A question I’ve received frequently the last couple months from many different people is about the potential for inflation given the unprecedented response to the Novel Coronavirus Pandemic. It is an important question because it impacts the best investment approach going forward as well as other personal finance decisions.
I understand the rationale behind the question. After all, trillions of dollars have been pledged between the Federal Reserve and the U.S. Treasury in the last few months in what essentially amounts to a “helicopter drop” of money on the economy. So, it is understandable that people are beginning to have concerns about the potential for inflation.
Ultimately, I believe we will get inflation mainly because the Federal Reserve will stop at almost nothing to make it happen, HOWEVER, we must allow for the possibility of getting deflation first. Continue reading “Deflation or Inflation?”
Executive Summary: Warren Buffett is holding records amount of cash. Meanwhile, households are holding near record LOW levels of cash and near record high levels of stocks.
Last week we learned Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway set another new record for the amount of cash and short-term investments (e.g. U.S. Treasurys) its holding. Specifically, Berkshire is holding over $128 BILLION of cash and short-term instruments. That’s a lot of dry powder!
The reason he’s holding so much cash is because he hasn’t been able to find attractively-valued investment opportunities. So, like any disciplined investor, he’s not chasing obscene valuations. Successful investors don’t get caught up in the emotions of manias and bubbles. Successful investors also don’t let fear prevent them from buying good assets when they’re priced right much like Mr. Buffett was doing in early-2009 when everyone else thought the world was ending.
Last week, I also happened to come across some charts from @SentimentTrader (Twitter) showing how households are currently invested. There is some really interesting data here that presents a stark contrast to Mr. Buffett’s approach right now. Before we continue, remember Mr. Buffett’s wise words, “Be fearful when others are greedy and greedy only when others are fearful.”
Continue reading “Warren Buffett versus U.S. Households… In Charts”
Each year Warren Buffett pens a letter to shareholders, which has become a must-read for investment professionals and individual investors alike. Here, I will highlight some excerpts I found particularly interesting and relevant from this year’s letter (released this morning).
Continue reading “Warren Buffett’s Annual Letter to Shareholders – Just the Highlights”