I attended an investment conference recently and one of the speakers was Stephen Friedman, former Chairman of Goldman Sachs. During his fireside chat, he mentioned that when it comes to investing, he follows some basic rules of risk management. He said that these rules were universal truths that grandparents have shared with their grandchildren over multiple generations.
Over the past few decades, student debt has transformed from a tool for accessing higher education to a significant obstacle preventing young people from accumulating wealth and saving towards retirement. According to a February 2017 report published by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, outstanding student loan balances increased by $31 billion in 2016.
I recently read a book on the sinking of the Lusitania in 1915. The author thoroughly details the lives of some of the affluent passengers who were aboard the luxury liner’s final voyage. As I was learning about these “high net worth” people who lived one hundred years ago, I kept wondering about how they saved and invested, and how early 20th century investing contrasts with early 21st century investing.
In the fourth-quarter newsletter, we discussed how we think about long-term equity return expectations. The purpose of the article was to explain how fundamental returns (driven by earnings growth) and speculative returns (driven by changes in valuation) collectively impact market prices. While changes in valuation are the overwhelming driver of equity returns in the short run, earnings growth (a proxy for intrinsic value) is what truly matters over the long-term.
"A blue-chip stock is the stock of a large, well-established and financially sound company that has operated for many years. A blue-chip stock typically has a market capitalization in the billions, is generally the market leader or among the top three companies in its sector, and is more often than not a household name.