The Learning Discipline

What’s the key to successful investing?

Source: Get Refe

There isn’t one key. There are lots of them: understanding ourselves, diversification, setting good goals, managing risk—the list goes on and on. And there are many fruitful investment styles: value, growth, momentum, factors, index investing. Successful investors have to pay attention to lots of things all the time.

But when you study great investors like Mario Gabelli or Laura Sloate—the blind stock analyst whose blindness forces her to “see” everything differently—one thing stands out: they’re always learning. Whether it’s understanding how new drugs can trick our bodies into fighting cancer or a new quantitative technique for detecting financial fraud, great investors are intellectually curious. They’re interested in everything.

So whether it’s a new translation of Homer’s Odyssey or a recently discovered grove of giant redwoods in California, everything has value. After all, some of these coastal redwoods were seeds when Homer wrote his work. They have something to say about long-term strategies.

Henri Matisse said that the role of an artist is to see old things in new ways. For the investor it’s something similar—seeing old principles applied in new circumstances. And buying great companies at cheap prices.

Douglas R. Tengdin, CFA

Chief Investment Officer

By | 2017-07-17T12:22:41+00:00 July 24th, 2015|Global Market Update|0 Comments

About the Author:

Mr. Tengdin is the Chief Investment Officer at Charter Trust Company and author of “The Global Market Update”. The audio version of each post can be heard on radio stations throughout New England every weekday. Mr. Tengdin graduated from Dartmouth College, Magna Cum Laude. He received his Master of Arts from Trinity Divinity School, Magna Cum Laude and received his Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation in 1992. Mr. Tengdin has been managing investment portfolios for over 30 years, working for Bank of Boston, State Street Global Advisors, Citibank – Tunisia, and Banknorth Group. Throughout his career, Mr. Tengdin has emphasized helping clients manage their financial risks in difficult environments where they can profit from investing in diverse assets in diverse settings. –
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