Summer thoughts

Some of my summer investment thoughts:

Thought 1 – Private investing is the best job in the world

You get paid for 1/ learning about the world and 2/ your own judgement.

reading
Dude in the picture is Todd Combs. He’s the “Ted and Todd” Warren hired to manage $10bn of Berkshire’s money. His job is to learn about the world by reading 500+ pages DAILY. 

It’s the kind of job where you have a complete autonomy over generating revenue for your “company” ie yourself. You get rewarded by your own analysis and judgements and get told by no one in making such judgement. During the process you get to learn about the world. Like today I learned about, from the US decade-old water infrastructure industry to the 21st century hype of blockchain technology. In between I learned about the biggest salt mine in the world, the global custodians and fashion brands. Without investing I would never have spent more than 10 minutes reading about this stuff…

Thought 2 – Private investing is the worst job in the world

Hah…Got your attention there didn’t I? *Make up your damn mind V*. Well investing does come with a catch. The biggest catch that has ever happened to me wasn’t that of losing money. But it is to be walking alone in this path.

Yeah, private investing is a lonely business, for various reasons. Though to me the biggest reason is this. If you start active long-term investing at your early 20s the odd is that most of your friends are too busy thinking of either short-term trading, start-up entrepreneurial venture, climbing the ladder or just something else more exciting (subject to individual definition of what constitutes as exciting) within the financial spectrum.

Yet historically and statistically speaking long-term investing has always been the best wealth-generating source. A rational person would theoretically favour such approach to the likes of start-ups and the sorts.

However I don’t condemn people of wanting to step foot into the ventures, high-frequency trading, start-up space or working their way up to the top, since these activities do have a lot of benefits including: it’s exciting, you can act independently while managing your own teams, ability to massively change the world (look at the big tech businesses), fostering your leadership, and a lot more.

But to me rationality triumphs personal preference, or the need to do something exciting. It has always been noted that acting rationally sounds easy, but it is very hard to do. This is because it goes against human nature being greed and opportunist versus rationality being return-risk driven and patience.

howard
This book taught me a shit tons of rationality. Uncommon sense + Thoughful = Rationality?! “Yo Howard keep them memo going”

Thought 3: Interesting businesses that are priced fairly to cheap

These are businesses that I have been assessing closely in the last month or so:

Vietnam:

Aviation Corporation of Vietnam – Vietnam monopolistic airport operator/owner

Bibica – Owning some of the most domestically notable confectionary brands like Hura, Keo Bon Mua, Goody, etc.

Kinh do Foods – Biggest ice cream business in Vietnam. However, not yet IPO. Though I’m concerned about their strategic direction to diversify away from the ice cream business

Global:

Shiseido – The only Asia premium cosmetic brand that has a respectably global footprint

Bank of New York Mellon – the biggest global custodian bank with a whopping $30 trillion in assets under custody. Though financial-disruptive nature of blockchain is annoying to think of…but if I dismiss the technology I will be essentially betting against long-term productivity growth, which is irrational and frankly, stupid

blockchain 1
Fuck you blockchain, and you too McKinsey for writing that. Though may the force be with you for the sake of raising human productivity…*sigh*. So BNY Mellon, what chu gonna do now?!

Compass Minerals – owner of the biggest salt mine in the world.

Mueller Water Product – various sources pointing towards it being the biggest water-valves manufacturer in the States. And there is a need to spend $1 trillion in repairing and replacing water infrastructure of which the majority was built during the 20th century…I mean come on, freaking 20th century lol

Alphabet – hmm Google?

 

 

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