The ever-changing mosaic of the market holds my attention like few things do. It seems that a million factors bear on daily outcomes, mediated by human emotions such as fear and greed.
As fundamental investors, we believe that value ultimately comes out. Fads and fears may drive prices to irrational levels, but sooner or later the bottom line, the intrinsic worth makes itself known. This is why we are sometimes content to invest or hold onto unpopular companies: we’re waiting patiently.
Recently the broad stock market averages had their worst day in many months—followed the next day by the best day in many months. One day the global economy is supposedly going off a cliff; the next, all is well in the world. During such turmoil, we are happy to do our research, make decisions, and hang on.
The crosscurrents have been strong. When some of our larger holdings gain or lose 5% in a day, it has an impact on your account balances. But we pick our spots, thinking about the long term, and judge our results over the longest possible time horizon.
Streakiness in the short run, we can tolerate. It may just be the price of getting to the long-term results we desire.
For you, that means we are interested in your cumulative results: how much have you put in, and how much do you have now? This is generally a more useful, and gratifying, way to look at your portfolios. The day-to-day action can appear random, by comparison. (It goes up and down, this we know.)
In the meantime, we read and study, assessing our holdings and looking for new possibilities. Having the best clients in the world helps: we spend no time apologizing or explaining short-term volatility, for we know it will always be with us.
Clients, if you would like to talk about this or anything else, please email us or call.
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