscribing to the paid version to get all of the content going forward.

The newsletter will be just like this blog. For those of you that already subscribe via email, I will try and move you over to the free version. You can then upgrade if you’d like to subscribe to the paid version. I don’t know if I’ll be able to transfer all of the email addresses over, so if you don’t receive an email over the next day or two, you may just need to use the new landing page above to sign up once again.

The first (and free) 'Links' post for today has just been posted to the new page

I’m going to experiment with the free version a bit. Assuming a normal week of 3-5 posts, the free version will either include 1 of those posts, or possibly a short weekly summary as an alternative.

For the paid version, the price will be set at $7 per month. My hope is that the time I’m able to save readers through curation, and uncovering articles or investment ideas that they may not have found on their own, that price will pay for itself many times over. For now, I'm just going to offer a monthly subscription option in case I change my mind. If I decide to make everything free again, it is easier to go back when subscribers are only paying monthly.

Another benefit to subscribers will be the comments section. I had to turn comments off on the blog a long time ago because too much spam was getting into them. But now, whether it’s an investment idea or article about something completely outside of the investing world, comments will be open to those that want to discuss things (for the subscriber-only posts).

There are also a couple of things that I hope to add over time. Given my day job and main focus is still managing client accounts at a registered investment adviser, I’m not sure how quickly or to what extent these will get implemented. So when deciding whether or not to subscribe, see this blog for an expectation of what you’ll be paying for, and not these additional items. But I do hope to add: 1) More discussion of potential investment ideas. Given the comments section for subscribers and a number of investors and other business people I expect will continue as subscribers, I hope we’ll be able to have some informed discussions for those with these interests; and 2) A podcast. Even when I do (eventually) add this, I expect it to be fairly infrequent and only when I think I (and any possible guests) have something really worth talking about.

Thank you again to everyone that has read and supported this blog over the years. And thank you to those that are continuing the journey.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020


"It's one thing to have an opinion, and something very different to act as if it's right." --Howard Marks

The CFA Institute's Virtual Conference [Howard Marks, Peter Zeihan, and others] (LINK)

Platforms in an Aggregator World - by Ben Thompson (LINK)

All six parts of Matthew Ball's & Jacob Navok's primer on Epic Games (LINK)

The Rise of TikTok and Understanding Its Parent Company, ByteDance (LINK)

What Is Clubhouse, and Why Does Silicon Valley Care? (LINK)

The 'Don't Worry, Make Money' Strategy Trouncing The Stock Market By 30 Percentage Points (LINK)

Mortgage Credit Tightens, Creating Drag on Any Economic Recovery ($) (LINK)

Could the Pandemic of 2020 Redefine “Enough”? - by Frank K. Martin (LINK)

Can Remote Work Be Fixed? - by Cal Newport (LINK)

Chapter 1 of Matt Ridley's new book, How Innovation Works: And Why It Flourishes in Freedom (LINK)

Ian Cassel Talks MicroCaps and 100-Baggers on the Chain Reaction Podcast (LINK)

Rob Arnott on WealthTrack (video) (LINK)

Invest Like the Best Podcast: Shishir Mehrotra – The Art and Science of the Bundle (LINK)

The Talk Show With John Gruber (podcast): 285: ‘Fahrenheit Truthers’, With Ben Thompson (LINK)

Recode Decode Podcast: Brian Chesky: These 9 weeks were the most stressful in Airbnb’s history (LINK)

Acquired Podcast: SpaceX (LINK)

Masters in Business Podcast: Michael Lewis on the Power of Intelligent Leadership (LINK)

Against the Rules with Michael Lewis (podcast): The Coach Effect (LINK)

Tail risk of contagious diseases: a conversation between Nassim Taleb and Pasquale Cirillo (video) (LINK)

Freakonomics Radio (podcast): 419. 68 Ways to Be Better at Life [with Kevin Kelly] (LINK)

Friday, May 22, 2020


"We had to decide what are the fundamental directions we're going in, and what makes sense and what doesn't. And there were a bunch of things that didn't. Micro-cosmically they might have made sense. Macro-cosmically they made no sense. When you think about focusing, you think 'Focusing is saying yes.' No. Focusing is about saying no." --Steve Jobs (1997 WWDC)

Netflix: Cooked? - by Stephen Clapham (LINK)

The Brooklyn Investor blog: Wow! (LINK)

Nassim Taleb in conversation with The Economic Times (video) [H/T Linc] (LINK)

Hong Kong National security law; Mocking Trump; Two Sessions begin - by Bill Bishop (LINK)

Village Global's Venture Stories Podcast: The Bull and the Bear Case for the American Economy with Dan McMurtrie (LINK)

Odd Lots Podcast: What The Weak Recovery In Japan Can Teach Us About Re-Igniting The U.S. Economy (LINK)
Related link (subscription required): Professor Richard Werner joins Hugh Hendry for a chat on Real Vision
The James Altucher Show (podcast): 590 - How to THINK like an Innovator with Matt Ridley (LINK)
Related book: How Innovation Works: And Why It Flourishes in Freedom
Elephants Really Can’t Hold Their Liquor (LINK)
Humans and other species have a gene mutation that lets them digest alcohol. In other species, it’s missing.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020


"...most investors think quality, as opposed to price, is the determinant of whether something’s risky. But high quality assets can be risky, and low quality assets can be safe. It’s just a matter of the price paid for them. . . . Elevated popular opinion, then, isn’t just the source of low return potential, but also of high risk." --Howard Marks

Peter Zeihan chats with Grant Williams (video) (LINK)
Related book: Disunited Nations
Epic Games Primer - by Matthew Ball & Jacob Navok (Part 1, Parts 2 & 3)

Millions of Americans Skip Credit-Card and Car Payments ($) (LINK)
About 15 million credit-card accounts and 3 million auto loans didn’t get paid in April as the coronavirus ravaged the economy, data show
America’s Patchwork Pandemic Is Fraying Even Further - by Ed Yong (LINK)
The coronavirus is coursing through different parts of the U.S. in different ways, making the crisis harder to predict, control, or understand.

Seth Klarman quote

From the October 2008 Graham & Dodd Breakfast (via Outstanding Investor Digest):
In terms of our firm, I tried so hard to learn the lessons of 1998 in particular, which were: Don’t be unprepared for something out of the blue that’s really bad. 
To some extent, we were prepared this time.  However, you can never be prepared enough.  We had a lot of macro protection in terms of credit default protection on bonds where we were just betting that credit spreads would widen. That’s been incredibly helpful.  But we’ve gotten really tired of buying market puts, or anything like that, because they inevitably are expensive and expire worthless. 
So as an investor, you have terrible trade-offs.  Do you overpay for insurance — or do you go uninsured? That’s just one of those dilemmas for which there are really no perfect answers.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020


For those interested.... The 5th Annual Value Symposium is back on. Not in Toronto (as originally planned), but via video and scheduled for May 27, 2020. The event has several portfolio managers scheduled to discuss their favorite ideas in a TED Talk format along with ample Q&A time for all attendees. You can buy your ticket ($29) for the virtual event HERE. For more information on the event and speakers, you can email


Gabelli's Omaha (Virtual) Research Conference | Berkshire Hathaway Valuation | May 2, 2020 [with Chris Bloomstran] (video) (LINK)

Lollapalooza Time (LINK)

The Song Remains the Same (LINK)
Related book: Where Are the Customers' Yachts?
Princes of the Yen: Central Bank Truth Documentary (video) [H/T @hendry_hugh] (LINK)
Related book: Princes of the Yen: Japan's Central Bankers and the Transformation of the Economy
Bill Gates' summer reading list (LINK)
The books: 1) The Choice - by Dr. Edith Eva Eger; 2) Cloud Atlas - by David Mitchell; 3) The Ride of a Lifetime - by Bob Iger; 4) The Great Influenza - by John M. Barry; 5) Good Economics for Hard Times - by Abhijit V. Banerjee and Esther Duflo
Not even wrong: ways to predict tech - by Benedict Evans (LINK)

Chips and Geopolitics - by Ben Thompson (LINK)

Facebook Launches Shopping Platform for Small Businesses ($) (LINK)

Spotify Strikes $100 Million-Plus Podcast Deal With Rogan ($) (LINK)

Be Careful Handling White-Hot Moderna Stock ($) (LINK)

Invest Like the Best Podcast: Hamilton Helmer – Power + Business (LINK)
Related book: 7 Powers: The Foundations of Business Strategy
The Meb Faber Show (podcast): #221 - Chris Davis, Davis Advisors (LINK)

Against the Rules with Michael Lewis (podcast): The Coach in Your Head (LINK)

Hope, Through History Podcast: 5 | The 1918 Influenza Pandemic (LINK)

The Three Sides of Risk - by Morgan Housel (LINK)

Monday, May 18, 2020


“Instead of a discussion of risk (which is both predictive and sissy) I advocate the notion of fragility, which is not predictive—and, unlike risk, has an interesting word that can describe its functional opposite, the nonsissy concept of antifragility.” --Nassim Taleb (Antifragile)

The Acquirers Podcast: Tulip Mania: Chris Bloomstran on Warren Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway (LINK)
Oaktree’s Howard Marks Says Fed Support Isn’t Forever, Distress Coming (video) (LINK)

Apollo Asia Fund: the manager's report for 1Q20 (LINK)

When Failure Is an Option: A Trading Strategy Soaks Investors - by Jason Zweig ($) (LINK)

To Hedge or Not to Hedge - by Frank K. Martin (LINK)

Media, Regulators, and Big Tech; Indulgences and Injunctions; Better Approaches - by Ben Thompson (LINK)

Exponent Podcast: 185 — Open, Free, and Spotify (LINK)

Strategy under uncertainty - by Jerry Neumann (LINK)

Covid-19: Big shifts in the entertainment industry - by Sangeet Paul Choudary (LINK)

Innovation Can’t Be Forced, but It Can Be Quashed - by Matt Ridley (LINK)
Related book (released tomorrow): How Innovation Works: And Why It Flourishes in Freedom
Fed Chair Jerome Powell on "60 Minutes" (video) (LINK)

The Pomp Podcast: 294: Cullen Roche Explains The Ultimate Breakdown Of The Federal Reserve (LINK)

Hidden Forces Podcast: How the Wealth Gap Drives Imbalances in Global Trade & Finance | Michael Pettis (LINK)

The Grant Williams Podcast: Super Terrific Happy Hour Ep. 2 - Inflation/Deflation (LINK)

The Daily Stoic Podcast: Ask Daily Stoic: Ryan and Historian Andrew Roberts Talk Leadership, Character and How One Person Can Change The World (LINK)

Recode Decode Podcast: Jon Meacham: America’s history can teach us how to hope for our future (LINK)

The Twilight of the Iranian Revolution - by Dexter Filkins (LINK)

Some Zoos, and Some of Their Animals, May Not Survive the Pandemic (LINK)

What's Different About the Coronavirus in Kids - by Sarah Zhang (LINK)

Mental Models For a Pandemic (LINK)

A review of The Great Mental Models, Volume 2 (LINK)

Thursday, May 14, 2020


"A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves." --Lao Tzu 

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway sold a substantial amount of U.S. Bancorp stock this week (LINK)

A good post via the Berkshire Hathaway message board at The Motley Fool [H/T Linc] (LINK)

Full video of Stanley Druckenmiller at The Economic Club of New York (LINK)

Full video of David Tepper's CNBC call-in yesterday (LINK)

A Viral Market Update VIII: A Crisis Test - Value vs Growth, Active vs Passive, Small Cap vs Large! - by Aswath Damodaran (LINK)

Acceptable Flaws - by Morgan Housel (LINK)

The Tim Ferriss Show (podcast): #432: Books I’ve Loved — Kevin Kelly (LINK)

Freakonomics Radio (podcast): 418. What Will College Look Like in the Fall (and Beyond)? (LINK)

Matt Ridley: 23 of Your AMA Questions, Answered (LINK)

Wednesday, May 13, 2020


Amid the Coronavirus Crisis, a Regimen for Reëntry - by Atul Gawande (LINK)

Scanning for answers to a pandemic - by Bill Gates (LINK)

David Tepper says this is the second-most overvalued stock market he’s ever seen, behind only ’99 (LINK)

Druckenmiller Says Risk-Reward in Stocks Is Worst He’s Seen (LINK)

Daniel Yergin at The Economic Club of New York (video) (LINK)
Related book (September release): The New Map: Energy, Climate, and the Clash of Nations
BIS paper: US dollar funding markets during the Covid-19 crisis - the money market fund turmoil (LINK)

BIS paper: US dollar funding markets during the Covid-19 crisis - the international dimension (LINK)

Dithering and Open Versus Free - by Ben Thompson (LINK)

Steven Kiel interviews Harris Kupperman as well as Calvin Froedge about the opportunity in tankers.

Steve Vafier with the investment case for Stitch Fix (video) (LINK)

Invest Like the Best Podcast: Tobi Lutke – Building a Modern Business (LINK)

Acquired Podcast: Adapting Episode 3: Intel (LINK)

TC's Chartcast Podcast: #25: Josh Wolfe (LINK)

Against the Rules with Michael Lewis (podcast): Don’t Be Good – Be Great (LINK)

Hope, Through History Podcast: 4 | The Cuban Missile Crisis (LINK)

Eat Rat, Make New Body: Easy Stuff for Pythons - by Carl Zimmer (LINK)

Monday, May 11, 2020

Howard Marks Memo: Uncertainty

Link to Memo: Uncertainty
In investing, uncertainty is a given – how we deal with it will be critical. Read Howard Marks’s latest memo, in which he discusses the value of understanding the limitations of our foresight and “investing scared.”