I have been interested in investing since my first high school economics class. The good news is that I have grown out of my belief in the efficient market theory. It took longer than Santa Claus, but the case for it is a little stronger than "magic reindeer". Now I manage my own investments with the goal of supporting my travel habit.
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I am an amateur writer and investor. I got my start as floor clerk as the CBOE. While I have moved on to other professional endeavors, I have retained my passion for markets. I became a SeekingAlpha contributor because I subscribe to the idea that writing well (i.e., logically structured, concise, and critical) is conducive to investing well (i.e., consistent with a logical, concise, and critical thesis). Plus, writing for only myself just seems... bleh.
Corporate finance axioms to live by:
* "GAAP is crap". - Me
* "CAPM? More like CRAP-M" - Me
* "Post-Mortem Portfolio Theory " - Me
* "The WACC is whack! " - Me
* You mean the Whack & Scholes?
Kidding aside, the Modern Portfolio Theory and Black & Scholes models are two of the most elegant, intuitive, and insightful things ever to come out academia. So why do I knock on them? It's mainly because some people have turned these models into a religion whose edicts are sacrosanct; beyond questioning and common sense. It also has something to do with the fact that I enjoy being an iconoclast. These underlying problems come from the fuzzy lines we draw between models and reality.
* "You have to understand the fundamentals first" - Aleks Chechkin
* "You want to know about charts? All ships at the bottom of the ocean had charts; look where that got 'em!" - Bill McMahon
* "If you spend more than 13 minutes analyzing economic and market forecasts, you've wasted 10 minutes." - Peter Lynch
* "The market can remain irrational for longer than you can remain solvent" - Keynes
* "The time to buy is when blood is in the streets" - Baron Rothschild
* "There is no such thing as a bad investment; just a bad price"
* "The solution for high (low) prices is high (low) prices"
* “You can’t compensate for risk by using a high discount rate.” - Warren Buffet, quoted at a 1998 Berkshire Hathaway shareholder meeting
* "It is better to be approximately right than precisely wrong" - Warren Buffett
* "There are two kinds of businesses: The first earns 12 percent, and you can take it out at the end of the year. The second earns 12 percent, but all the excess cash must be reinvested - there's never any cash. It reminds me of the guy who looks at all of his equipment and says, 'There's all of my profit.' We hate that kind of business." - Charlie Munger, Berkshire Hathaway 2013 Annual Meeting
* "Their approach to investing has a very long time horizon... like buying straw hats in the winter." - Jay Keyworth
* "Professional allocators will not pay hedge fund fees for the execution of strategies that are on the first year curriculum of any Masters of Finance program." - Tammer Kamel, The Unbearable Transience of Alpha
* "You can observe a lot by just watching." - Yogi Berra
* "Don't make things more complicated than they have to be" - rough translation of Occam's Razor
* "it is the mark of an educated man to look for precision in each class of things just so far as the nature of the subject admits" - Aristotle, Nichomachean Ethics 1094b18
Jeff Diercks, is an investapreneur and recovering CPA. He actively trades his own money and manages the assets of a select group of clients at InTrust Advisors, a Tampa, Florida based wealth management firm focused on trend following and price momentum strategies utilizing ETF securities.
Mr. Diercks is also the managing member of Stock-Signal.com, which provides its subscribers with trend following buy and sell signals on a select group of broad market indexes.
Mr. Diercks has worked with discretionary and non-discretionary investment accounts for over a fifteen years and has overseen all aspects of InTrust's and Stock-Signal's investment processes. Additionally, he has over twenty years of experience working with wealthy individuals and families in both business and financial consulting roles.
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.
I am an individual investor who cares a great deal about realistically analyzing companies. I generally disagree with the idea that the market is quick to 'price in' events correctly. If the market does react to events, I believe it tends to overreact, creating buying or selling opportunities. This philosophy tends to leave me slightly out of touch with the market, since it ebbs and flows to highs and lows that I find unjustifiable. I enjoy criticism, because it makes me a stronger investor with a clearer view of my goals in investing.
I work as a contractor for Verizon.
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