Hottest Links for July 31th, 2013 the afternoon edition (see Tuesday’s edition of hottest links here). Top stories for today include; Bill Ackman has built a giant stake in Air Products & Chemicals, Inc. (NYSE:APD), but the news is being overshadowed by a massive investment in Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) by George Soros (a stock which Bill Ackman is short); Ever wonder what P/B was in Sudan? Look no further, some amazing data on global market valuations; tips for playing golf with the boss; 12 things you can learn from Oaktree founder, Howard Marks; What killed Iron Mountain?; further details from Inside the bitcoin cult and much more below.

Hottest Links

Hottest Links: Stories

Bill Ackman has built a massive stake in Air Products & Chemicals, Inc. (NYSE:APD). The news is being overshadowed by George Soros buying Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF), which Ackman has a $1B short in (see that story below) [Maneet Ahuja, Becky Quick, CNBC]

A dozen things about investing

A dozen things I’ve learned about investing from Howard Marks. Check out the latest list from Tren on ’12 things I learned’, this time from the famous value investor Howard Marks [Tren Griffin, 25iq]; also if you have not checked it out you got to read The Most Important Thing Illuminated: Uncommon Sense for the Thoughtful Investor by Howard Marks.

Inside Bitcoins conference

MarketWatch looks further into the dark world of the Bitcoin cult. Get your Alex Jones shirt on, your tin foil hat ready, and Ron Paul bumper sticks and take a look at what happens at the Bitcoin conference [Saumya Vaishampayan, Marketwatch], more Bitcoin conference coverage on marketwatch here. Also see how to regulate virtual currencies here.

The real investment risk

The biggest risk in investing could actually be the fact that you will not change your outlook and thinking, argues the famous Michael Lipper [A. Michael Lipper, CFA Institute]

Will China’s economy crash?

Michael Pettis has the latest on whether the Chinese economy will crash. A nice read from someone who has been on top of the situation before certained unnamed macro tourists came along [Michael Pettis, CNN]

Survive a sporting event with your boss

Goldman Sachs Elevator has a humours new guide to how to go about a golfing event with your boss. Check it out here for some humor and possibly some ‘pro tips’. [GS Elevator]

Meet the man who sold his fate to investors

On January 26, 2008, a 30-year-old part-time entrepreneur named Mike Merrill decided to sell himself on the open market. He divided himself into 100,000 shares and set an initial public offering price of $1 a share. Here what happened when this man IPOed himself. [Joshua Davis, Wired]

Market multiples

Some really fantastic charts and data from the famous NYU professor. There are interactive charts on p/e, p/b, EV/EBITDA for nearly every country in the world and you can create your own chart. Curious what the PE is of Sudan? Check no further, see short example below.  [Aswath Damodaran]

361 Capital weekly research

361 Capital portfolio manager, Blaine Rollins, CFA, previously manager of the Janus Fund, writes a weekly update looking back on major moves, macro-trends and economic data points. [Blaine Rollins, The Reformed Broker]

Hidden fees in hedge funds

It might be hard to believe but when you invest in hedge funds you are just paying 2/20. But it gets worse, see the hidden fees in hedge funds here. [Josh Barlow, FIN Alternatives]

Big beer goes float

Though it shows little sign of slowing down, the rise of craft breweries (defined as small, independent brewers of fewer than 6,000,000 barrels per year) is far from new. Big Beer is trying to get a part of the action, but they may be wise to go about this in a different manner. [Liam Boluk, Ivey Business Review]

Malaysia’s khazanah

Khazanah Nasional Berhad, the strategic investment fund of the Government of Malaysia, stands out among global sovereign wealth funds (SWF) as a leading example of how such a fund can be an engine of economic development for the country [Usman Hayat, CFA Institute]

Snapped by regulatory storms

Was Iron Mountain growth, a once Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.A) (NYSE:BRK.B) holding, thwarted due to company decisions? OR did the company fail because of certain Government regulations? Check out this interesting article by Koon Koon Kee on the history of the company. [Koon Koon Kee, Beyond Proxy]

Make better decisions

Ted Williams was arguably the greatest pure hitter who ever played the game of baseball. Besides for being an inspiration for baseball players, investors can also learn from him. [Shane Parrish, Farnam Street Blog], Also see the Science of Hitting.

Not the Onion

George Soros has taken a massive stake in Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF). In fact, the famous money manager supposedly has made the MLM company one of his top three holdings. See more details on the news here. Shares soared nearly 10 percent on the news. [Value Walk]