Successful Investors Read, And Read A Lot

By: Tim Melvin

Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger have commented many times in the past about the need to read widely and often to achieve investment success. "I have said that in my whole life, I have known no wise person over a broad subject matter area who didn't read all the time -- none, zero," Munger commented at the 2003 Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK-B) annual meeting.

"Now I know all kinds of shrewd people who by staying within a narrow area can do very well without reading," he added, "but investment is a broad area. So if you think you're going to be good at it and not read all the time, you have a different idea than I do. . . . You'd be amazed at how much Warren reads. You'd be amazed at how much I read."

When Warren was asked by an interviewer how he achieved success he held up a sheaf of papers and commented, "Read 500 pages like this every day. That's how knowledge builds up, like compound interest." This is an underappreciated talent in today's investing world. We flock to seminars and meetings to learn how to pick stocks and analyze markets using charts and pictures, without developing the knowledge of what is driving the price moves.

Get Your Nose In A Book

Continue reading "Successful Investors Read, And Read A Lot"

How You Can Take Your Trading To an Olympic Level

The average trader always has money on the mind.  Money,money, money.  A couple more points.  A sexy balance sheet.

That's also why they're average. The best of the best aren’t thinking about money at all. Let's use an analogy to prove this point.

What happens to an Olympian who's always looking up at the scoreboard or clock? They lose the puck, fall behind another skier, or miss their landing. What happens to the Olympian who is focused on improving their game, making the right pass, hitting the right turn, and nailing their landing? They win.

This is no different than trading. Money is the byproduct. We all know that. But focusing on the byproduct doesn't get you any closer to it. To take your trading to an Olympian level, you must remove yourself from the bottom line and focus on what makes you better. If you can't do that, go liquidate your brokerage account. You shouldn’t be trading. Continue reading "How You Can Take Your Trading To an Olympic Level"

Will These 3 Laggard Stocks Outperform In 2014?

By Tim Melvin

The best performing stocks in the S&P 500 in the past year have been Netflix, Micron Technology, Best Buy, Delta Airlines and Constellation Brands.

The interesting thing about these stocks is that as investors came into the year, they were not on anyone's list of top performers or even likely winners. Most of them were on the worst performing list for 2012 and with the exception of Netflix, there was very little market buzz or chatter about any of these stocks.

The rest of the top ten performers include names like Pitney Bowes and Boston Scientific, whose very existence was being questioned by many as 2013 began. Continue reading "Will These 3 Laggard Stocks Outperform In 2014?"

Zinc or Swim: Do Base Metals Have a Future?

The Mining Report: How are the fundamental challenges facing the global base metals markets likely to play out in 2014?

Joseph Gallucci: There are several long-term issues that impacted copper and the other base metal spaces in 2013, and those long-term issues will persist for the foreseeable future. Allow me to explain the basics via a few examples:

Indonesia recently stopped the export of intermediary products, such as pig iron nickel. The country's leadership is increasingly practicing resource nationalism by restricting mining firms to in-house processing and to shipping only finished products. It is also unsettling that Intrepid Mines Ltd. (IAU:TSX; IAU:ASX) lost control of its project this year to an Indonesian partner!

In terms of supply chain disruptions in 2013, Grasberg and Bingham Canyon were two of the biggest issues, but we are still well below the annual average of a 5% supply disruption. This year has been an anomaly and quite low in that regard. Supply chain disruptions will definitely pick up going forward and they are impossible to predict.

For problems with mining infrastructure, Chile was the hot button. It has port access and infrastructure issues, and there are still no power agreements in place for many of Chile's mining development projects. These types of long-term issues will continue to impact the base metals sector into the future.

TMR: Were declining ore grades an issue in 2013? Continue reading "Zinc or Swim: Do Base Metals Have a Future?"

Option Trade For A Range Bound Stock

By: Adam Beaty

Credit card companies have been nonexistent for the summer.

American Express (NYSE: AXP) and Visa (NYSE: V) have been trading in a range since May. Mastercard (NYSE: MA) has seen a little bit of action thanks to some better-than-expected earnings. The stock traders should focus on is American Express. AXP has traded in a range from $72.00 to $78.00, and right now is bouncing off the lower levels. AXP is oversold, so a bounce is probable here especially if there is a market bounce to go along with it. Traders could get long here with a first target at $73.30 and another target at $75.00. Continue reading "Option Trade For A Range Bound Stock"