What I’m reading ~ 13/4/2017

Matchmakers: The New Economics of Multisided Platforms [David Evans]

Beating the odds when you launch a new venture [Harvard Business Review]

Consolidated learnings: What I think I know about investing [Medium]

Inside Blue Apron’s meal kit machine [Bloomberg]

Is it last call for craft beer? [NYTimes]

Americans haven’t been this optimistic about stocks for nearly two decades [Bloomberg]

The gap between sentiment and certainty is stunning [WSJ]

On the ramifications of Brexit [Arp Investments]

How Canada completely lost its mind over real estate [Macleans]

Why Costco (COST) loves store sales: you try shipping a tub of mayo [WSJ]

Q&A with Airbnb’s CEO Brian Chesky [Fortune]

Mobile video to grow almost 900% by 2021 Cisco predicts [Fierce Wireless]

Inside Verizon’s go90, a video app mix between YouTube and Netflix [Business Insider]

Your focus should be on saving money, not investment returns [Collaborative Fund]

Instagram (FB) ‘influencer’ marketing is now a $1 billion industry [MediaKix]

Quick video on Zara: How a Spaniard invented fast fashion [YouTube]

Yachtman: Stocks as Bonds; Case Study on Death [csinvesting]

The $260 Billion Portfolio Shaped by Bodybuilding, Scripture, and Slow-Thinking [BBG]


What I’m reading ~ 11/4/2017

  1. Kase Capital Short Wingstop
  2. Allan Mecham’s Arlington Value closes to new investors [ValueWalk]
  3. Sears and its hedge fund owner, in slow decline together [NYTimes]
  4. Eton Park shutdown shows how hedge funds are dying at an alarming rate [Fortune]
  5. Ryanair’s Low Cost Flywheel: Scuttleblurb Analysis [market folly]
  6. How to Beat the FX Market? Just Get on Twitter, Academics Say [BBG]
  7. Modelling France’s presidential election [The Economist]
  8. What If Other Areas of Life Operated Like Wall Street? [A wealth of common sense]
  9. Wall Street Made Charles Murphy Successful and Rich, but Happiness Eluded Him [WSJ]
  10. The Man Who Invented the World’s Most Important Number [BBG]


Daily wrap:

  • Tillerson: Russia Should Give Up ‘Unreliable Partner’ Assad (BBG)
  • U.S. tries to line up West, Mideast against Assad (Reuters)
  • United Airlines under fire after passenger dragged from plane; officer put on leave (Reuters)
  • Tillerson carries Syria stance to Moscow as Trump assumes West’s leadership (Reuters)
  • Investors Dump French Assets as Presidential Race Opens Up (WSJ)
  • Why Bond Bears Look Poised to Come Out of Hibernation…Again (BBG)
  • North Korean ships head home after China orders coal returned (Reuters)
  • 142-Year-Old Japanese Giant Toshiba Warns It May Not Survive (BBG)
  • Commercial-Property Lending Falls as Investors Pull Back (WSJ)
  • Qualcomm hits back at Apple’s lawsuit, accuses iPhone maker of false statements (Reuters)
  • U.K. Grocers Secretly Squeeze Customers as Brexit Bites (BBG)
  • Chinese cities restrict home sales by buyers to fight speculation (Reuters)
  • Pipeline Built to Survive Extremes Can’t Bear Slow Oil Flow (BBG)
  • Secret Recordings Play Role in SEC Probe of Insurer AmTrust (WSJ)
  • Yuan firms as dollar retreats; Macquarie forecasts no depreciation this year (Reuters)
  • U.S. judge finds Texas voter ID law was intended to discriminate (Reuters)
  • Sorry America, Your Taxes Aren’t That High (BBG)
  • Banks scramble to fix old systems as IT ‘cowboys’ ride into sunset (Reuters)
  • London Police Acted Illegally in Russia Cash Seizure, Court Says (BBG)
  • Toshiba files earnings without auditor endorsement, delisting risk rises (Reuters)
  • Grains piled on runways, parking lots, fields amid global glut (Reuters)

What I’m reading ~ 6/4/2017

  1. How moats make a difference [Intrinsic Investing]
  2. Boyar Research’s thesis on QVC and Madison Square Garden [Barrons]
  3. Autonomous cars and second order consequences [Benedict Evans]
  4. The hardest question in portfolio management [A Wealth of Common Sense]
  5. Diversification, adaptation, and stock market valuations [Philosophical Economics]
  6. Noise: how to overcome the high, hidden cost of inconsistent decisions [Harvard Biz Review]
  7. How Domino’s built a $9 billion empire [Bloomberg]
  8. How do winning consumer goods companies capture growth? [McKinsey]
  9. Airlines make more money selling miles than seats [Bloomberg]
  10. At Blackrock, machines are rising over managers to pick stocks [NYTimes]
  11. What’s next for malls? [Fashionista]
  12. Andrew Ng on what AI can and can’t do [Harvard Business Review]
  13. Margin debt hit all time high in February [WSJ]
  14. The 1% rule: why a few people get most of the rewards [James Clear]
  15. Is the US stock market an anomaly? (Alpha Architect)
  16. 15 obstacles we face as humans (Humble Dollar)
  17. “Bad news smashes your face against an amplifier, while good news just plays quietly in the background.” (Irrelevant Investor)
  18. Netflix is set to take over the stand-up comedy game with a new special every week for the rest of 2017 (Ringer)
  19. How being lazy helps make Michael Lewis successful (Inc)
  20. The Eighth Wonder (What I Learned on Wall Street)

Joel Greenblatt’s Talk at Google

From market folly

– He thinks the vast majority of investors should index rather than pick stocks.  That said, he doesn’t index and Warren Buffett doesn’t either.

– Greenblatt said people are still crazy (human behavior) and the market has wild rides (50% drops in recessions, tripling in value afterwards, etc).  So there’s an opportunity.  The key is obviously to buy when valuations are below average and sell when they’re above average.

– He tells his MBA students at Columbia Business School: “If they do good valuation work, I guarantee the market will agree with them… I just don’t know when.”

– “Stocks are ownership shares in businesses.”  Looks at how relatively cheap they are compared to other businesses, to history, etc.  Measure in absolute and relative value.

– Emphasizes being patient; market oscillates back and forth over the years.  Time horizons are shrinking so we’re playing time arbitrage.

– “Almost never have I bottom-ticked a stock.”  That means most of the time he’ll be down on a stock at some point.  There’s two reasons why: he’s either wrong or just needs more time for the thesis to play out.

– Greenblatt also wrote a book called The Big Secret that he joked is still a secret since no one read it.  But he’s also authored a wildly popular investing book with a cheesy title: You Can Be a Stock Market Genius

– “To beat the market you have to do something different.”

– Runs 100% net long but it’s typically achieved via 170% long and 70% short.  They determined the leverage amount based on returns.

– The market’s been cheaper 83% of the time based on current valuations.  Based on this, market could see 3-5% returns over the next year and then 8-10% over the next two.  Not a prediction though he said.

– “Stock investing is figuring out what a business is worth and paying less.”

– Harped on the importance of compound interest tables.  Start investing as early as possible.

– Thinks there’s still a lot of groupthink going on.  If you’re good at taking ‘unfair bets’ in obscure places that other people aren’t looking, you can do well.  But eventually you’ll have too much money to play in that arena anymore to have it move the needle.

– On Apple (AAPL): “I think it’s cheap relative to other choices right now.”

– “Your job is to be cold and calculating, and unemotional.  Unfortunately, people are human.  That’s good news for us, but the stats are against you.”

– “The last man standing is patience.  We call it time arbitrage.  That’s in really short supply.  It’s not getting better, things are moving faster… and less patience.”

– For more from this investor, we’ve also posted up Greenblatt’s interview with Consuelo Mack

Embedded below is the video of Joel Greenblatt’s talk at Google:

What I’m reading ~ 4/4/2017

  1. Gotham research shorts German PE [Value Walk]
  2. Indexing bias [Value Walk]
  3. Uncovering the Secret History of Wall Street’s Largest Oil Trade [BBG]
  4. How World War I ushered in the century of oil [Value Walk]
  5. China Starts 2017 With Highest Number Of Corporate Defaults In History [Zero Hedge]
  6. Phil Fisher’s Investment Checklist: 15 Things To Look For [market folly]

Daily wrap:

  • Europe stocks rise but bond yield falls show investor caution (Reuters)
  • Danger of Sell-Off in U.S. Stocks Grows as Auto Sales Disappoint (BBG)
  • Battle Over Gorsuch Confirmation Is Set to Hit Senate Floor (WSJ)
  • U.S. business seeks action, not trade war, in Xi-Trump summit (Reuters)
  • Google Says Ex-Executive Built Driverless Business on the Side (WSJ)
  • Thousands of Greek pensioners protest against cuts as more austerity looms (Reuters)
  • GM Once Again Owns Corporate Aircraft (WSJ)
  • U.S. Considers Far-Reaching Steps for ‘Extreme Vetting’ (WSJ)
  • Greek Pensions Hot Potato Puts Tsipras in Bailout Tight Spot (BBG)
  • China wary about U.S. missile system (Reuters)
  • China’s Currency Takes a Twist Ahead of Trump-Xi Meeting (WSJ)
  • It’s a Big Week for One of the Most Important Debates in Markets (BBG)
  • Homeland Security announces steps against H1B visa fraud (Reuters)
  • Fox News, Roger Ailes Hit With Another Sex-Harassment Suit (BBG)
  • St. Petersburg metro blast suspect likely born in central Asia (Reuters)
  • Manhattan Home Resales Rebound After Sellers Agree to Cut Prices (BBG)
  • At Trump’s EPA, Less Science and More Industry (BBG)
  • Trump signs repeal of U.S. broadband privacy rules (Reuters)
  • House Republican tax chief to huddle with Democrats (Reuters)
  • Massachusetts top court to hear case on illegal immigrant detention (Reuters)
  • South Africa Cut to Junk for the First Time Since 2000 (BBG)

What I’m reading ~ 2/4/2017

David Einhorn wants to create a new share class for General Motors. Plus the unavoidable slide deck.

Sears seems to be Eddie Lampert’s Waterloo

LNG bunkering’s time still has yet to come

The “Global stockpicking” blog’s first year review

An interesting reply to John Hempton’s post “When to average down”

Good overview about the current state of the mechanical watch market

Are investors too optimistic about Amazon? [The Economist]

Why facts don’t change our minds [The New Yorker]

Raoul Pal, Paying Attention [Mauldin Economics]

Damodaran on Valeant below:

What I’m reading ~ 24/3/2017

Mauboussin: The incredible shrinking universe of stocks [Credit Suisse]

7 traits for active investors to win in the long term [Jim O’Shaughnessy]

How to fight a price war [Harvard Business Review]

Stephen Jarislowsky’s secret: buy stocks you never plan to sell [Canadian Business]

The fourth industrial revolution: a primer on artificial intelligence [Medium]

A pitch on Alphabet (GOOGL / GOOG) [Wexboy]

The autonomous vehicle revolution [Rational Walk]

Mohnish Pabrai thinks autonomous vehicles will take 20 years [Benzinga]

Baidu’s (BIDU) CEO envisions a spinoff of robot cars arm [Bloomberg]

On Intel’s (INTC) purchase of Mobileye (MBLY) [Stratechery]
Apple (AAPL) wants to bring augmented reality to the masses [Bloomberg]

Tech and entertainment in the era of mass customization [Andreessen Horowitz]

How being wrong can help us get it right [Tim Harford]

Advertisers are more interested in Instagram than Snapchat [Fortune]

Interview with Ctrip.com’s (CTRP) CEO [Skift]

The billion dollar industry of professional video gaming [Bloomberg]

Soda loses its US crown; Americans now drink more bottled water [WSJ]

Eton Park hedge fund to shut down [NYTimes]

The 34-year old hedge fund manager who bet everything on a stock that tanked [Forbes]

Top 25 highest earning hedge fund managers [Forbes]

What it’s like to be a woman in the hedge fund business [Business Insider]

How a $26 billion hedge fund lures the beautiful minds [Bloomberg]

Simon Lack on hedge funds [Ritholtz]

Hedge funds’ top secret social network is… Yahoo? [fnLondon]

Preet Bharara: a prosecutor who knew how to drain a swamp [NYTimes]