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Reading Recommendations Archive

Monthly Book Reviews

River Road’s investment team members share the books they’re reading.

March 2020

The Outsiders: Eight Unconventional CEOs and Their Radically Rational Blueprint for Success
By William N. Thorndike

We try to read The Outsiders at least annually. It is our favorite, and most recommended, book on the topic of shareholder orientation. The author compares eight unique CEOs and their legendary track records with the traditional example of a successful CEO…GE’s Jack Welch. The “Outsiders” share a common philosophy the includes several similarities: a preference for cash flow over earnings, opportunistic share buybacks, decentralized operations, the thoughtful use of leverage and infrequent, but meaningful acquisitions. Despite stock performances that trounced the market and their peers, this group of extraordinary leaders were not “charismatic”, but, rather were often humble, independent, highly analytical (more engineers than MBAs) and family-oriented. We are always on the “look-out” to partner with Outsider-like CEOs.

February 2020

Renewable Energy: A Primer for the Twenty-First Century
By Bruce Usher 

This book provides a great framework for understanding the current transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy by examining past energy transitions such as wood to coal and animal power to oil.  The basic thesis is that energy transitions are about cost, they are slow, and they have profound effects on society. The transition to renewables for electricity generation has accelerated in recent years as wind and solar power have become considerably less expensive than fossil fuels, even without tax credits.  However, renewables are still held back by the cost of battery storage, which is required to address wind and solar’s intermittency issue. Electric vehicles are approaching cost parity with internal combustion engines enabling a transition away from fossil fuels for transportation.  The speed of the renewable energy transition is hard to predict, but this book is well researched and provides wonderful insight into why the transition is occurring and how it is likely to develop.

January 2020

A Man for All Markets: From Las Vegas to Wall Street, How I Beat the Dealer and the Market
By Edward O. Thorp 

A nice complement to last month’s review, The Man Who Solved the Market, this book traces the remarkable life of the original “quant” Ed Thorp. The first part of the book describes his childhood and his love for math and science, which eventually earned him a Ph.D. in math and an MIT post. He spent the 1960s literally writing the book on how to take on the casinos (Beat the Dealer) and the market (Beat the Market). It is particularly entertaining to read about Thorp and fellow MIT professor / “father of information theory” Claude Shannon tinkering with roulette equipment in Shannon’s basement and then the game of bridge with Warren Buffett in 1968. Thorp spent the next several decades developing option pricing theory and mastering hedged strategies, including convertible and statistical arbitrage, for his Princeton Newport and Ridgeline hedged funds. The book is highly recommended for those interested in the beginnings of the quant investing revolution.

December 2019

The Man Who Solved the Market: How Jim Simons Launched the Quant Revolution
By Gregory Zuckerman

The Man Who Solved the Market, holiday reading for River Road associates, tells the remarkable story of former math professor Jim Simons and the secretive investment firm he built, Renaissance Technologies.  With an annualized return of +39% (after fees) over the past 30 years, and not a single year of negative returns, Renaissance’s Medallion Fund is arguably the most successful investment fund in history. The book describes how Simons assembled a team of brilliant, and often quirky, mathematicians and computer programmers to identify complex patterns in the market. We especially enjoyed the author’s insights about the many challenges Renaissance faced in developing its algorithms and Simon’s perseverance.

November 2019

Merger Masters: Tales of Arbitrage
By Kate Welling and Mario Gabelli 

This book is for true value investing junkies that perk up when something is “happening” (e.g. M&A, recapitalizations, asset sales, reorganizations, self-tenders, and liquidations). A Warren Buffett quote comes immediately to mind upon reading this book…taken from his 1988 shareholder letter, “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach him how to arbitrage and you feed him forever.” Through conversations with 17 risk arbitrageurs / value investors ranging from John Paulson to Paul Singer and Michael Price, the authors trace the natural evolution many of these investors have taken from pure risk arbitrage (providing liquidity for those not interested in waiting for a deal to close) to activist investing (use influence to close the “value gap”) and finally distressed investing (the natural end to the investing cycle). Several common themes among the investors include the importance of thoughtful valuations, robust risk controls, and portfolio construction.

October 2019

The Ride of a Lifetime
By Robert Iger

It seems unlikely that a weatherman from a tiny cable TV station in Ithaca, NY would someday lead one of the largest media companies in the world. Once the reader learns, however, that Bob Iger was groomed for his leading role from the “greatest two-person combination in management that the world has ever seen or maybe ever will see” (at least according to Warren Buffet) – Tom Murphy and Dan Burke, his eventual success makes more sense. As Iger was promoted through the ranks of ABC / Capital Cities, the Outsiders duo of Murphy / Burke certainly rubbed off on him. Upon assuming the Disney CEO role in 2005, Iger followed the Capital Cities playbook of decentralization and making infrequent, but meaningful, investments. Iger quickly dismantled the Strategic Planning Group (~65 Ivy-educated MBAs) and made three large studio investments in Pixar, Marvel, and Lucasfilms. Iger re-focused and re-energized the firm over the past 14 years and the stock price has followed his lead, returning almost 15% per annum over that time period and beating the market by ~600 basis per annum. Disney shareholders should sleep well at night with Iger leading the firm into its next direct-to-consumer chapter.

September 2019

Railroader: The Unfiltered Genius and Controversy of Four-Time CEO Hunter Harrison
By Howard Green

Hunter Harrison’s tenacity, common sense, creativity, and willingness to not be loved allowed him to change an entire industry that is critical to life in North America. While viewed by many inside and outside the companies he ran as the enemy, Mr. Harrison’s results at the four railroads he ran were nothing short of amazing and have stood the test of time.  At the core of Hunter Harrison’s success is his own brand of railroading, “Precision Scheduled Railroading” (PSR).  Many of Harrison’s ideas are counter-intuitive, such as the notion that the customer isn’t always right or that by reducing the number of locomotives you could increase the volume transported or that an asset unused can actually be a liability. The key to PSR is that it results in better service for customers through faster and more reliable service while providing the railroad with better economics.

August 2019

Sol Price: Retail Revolutionary & Social Innovator
By Robert E. Price

It is rare for an individual to succeed with a new retailing format let alone two different models. However, Sol Price changed the way people shop and the way retailers operate by creating the discount retail model with FedMart, in the 1950s, and the warehouse club model with Price Club, in the 1970s. His ideas influenced many of the most successful retailers in history including Sam Walton (Walmart), Bernard Marcus (Home Depot), and Jim Sinegal (Costco). At the core of his success was the notion that his companies maintained a professional fiduciary relationship with their customers. He felt that he was representing the customers and that he had a duty to be very honest and fair with them. This idea along with many other Sol Price ideas can be most directly observed at Costco today, which acquired Price Club in 1993.

July 2019

Responsible Investing
by Matthew W. Sherwood and Julia Pollard

The authors provide a comprehensive review of the history, motivations, and academic support for ESG investing and its many iterations (e.g. impact, sustainable, socially responsible, and mission-related investing). Despite a lack of universally accepted standards, the industry has grown to account for more than a quarter of professionally managed assets around the world. The growth seems likely to continue as an increasing number of corporations disclose ESG information, active managers and independent third-party providers like Sustainalytics incorporate the new information, and both active and passive investment providers offer an increasing number of ESG investment options. Active asset managers have a unique opportunity to customize their investment process through optimization and/or other qualitative/quantitative methods to accommodate the growing demand.

June 2019

WTF?! (Willing to Fail): How Failure Can Be Your Key to Success
by Brian Scudamore

Brian Scudamore, the author and founder of 1-800-Got-Junk, tells an inspiring story of growing his $1 MM per year junk-hauling business in 1996 to a $1 MM per day juggernaut today. Throughout this quick and easy read, Scudamore stresses the importance of passion and enthusiasm, embracing failure (he once fired his entire staff and started over), and promoting company culture to create lasting success. He turned down an offer to sell out for up to $100 MM in 2007 and instead continues to grow his empire to include one-day house painting, moving services, and house detailing. As investors, we are always on the lookout to partner with owner-operators like Scudamore that clearly, as Buffett remarks, like to “tap dance to work.”

May 2019

Big Money Thinks Small: Biases, Blind Spots and Smarter Investing
by Joel Tillinghast

The author has beaten the market by ~400 basis points per annum over the past three decades running the Fidelity Low-Priced Stock Fund. The book is directed toward investment practitioners with a focus on investment versus speculation. The author’s patient and common-sense approach to investing zeroes in on “what a stock is worth” rather than “what happens next.” The book highlights the benefits of sticking within your circle of competence and investing alongside capable management teams with appropriate levels of financial leverage. He sprinkles in enjoyable and humorous anecdotes to stress the importance of avoiding accounting shenanigans, bypassing commoditized industries or undemocratic countries (e.g. Russia) and the “garbage-in, garbage-out” realities of discounted cash flow valuations. A must-read for serious value investors.

April 2019

The Myth of Capitalism: Monopolies and the Death of Competition
by Jonathan Tepper and Denise Hearn

This very readable and well-researched book suggests that U.S. industry has become increasingly concentrated over the past several decades. Since the Chicago School convincingly argued in the 1970s that oppressive antitrust regulation prevented economies of scale for corporations and lower prices for consumers, the U.S. government has consistently allowed historic industry consolidation. The authors cite convincing academic evidence and clear examples (e.g. two companies control 90% of the U.S. beer market and four airlines dominate air traffic) of growing monopolistic behavior weighing on the U.S. economy and income inequality. The authors’ solution is a return to authentic capitalism. As an increasing percentage of profits flow to the most dominant companies, the takeaway for investors is clear. Find and invest in those companies that are insulated from extreme competition.

March 2019

Concentrated Investing: Strategies of the World’s Greatest Concentrated Value Investors
by Allen C. Benello, Michael van Biema, Tobias E. Carlisle

The authors profile eight diverse investors with concentrated styles and amazing track records. These Hall-of-Fame investors range from professional money managers to math geniuses and industrial executives. The group shares one compelling attribute: an ability to think independently and focus on their 10 to 15 best ideas at any given time.

February 2019

China’s Great Wall of Debt: Shadow Banks, Ghost Cities, Massive Loans, and the End of the Chinese Miracle
by Dinny McMahon

Famed short seller Jim Chanos remarked that China’s economy was on a “treadmill to hell” back in 2010. Celebrated hedge fund investor George Soros warned that “a hard landing is practically unavoidable” two years later. China has kicked the can down the road since then and added $12 trillion worth of debt to its economy since 2008 (roughly the same size as the U.S. banking system), but the day of reckoning has not yet come. The author explains how one-party rule has led to insolvent banks, zombie companies, and ghost cities. Foreign investors in China should proceed with caution as the Chinese economic miracle must eventually contend with its mountain of debt.

January 2019

Astroball: The New Way to Win It All
by Ben Reiter

Human judgment and big data combine to transform the Houston Astros from the worst baseball team in a half century to World Series champs in just three years. There are lessons for the investment industry. The combination of statistical analysis AND human judgment can deliver superior performance versus relying solely on big data (quants) or human judgment alone. Commitment to an evidence-based process in the face of adversity is required to achieve the long-term objectives of an investment management firm or a Major League Baseball team.

December 2018

One Buck at a Time: An Insider’s Account of How Dollar Tree Remade American Retail
by Macon Brock and Earl Swift

Ever wondered how Dollar Tree sells everything for just a dollar? So did the three founders when they opened their first dollar store in 1986. Like a great value investor, co-founder and author Macon Brock searched around the world for ‘off-the-beaten-path’ quality merchandise at incredible prices that would surprise and delight Dollar Tree shoppers. The company has maintained the same $1 price point and the best margins in all of retail more than three decades later.

My Father’s Business: The Small-Town Values That Built Dollar General into a Billion-Dollar Company
by Cal Turner Jr., Rob Simbeck

Written by Cal Turner Jr., the former CEO of Dollar General and the son of its founder, the book tells the amazing story of how the Turner family of Scottsville, KY grew Dollar General from its rural Kentucky roots into a national retailer with a $30 B market value. The experiences of Cal Turner Jr., his father, and grandfather provide many useful lessons in business management as they navigated the company through decades of change in the retail industry.

November 2018

Mastering the Market Cycle: Getting the Odds on Your Side
by Howard Marks

Noted distressed debt investor and author Howard Marks’ investment track record suggests an ability to put the “odds in his favor.” While some on staff hoped for a deeper dive into cycle analysis, Marks chose to keep the material at a high level. Successful investors must recognize how the odds shift as cycles unfold and position portfolios appropriately. Marks urges investors to consider the role of the credit cycle and current valuation levels when determining the “aggressiveness” or “defensiveness” of a portfolio.

October 2018

Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup
by John Carreyrou

The author is the WSJ journalist that exposed the Theranos fraud through unrelenting investigative journalism. Much like Einhorn’s Fooling Some of the People All of the Time regarding Allied Capital, Theranos relied on misleading statements, wildly optimistic projections, and outright fraud to deceive large companies and otherwise smart individuals (e.g. Safeway, Walgreens, Theranos board members and investors). Carreyrou’s investigative work is a testament to the value of thorough research.

June 2018

Common Stocks and Common Sense: The Strategies, Analyses, Decisions, and Emotions of a Particularly Successful Value Investor
by Edgar Wachenheim III

An enjoyable book in which Wachenheim shares his take on how investors can improve their investment practices.

June 2018

Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike
by Phil Knight

A popular read among River Road’s investment team, Shoe Dog is a memoir by Nike founder Phil Knight about his earliest days at the company. The book highlights values we emphasize at River Road, including entrepreneurship, building passionate teams with complementary skill sets, and embracing innovation. The book also highlights the role luck plays in any fledgling venture.


Weekly Reading Recommendations

River Road’s investment team members share the articles they’re reading.

March 19, 2020

How markets process COVID-19 (millervalue.com)

The sell-off in a historical perspective (awealthofcommonsense.com)

The perilous road ahead (rationalwalk.com)

Burry warns of selling stampede (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

This too shall pass (researchaffiliates.com)

March 12, 2020

A preview of what’s coming (woodlockhousefamilycapital.com)

Different kinds of decline (collaborativefund.com)

Market panics in hindsight (sabercapitalmgt)

Looking beyond the volatility (blackstone.com)

Words of wisdom from Munger (assets.empirefinancialresearch.com)

March 5, 2020

Many admired investors advocate calm and perspective (brooklyninvestor.blogspot.com) (oaktreecapital.com) (millervalue.com) (woodlockhousefamilycapital.com) (broyhillasset.com)

Bill Gates vs. the “base-raters” on the spread of the coronavirus (nejm.org) (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) (theatlantic.com)

Pandemic: a slowdown or a recession? (calculatedriskblog.com)

Singapore as the litmus test for containment (newyorker.com; tiered subscription) (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

How viruses spread (awealthofcommonsense.com)

February 27, 2020

How we’re thinking about coronavirus (intrinsicinvesting.com)

All eyes to the Fed  (themacrotourist.substack.com)

Learning the wrong lessons (lt3000.blogspot.com)

Inside Berkshire’s future (barrons.com; subscription required)

Corporate governance as an underrated moat (nongaap.substack.com)

February 20, 2020

T-Mobile and Sprint deal may just be the opening act (cnbc.com)

Bye-bye buybacks (blog.evergreengavekal.com)

Brookfield seems well positioned for the future (ft.com; subscription required) (bam.brookfield.com)

ESG indexes will be bigger than traditional gauges (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

Solar power is now cheaper than fossil fuels (pv-magazine-usa.com) (forbes.com)

February 13, 2020

Casper should not have gone public (profgalloway.com)

The origins of the Astros cheating scheme (wsj.com; subscription required)

Vanguard enters private equity (wsj.com; subscription required)

Apple watch outsold the entire Swiss watch industry (cnbc.com)

Laser LiFi could send data speeds soaring (spectrum.ieee.org)

February 6, 2020

Arnott on value’s death (researchaffiliates.com)

How I almost bought the Knicks (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

The housing crisis in the heartland (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

401(k)s have reached their expiration date (morningstar.com; subscription required)

Blow-out housing starts (calculatedriskblog.com)

January 30, 2020

It may be the biggest tax heist ever (nytimes.com; tiered subcription)

Are Utilities a new growth sector? (troweprice.com)

Wall Street caves on MiFID (bloomberg.com; tiered subcription)

Peak Permian is approaching (bloomberg.com; tiered subcription)

Bill Miller had a nice 2019 (millervalue.com) (finance.yahoo.com)

January 23, 2020

Stocks have rarely been this quiet  (wsj.com; subscription)

Another compelling Hoisington case for lower rates  (hoisingtonmgt.com)

4 lessons from Blackrock’s ESG statement (morningstar.com)

150 portfolios better than yours (whitecoatinvestors.com)

Is a $1,000+ book worth reading? (amazon.com) (woodlockhousefamilycapital.com)

January 16, 2020

The 47,500% return: meet the Mendelson family (forbes.com)

Hidden dangers of the index fund takeover (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

Bad to worse at Softbank (profgalloway.com) (oversharing.substack.com)

BlackRock puts Climate front and center (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

Oil and natural gas going in different directions (reuters.com)

January 9, 2020

The art of not selling (akrecapital.com)

AI for picking stocks? (wsj.com; subscription)

UPS’s e-commerce bet is paying off (fortune.com)

The choice of an ESG ratings provider is critical (researchaffiliates.com)

The next 24 months for FedEx (profgalloway.com)

January 3, 2020

A great year and decade (nytimes.com) (spectator.co.uk) 

Changes coming at Wells Fargo (americanbanker.com)

The Permian gas problem is just getting worse (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 
Why banks are undervalued  (advisorperspectives.com) 

1997 Buffett on Microsoft investment (sabercapitalmgt.com) 

December 26, 2019

The best books I read in 2019 (awealthofcommonsense.com)

Like the Coffee Can portfolio from years ago, this fund succeeds by doing nothing (csinvesting.org)  (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

Having the guts to fade your idol (themacrotourist.substack.com)

ESG investing impact on stock prices (advisorperspectives.com)

Bookings is not scared of Google (intrinsicinvesting.com)

December 19, 2019

Huge disparity in corporate profits hints at something amiss (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

Creativity in Investment Firms (cfainstitute.org)

Does this make any sense? (awealthofcommonsense.com)

52 things I learned in 2019 (medium.com)

Never forget these 10 investment rules (realinvestmentadvice.com) 

December 12, 2019

Update on the U.S. repo market (msn.com) (biancoresearch.com)   

Ken Griffin’s other money machine (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

CalPERS fires most of its equity managers (ai-cio.com)

A look at the source of the bull market’s returns (awealthofcommonsense.com)

Paul Volcker was a remarkable public servant (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

December 6, 2019

What makes a fund company excellent? (morningstar.com; tiered subscription)

How to read (collaborativefund.com)

How Barry Diller built a $4.2 B tech fortune (forbes.com)

Abandon value? Now?? (rafi.com)

The quest for better explanations (woodlockhousefamilycapital.com)

November 27, 2019

Meet the Buffett Bot (ft.com; subscription required)

A critical look at ESG research and performance (alephblog.com) (advisorperspectives.com)

It’s time to sin as value stocks are starting to work (institutionalinvestor.com) (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

Valuing the Aramco IPO (aswathdamodaran.blogspot.com)

AI can’t predict if you’ll die soon (newscientist.com)

November 21, 2019

The “time horizon” edge grows (sabercapitalmgt.com)

How Google interferes with its search algorithms (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

Active managers just can’t win the loser’s game (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) (advisorperspectives.com)

Brooklyn investor thoughts on Schwarzman’s new book (brooklyninvestor.blogspot.com)

Wind turbines are getting wild and producing returns (popularmechanics.com) (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

November 14, 2019

Meet Wall Street’s best dealmaker (forbes.com)

The google squeeze (stratechery.com)

Simons questioned by investors (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

A breakthrough molecule to store solar power (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

Bob Iger is ready for the streaming wars (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

November 7, 2019

The making of the world’s greatest investor (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

So much for the cashless society (latimes.com; tiered subscription)

Inside the Nordstrom Dynasty (nytimes.com; tiered subscription)

The bond market panic that wasn’t (barrons.com; tiered subscription)

Kerrygold butter has conquered American’s kitchens (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

October 31, 2019

Morningstar’s deep dive on value underperformance (morningstar.com; tiered subscription) 

Schwab kills commissions to feed its scale flywheel (intrinsicinvesting.com)

The gasoline car to the EV is like the horse to the car (contrarianedge.com)

Bond rating firms go easy on some highly levered firms (wsj.com; tiered subscription) 

How to retire by 40 (ft.com; subscription required) 

October 24, 2019

A eulogy for the 60/40 portfolio (awealthofcommonsense.com)

Where ESG fails (institutionalinvestor.com; tiered subscription)

Housing suggests no recession (calculatedriskblog.com)

Shades of 2000 (gmo.com)

Half the world’s banks won’t survive a downturn (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

October 17, 2019

The best predictor of stock fund performance (and it’s not fees) (morningstar.com; tiered subscription)

Three big things that are shaping the world (collaborativefund.com)

Hoisington sticking with their long-term bonds, but Gross is not (hoisingtonmgt.com) (williamhgross.com)
Bubble yet? (brooklyninvestor.blogspot.com)

How Markopolos got GE wrong (fortune.com; tiered subscription) 

October 10, 2019

NYU professor on WeWork (nymag.com)

Why the yield curve reliably predicts recessions (aier.org)

The rise of the machines (economist.org)

Everything is private equity now (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

The seven-year auto loan (wsj.com; tiered subscription) 

October 3, 2019

Jim Grant is a Wall Street cult hero (institutionalinvestor.com; tiered subscription)

Bob Rodriguez sounds off on the Fed (advisorperspectives.com) 

Miami real estate is about to collapse (adventuresincapitalism.com) 

McDonald’s CEO wants Big Macs (and the Beyond Meat burger) to keep up with Big Tech (cnn.com) (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

Woe is We (oversharing.substack.com)

September 26, 2019

Softbank founder’s empire is vulnerable to WeWork woes (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) (wsj.com; tiered subscription) 

Explanation of the recent overnight repo rate volatility (wsj.com; tiered subscription) 

How U.S. banks now rule the world (wsj.com; tiered subscription) 

The end of shareholder primacy? (project-syndicate.org)

Home building less than half of what it used to be (realestateconsulting.com)

September 19, 2019

The growing market for clean energy portfolios (rmi.org)

Unicorns and now spaceships going public (finance.yahoo.com) (fool.com)

The affordable housing crisis (curbed.com)

Blueprint for successful dividend investing (dividendgrowthinvestor.com)

Streaming video will end up like the bad old days of TV (nytimes.com; tiered subscription)

September 12, 2019

Historic start to this trading week (zerohedge.com)

When corporations changed their social role (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

The risk of outsourced thinking (sabercapitalmgt.com)

Don’t fall into the intelligence trap (oakmark.com)
Debunking the passive is a bubble myth (awealthofcommonsense.com)(bnnbloomberg.ca)

September 5, 2019

Fate of largest ETF tied to 11 random millennials (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

Stock talk tips (hvst.com)

Older people are embracing video games (nbcnews.com)

Bond stars are underperforming (reuters.com)

Chicken sandwich mania at Popeye’s (sun-sentinel.com)

August 29, 2019

Broyhill argues for value’s resurrection (broyhillasset.com)

The housing market is getting back to normal (businessinsider.com)

Cities say no to 5G (wsj.com; subscription required)

McKinsey on resilient companies and asset management analytics (mckinsey.com)

Japanification is spreading globally (ft.com; subscription required)

August 22, 2019

Don’t freak out about the yield curve (calculatedriskblog.com)  

WeWork is all about Adam (oversharing.substack.com)

Is David Swenson horrible for investing? (institutionalinvestor.com) 

Oakmark’s Nygren explains how value investing has evolved (morningstar.com)

Germany sells bonds offering negative yields (nytimes.com: tiered subscription) (wsj.com; subscription required)

August 15, 2019

Asset managers on brink of historic shakeout (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)  

Investing in a negative rate world (awealthofcommonsense.com) (wsj.com; subscription required)

Small value stocks are cheap (advisorperspectives.com) 

The best finance books in one sentence (awealthofcommonsense.com)

Bill Miller on The Fed’s rate cuts (millervalue.com)  

August 8, 2019

Why we should fear easy money (nytimes.com; tiered subscription)

Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble (researchaffiliates.com)

Howard Marks on the Fed and rates (oaktreecapital.com)

My questions about negative-yielding debt (awealthofcommonsense.com)

Pay-to-play is hurting investors (barrons.com)

Ron Howard and Brian Grazer want to be the center of the streaming era (nytimes.com; tiered subscription)

August 1, 2019

The greatly exaggerated death of value investing (millervalue.com)

Japanese rates present a warning for the world (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

The cannabis opportunity (mebfaber.com)

22 books that expand your mind (getpocket.com)

50 most valuable sports teams (forbes.com)

July 25, 2019

Value stocks haven’t traded this low in nearly half a century (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) (fa-mag.com)  

Interesting summary of opioid crisis (cbsnews.com)

EBITDA add-backs are so hot right now (ft.com; subscription required)

Horizon Kinetics on the current internet bubble (horizonkinetics.com)

The U.S. is overflowing with natural gas (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

July 18, 2019

From negative-yielding junk to levered loans, the global bond market is alarming (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

The compelling case for even lower bond yields and stock prices  (hoisingtonmgt.com) (hussmanfunds.com)  

Buybacks are the new dividend – an inside view of Delta’s buyback (ft.com; subscription required) (sullimarcapital.group) 

Does HHC teach us anything about other land banks(yetanothervalueblog.com)  

Why factor investing isn’t working (institutionalinvestor.com) 

July 11, 2019

Oakmark on the value of being a generalist (oakmark.com) 

Annual Sequoia Fund transcript (sequoiafund.com) 

Beware of the Dr. Fox Effect (broyhillasset.com) 

Global recession risks are up, and central banks aren’t ready (markets.businessinsider.com) (nytimes.com; tiered subscription) 

Morningstar is changing its ratings (morningstar.com) 

June 27, 2019

Are small caps and transports waving the red flag for the broader market? (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

Consumers are becoming wise to your nudge (behavioralscientist.org) 

An extreme in fear and pessimism (fat-pitch.blogspot.com) 

Lack of standardized reporting holds back ESG integration (fundfire.com; subscription required) 

Midstream payouts inflecting (bpcfunds.com) 

June 20, 2019

Even Yale can’t keep up with the S&P 500 (morningstar.com) 

The South’s economy is falling behind (wsj.com; tiered subscription) 

International dividend yields are attractive (bespokepremium.com) 

Guy Spier’s annual report (aqfd.com; registration required) 

Letter to a young investor (advisorperspectives.com) 

June 13, 2019

ESG investing performance analyzed (a bit more on the topic) (morningstar.com) 

The making of Amazon Prime (vox.com) 

Europe inflation expectations at record low (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

Bill Miller still betting big (wsj.com; tiered subscription) 

Can Buffett beat 2% over 25 years in Europe? (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

June 6, 2019

The coddling of the American investor (theirrelevantinvestor.com) 

It’s like Moneyball for cattle (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

Druckenmiller sells all of his equities (zerohedge.com) 

The two-fund portfolio just had its best decade (morningstar.com) 

The Kentucky Derby, as told by the horses (newyorker.com)

May 30, 2019

Big changes to U.S. retirement system (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

Making billions at the dollar store (fortune.com)

How Aldi is upending America’s supermarkets (edition.cnn.com)

The inverted yield curve (researchaffiliates.com)

Death by a 1,000 cuts (gmo.com)

May 23, 2019

Negative rates have become an addiction (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

Why isn’t Hulu better? (hbr.com; tiered subscription) 

The promise and pitfalls of 5G (knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu) 

A unique hedge fund that shares the risk of losses (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

You can’t always trend when you want (aqr.com) 

May 16, 2019

The 2018 Broyhill book club (broyhillasset.com; registration required) 

The lowest level of U.S. births in 32 years (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

What if the cycle turns(causewaycap.com) 

“I’ve never seen these kinds of valuations(institutionalinvestor.com; tiered subscription) 

A tale of two crashes (wsj.com; tiered subscription) 

May 9, 2019

The Berkshire transcript (thehobbyistinvestor.com)

An interesting proxy fight in the oil patch and the “dissident’s” response (dallasnews.com; horizonkinetics.com) 

How Schwab ate Wall Street (wsj.com; tiered subscription) 

The man who solved Jeopardy (fivethirtyeight.com) 

Conversation with short-seller John Hempton (realvision.com; registration required)

May 2, 2019

Vanguard patented a method to avoid mutual fund taxes (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

Buybacks may be the best bet for Berkshire to outperform (ft.com; subscription required) 

The active dangers of passive investing (advisorperspectives.com) 

International dividends look attractive (thornburg.com) 

Kids are “so over” driving (wsj.com; tiered subscription) 

April 25, 2019

Even God would get fired as an active investor (alphaarchitect.com) 

The U.S. is the best example of MMT at work (themacrotourist.com) 

Read this before you become an Uber driver (oversharing.substack.com) 

Bill Miller explains his advantages (bizjournals.com; tiered subscription

Behind Paul Singer’s fearsome reputation (advisorperspectives.com)

April 18, 2019

Chou takes an honest look at his results (pg. 10)? (choufunds.com) 

Price-to-book is dead (advisors.leutholdgroup.com) 

Disney and the Future of TV (stratechery.com) 
Musk versus Einhorn (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

Hoisington examines the results of too much debt (hoisingtonmgt.com) 

April 11, 2019

The decade of de-leveraging that wasn’t (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription) 

Net buybacks and the seven dwarfs (wsj.com; subscription required) 

An upside to sequence of return risk (morningstar.com; tiered subscription) 

The stocks manage themselves (awealthofcommonsense.com) 

The Berkshire buyback no one is talking about (fool.com) 

April 4, 2019

What is Amazon(zackkanter.com) 

Is 5G really a threat for cable companies? (lightreading.com) 

Death, taxes, and a few other things (collaborativefund.com)

Why Disney+ will succeed (redef.com)

Is this inversion more like 1998? (themacrotourist.com)

March 28, 2019

The Fed’s new normal (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

Most stocks underperform the market (awealthofcommonsense.com)

Will the 6% real estate commission last? (marketwatch.com)

The problem for small-town banks (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

The man with the perfect bracket (ncaa.com)

March 21, 2019

Counterintuitive competitive advantages (collaborativefund.com) 

Kraft Heinz lessons (aswathdamodaran.blogspot.com) 

How Sears lost the American shopper (wsj.com; tiered subscription)

March Madness and active investing (oakmark.com) 

Spinning gold (broyhillasset.com) 

March 14, 2019

Value stocks are cheapest versus growth in 14 years (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

Entertaining conversation with the former Bond King (ft.com; subscription required)

The family that built an empire of pain (newyorker.com; tiered subscription)

Is it worth it to be a famous fund manager anymore? (awealthofcommonsense.com)

How concentrated should you make your value portfolio? (investorfieldguide.com)

March 7, 2019

The fading American beer industry (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

Not caring about having an imperfect portfolio (collaborativefund.com)

An inside look at the Reds’ scouting database (theringer.com)

The Gates annual letter (gatesnotes.com)

Scratch the 401(k) (wsj.com; subscription required)

February 28, 2019

The final months at Theranos (vanityfair.com)

Buffett and Munger discuss their current thoughts (cnbc.com)

The compounding wonders of buy-and-hold (forbes.com)

Issues with CPG investing (intrinsicinvesting.com; rogermontgomery.com)

The pros/cons of ESG investing (whitecoatinvestor.com)

February 21, 2019

Beware of recessionary bias among analysts (blogs.uoregon.edu)

The dreaded earnings recession (awealthofcommonsense.com)

Both the right and the left have issues with MMT (mauldineconomics.com, nytimes.com)

Why people still don’t buy groceries online (theatlantic.com)

China’s demographic danger grows (wsj.com; subscription required)

February 14, 2019

Why time horizon works (collaborativefund.com)

Does more information lead to better investment decisions? (behaviouralinvestment.com)

ESG flows continue to set records (morningstar.com; tiered subscription)

Factor investing has failed to live up to its promises (researchaffiliates.com)

The price that makes hedge funds a steal (institutionalinvestor.com)

February 7, 2019

Everything you wanted to know about MMT (themacrotourist.com)

Are “low-volatility” stocks overvalued? (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

Legendary investor Rodriguez still thinks the equity market is delusional (thinkadvisor.com)

Was this a dead cat bounce? (theirrelevantinvestor.com)

The Permian is on track to be the world’s #1 oil field within three years (nytimes.com; tiered subscription)

January 31, 2019

Fed considering Trump’s “stop with the 50 B’s” (wsj.com; subscription required)

Munger likes this book (wsj.com; subscription required)

Bill Miller in the wilderness (institutionalinvestor.com; tiered subscription)

Does the U.S. just lick the glass like everyone else? (mebfaber.com)

The worst alternative investments (morningstar.com; tiered subscription)

January 24, 2019

GMO suggests the stock market bubble may be bursting (advisorperspectives.com)

Shiller on bubbles (blogs.cfainstitute.org)

Will these earnings last? (crestmontresearch.com)

Research Affiliates’ winning formula (researchaffiliates.com)

Romick on value investing (mebfaber.com)

January 17, 2019

Shutdowns get bad exponentially (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

Bill Miller thinks courage will be rewarded in the year of the pig (millervalue.com)

Hoisington explains how we’ll end up back at zero rates (hoisingtonmgt.com)

20% / year stock-picker wishes his edge would disappear (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

2018 marked the first year since 2006 with no bank failures (calculatedriskblog.com)

January 10, 2019

Gundlach’s forecast for 2019 (advisorperspectives.com, valuewalk.com)

Europe’s largest economy may be slipping into recession (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

IRS refunds may take longer this year (wsj.com; subscription required)

How important is sequence of returns risk? (obliviousinvestor.com)

Big landlords are starting to build new entry-level houses (wsj.com; subscription required)

January 3, 2019

Does the yield curve really forecast recession? (research.stlouisfed.org)

A history of bear market bottoms (theirrelevantinvestor.com)

Canada’s Buffett drives his own pickup truck (bloomberg.com; tiered subscription)

How much of the internet is fake(nymag.com; tiered subscription)

We can see things other people can’t see (barrons.com; subscription required)



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