We’re checking in with legendary billionaire investor Howard Marks to get his views on the current stock market, some timeless investing tips, his opinion on cryptocurrencies, and much more.
Here, courtesy of Business Insider, are 12 of the best quotes from a recent We Study Billionaires podcast from the co-founder and Co-Chairman of Oaktree Capital Management, majority-controlled by Brookfield Asset Management.
Marks’ 12 best quotes, lightly edited and condensed for clarity:
1. “The pandemic was like a meteor hitting the Earth from outer space. The market decline was not born out of excess optimism. The recovery was not merely a bounce back from excess pessimism, it was the result of the greatest economic rescue effort in history.”
2. “There certainly are similarities that cause Jeremy Grantham and others to say ‘bubble territory’ and to blow the whistle of caution.” – comparing the hype around several assets in 2006 to the current market boom.
3. “If investors can think of an asset class and say, ‘Oh, for that, there’s no price too high’ – that’s one of the greatest indications of a bubble.”
4. “We have the lowest interest rates in history. That would simplistically argue for the highest asset valuations in history.”
5. “I came out very strongly against bitcoin in 2017. I was extremely negative, I was extremely outspoken. I had a knee-jerk reaction to something new. Now I prefer to say, ‘I don’t know enough about it to have a strong opinion.’
6. “Bitcoin has been around now for a dozen years. If it’s a flash in the pan, it’s an awful long pan.”
7. “One of the most important aspects of being a good investor is you try to set things up so that if things go your way, you do great. But if things don’t go your way, you still do okay.”
8. “Good investing is not a matter of buying good things but buying things well. And if you don’t know the difference, then you shouldn’t be doing much investing.”
9. “Don’t get in the way of the compounding machine. Just get out of the way. Don’t screw it up.”
10. “When you’re in an area which is beset with uncertainty, variability, unpredictability, randomness, things like that – it just strikes me as folly to be confident that you know the future.”
11. “Active investors are in this business to buy low and sell high. But everything in our nature conspires to make us buy high and sell low. It is essential to combat those instincts.”
12. “Somebody comes into your office and says, ‘I’ve been managing money for 30 years, I’ve made 11% a year, and I’ve never had a down month.” Your job is to say, ‘That’s too good to be true, Mr. Madoff.’
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