Value Investing The Right Way: Four Keys To Buying a Stock

For the past twenty years, we have been perfecting the science of picking stocks. Since the early days of our firm, our methodology has improved dramatically and continues to do so every year. Like every investor, when we first started in this industry we searched and searched for the one “system” that would produce the results we were looking for. The easier this system, the better for us and our clients. In our attempt to find a single system, we learned one thing: there is no easy, simple, or ultimate system. In fact, we learned that the work that needed to be done to analyze a stock was long and exhausting . . . but well worth it. What we have deduced, however, is that there are four keys every stock investment should have. We did not invent these four things. They are core principles that investors, including Warren Buffett,
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Categories: Markets and Strategy.

The Next Apocalypse: Or What The Media Wants You to Believe

This month’s market commentary video is chalk full of fun topics at the top of everyone’s mind. Like: After this bull run is the market cheap or expensive? Should I invest now or hold back? How do I deal with the (next) apocalypse the media is touting? As always we have an Iron Gate perspective that I believe you’ll appreciate. Enjoy the video. What We’re Reading You’re not as good an Investor as you think you are: In celebration of the Bull Market’s 8th birthday, one of our favorite writers, Jason Zweig, discusses how psychology can wreak havoc on investors as they try to go at it alone. The Downfall of the Popular IPO: With Snapchat going public this week, we’ve heard a TON about IPOs. In fact, I was on the ski lift and the ski instructor started talking about Snap’s IPO! Uh oh! Here’s a great article by
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Categories: Market Commentary, Markets, and Strategy.

Buffett’s Hedge Fund Bet: How Iron Gate Compares

Every spring, Warren Buffett releases his annual letter to shareholders. The wisdom that Warren Buffett gives, and the simple way he gives it, has made his annual letter one of the most widely read documents dealing with investing and the markets. At Iron Gate Global, it’s certainly one of our favorite annual letters, and this year was no exception. Proper capital allocation, the good and the bad about companies buying back shares, how great America as a country is, and the importance of low-fees were among the several topics Buffett discussed this year. However, one topic that stood out to me was his update to the big Buffett bet. In Buffett’s own words, he describes the bet: In Berkshire’s 2005 annual report, I argued that active investment management by professionals – in aggregate – would over a period of years underperform the returns achieved by rank amateurs who simply sat
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Categories: Markets and Strategy.

Putting the Bull Market Into Perspective

The stories are starting to appear in the press again. We read and hear them every time the market makes a bullish (upward) move. They all sound similar and usually have the phrase “the market is moving too far too fast,” or “this is the longest bull market in history; it can’t last.” To anyone saying or thinking something similar, it’s to you that we are writing this week’s newsletter. Recently, we read an article called “Anatomy of a Bull Market” by Just Sibears. While you can, and should, read his article, we will summarize a few key points that we would like our readers to know. BULL MARKETS Regarding the current bull market, which started in March of 2009: This is currently the 7th longest bull market and 6th strongest in history. For it to become the longest in stock market history, it will need to continue through the
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Categories: Markets.

Market Commentary: Inaugural Year Lessons and What You Should Be Doing

It’s once again time for our monthly Market Commentary and I am discussing three things that anyone with any money invested anywhere should be considering. They are: Lessons learned from the transition of Presidential power as it affects the markets; The way to approach hitting the eighth year of a bull market; and What to expect this year along with the “must dos” for any investor right now I know there are all kinds of expectations for the market in the coming year. We hope you’ll approach this year as any: with deliberate, probability-based decision making that removes emotion and optimizes your potential. What We’re Reading Buffett Bought $12 Billion of Stock From Election Through Friday. We LOVE this story. It’s the perfect example of not letting politics get in the way of sound investing. We discuss this more in the market commentary video. What a great example for us
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Categories: Market Commentary, Markets, and Strategy.

A Simple Portfolio Strategy for the Trump Presidency

Over the last few weeks, and seemingly every time I look at the news, I see articles that are trying to forecast whether President Trump will be good or bad for the stock market. Here are a few examples: “The Trump Factor: Should Investors be Bullish or Bearish?” (Marketwatch) “With Donald Trump as President, Here’s What Will Happen to the U.S. Economy” (The Street) “How Donald Trump’s Presidency Will Affect the Stock Market” (Forbes) And, my personal favorite, the potential development of “Trump ETFs” being discussed at this week’s Inside ETF conference. If I’m being completely honest, here’s how I feel: I can’t take this nonsense anymore! And that’s putting it lightly. Nobody can be certain what is going to happen to the stock market, and this early on, these types of forecasts are a waste of time. Their purpose is to generate clicks, not to spread information. That said,
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Categories: Markets and Strategy.

Did Confirmation Bias Hurt You As An Investor in 2016?

If 2016 taught you anything, it’s to expect the unexpected. From the worst start E-V-E-R in Wall Street history at the beginning of 2016, to the June Brexit shock and finally to November’s Trump Rally, this past year has been a roller coaster ride. Through all the volatility there is one thing that the great investors do. It’s part of their process, and it’s part of our process at Iron Gate Global. Jason Zweig from the Wall Street Journal said it best, he said – “To be a good investor, you have to be right much of the time. To be a great investor, you have to recognize how often you may be wrong.”  An example of this from the past year. The Election. How divisive was this past election? It was insane. We had Clinton voters arguing that Donald Trump is going to destroy the world and the markets,
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Categories: Markets and Personal Finance.

The Holly Jolly of a Post-Election Rally: December Market Commentary

‘Tis the season to be jolly, especially as we have watched the markets rally in this post-election atmosphere. In this month’s market commentary I talk about sector-by-sector performance in that post-election rally. I also talk about the value of patience in the markets and how not chasing what is “popular”, i.e. dividend centric stocks recently, can help your portfolio’s performance. Finally, I talk about December and how it often performs historically. I hope you enjoy as you click through and review recent market events. What we’re reading: Some of the Wisest Words Ever Spoken About Investing. This is a fantastic article written by Jason Zweig of the Wall Street Journal. My favorite line of the article is “Evaluating yourself honestly is at least as important as evaluating your investments accurately. If you don’t force yourself to learn your limits as an investor, then it doesn’t matter how much you learn
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Categories: Market Commentary and Markets.

Middle Market: The Investment for the Super Rich That You Can Access Too

The U.S. economy is by far the largest economy in all the world. It’s worth $18 trillion followed by China at $11.4 trillion which is followed by a market that few know about and fewer invest in. If treated as its own economy, the U.S. middle market economy is the third largest economy in the world, worth $5.9 trillion. It’s bigger than Japan, Germany and the U.K. yet no one on CNBC or Fox Business even talks about it.1 In fact, it’s an area of the market that I really didn’t know anything about until a friend of mine introduced it to me several years ago. After years of research, and my own money along with some client’s money being invested in this area of the market, I think it’s something more people should be aware of. I really got excited about middle market investing during the first part of
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Categories: Markets and Personal Finance.

Presidential Election Results: A Quick Guide for Investors

This week has seen one of the most surprising US Presidential election results in history. What a ride it was! For me, this has meant mass texts, calls, emails and more from clients and associates wanting to grasp what it means for their portfolios and how to react. Today’s video is meant as a guide to how we believe the disciplined investor will act in light of a President-Elect Trump. Enjoy. What We’re Reading Jamie Dimon just sent this memo to his staff about Donald Trump’s victory: One of our favorite CEOs, Jamie Dimon of JP Morgan, sent out a letter to his employees after the election results. The whole idea of working hard, listening to our clients, and realizing the kind of country that we live in, that is stuff that we completely agree with. Good work Mr. Dimon! Master’s in Business Podcast interview with Bill Miller: This podcast
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Categories: Markets and Strategy.