I was recently reading through some old investor interviews from the excellent Graham and Doddsville newsletter from Columbia Business School, and I came across an interview with Glenn Greenberg of Brave Warrior (formerly Chieftain Capital). A couple years ago I commented on a talk that Glenn Greenberg did at Columbia, where he discussed his investment approach. My own investment approach tends to fall in line with Greenberg’s investment philosophy as well as his portfolio management approach. Despite a few misses here and there (notably Greenberg’s investment in Valeant, a company I discussed last year in this post), his overall performance has been outstanding over the past 3 decades.
But putting Greenberg’s individual investment ideas aside, I’ve always like his general approach, specifically the following two points:
- Focus on the quality businesses (he lived through the stock market crash of 1987, where the market tumbled over 20% in one day, and he wanted to ensure that if that ever happened again, he would feel comfortable with the businesses he owned)
- Position Sizing: If it’s not worth putting 5% of your portfolio in the stock, then it’s probably either too risky, outside your circle of competence, or doesn’t have enough upside
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The original article is written by Steve Burns and is available here.
As a trader, your #1 goal is to keep your current trading capital safe and secure. Your goal as a a trader is to make money and not lose money. Many new traders lose their trading capital in the first year, but these ten tips will help you keep your capital intact so you can make it grow.
- Do not start trading until you have fully educated yourself. Trading tuition is expensive when you trade first and learn later.
- Do not trade an account so small that commissions will end up being a big drag on your returns.
- Do not trade until you have a well developed trading plan.
- Trade a position size that does not cause your emotions to become so loud you can’t hear your trading plan.
- Only trade in markets you fully understand.
- Only take valid entry signals and do not chase. Let your entry point trigger first.
- Only trade in liquid markets so bid/ask spreads do not devour your account.
- Never risk losing more than 1% of your total trading capital on any one trade through proper position sizing, and by placing stop losses at the correct price levels.
- Never expose your total trading account to more than a 3% loss of total trading capital at any one time, on one day.
- Never move a stop loss. Take the exit the first time it is triggered.