Thursday 21 February 2019

Flawed thinking on buybacks, and why buybacks are still underutilized

Something I encounter repeatedly in the world of investment commentary/analysis is a lot of flawed thinking and fundamental confusion about the issue of dividends vs. corporate buybacks. You'll often hear people say things like "I would prefer the company reduce the dividend so it can increase buy backs, as the shares are undervalued", or "management shouldn't be buying back stock at current elevated prices; they should instead be returning excess capital to shareholders via dividends".

Wednesday 6 February 2019

The value of what is vs. what could be, and the economics of disruption redux

In the past, I have blogged about both the often-tortured debate on the growth vs. value investing dichotomy, and how in my assessment, many self-described value investors are today practicing strategies more akin to growth investing than value investing. Meanwhile, I've also outlined some thoughts on how the economics of disruption is often misunderstood (see here). I hope to pull together these strands here, and offer some additional insights.

Sunday 3 February 2019

The real reason populism is rising in the West

In recent years, we have seen the emergence of 'populist' movements across many developed countries, from the US (Trump) to the UK (Brexit), to Italy and now even the Yellow Vest protests in France (not to mention the rise of what are sometimes described - often unfairly - as 'alt right' parties across Europe). This has given rise to much confusion and concern amongst the elite, but if the issues are properly understood, it shouldn't. I feel the underlying drivers are very poorly understood and often misdiagnosed, and I hope to shed a little light on what is going on with this post.