Our Philosophy

COMMINGLING WITH THE HERD

THE HERD represents approximately 85% of investors – investors who make decisions in an emotional state of mind with a short time horizon and a short fuse. They buy and sell based on greed and fear. When a stock goes up, they buy high. When a position begins to decline, they ride it down and often sell low. If the assets of the long-term investor are commingled with THE HERD via mutual funds or large institutionally managed accounts, the investor’s holdings are attached to the same emotional roller coaster. Fasten your seat belt. The very person you would never go into business with, or never appoint to your entity’s board, has become your partner in risk.

We have unique strategies that separate us from THE HERD. We can provide exclusivity and we can customize investment strategies to meet the needs of any client because of our independent nature.

We have spent over two decades developing a proprietary investment management system that removes human emotion from decision making, thereby separating our clients from THE HERD. It is based on three key disciplines which we use to our clients’ advantage. And we never, ever violate these three disciplines.

A WORD ABOUT CAPACITY: WHY BIGGER ISN’T BETTER

Ask any large mutual fund manager, or manager of large institutional portfolios, how long it would take to liquidate their largest holding without negatively impacting the price of the stock. After an uncomfortable pause, they’ll typically predict six months or more.

Ask yourself – if the market’s going down, do you have six months to wait?

Capacity is defined as the length of time it takes for a manager to liquidate his or her largest holding without negatively impacting the price of the stock. The capacity question is the first question we ask every money manager we interview. If they cannot liquidate within five days or less, they’re simply not a candidate for our system.

Many investors feel safer in bigger funds or large institutional accounts. Many advisors advocate their selection. We have strongly believe that bigger is not better. Consider this cause and effect. The short-term mentality of THE HERD reacts to even the most minor economic uncertainty and drives the market down. Large funds are forced to liquidate assets quickly, and at their low point, to meet THE HERD’S redemption requests. By liquidating too much too quickly, their actions inadvertently drive the price of a particular holding down.

Alternatively, their capacity constraints don’t allow them to get out quickly enough, leaving their investors holding ever-declining positions. And then the story gets worse. Most large funds are relegated to keeping no more than 10% in cash. When THE HERD hears a spark of good news, and the market shows promise of a rebound, THE HERD reinvests, plowing cash back into the managers’ hands. It’s no longer a buyer’s market, but the fund finds itself with too much cash. Because of the rules it is asked to follow, it is forced to literally buy high.

NOT ALL PRIVATELY MANAGED ACCOUNTS ARE MANAGED PRIVATELY

Many affluent individuals or institutional investors feel safer when invested in privately managed accounts. However, the institutional managers who manage those accounts typically also manage the mutual fund accounts with the same stock holdings. Therefore the privately managed accounts are forced to follow the same guidelines as the mutual funds and possess the same capacity issues.

Our TRIPLE DISCIPLINE INVESTMENT SYSTEM captures the agility of the market by hiring those individual money managers who oversee millions – not billions. Because most own their own privately-held firms, they have the freedom to act on research and intellect. We have found that there are many good stock pickers in the world, but there are few good stock sellers. That is why each of our managers is required to have a documented, proven sell discipline based on technical research, price targets and trigger points. This protects our clients’ downside risk, and once again removes human emotion from investing.