Reblog: What To Do When Your Stocks Are Soaring?


Bull markets seem like they should be easier than the alternative but even dealing with gains can be challenging as an investor. Research shows that investors trade more often during bull markets because we don’t know what to do with gains, it’s difficult to hold winners, and there are constant temptations with even bigger winners elsewhere. This piece I wrote for Bloomberg looks at how to deal with big gainers in your portfolio.

*******Major stock indexes are hitting new highs almost daily, adding to the huge gains many securities have posted in recent years. For example, Nvidia Corp. has gained almost 1,800 percent since the start of 2013. Over the past five years or so, Netflix is up 1,375 percent; Tesla is up 835 percent; Facebook is up 590 percent, and Amazon has risen 380 percent. Bitcoin is up more than 900 percent in 2017 alone.If you’ve been fortunate enough to be involved in any of these equities or other market stars, you made the right choice. But investors would be wise to work through their options on how to handle these stocks. Large gains in your portfolio are a good problem to have, but the good news also comes with psychological baggage. Continue Reading

Reblog: Bill Nygren: Value Investing Principles and Approach


Bill Nygren is a fund manager at Oakmark Funds. He is also Chief Investment Officer for U.S. Equities at Harris Associates. He’s particularly well-known for being a value investor who doesn’t fear the technology sector.

This post summarises key takeaways from his talk at Google in December 2017. While he reinforces many core value investing principles, he also challenges us to think differently.

The difference between gambling and investing

A value investor recognizes there are different ways she can put capital at risk and the difference between gambling (negative expected value) and investing in stocks (positive expected value)

Buying stocks like you would buy groceries

Bill observed the way his mother shopped for groceries by buying more of something that was on sale and deferring her purchase of something that wasn’t yet on sale

Smart money is not always smart

He spent two years as a research analyst at Northwestern Mutual Life where he pitched ideas of companies that he found were trading below their asset values. However, the portfolio managers chose not to buy such stocks until after they were recommended by 2-3 Wall Street analysts, by which time the price had moved to above asset values.

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