Thoughts on Investing
This manager commentary provides insight into our global, concentrated absolute value investing philosophy and the key tenets that have consistently underpinned our value investing approach.
The purpose of C&B Notes is to pass along ideas, concepts, stories, and information that are informing and influencing our worldview and “latticework of mental models.”
There is no substitute for being on the ground to assess how businesses are really performing. Accordingly, international and domestic travel is a critical component of our research. This Travelogue includes snippets from some of these international trips.
A recent client memo by Wachtell Lipton highlights the UK government’s recent decision to stop mandating quarterly earnings reporting. We applaud this change and wish US lawmakers would follow suit. The natural tendency for executives to manage what can be measured often leads to short-term thinking. Many non-US companies that we follow report only on a semi-annual basis, and we are quite satisfied with the frequency of this disclosure.
Investing is a probabilistic endeavor, and being “certain” of a particular outcome – whether it is the direction of a commodity’s price, the shape of a yield curve, a smooth and steady increase in a company’s earnings, etc. – is the enemy of good decision-making and a recipe for permanent capital loss. A talk that Jason Zweig gave back in 2001 is a useful reminder of this idea.