Ideas and insights for the discerning investor
Welcome to the Independent Investor website. I trust you will find something of interest here, whether that is an event, an article, a book, or details of my new forthcoming publication Investor Q and A. For more than 30 years my professional life has revolved around analysing the financial markets, initially as a journalist on national newspapers, latterly as a qualified investment professional. Aided and abetted by an extensive network of professional contacts, I aspire to offer a guiding hand to professional and private investors alike through books, columns, a newsletter and events. If you don’t know me already, you can find out more from the About link. I would be delighted to add you to my professional circle. Please feel free to sign up for more information.
New newsletter from Independent Investor
Why not join me from this month as I discuss a series of topical investment issues every fortnight with the help of the UK’s best professional investors – the investments they like and their latest views on the markets? Investor Q and A is a subscription-only publication from Independent Investor that canvasses the opinions of the best professional practitioners at work in the markets today. It is currently being tested in beta format and goes live and open for subscriptions in November. To find out more follow this link to Investor Q and A’s dedicated website. Those on my regular panel of of interviewees will include Jim Rogers, Richard Oldfield, Richard Buxton, Sebastian Lyon, Ken Fisher, Giles Hargreave and many more. Anyone who has signed up for the free emails on this site, or who subscribes to my blog, will automatically receive more details nearer the time.
Latest from my blog
A pause to this market march?
Andrew Smithers, as he notes in his latest World Market Update, has been saying for ages now that the equity markets are overvalued – but probably going up. In other words, while on long term valuation measures equities are priced to deliver below-average returns over the medium term, in the near term with momentum and other factors, principally central bank monetary stimulus, egging them on, they can easily go on rising for quite some time. (For what it is worth, that has been my basic stance for most of this year too: markets are far more volatile than the fundamental value changes). But is that period now due for pause? While we are not yet calling an end to this, we see it drawing to a close. The two key supports for the US stock market are corporate buying of equities and quantitative easing (“QE”). The former is threatened by current fiscal plans and the latter by the need to taper QE should unemployment continue to fall. If the Federal budget is finalised as currently indicated then a decline in corporate cash flow seems highly likely and corporate buying, which has fallen recently, is likely to fall further. If the ...Read more.
My books: analysing professional investors
A new and updated edition of my first book, Money Makers, a study of eight leading professional investors, was released recently. Last year John Wiley in the United States published Templeton’s Way With Money, a fresh in-depth study of the investment methods of Sir John Templeton, timed to coincide with the 100th anniversary of his birth. I have also edited and introduced Professional Investor Rules, a compilation of tips from leading professional investors on how to make money in the stock market (Harriman House 2013). The next project in my pipeline is a second book (after a gap of more than 20 years) about the game of bridge, which remains an absorbing second passion of mine.
I am a founding shareholder in a Brazilian farmland development company, Genagro Ltd, which directly and through its offshoot Agrifirma Brazil now has a substantial equity interest in 77,000 hectares of land in Brazil. The company transforms unproductive scrubland in central Brazil (nowhere near the rain forest, incidentally) into fertile arable land to provide food and feed to a hungry world. This article in The Spectator explains how I came to be involved in this exciting new venture. Five years on from its formation, Agrifirma, the business which Genagro seeded, is setting new standards for sustainable farmland development in Brazil and is targeting a stock market listing in due course. Farmland has more than proved its worth as an investment asset over the past decade, with prices in Brazil having more than doubled in that time.
In the past few years Independent Investor has been responsible from time to time for publishing or helping to commission a handful of titles that I believe merit a wider circulation. These include the historian Edward Chancellor’s prescient study The Coming Credit Crunch? (2006), a stark warning of the looming financial crisis that broke in 2008, Fundology by John Chatfeild-Roberts (2007), a layman’s guide to investing in funds, and Beyond the Internet Bubble, a masterful historical analysis of technology booms and busts through the centuries by my friend and co-author Sandy Nairn. Subscribers to the Investor Q and A newsletter will have access to my lists of recommended books, publications and websites.