One of my favorite celebrity quotes that has been echoing for years (since before I was in college back in the 1980s) on public radio is, "Well, that's the news from Lake Wobegon, where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average." -- Garrison Keillor, A Prairie Home Companion
The humor and truth for me resonates around his calling all the children above average. I believe you would be hard pressed to find a parent (including myself) that does not believe that his or her children are above average, especially when the kiddos are young. So, at this point you may be saying, what has this got to do with investing?
Ironically, when it comes to stocking picking most of us are below average, but we just don't want to believe it. And due to our ability to ignore and avoid the painful truth, many of us fall victim to the marketing across the financial industry that stokes our egos and says that they will sell us the recipe for outstanding returns. Furthermore, we tend to take too much ownership in our investing ideas and are reluctant to turn them loose. On the other hand, investing in a passive fund that mimics a benchmark works well enough (if you can stick with it) but it is so boring!
I hope that we can learn a considerable amount from one another and that whatever companies I write on culminate in some interesting debates. I will do my best to isolate ideas that have a fair chance at making a reasonable return in the future.
W.A. "Trey" Cowan
PS -- Hopefully, you found that profile bit more descriptive than me telling you I have a financial background that includes an MBA from a top-tier school and previously spent 10 years of my career working for both large and small Wall Street firms.