Hottest links for Monday October 7th, 2013 the — late edition (see Sunday’s edition of hottest links). Get our free daily newsletter and never miss a single linkfest.
Top stories for today can be found below. No intro paragraph today (for better or worse).
Why Markets Trend
I really liked this way of thinking about trending markets courtesy of the Michael Platt chapter in Jack Schwager’s excellent Hedge Fund Market Wizards. Platt founded the $25 billion hedge fund BlueCrest thirteen years ago. It is one of the ten largest hedge funds in the world and has become well known for its dedication to risk management. [Joshua M Brown, The Reformed Broker]
The Psychology of Grand Gestures
These days many people approach China through the lens of superlatives – massive buildings and infrastructure, dynamic fast paced growth and grand government visions. Local press Caixin had a photo series of some of the more opulent government offices which had been built in recent years in some of the more deserted parts of China. [China Meltdown]
William Ackman: ‘You Need a Thick Skin to Be in This Business’
Your short position on Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) — you’re betting against the company — has caused some friends like George Soros and Daniel Loeb to turn on you. Neither of the people you mentioned is, or has ever been, a close friend of mine. I certainly know the people you mentioned — but, look, you need a thick skin to be in this business. In a short sale, the whole world is going to be on the other side of the investment until they realize you’re right. [Andrew Ross Sorkin, NYTimes]
Can Anyone Say Timothy Sykes?
Take a recent ad for one of Mark Skousen’s investment newsletters, called High-Income Alert. In the ad, Skousen says “the fact is, that for seven years running — through good markets and bad — my recommendations have racked up an annualized return of 145%.” [Mark Hulbert, Barron’s]
A Dozen Things I’ve Learned from Bill Ruane
“Nobody knows what the market will do.” Investing based on macro market forecasting is folly. Every investor in this series (over 20 now) believes in this bedrock principle. Where are the great investors who believe to the contrary? Where is the list of great investors who outperform the market based on macro forecasting? You may be thinking: “Ray Dalio at least.” [Tren Griffin, 25iq]
Why Warren Buffett is Richer than George Soros
Mid-career professionals like Warren and George are thriving while hedge fund managers aged under 80 gain experience. Over 41 years and net of fees George has turned $1,000 into $14 million and Warren to $3 million from his actively managed closed end fund. He charges less fees than “cheap” unskilled index funds and his hedge fund is available to anyone with $80 to invest. [Joshua M Brown, The Reformed Broker]
Life after 2017 in HHC? Channeling John Malone…
I have no doubt in my mind that as Howard Hughes Corp (NYSE:HHC) transitions into a cash flow vehicle, the insiders would have made their killing from their own investments in the company (but most deservedly). However, for long term investors who aspire to own HHC past that point, there remains an unanswered question: how will the upside motivate the insiders versus November 2010 at the bottom of the housing market? Of course, Nov. 2010 was a once in a life time opportunity. [Contra Spin]
Why Europe’s PIIGS are flying
Here are a few investment thoughts about potentially taking advantage of the situation. Global X Funds (NYSEARCA:GREK): up 30.5% since Sept. 1. iShares MSCI Spain Capped ETF (NYSEARCA:EWP): up 21.21% since Sept. 1. iShares MSCI Italy Index (ETF) (NYSEARCA:EWI) up 18.31% since Sept. 1. [Nicholas A. Vardy, MarketWatch] Related; That is important for GREK because financial services is the ETF’s second-largest sector weight at 15.3%. National Bank of Greece (ADR) (NYSE:NBG) and Alpha Bank A.E. (ADR) (OTCMKTS:ALBKY) are GREK’s fourth- and fifth-largest holdings, respectively, combining for more than 12% of the ETF’s weight. [Tom Lydon, ETF Trends]
Bill Ackman’s Message to Herbalife Analyst
I am paying attention, that’s his message to Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF) analyst Tim Ramey. Last week, MarketWatch spoke to Ramey about Ackman’s latest investor letter attacking the analyst on his bullish call on the global nutrition and weight management company. The Pershing Square founder has been highly critical of Herbalife and accused management of running a pyramid scheme and the billionaire and the analyst have got into a feud over the firm. [The Tell]
Hottest Links: Not The Onion
Burglar caught by cucumber
A DOZY burglar was caught by police after having a bite out of a cucumber. Billy Joe Donnelly, 22, was peckish when he raided a greenhouse down a country lane. [Nicky Harley, Hull Daily Mail]