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  Quotations - Invest  
[Quote No.32805] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Even the wildest bull market does not rise in a straight line – it inhales and exhales." - Dr. Alexander Elder
Well known share trader and author.
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[Quote No.32808] Need Area: Money > Invest
"When you go in search of honey you must expect to be stung by bees!" - Kenneth Kaunda

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[Quote No.32812] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Maturity [especially financial maturity] is the ability to reap without apology and not complain when things don't go well." - Jim Rohn
Extremely successful serial entrepreneur.
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[Quote No.32823] Need Area: Money > Invest
"The five primary asset classes are stocks, bonds, cash, real estate, and commodities. You should have a well-diversified portfolio that includes all five of these asset classes. If you're older, you need more bonds and cash for the income and safety. If you're younger, you need more stocks and real estate. You have more time and can afford to speculate." - Michael Masterson
Successful entrepreneur.
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[Quote No.32837] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Research beginning in the late 1980s documents the empirical regularity that the slope of the yield curve is a reliable predictor of future real economic activity... The yield curve [inverted 4 to 6 quarters before the official start of the recession] has predicted essentially every U.S. recession since 1950 with only one 'false' signal, which preceded the credit crunch and slowdown in production in 1967. There is also evidence that the predictive relationships exist in other countries, notably Germany, Canada, and the United Kingdom... Bordo and Haubrich (2004) provide regression-based statistical evidence using U.S. data from 1875 to 1997 and Baltzer and Kling (2005) perform a similar exercise with German data from 1870 to 2003. [Therefore monitoring short and long-term interest rates is important for share investment timing and success.]" - Federal Reserve Bank of New York
http://www.newyorkfed.org/research/capital_markets/ycfaq.html
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[Quote No.32841] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Security... it's simply the recognition that changes will take place and the knowledge that you're willing to deal with whatever happens." - Harry Browne

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[Quote No.32845] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Markets follow cycles. They go up as the economy expands and they go down when it contracts. In general over time the market goes up as populations, products and productivity, along with inflation, increases. This has spawned the idea of buying and holding shares regardless of the economy. That is not always the best thing to do. Here's why: In a famous speech made to internet entrepreneurs at Sun Valley (Idaho) in 1999, Warren Buffett pointed out that on 31 December 1964, the Dow Jones Average stood at 874, and by 31 December 1981, the index only managed a one point gain to 875, despite the economy growing fivefold. So while the share holder has hopefully received dividends during that time, when inflation is taken into account they have done very poorly with the capital they invested. During those seventeen years if the shareholder had tried to be in shares when the economy and the market was rising and then sell before it fell in recessions they would have done significantly better, more than doubling their investment even after taxes. So the best longterm investment strategy is to try to buy at the beginning of economic expansions, riding the share market cycles up but then sell, and pay capital gains taxes, just before recessions start and the share market falls. This is the famous 'buy low (especially good growth companies with good dividends) and sell high' concept. It is not easy to do but just because it isn't easy doesn't mean it can't be done and shouldn't be attempted. It is the primary way highly successful investors have received superior results in the past, without undue risk from for example using debt to leverage your returns higher than the market's but which comes with the risk of greater losses than the market too should it turn down before you get out." - Seymour@imagi-natives.com

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[Quote No.32846] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Attachment is the great fabricator of illusions; reality can be attained only by someone who is detached. [Owning a share can make you less able to think about it objectively. To counter this keep thinking if I didn't already own this share would I want to buy it now and why?]" - Simone Weil
(1910 - 1943), French philosopher and mystic.
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[Quote No.32847] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Do what we do: Find extremely well-financed companies that do not rely on continuous access to the bond or stock markets for refinancing, that are run by competent management teams and that have favorable prospects for growth. Buy these companies' stocks when they are available at a meaningful discount. All other systems of investing are concerned with predicting stocks' near-term price movements." - Marty Whitman
Co-chief investment officer, Third Avenue Management. He is a famous and highly successful value investor.
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[Quote No.32848] Need Area: Money > Invest
"[Recognizing real estate bubbles like all bubbles is inexact. There are some rules of thumb however that relate to the price in relation to the buyer's income and the percentage of the owner's income per year required to service the loan. For example...] A 2006 survey conducted by the National Development and Reform Commission showed that the average ratio between housing prices and income was approaching 12:1 in many large and middle-size cities in China (in Beijing it had reached 27:1). Twelve to one is significantly higher than the World Bank's suggested affordability ratio of 5:1 and the United Nations' 3:1. The problem was compounded by the fact that, of the more than 80 percent of Chinese who owned their own homes in urban areas (generally considered cities with populations of more than 20,000), 54.1 percent were making monthly mortgage payments that constituted 20 percent to 50 percent of their monthly incomes." - Stratfor
A market intelligence company. Quoted from their report on the growing Chinese real estate bubble, published October 13, 2009.
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[Quote No.32854] Need Area: Money > Invest
"In all affairs it's a healthy thing now and then to hang a question mark on the things you have long taken for granted." - Bertrand Russell

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[Quote No.32873] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Hindsight is always twenty-twenty." - Billy Wilder

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[Quote No.32880] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Markets often rise higher than you think is possible, and fall deeper than we can imagine." - Jim Rogers
Famous share and commodities trader
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[Quote No.32881] Need Area: Money > Invest
"[The business and share market cycle, recessions and the] Four Stages of Market Turning Points: It can be argued that there are four classical stages in a move from market bottom to market top and then back again. Stage One: It is important to recognize that market bottoms are made when investors lose all sign of hope, and fear is the dominating emotion. At bottoms, bears are deified and bulls (like Legg Mason's Bill Miller) are rebuked. Seven months ago, prices were beaten down, and the news flow was consistently reinforcing in its negativity. Economic expectations were uniformly bearish, as the credit and financial system seemed broken. Investors no longer believed. The fear of being in the markets overwhelmed market participants - so much so that on the day of the yearly low, a poll indicated that more than half of Americans believed we were entering the Great Depression II. Importantly, decades of buy-and-hold investing seemed to vanish and gave way to a preferred strategy of opportunistic trading. Stage Two: As stocks began their ascent from the March lows, signs indicated that things were getting less-worse as the second derivative [economic data is still falling but not as fast as before] recovery commenced. The liquidity put into the system in late 2008 and early 2009 began to flow into the capital markets. Credit spreads improved as the curse of [low interest on] cash began to manifest. In time, fiscal and monetary stimulation began to assert a hold, and improving economic conditions followed. Stage Three: In time (and with the impetus of higher stock prices and recognition that there were signs of economic improvement), the fear of being in began to be replaced by the fear of being left out. As deflated company [earnings] forecasts turned out to be too pessimistic, the news (importantly influenced by aggressive cost-cutting) improved, and share prices moved comfortably above the March lows. Stage Four: Tops are born out of a rally in optimism and when bullish commentary multiplies. At tops, bears are chastised, and bulls (again like Legg Mason's Bill Miller) regain their popularity... And at tops, investors want to believe." - Doug Kass
Famous short trader. Quote from his regular trading diary on RealMoney Silver, published 12th October, 2009. He was one of only a few who publically called the bottom of the market correctly in March, 2009.
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[Quote No.32883] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Peter Bernholz (Professor Economics in Basel) studied the world's 12 most important periods of hyperinflation and discovered that the tipping point occurs when deficits amounted to 40% of the expenditures. For the United States we have arrived at exactly that point. The deficit of $1.5 trillion amounts to 41.7% of the $3.6 trillion in expenses. You see, that Peter Bernholz, rounds some numbers, but for those of you keeping score at home, the real point is that the U.S. deficits are greater than 40% of expenditures... And you know me, I truly believe in this history repeating itself, or as Mark Twain put it, it may not repeat itself but it rhymes... Mark Twain also wrote: 'It's not worthwhile to try to keep history from repeating itself'... So, the point I'm trying to make here is that according to Mr. Bernholz, we can soon expect a bout of hyperinflation!" - Chuck Butler
President, EverBank World Markets. Quoted in 'A Pfennig For Your Thoughts', Tuesday, October 20, 2009.
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[Quote No.32884] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Everything that can be invented has been invented. [Never forget that experts are not infallible.]" - Charles H. Duell
Commissioner, U.S. Office of Patents, 1899.
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[Quote No.32885] Need Area: Money > Invest
"[Central Banks can and do intervene in foreign exchange - currency markets as the following article from The Reserve Bank of Australia discusses.] How Does the Reserve Bank Intervene? When the RBA [Reserve Bank of Australia] intervenes, it buys or sells Australian dollars against another currency, almost always the US dollar. To support the exchange rate at a time when it is depreciating, the RBA would sell foreign exchange and buy Australian dollars. If the RBA wanted to resist an appreciating exchange rate, it would buy foreign exchange and sell Australian dollars. The RBA has the capacity to deal in Australian dollars around the world, 24 hours a day. As well as decisions about whether, and by how much, to intervene, the RBA also has discretion to vary the way the intervention is conducted and therefore the impact a given amount of intervention will have on the market. For example, if the RBA was intervening with the intention of influencing the exchange rate, it could enter the broker market directly through the electronic broker market. Because the broker market is the main mechanism used by interbank market participants to trade among themselves, knowledge of the RBA's presence in the market is immediately available to all active interbank players. They typically also inform their clients very quickly. This 'announcement effect' can itself have a significant impact on the exchange rate. Alternatively, if the RBA was intending to replenish foreign exchange reserves after a period of intervention, the aim might be to rebuild reserve holdings without having a significant impact on the exchange rate. Under these circumstances, the RBA might use an agent bank, so that the market as a whole is not aware of the RBA's presence. These are only two examples of the way in which the RBA can intervene in the foreign exchange market. Intervention operations have implications for domestic liquidity. When the RBA buys Australian dollars, for example, there is a fall in the banking system's holdings of Australian dollars, thereby draining cash from the domestic money market. If the RBA took no further action, the market would be short of cash and domestic money market interest rates would tend to rise. This would be an example of unsterilised intervention. In effect, it would be a tightening of monetary policy since it leads to a rise in the cash rate. The RBA can, of course, act in the domestic money market to replenish the banking system's liquidity by buying securities. This cancels, or 'sterilises', the liquidity effect of the intervention and leaves domestic interest rates unchanged. This is called sterilised intervention, and is the routine practice for central banks, unless they specifically set out to achieve a change in monetary policy. By using its domestic operations to keep cash rates around a target level, the RBA offsets excess demand for, or supply of, cash in the banking system whether it arises from intervention or from any other source. At times of heavy intervention, this has the potential to cause substantial changes in the RBA's balance sheet as, for example, it sells US dollars in the foreign exchange market and sterilises this by buying domestic securities. To avoid the costs that can arise from this, the RBA uses foreign exchange swaps as the main vehicle for sterilising its intervention. In a situation where the RBA has bought Australian dollars and sold US dollars in its intervention operations, it subsequently undertakes a swap in which it lends Australian dollars and borrows US dollars. The settlement flows from the first leg of the swap offset those arising from the intervention transaction, and therefore remove the need for further operations to control liquidity. As each swap consists of a spot with an offsetting forward transaction, it does not alter the net balance of demand and supply for Australian dollars in the foreign exchange market, and therefore does not cancel out the effect on the exchange rate of the original intervention... Over the post-float period [since 1983 when the Australian Dollar was first floated], there have been three broad cycles of foreign exchange intervention reflecting the three cycles in the exchange rate: one in the second half of the 1980s; one in the first half of the 1990s; and one since 1997... Each cycle began with the Australian dollar falling and the RBA selling foreign exchange (i.e. buying Australian dollars), with the position reversed during the second phase of the cycle as the exchange rate rose. The timing of each cycle... is defined in terms of the major turning points in the RBA's cumulative foreign exchange position resulting from intervention. For instance, the initial phase of the first cycle extended from December 1983 to September 1986 during which the RBA was a net seller of foreign exchange with cumulative net sales peaking at US$6.0 billion in September 1986. From there through to September 1991, the RBA was a net buyer. Total purchases over that period amounted to US$11.7 billion, so that the cumulative position since the float moved from a net short position of US$6.0 billion in September 1986 to a net long position of US$5.7 billion in September 1991. The subsequent cycle saw net sales of foreign exchange between October 1991 and October 1993, and net purchases from November 1993 to September 1997, while the final cycle saw net sales from October 1997 to February 2002 and net purchases from March 2002 onwards... If the objective of the central bank is to limit fluctuations in the exchange rate, this will tend to involve the purchase of the local currency (sale of foreign exchange) when the exchange rate is relatively low, and the sale of the local currency (purchase of foreign exchange) when the exchange rate is high... buying low and selling high..." - The Reserve Bank of Australia
The central bank of Australia. Quoted from http://www.rba.gov.au/MarketOperations/International/ex_rate_rba_role_fxm.html October, 2009.
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[Quote No.32886] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Although central banks and fund managers appear to be quite similar in regards to their management of foreign currency portfolios there are some important differences. Whereas fund managers are expected to make investment decisions in such a way as to maximise the value of the assets under their management subject to their client's investment mandate, central banks must manage their reserves portfolios subject to a range of policy-related constraints. Most obviously, central banks hold foreign currency reserves to fund foreign exchange market operations that arise as part of their broader monetary policy functions. Under a fixed exchange rate regime, foreign currency reserves are used to maintain a particular exchange rate. However, even under a floating exchange rate regime, foreign currency reserves are often used to provide liquidity in the event of extreme market movements to maintain investor confidence in markets. Foreign currency transactions are also used by many countries to augment their domestic liquidity operations while other countries use foreign currency reserves to manage the impact of government transactions. Reflecting the nature of these policy objectives, central banks understandably place a relatively high premium on ensuring the liquidity of their foreign currency reserves. This doesn't mean that income generation and capital preservation are not also important to central banks. Indeed, depending on a central bank's circumstances, income generation and capital preservation may be extremely important. For example, in the case of central banks that borrow their reserves (rather than own them outright), the income generated by their reserve assets ideally should exceed their cost of funding. For other countries, where the income generated by these foreign assets constitutes a significant source of public sector revenue, shortfalls can have significant political ramifications." - The Reserve Bank of Australia
The central bank of Australia. Quoted from http://www.rba.gov.au/MarketOperations/International/MgmtForeignCurrencyReserves/Html/index.html October, 2009.
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[Quote No.32887] Need Area: Money > Invest
"If you believe the economy is picking up and the Fed [central bank] is closer to tightening [rather than loosening monetary policy and therefore raising short term interest rates after a period of stimulatory positive yield curve], that's a yield curve flattening trade: people sell the short end and buy the long end of the bond market." - Forbes magazine

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[Quote No.32890] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Near the end of a recession, the improvement in risk appetite cannot be underestimated. As the saying goes, 'A rising tide lifts all boats [except those with a hole in their hull].' " - Seymour@imagi-natives.com

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[Quote No.32891] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Excessive debt is usually a predictor of subsequent trouble [for states, companies and individuals]." - Niall Ferguson
Harvard economics professor and author of 'The Ascent of Money'.
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[Quote No.32892] Need Area: Money > Invest
"It is to be expected that interest rate differentials will drive capital flows [so that countries with higher interest rates will attract more investment money to receive the higher rates and therefore their currency exchange rates will rise too, while countries with lower interest rates will attract borrowers interested in this 'carry trade' and therefore their currency exchange rates will fall.]" - Janet Yellen
(1946 - ), economist and president of the U.S. Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. Quote from 20th October, 2009.
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[Quote No.32904] Need Area: Money > Invest
"When we are in the easing part of a credit cycle [that is interest rates are less than average, stimulating the sick economy, and the yield curve is positive and rising] investors should be buying equities." - Christian Gattiker-Ericsson
Head of research at Julius Baer, an international Swiss Private Banking Group.
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[Quote No.32918] Need Area: Money > Invest
"When written in Chinese, the word 'crisis' is composed of two characters. One represents danger and the other represents opportunity. [This is particularly true in investing. Every company or countrywide economic crisis - for example a recession, provides unique opportunities for those investors that are better able to predict the likely outcomes.]" - John F. Kennedy
U.S. President
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[Quote No.32920] Need Area: Money > Invest
"One very simple, active strategy that would have avoided the stock market holocaust in both of the recent recessions [2001 and 2008] would have been to get out of the market when the yield curve inverts and stay out until the NBER announces the recession has ended. While this would limit losses it would not necessarily reap the excess returns available from following a more value orientated investing strategy that buys the shares of excellent companies when they are well below fair value, in the depths of recessions and the pessimism that abounds then." - Seymour@imagi-natives.com

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[Quote No.32935] Need Area: Money > Invest
"The worth of a thing is what it will bring [to a particular person at a particular time. Highly successful investors therefore know that to to get a bargain they must buy when the market is pessimistic and frightened and therefore values the thing cheaply and conversely the time to sell is when the market is optimistic and greedy and values the thing highly.]" - Portuguese Proverb

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[Quote No.32939] Need Area: Money > Invest
"[Usually stock market reports are a little dry but there are always a few 'wags' giving some light relief. Here are a couple of fun reports that do the rounds occasionally:] -- The Local Daily Stock Market Report: Helium was up, feathers were down. Paper was stationary. Fluorescent tubing was dimmed in light trading. Knives were up sharply. Cows steered into a bull market. Pencils lost a few points. Hiking equipment was trailing. Elevators rose, while escalators continued their slow decline. Weights were up in heavy trading. Light switches were off. Mining equipment hit rock bottom. Diapers remain unchanged. Shipping lines stayed at an even keel. The market for raisins dried up. Coca Cola fizzled. Caterpillar stock inched up a bit. Sun peaked at midday. Balloon prices were inflated. And Scott Tissue touched a new bottom. -- The Overseas Daily Stock Market Report: The Japanese banking crisis shows no signs of ameliorating. If anything, it's getting worse. Following last week's news that Origami Bank had folded, we are hearing that Sumo Bank has gone belly up and Bonsai Bank plans to cut back some of its branches. Karaoke Bank is up for sale and is (you guessed it!) going for a song. Meanwhile, shares in Kamikaze Bank have nose-dived and 500 back office staff at Karate Bank got the chop. Analysts report that there is something fishy going on at Sushi Bank and staff there fear they may get a raw deal. [It's important not to lose your sense of humour even when dealing with serious issues or serious amounts of money.]" - Seymour@imagi-natives.com

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[Quote No.32951] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Adequate capital and adequate liquidity [especially for banks and financial companies] are two completely separate concepts as Bear Stearns and Lehman found out the hard way [in 2008 as they went bankrupt]. Capital is purely an accounting concept, generally consisting of common and certain preferred equity. Liquidity on the other hand is the cash either available or that can be generated to meet funding obligations in the event of deposit withdrawals or a freeze in short-term credit." - Michael Steinberg

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[Quote No.32953] Need Area: Money > Invest
"To be uncertain is to be uncomfortable, but to be certain is to be ridiculous." - Chinese Proverb

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[Quote No.32954] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Stocks of companies that are small and weak, which often have had the stuffing beaten out of them during the down period [that is the bear market], typically lead the way at the start of the bull market [with commentators calling it a 'dash for trash']." - Manuel Schiffres
Executive Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance
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[Quote No.32957] Need Area: Money > Invest
"There is no such thing as effortless or riskless prosperity." - Glenn Stevens
Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia. Quote from a speech, 5th November, 2009.
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[Quote No.32958] Need Area: Money > Invest
"There is still a business cycle. [The economy always expands and then contracts before expanding again, just like any living thing breathes in, out then in again.]" - Glenn Stevens
Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia. Quote from a speech, 5th November, 2009.
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[Quote No.32959] Need Area: Money > Invest
"The road to prosperity will have some bumps, twists and turns. But it is the road to the right destination." - Glenn Stevens
Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia. Quote from a speech, 5th November, 2009.
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[Quote No.32967] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Property markets rarely bottom until unemployment reaches a peak." - James Kirby

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[Quote No.32970] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Danger, the spur of all great minds. [For great invest minds this means never forgetting to consider what could go wrong as well as what could go right!]" - George Chapman

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[Quote No.32985] Need Area: Money > Invest
"When you follow [and learn to understand leading, coincident and lagging] economic indicators, it lowers the odds that you will miss the boat in the markets." - R. Mark Rogers
He worked for 19 years as the economic forecaster for the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta and now is senior economist for the Econoday economic analysis firm. He has also written the book, 'The Complete Idiot's Guide to Economic Indicators'.
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[Quote No.33000] Need Area: Money > Invest
"The wise have always said the same things, and fools, who are the majority have always done just the opposite." - Arthur Schopenhauer

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[Quote No.33002] Need Area: Money > Invest
"The most difficult part of investing is managing your emotions." - Charles Schwab
Legendary investor.
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[Quote No.33013] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Anyone who thinks they’re going to get every call right is naïve." - Jeff Saut
Chief investment strategist at Raymond James.
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[Quote No.33041] Need Area: Money > Invest
"The chief risk [in investing] is paying too much for mediocre businesses during generally prosperous times..." - Benjamin Graham
He was a financial analyst and fund manager who is considered the 'Father of Value Investing' for his efforts to help develop rational standards for analysing companies and investing in shares. This quote comes from his book, 'The Intelligent Investor', published in 1949.
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[Quote No.33063] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Man, an animal that makes bargains." - Adam Smith

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[Quote No.33066] Need Area: Money > Invest
"To improve the golden moment of opportunity and to catch the good that is within our reach, is the great art of life [and investing]." - Samuel Johnson

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[Quote No.33099] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Severe stock market crashes, like October, 1929 and October, 2008 have been explained by the economist Minsky: When times are good, for example interest rates are historically low and the economy is growing above normal rates, investors take on risk in the form of stocks and other assets, especially funded by debt; the longer times stay better than normal, the more risk and debt they take on, until they’ve taken on too much, should interest rates return to normal settings. Eventually, they reach a point where the cash generated by their assets is no longer sufficient to pay off the mountains of debt (leverage) they took on to acquire them as central banks raise interest rates to reduce inflation and deflate asset bubbles caused by investor complacency and irrational exuberance. Losses on such speculative assets prompt lenders to call in their loans. This leads to selling, collapsing asset values, equity destruction, margin calls and ferocious forced selling. Eventually as investors are forced to sell even their less-speculative positions in solid good companies to make good on their loans and margin calls, markets spiral lower and create a severe demand for cash. At that point, the dreaded Minsky Moment has arrived and a rapid market crash occurs where even very good companies are sold below their fair long-term value. Therefore, as a rational investor, it is always sensible to be especially wary and ready to sell investments and reduce debt when interest rates have been unusually low for a long time and central banks start tightening their loose monetary policy and interest rates and to do it while there is still buying interest, that is before the rest of the investors also rush for the exits. Then to wait until you can use that cash to buy good companies at below their fair long-term value when the selling climax abates. This is the essence of the smartest value investing." - Seymour@imagi-natives.com

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[Quote No.33132] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Although I invested in a particular stock in good faith, I'll never know enough about the stock or the market to be 100 percent right all of the time [nor will anyone else!]. When the market causes the price of one of my stocks to come down, that is just its way of telling me that I didn't have all the facts. [Therefore since no-one can ever have all the facts, the idea is to wait for a 'margin of safety' below your assessed fair value for the stocks before you invest. This 'margin' will protect you from all but the very worst lack of knowledge and consequential loss, and improve the percentage returns you do achieve.]" - Michael Masterson
Successful entrepreneur.
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[Quote No.33134] Need Area: Money > Invest
"There is no means of avoiding the final collapse of a boom [in shares or real estate] brought about by credit [debt] expansion [due to too low interest rates]. The alternative is only whether the crisis should come sooner as the result of a voluntary abandonment of further credit expansion [tightening of monetary policy and therefore increasing interest rates] or later as a final and total catastrophe of the currency system involved [as foreign funds are removed to avoid holding government debt when they default]." - Ludwig von Mises
Austrian economist
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[Quote No.33135] Need Area: Money > Invest
"More generally, the rule of thumb is that an inverted yield curve indicates a recession in about a year, a flat curve indicates weak growth and a steep curve indicates sharp growth." - Matteo Radaelli

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[Quote No.33136] Need Area: Money > Invest
"...since the 80s, a large number of academic studies have suggested that the yield curve is a reliable predictor of recessions: for example, before each of the last seven recessions, including the last one, short term interest rates (3 month T-Bill) rose above long term rates (10y T-Bond), producing what economists call yield curve inversion. Although the yield curve has made a poor job in forecasting the magnitude of economic growth, it is a great forecaster of the direction of the economy. More generally, the rule of thumb is that an inverted yield curve indicates a recession in about a year, a flat curve indicates weak growth and a steep curve indicates sharp growth... The outcome of past academic studies also enables us to calculate the likelihood of a recession in the 12 months ahead using the steepness of the yield curve. In particular, we are using a probit model, which exploits the normal distribution to convert the value of a measure of the yield curve steepness into a probability of recession one year ahead. The model developed by the NY Fed economists Estrella and Trubin ('The yield curve as a leading indicator: some practical issues') suggests that the current yield spread is in line with a 0% chance of recession in the coming 12 months. Another meaningful probit model was developed by the Fed economist Jonathan Wright in the paper 'The yield curve and predicting recessions'. This model uses both the yield spread and the level of the Fed fund rate to determine the probability of recession. According to Wright calculations, the predictive power is higher than that of the yield spread alone. Even under this model, the chances of another recession in the subsequent 12 months appear to be close to 0%. Are we sure that a recession will not occur in 2010? An argument against taking too much comfort from the positive slope of the yield curve was provided by Paul Krugman, who had previously predicted a 30/40% chance of a recession materializing in 2010. In his NY Times blog, Krugman said that, given that the Federal Reserve cannot cut rates from here [as they are already below 1%], long-term rates must be higher than short-term rates because they are like an option: short rates might move up but they cannot go down. Krugman reinforced his view highlighting that in Japan the yield curve was positively sloped all the way through the lost decade. However, unless the US economy experiences a lost decade, as it occurred in Japan - a possibility that we do not rule out but that we consider thin - the yield curve message should be taken seriously. The predictive power of the slope of the yield curve is not limited to the US economy. In a paper published in 1996 ('Does the term structure predict recessions? The international evidence') BIS’s [Bank of International Settlements] economists Bernand and Gerlach highlighted that home country yield curves have predicted recessions in 8 countries. Hence, based on most recent data, no major developed countries will likely slip into recession in 2010. The steepness of the yield curve also gives us useful indications of the corporate profits outlook. Indeed, a considerable gap between the 10 year T-Bond and 2 year T-Bill has been usually followed by a sharp increase in corporate profits in the subsequent three years. Obviously, this does not come as a surprise considering the above-mentioned yield curve ability to anticipate economic growth." - Matteo Radaelli
Italian economist with investment banking experience. Published 19th January, 2010.
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[Quote No.33137] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Intense fear at the time may have obscured the fact for many investors, but it's hard to argue that stocks weren't extremely cheap back at the end of March, 2009. U.S. equities were close to 50 per cent off their highs and selling at their lowest levels in more than a dozen years. Canadian stocks were at levels not seen since 2003. And on top of that, interest rates were at or near historic lows, making stocks even cheaper compared to bonds and fixed-income investments. Even well-known, long-time bears such as Jeremy Grantham and Steven Leuthold were calling equities cheap. You wouldn't have known it by looking at the most-used stock valuation metric, however. At the end of March, the S&P 500 was selling at a whopping 116.3 times reported 12-month earnings. Using operating earnings, its price/earnings ratio was 18.6 - much more attractive, but not exactly dirt cheap. That disconnect highlights the limitations of the P/E ratio. In major economic downturns, earnings can plummet to incredibly low, or negative, levels for brief periods, distorting the market's P/E. The same can happen with individual stocks. Many times, a good company will go through a bad year or two - what Kenneth Fisher termed 'the glitch' in his 1984 classic 'Super Stocks'. Mr. Fisher, one of the investing greats upon whom I base my Guru Strategy computer models, said that many investors bail when a firm hits a glitch. But, he found, good companies are able to identify and fix their problems, and soon resume posting strong profits. If you can buy the stocks of such companies during a glitch, Mr. Fisher found, you can make a bundle when they get back on track and investors pile back in. The trick comes in evaluating a company when its earnings have fallen sharply or have turned negative. The solution, according to Mr. Fisher: the price/sales ratio (PSR). While earnings - even earnings of good companies - can fluctuate significantly from year to year due to business ups and downs, capital expenditures, or accounting changes, Mr. Fisher found that sales of good companies are much more stable. By comparing the amount of sales a company does to the price of its stock, he says investors can get a good idea of the real value of a stock. Mr. Fisher is considered the PSR's pioneer, but other highly successful investors have followed his lead. One is James O'Shaughnessy, whose extensive study of historical stock market returns is one of the most in-depth of its kind. Mr. O'Shaughnessy, whose book 'What Works on Wall Street' forms the basis for another of my Guru Strategies, found that the PSR was actually the single best determinant of a stock's future success or failure. He made the variable one of the key pieces of his growth stock selection strategy. The PSR is no silver bullet - both Mr. O'Shaughnessy and Mr. Fisher used a variety of other variables in their stock selection processes - but it can be a very helpful tool in evaluating equities as a group or individually... Mr. Fisher used a couple of different PSR standards depending on the company's industry, which my model reflects. For non-cyclicals, it targets stocks with PSRs below 1.5, and preferably below 0.75 (using trailing 12-month sales). But for basic industry-type firms ('smokestacks'), Mr. Fisher looked for lower PSRs, since they tend to have lower margins and slower growth. This model wants smokestacks to have PSRs below 0.8, and preferably below 0.4." - John Reese
Founder and CEO of Validea.com and Validea Capital Management, and portfolio manager for the Omega American & International Consensus funds.
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[Quote No.33160] Need Area: Money > Invest
"Men [investors] are like sheep, of which a flock is more easily driven than a single one." - Richard Whately

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[Quote No.33173] Need Area: Money > Invest
"If we don’t get the analysis right, we won’t get the response right." - Sheldon Richman
January 29, 2010
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