Sunday, September 29, 2013

Universal Security Instruments Is Very Cheap

Universal Security Instruments (UUU) does not look like a great business of late. Its operating income has been negative for four consecutive years. But as a result of what appears to be distressed selling, the company's stock price has been in free fall relative to the firm's equity, which is stable. As such, the stock now trades at a massive discount to book value, offering an extraordinary risk/reward opportunity for deep-value investors with a long-term outlook. Read more...

Friday, September 27, 2013

Hawaiian Holdings

I don't have much interest in owning any airlines (as per this note) but a write-up I read on Hawaiian Airlines has me intrigued. In my opinion, Red makes a tremendous case for it.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Manual Of Ideas

I recently had the chance to read a great new book on value investing called The Manual Of Ideas. You might recognize the title from the site with the same name, where you can watch a number of interviews with quality value investors who discuss everything from specific aspects of competitive advantages to their favourite stock ideas.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Four Steps To The Epiphany

As Ben Graham is credited with fathering value investing, so can Steve Blank be credited with starting the Lean Startup school of thought. Startups (defined to include both brand new companies as well as innovative groups within established firms of any size) are traditionally seen as risky businesses, but with his book Four Steps To The Epiphany, Blank spawned a revolution that is changing that.

Monday, September 16, 2013


About one-third to one-half of the world's population is introverted, but the world considers such people second-class citizens, according Susan Cain, author of the book Quiet: The Power Of Introverts In A World That Can't Stop Talking. But Cain makes the case that introverts contribute just as much if not more to society than do extroverts. Despite this, as a society we idealize the extrovert, the smooth-talking people-persons that capture the attention of whatever room they're in. We shouldn't.

Monday, September 9, 2013

The Lean Startup

In the excellent book The Innovator's Dilemma, the competitive situation is generally viewed through the eyes of the established incumbent. In The Lean Startup by Eric Ries, the focus is on the disrupting company.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Torstar Shines Bright

Newspaper stocks are generally shunned by today's investors. Moats are shrinking as advertising moves online, and yet capital structures are often levered (a consequence of the decades of industry stability). But it is among the most-hated industry groups that some of the best bargains can be found.Read more...

Thursday, September 5, 2013

The Turnaround Kid

I've said many times that I like to buy companies undergoing temporary problems, because that's when I can get a good price. Sometimes, I'm wrong in thinking that the problems are temporary. As a result, I've been an unwitting investor in a few turnarounds. Other times, I've invested because I believe assets to be worth more than market value. In these particular cases, I've been a willing investor in turnaround situations.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Settling A Five-Year-Old Bet

I only like to bet when I believe the odds are in my favour. Since I believe commodity prices to be rather unpredictable, I tend not to bet on anything commodity-price related. I made an exception five years ago.