INDEPENDENT Financial Advisor / Professional Investor- with over 30 years of navigating the Stock market's "fear and greed" cycles that challenge the average investor. Investment strategies that combine Theory, Practice and Experience to produce Portfolios focused on achieving positive returns over a period of time. Providing advice in helping to avoid the pitfalls and traps that wreak havoc on your portfolio with a focus on Income and Capital Preservation.
I manage the capital of only a handful of families and I see it as my number one job to protect their financial security. They don’t pay me to sell them investment products, beat an index, abandon true investing for mindless diversification or follow the Wall Street lemmings down the primrose path. I manage their money exactly as I manage my own so I don’t take any risk at all unless I strongly believe it is worth taking.
Blogging here on SA is part of my research. I write to find out what I think.
I invite you to join the family of satisfied clients send an e-mail :firstname.lastname@example.org
Time management is essential to monitoring a 47 position portfolio. My 1st comment concludes with "Rich-unck:xx hrs"; I uncheck from the article to avoid repetitive comments, nonsense, and (most) arguments. I extend another XX hrs when I respond to a question or comment...I also respond to all PMs.
BACKGROUND My journey as a self-directed investor (SDI) began in 1973, and resulted in financial independence at age 52, which also allowed me to retire from corporate life the following year (Feb 1995).
I have no special knowledge not attainable by others who also dedicate themselves to the study of the economy, market, and stocks...I could cease all portfolio management today, and place it with a professional manager; however, I enjoy the psychic and financial rewards. Alternatively, I could become a passive investor via mutual funds and/or index ETFs (those works too! ). With few exceptions, As a rule, Rich only discusses his IRA here--it is only a portion of his and Joyce’s investment assets.
INVESTMENT PHILOSOPHY If you ‘lived for today’ over the past 5 or 6 decades, you better invest in lottery tickets. The most probable path to a financially secure retirement is the product of an investment program (either active or passive) started when relatively young; living on less than all your after-tax income (saving means delayed gratification); and either self-directed or via professional management, adopting a sensible strategy suitable to age and comfort zone. There is wisdom in flexibility, diversification, and not being life-long wed to any strategy. It is appropriate to take greater risk for greater rewards (sensible growth stocks) when younger, as those are our lowest earnings years combined with our highest expense years--in the years between early investment and retirement, investments in solid growth companies can double 8 times or more.
There is time to adjust allocations to a more conservative strategy when closer to retirement. Never assume you have an information edge over the professionals. Time-in-the-market is your principle advantage. When/if you become interested in dividend stocks, never forget both price return and dividends compound, and price more so.
Financial independence is achieved when one has sufficient confidence his/her lifestyle will not change significantly, regardless of the potential depth or breadth of decline suffered by their portfolio--including a prolonged series of bear markets such as 1929-37. True, the recent 18-month bear market ending mid-2009, was deep--but also too brief to consider its lack of widespread dividend cuts to be as proof a portfolio of dividend-payers won't suffer income losses in a more prolonged decline (i.e., no portfolio is "dividend bulletproof").
The balance of this profile is lengthy, and likely not helpful to passive investors who simply go along for the ride, their portfolios bobbing up and down like flotsam in the ocean; their course always subject to the whims of winds, waves, and trends...THIS IS YOUR ONLY WARNING!
PORTFOLIO GOALS Now in my 70s, it’s no longer appropriate to engage in the growth strategies applied in wealth accumulation. As a more conservative investor, 100% of his portfolio consists of dividend-payers. 95% of positions have investment grade credit ratings (the lone exception is a REIT).This combination, along with having companies in 10 of the 11 S&P GICS sectors (none in Materials at this time) provide a measure of diversification. This IRA portfolio holds no bonds, though bonds and other investments are held elsewhere.
Maximizing total return and wealth preservation are mutually exclusive. A key observation: Having the capacity for risk is not the same as having the tolerance for it!
Rich’s objective is now a ‘smoother-ride’ that levels out the market’s peaks and valleys (limit losses, trim notable excess valuation). That smoother ride in an all-equity portfolio cannot be achieved without active management and continuous monitoring of positions--therefore TIME is an essential input to his portfolio management. Active management does not’ means frequent changes, as it is not unusual for a quarter or more to pass between a trimming or sale (nonetheless, when a company fundamentals change, or a mistake is made, corrective action is taken.)
STRATEGY SINCE 2008 Rich targets both legs of TOTAL RETURN (distributions + price change). His Growth & Income strategy often focuses on VALUE investing tactics applied to dividend-payers. Value investors seek out unpopular, companies most investors are avoiding (i.e., fundamentals have declined but credit rating is strong, BoD has implemented a rational recovery plan, and the dividend not in danger). Value investors seek to be paid to wait for other investors to recognize the stock’s value and assign it a greater share price. In any event, value stock or growth stock, Rich always seeks a ‘margin of safety’--no shares are bought at prices >FV, and his margin of safety is derived from dividends paid, price appreciation, and rising FV over time.
In all cases, value or growth, Rich selects well-established dividend-paying companies having a high-probability of growing earnings (growth of earnings is ESSENTIAL to growth of price and dividends). He tends to be flexible, forward looking, reactive to changing fundamentals, and willing to admit a mistake so action follows.
SDI is not easy, success is not assured, and in recent decades, advice from academics, and investment coaches, almost universally recommend index funds. Those NOT having the prerequisite time and interest are unlikely to develop the requisite skills for stock investing--thus the probability strongly suggests most newbies would be better served by indexing (Ben Graham wrote favorably of indexing). However, when done successfully, self-directed stock investing can offer rich psychic and financial rewards.
CORE PORTFOLIO Presently, +/-30 equities. Core holdings dominate at about 65% of total portfolio positions. Favored are traditional, large- and mid-cap, low-beta, best/near-best in class, institutional-owned, moaty, dividend-paying, value and growth stocks, having investment-grade debt ratings, and representing the consumer staples, healthcare, utilities, and telecom sectors.
OPPORTUNISTIC PORTFOLIO The remaining 15+ positions consist of equally well-known dividend-payers found among widely-owned cyclicals, such as financial, industrials, consumer discretionary, technology, real estate, and energy sectors are sensitive to the economy. In an expanding economy, cyclicals typically grow their earnings (and dividends) faster than do the typically slower-growing core companies. But because the reverse is also true, in a contracting economy, these positions are intended to be heavily trimmed to preserve gains as the economy peaks and shows evidence of decline. Some are susceptible to quite significant price declines when Mr. Market assumes their will suffer reduced earnings, and sometimes dividend-freezes/cuts, in anticipation of those events.
Rich is sometimes fully-invested, but unlike some, observes no such rule. Building a large cash cushion at the front-end of a correction/bear market (-20%) provides the dry powder required to both cushion the market's decline, and also creates the cash required to purchase excellent companies at below FV prices (without having to sell a position he wants to keep!).
TRIMMING POSITIONS When positions in either portfolio become significantly overvalued, they are trimmed by 5-10%, and the proceeds applied to fairly valued companies before the (almost always) temporary gift of over-valuation reverts to the price mean. If the position continues to advance, and absent other information, the position will be trimmed again. Added benefits to selective trimming include (1) serves as a more sensible method of rebalancing (as opposed to automatic--professionals do not use such a meat cleaver); (2) reduces the position's remaining Capital at Risk (which may suggest room for additional shares within an otherwise full position), and (3) provides the necessary dry powder to buy other shares at FV or below.
OTHER INTERESTS As we age, the importance of family grows. Rich has long volunteered in his community; over the years has served with distinction as member/chair of a number of advisory committees. Assisting others on SA is also a source of satisfaction and fulfillment.
Finally, having been blessed by years of excellent investment performance, Joyce and Rich have long been avid world travelers, and have visited over 60 countries over a span of 30 years (his SA avatar reflects the Taj Mahal in his sun glasses). They reside in Michigan--for 9 months of beauty, bliss, and family, and thoroughly enjoy wintering in equally beautiful Naples FL--for 3 months of sunny warmth and relaxation.
Life is good--it's been an unbelievably awesome ride!
65 years old, been trading for almost 40 years. Take a long view, I have 100 % faith in long term fundamentals and use Technicals (MACD/RSI/MOM/Fibonacci) only to gauge entry/exit points.
I believe the bankers and heads of financial institutions responsible for the derivatives mess should all have had lengthy prison sentences of the type handed down to Skilling (Enron) and Ebbers (WorldCom). The District Court Judge said of Skilling:
"His crimes have imposed on hundreds, if not thousands of victims a life sentence of poverty."
And exactly what did the bankers, Goldman Sachs and the others do to have deserved a lesser sentence or even no sentence at all?
Chris DeMuth Jr. is the founder of Rangeley Capital LLC. Rangeley is an investment firm that focuses on event driven, value-oriented investment opportunities. Rangeley Capital and his value investing forum, Sifting the World (StW), search the world for misplaced bets. Rangeley exploits them for its investors and then Mr. DeMuth writes about them on StW.
EP Vantage is a forward-looking comment and analysis service tailored to the needs of pharma and finance professionals, focusing on the events that will define the future of companies, products and therapy areas. Written by experienced journalists, EP Vantage provides timely financial analysis of regulatory and patent decisions, marketing approvals, licensing deals, and M&A, giving fresh angles and insight to both current and future industry triggers. EP Vantage is powered by EvaluatePharma, the industry leader in consensus forecasts.
Retired Petroleum Geologist. For over 40 years I have worked for several producing and exploration companies as well as oil field sevice companies in West Texas Permian Basin. Still do some geological consulting but not frequently. As far as stocks and mutual funds I tend to be very conservative; probably because of my age. Most of my money is in sector mutual funds, stocks, bonds and cash. I do move my principal around to preserve it as needed.
Chief Investment Officer, Stanford Wealth Management. Retired senior exec of Charles Schwab. 36 years active and reserve military service -- 6 in special operations, 30 in the intelligence community. Geopolitical analyst.
Author -- investment book Bringing Home the Gold.
Editor -- The Investor’s Edge®. In the 16 years from inception through year-end 2015, the Investor’s Edge® Growth & Value Portfolio increased in value from $250,000 to $1,038,453. That same $250,000 invested in the S&P 500 rose to just $422,905. (Past results are no guarantee of future performance; maybe those 16 years were pure luck.)
Featured in Forbes, Barrons, The Wall Street Journal, Financial World, Wall Street Transcript, Global Investing, Welling on Wall Street, etc.
If you have a $500,000 portfolio ($250,000 for solely mutual funds & ETFs) you may contact me for a no-obligation "second opinion." email@example.com.
Editor for The Biotech Forum (www.biotechforumsa.com), the #2 subscribed to Marketplace investment service offered through SeekingAlpha. Top 5% ranked analyst (TipRanks) 2013 through first half of 2015. Daily contributor for Real Money Pro. Hedge fund manager from 2008 to 2011. Previously technology executive at Fortune 100 firm for a decade. For Free weekly investment reports on small, attractive biotech stocks just register at www.bretjenseninvests.com
Nathan's interest in the stock market arose from broader interests in theories of reification. Seeking Alpha has enabled him to challenge his own assumptions and expand his worldview.
Nathan is pursuing a career path in applied sciences.
Nathan was listed in "The Best Performers of Seeking Alpha: Vol 1" (2014). While other internal and external studies have compared the performance of Seeking Alpha writers, this computerized ranking was uniquely comprehensive in mining the text of articles for specific predictions, and placed Nathan within the top percentile of Seeking Alpha Contributors for his category.
Wall Street Breakfast, Seeking Alpha's flagship daily business news summary, is a one-page summary that gives you a rapid overview of the day's key financial news. It's designed for easy readability on the site or by email (including on mobile devices), and is published before 7:00 AM ET every market day.
Wall Street Breakfast readership of over 900,000 includes many from the investment-banking and fund-management industries.
Sign up here to receive the Wall Street Breakfast in your inbox every business day: http://seekingalpha.com/account/email_preferences
I have been an active stock trader for nearly 20 years. I am very conservative in my approach and have learned from many years of studying the markets in depth. I try to maximize gains with each correct investment and minimize losses when I choose poorly.
Thirty five year veteran of the engineering world, with design experience primarily in hard infrastructure such as buildings, roadways, airports, water and sewer, power, and foundations. Currently employed as a project control engineer in the nuclear field, with primary emphasis on cost estimating. Whitewater kayaker and canoer, so risk management is nothing new.
I am currently a Junior at the George Washington University and have been investing since the sixth grade with my own money. I am very interested in the pharmaceutical sectors, but will buy just about any stock if I feel that the company is undervalued. I hope to provide some helpful insight, and to in turn learn a lot from the rest of the investment community.
Moon Kil Woong is currently a VP at a SME. Previously he was a tech stock consultant, VP of Research at ING, and sell side Director at Crédit Agricole Indosuez. Moon Kil Woong has a Masters in Public Administration from SJSU.
B.comm, Law Degree, CFA, and a Masters of Finance; I'm now working as a lawyer in the securities/public M&A sphere. I see law as my job, but investing more of a passion.
I have been investing for well in excess of 10 years and have a proven track-record. Although in my personal account I focus mainly on Canadian stocks, my articles on SA, due to necessity, typically focus more on the US markets.
Jeffrey Saut is Chief Investment Strategist and Managing Director of Equity Research at Raymond James & Associates.
Mr. Saut began his career on a trading desk in New York City. In 1973, he joined E.F . Hutton, where he began following equities and writing research. He subsequently worked as a securities analyst for Wheat First Securities, and then Branch Cabell, where he ran the equity research group as director of research and acted as portfolio manager for the firm's affiliate, Exeter Capital Management. As director of research, he built the research and institutional sales departments for the regional brokerage firm Ferris, Baker and Watts, Inc. and subsequently Sterne, Agee & Leach, Inc.
Mr. Saut is well known for his insightful and colorful commentary regarding the stock market, and he makes regular media appearances.
Note: Mr. Saut is not an active contributor to Seeking Alpha; rather, SA editors excerpt regularly from Mr. Saut's public commentary.
Disclaimer: This blog is an expression of my opinion on a particular company or matter. I am not a financial advisor or professional analyst. This is not a solicitation to trade any security. Although I rely on company approved public documents and make all reasonable efforts to confirm the accuracy of my statements, the comments made in my articles should be considered only as opinion and should not be considered as current or as absolute fact. All investors are strongly encouraged to not rely entirely on any single opinion and perform their own due diligence when investing. Investing in equities includes considerable risk, and investors should be prepared for the risk of capital loss.
Mark's mutual fund is launching December 15, 2011.
He is a self taught private investor who operates the website Fund My Mutual Fund (http://fundmymutualfund.com); a daily mix of market, economic, and stock specific commentary. Fascinated by the market since an early age, he discovered mutual funds as a teenager in the 80s and moved to equities by the mid 90s. The origin of the website is/was to leverage the power of the internet in developing a transparent track record to attract investors for his potential "long/short" mutual fund.
His equity focus is identifying secular growth trends and the companies most likely to benefit from these macro trends. Stocks are identified through fundamental analysis, although basic technical analysis is used in determining entry and exit points. You can receive Trader Mark's latest posts daily by subscribing free via RSS reader (http://feeds.feedburner.com/FundMyMutualFund) or subscribing free via email (http://www.feedburner.com/fb/a/emailverifySubmit?feedId=1109639).
With a degree in economics from the University of Michigan, a broader understanding of the economy as a whole, along with interpreting investor psychology, is also a major interest for Mark. To follow on Twitter, username: fundmyfund
MetalMiner currently ranks as the largest metals publication in the United States according to third party ranking sites. Geared toward industrial metal procurement professionals, MetalMiner has attracted a wide audience in the finance community as well as a global following. MetalMiner principals have appeared on FoxBusiness.com, MSNBC, NPR Marketplace, BBC Radio among others. The team has also received coverage in The Christian Science Monitor, Forbes, American Metal Market, American Iron and Steel Institute, Automotive Industry Action Guide, among many others. The team's principals have extensive global metals sourcing and trading experience having worked for consulting powerhouses Andersen and Deloitte Consulting and leading trading companies such as Stemcor and Glencore. Updated 14 times a week, MetalMiner continues to grow and attract an audience everywhere.
The Oil & Gas Investments Bulletin (http://www.oilandgas-investments.com) is an online subscription-based service that finds, researches, and profiles growing oil and gas companies that have high growth rates (or high growth potential.)
Its team of writers work under Keith Schaefer, Editor/Publisher, who shares his knowledge of the oil and natural gas markets in a simple, easy to read manner. The bulletin outlines which TSX, NYSE and NASD-listed energy companies have the ability to grow, and bring shareholders prosperity even in tough times.
There is tremendous potential to profit in oil and gas companies for informed investors. Mr. Schaefer has a degree in journalism but has spent the last 15 years assisting public resource companies in raising exploration and expansion capital.