Books

Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Investor Sentiment and the Housing Market

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I’ve been spending some time studying the housing market and a number of companies that directly and indirectly do business in that industry. I have a view on the fundamentals of the housing market that I might write about another time. But as a somewhat related aside, a few studies out there have noted how we, as humans, naturally fear financial panics but incorrectly and inadequately prepare for the next panic using tactics that would have helped prevent the previous […]

Books

Human Behavior and The Panic of 1907

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I recently wrote a post about a book I really liked called America’s Bank, by Roger Lowenstein. The book talks about the formation of the Federal Reserve, and the events that led to it. One of the major catalysts that started the process of banking reform was the Panic of 1907. What Caused the Panic of 1907? Basically, the Panic of 1907 was caused by a classic run on the bank, leading to the failure of the Knickerbocker Trust company […]

Books

The Interesting Story of the Founding of the Fed

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Roger Lowenstein wrote the first in-depth biography of Buffett in 1995 called The Making of an American Capitalist, an outstanding account that spans from Buffett’s early days in his partnership to the prime years of Berkshire’s growth. Lowenstein also wrote a book I like even better – one of my all-time favorite business books: When Genius Failed, which was the story of the LTCM collapse. There are lots of great lessons for investors to take away from that story, and […]

Books

The Behavior of Stock Market Manias

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I’ve heard more and more commentary/concern about the level of the overall market lately. With the market relentlessly marching to new all-time highs just about every day, I’ve even begun to hear the word “bubble” being used. While I certainly don’t think the market overall is cheap, and while I certainly believe it’s very possible that a bear market could occur at any time, we are definitely not in a bubble. Anyone who thinks that the current market is reaching […]

Books

The Misunderstanding of Peter Lynch’s Investment Style

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“I’ve never said, ‘If you go to a mall, see a Starbucks and say it’s good coffee, you should call Fidelity brokerage and buy the stock.’” – Peter Lynch I saw an article in Monday’s Wall Street Journal on Peter Lynch. Basically, it was a very brief piece where Lynch basically says that people are misinterpreting his advice to “buy what you know”. I like Peter Lynch and I like his writing. Although the first book I ever read on value […]

Books

David Einhorn and Reasons Why Widely Followed Stocks Get Mispriced

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Over the weekend I was reading David Einhorn’s book Fooling Some of the People All of the Time. I’ve had it on my bookshelf for some time, and it has always taken a back seat to other books until I decided to pick it up recently. It’s an entertaining read, basically recounting his short thesis on Allied Capital in great detail. It is a good book because it provides a glimpse into the significant amount of research and due diligence […]

Ben Graham

A Lesser Known Gem by Ben Graham

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Ben Graham is known largely for writing two of the most cited books in the field of value investing. Of course, in addition to being an outstanding writer and educator, he was a proficient practitioner of the investment field as well—a dual distinction that is extremely rare. In other words, he didn’t just preach, he practiced as well. And he did both at a very high level. His investment record was excellent—he averaged gross returns around 20% per year in […]

Books

How Warren Buffett Thinks About Risk

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“Rule #1: Don’t Lose Money….” The best book I’ve ever read on Buffett is Alice Schroeder’s Snowball. I remember picking up my copy about four years ago and literally not being able to put it down. I read it for hours at a time, all the while marking pages and circling things… and I often reference certain parts of the book when thinking about investments. The book goes much deeper into Buffett’s thought process than most of the other Buffett […]

Books

Mohnish Pabrai: Here’s Why Buffett Bought Coke (KO) in 1987

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I was reading a passage from Mohnish Pabrai‘s book Mosaic: Perspectives on Investing. I love reading Pabrai’s thoughts and ideas whenever I can. He’s one of the greatest investors of the last 15 years, establishing a track record that has significantly outperformed the S&P 500, including a remarkable run from 1999-2007 when he averaged around 30% per year. One reason I like Pabrai is because he uses simple logic to explain his investment process. We’re big fans of simplicity here […]