Tacit Thought

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Luck & Skill

November, 2019

“Rise early, work late and strike oil” This was the success formula embraced by the American oil tycoon Jean Paul Getty. In most activities, there is an element of skill; working hard and becoming a specialist in some task will improve the likelihood of success. There is also an element of luck; this is what […]

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Madness & Manias Part 2

November, 2019

Following on from last week’s Thought, we received various questions regarding the practical implications of ‘Madness and Manias’ for our investment approach at what is a confusing time for many of our clients. In reality, politics and newsflow in the modern world are volatile. The 24 hour news flow generated for the digitally connected world […]

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Madness and Manias

November, 2019

“People, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly and, one by one.” Charles Mackay was a nineteenth century Scottish journalist who made that comment in his influential book, “Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds” that […]

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Money Illusion

October, 2019

Money is a more slippery concept than you might imagine. The story goes that money was invented to replace barter. It’s clearly very hard to make an estimate of how many shoes are equal to a bushel of wheat although I was once offered “two camels for my wife” on a trip to Egypt. On […]

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Rembrandt’s & Perception

October, 2019

Why do people sometimes spend lavish amounts of money on pieces of art? It could be for purely personal reasons; they like the painter. It could be for aesthetic reasons; they like the painting. It could also be for financial reasons; they believe it can be sold at a higher price in the near future. […]

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Stay Focused on your Objective

October, 2019

With the focus very much on short term issues in the UK and US, we believe investors are missing key longer-term implications being highlighted in government bond markets. Government bond yields around the world have continued to fall even whilst economic growth has rebounded over the past decade. This puzzles most investors as the standard […]

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Bayes’ Rule

September, 2019

Thomas Bayes was an English Presbyterian minister and statistician known for formulating Bayes’ rule. Its practical application has been very useful since it was published in 1763. It was partly responsible for cracking the enigma code during the Second World War and tracking Russian submarines during the Cold War. In the modern world, its applications […]

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Forced Sellers

September, 2019

One of our analysts recently tried to buy a house plant for the office. These however don’t come cheap if bought new from a garden centre or plant shop. Being a value investor on the hunt for a quality bargain, searching for forced sellers comes naturally. People moving houses or offices often sell their plants […]

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It’s A Looking Glass World

September, 2019

The period in which we live is drenched in contradictions; political, economic and financial. The poor old White Queen has been dragged from the pages of Through the Looking Glass to declaim on believing “six impossible things before breakfast” more times than we can count. Most recently on the Today programme this week. The financial […]

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Beware the Noise

September, 2019

Over the last few days, the news has been largely negative – from the rising risks of a no-deal Brexit to Boris Johnson’s suspension of parliament and a falling sterling. We have highlighted many times before that the noise created by political events must be blocked out when making longer term investment decisions, no matter […]