I invest (technically) part-time, but I love the markets and immerse myself in them daily. I enjoy writing about my investment ideas as it helps me to organize my thoughts and I am happy to share if it helps others. I invite criticism as it will help sharpen my ideas, so please tell me where, in your opinion, I am going wrong.
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Alex is an equity research analyst at Granite House Capital Management, a value oriented long/short hedge fund based in Boston. In May 2013, Alex was the feature of a Forbes Magazine article titled, "Meet One Of The Youngest And Brightest Hedge Fund Analysts That Isn't On Wall Street." He started investing in the stock market at age 10 and payed for college by working as an analyst for a Minneapolis based hedge fund. He focuses on the investing methods of great investors such as Warren Buffett. Alex looks to differentiate himself in the industry through persistent hard work and continuous learning. He is the youngest ever admitted member of the SumZero buyside network and was one of 14 buyside analysts in nation to be named to the 2012 SumZero Buyside Analyst Honors which was published in the Wall Street Journal as part of the 'Best on the Street' column and CNBC. Over 8,000 analysts were considered and he had the second highest return on the list. He was featured in the biography of investor Warren Buffett in a book called "Of Permanent Value: The Story Of Warren Buffett,". He maintains a blog called "Alex Bossert's Thoughts On Value Investing" with over 550 subscribers and over 300,000 site views. His work has been syndicated on Yahoo Finance, Google Finance, SeekingAlpha, and GuruFocus.
Linkedin Profile: http://www.linkedin.com/in/alexbossert
Investment professional and CFA charterholder. I write on Seeking Alpha as a personal hobby and to elicit feedback on specific ideas and topics, help organize my thinking, and connect with intelligent people.
As an investor, I look for companies with excellent long term economics and capable, honest management that can reinvest earnings at an attractive rate.
My view is that it is best for to find companies that can compound earnings internally at a market beating rate rather than relying purely on the arbitrage profit gained from buying assets at a discount from their intrinsic value. I hold this view for two reasons:
1. The market has become more efficient as more value investors rise having gained exposure to Benjamin Graham's teachings either directly or indirectly though knowledge transmission in the industry. Therefore there are fewer severely mispriced securities.
2. The approach of finding excellent companies allows the investor to park his money within the stock for longer, as the company will increase by value autonomously through the virtue of the company increasing its business value year over year. This prolonged holding period has a multitude of benefits such as: (A) reduced transaction costs as fewer trades are needed for the portfolio, (B) An interest free loan from the government, as capital gains tax will only be paid when the security is sold and gains are realized (For a more detailed discussion see section "Taxes" in http://www.berkshirehathaway.com/letters/1989.html), (C) the ability to follow fewer securities and expend more resources researching and understanding each better, as fewer investment decisions will be needed to be made over any time period. This leads to investing in the investor's best ideas.
As I believe the goal of compounding capital at an attractive rate primarily falls on the management of companies held in the portfolio, my view of my job as an investor is focused on these roles:
I. Identification and Diligence: The first and foremost job of the investor is identifying attractive companies with excellent long term economics and capable management, and then doing the full diligence to understand the economics of the company and address any potential red flags that comes up during the investor's research.
II. Price monitoring: Even a great company is not a good investment at certain prices. Therefore the investor must monitor the price to buy at a fair or preferably a discounted price. Also, if a security begins to have a market value far beyond the business value of the company, the investor should sell his holdings to return capital to reinvest in more reasonably priced excellent companies.
III. Business monitoring: Not only does the market price of the business need to be monitored, so does the business value of the investment. If the economics or situation changes at the company, the investor must know and continuously reevaluate the investment thesis.
IV. Portfolio Diversification: the investor as a capital allocator has the job of eliminating individual industry risk of the portfolio. Each portfolio company's management can focus on providing excess returns within their industry. The investor must also look at it from a higher level and diversify away from industry risks by holding a portfolio of non-correlated securities operating in different segments of the market.
Adam Xiao graduated with a degree in Operations Research and Management Science from UC Berkeley. He currently works as an Equity Research Associate at a major Investment Fund.
Hewitt Heiserman Jr. conceived the Earnings Power Chart, which is the subject of his book "It's Earnings That Count" (McGraw-Hill, 2004).
Mr. Heiserman is a member of the Boston Security Analyst Society and the CFA Institute. He has been quoted in TheStreet.com, The Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, CBS MarketWatch, Business 2.0, Better Investing, The Motley Fool, Complete Growth Investor, Barron's, and the Haverford Trust Company Adviser.
Mr. Heiserman has spoken to the New York Society of Security Analysis, the Boston Security Analysts Society, Babson Investment Management Association, the American Association of Individual Investors, Fidelity Management & Research, Complete Growth Investor, Bryant College and Franklin-Templeton Group on "Ben Graham and the Growth Investor." He also serves as an instructor for Gerson-Lehrman Group.
A stock-picking screen Mr. Heiserman created for Motley Fool based on methods described in his book has turned a hypothetical $10,000 investment made at the beginning of 2005 into $32,000 at the end of 2009, excluding taxes and trading costs, or 26% annualized. In contrast, a $10,000 investment in the S&P 500 grew to just $10,321, or 1% annualized. To learn more, click here: http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2009/12/28/let-scrooge-make-you-rich.aspx
Mr. Heiserman graduated from Kenyon College with Distinction in History. He was also awarded Kenyon's Faculty Award for Distinguished Achievement. Mr. Heiserman is vice-president of an open land foundation. An Ironman triathlete finisher (Lake Placid, 2010), he qualified for and competed in USAT's 2012 age-group national championships. Mr. Heiserman is an Eagle Scout and Order of the Arrow recipient. He has climbed the Grand Teton and Mount Rainier, and has also bicycled across the United States.
In 2014, Columbia University will publish Mr. Heiserman's second book, The Checklist Investor. Mr. Heiserman also publishes Checklist Investor Quarterly, which shares the Internet's latest and best tips for improving stock-picking success.
My work consists in procuring investment situations for clients where the estimated monetary value of a quoted financial security is significantly higher than its market cost; thus establishing a margin of safety in investments that allows for market outperformance and a lower risk profile in the long term. During this time I have successfully identified and invested in inefficiently priced financial securities that with few exceptions have outperformed global equity markets.
My experience is further divided into two types of investments:
1.) General Equity Investments: Investments in companies whose true value is unrecognised by equity markets.
+Asset Value. Shares of companies selling for much less than their net asset value, liquidation value or those that have substantial hidden assets.
+Earnings Power Value. Shares of companies selling for much less than their cost of capital times their earnings, normalised earnings or their earnings potential.
+Great businesses at great prices. Shares of companies with excellent ROIC levels and competitive advantages selling for a price unreflective of such characteristics.
2.) Special Situations: Financial opportunities characterised by an unlocking of value via a complicated or uncommon financial structure that tend to be disregarded by market participants.
To realise the aforementioned investments, I read a great number of financial documents, reports and news articles daily and analyse and model my findings. While doing so my strategic framing and approach is two-fold:
+ Defensive Strategy: Monitoring and analysing the composition of the client’s securities portfolio and acting accordingly when the estimated value of a financial security changes.
+ Offensive Strategy: Exploring the global marketplace in search for investment opportunities, analysing them quantitatively and qualitatively and comparing them to the client’s opportunity cost (i.e. cash, current portfolio positions or other potential investments).
Andrew Shapiro is Founder, President and Portfolio Manager of Lawndale Capital Management, an investment advisor that has managed activist hedge funds focused on small- and micro-cap companies for over 23 years, one of the longest periods of experience deploying an activist/relational investment strategy today. Mr. Shapiro’s proactive ownership approach has been effective in directly creating and unlocking shareholder value in Lawndale’s portfolio companies and has contributed to Lawndale’s activist funds often being ranked among the top event-driven and small-cap value funds in peer databases for long-term performance. In addition to leading Lawndale, Mr. Shapiro has also served as a Director or Observer on portfolio company boards and debt and equity bankruptcy committees. Mr. Shapiro is a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) and, via Lawndale, has been a long-time Sustaining Member of the Council of Institutional Investors (CII).
Mr. Shapiro has more than two decades of portfolio management and analytically varied experience from a number of "buy-side" positions, employing a rare combination of credit, legal and equity analytic and workout skills. Prior to founding the Lawndale organization in 1992, Mr. Shapiro managed the workout and restructuring of large portfolios of high-yield bonds, distressed equities and risk arbitrage securities for the Belzberg family's entity, First City Capital. Before joining First City, Mr. Shapiro was involved in numerous highly leveraged corporate acquisition and recapitalization transactions for both Manufacturers Hanover Trust and the Spectrum Group, a private equity firm.
Mr. Shapiro received his JD degree from the UCLA School of Law where he was an Olin Fellow, an MBA from UCLA's Anderson Graduate School of Management where he was a Venture Capital Fellow and a BS in Business Administration from UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business, where he has taught finance courses and frequently guest lectures.
Mr. Shapiro was recently selected to the 2012 NACD Directorship 100, a list of the most influential leaders in the boardroom and corporate governance community. He is often quoted on matters of corporate governance, fiduciary duty and activist investing and has been the subject of several articles, including a Business Week article in 2000 calling him “The Gary Cooper of Governance”. Mr. Shapiro frequent speaks and panels on corporate governance and activist investing issues at a broad range of prestigious forums that include the Council of Institutional Investors, National Association of Corporate Directors, American Society of Corporate Secretaries, SEC Advisory Committee on Small Public Companies, and the Director’s education programs of Stanford Law School, UCLA Anderson Grad. School of Mgmt., the Wisconsin Business School and Yale’s Millstein Center for Corporate Governance, among others. Mr. Shapiro is a Contributing Author at Seeking Alpha.
Mr. Shapiro started Lawndale’s funds in 1993 with only $188,000 under management and through performance and added capital has grown the firm’s managed assets substantially. Lawndale applies a private equity approach through active and relational ownership of public company securities. In most investments, Lawndale plays a constructive relational role by actively working with boards and management teams to help them achieve their strategic and operating goals. In other instances, Lawndale is a direct value-unlocking catalyst, utilizing a range of tools that include aggressively promoting improvements in a company's governance and operational structures, proxy actions, asserting shareowner’s legal rights and taking active roles in restructuring and buyout proposal negotiations..