The Death of Value Investing? | Phil Town | Summary and Q&A

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January 17, 2019
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Rule #1 Investing
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The Death of Value Investing? | Phil Town

TL;DR

Value investing has evolved since its inception by Ben Graham in the 1930s, with Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger introducing new strategies focused on owning and understanding high-quality businesses for the long term.

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Questions & Answers

Q: How did Ben Graham's value investing approach differ from traditional buying low and selling high strategies?

Ben Graham's value investing involved looking for companies with strong financial integrity that were priced lower than their actual value. This approach focused on finding bargains and often involved buying companies close to bankruptcy.

Q: Why did Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger shift away from Graham's "cigar butt" investing strategy?

Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger recognized the limitations and risks of buying deeply undervalued companies. Instead, they focused on owning high-quality businesses with intrinsic value beyond just their asset prices.

Q: How does value investing today differ from the approach used by Ben Graham?

Value investing today requires deep knowledge about the intrinsic value of a business as an operating entity. It involves understanding the business's value and buying it at a price below its true value.

Q: What distinguishes a "ruler type" value investor from a "Graham type" value investor?

A "ruler type" value investor, like Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger, focuses on never losing money and understanding what makes a business wonderful for the long term. In contrast, a "Graham type" value investor may prioritize finding bargain-priced companies without as much emphasis on long-term quality.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • Traditional value investing, as developed by Ben Graham, involved finding undervalued stocks based on specific financial criteria such as low debt ratios and bargain prices.

  • Graham's approach, known as "cigar butt investing," aimed to profit from temporary undervaluation and often involved buying companies on the brink of bankruptcy.

  • Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger expanded on Graham's ideas by focusing on owning "wonderful businesses" and understanding their intrinsic value as operating entities.

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