After a recent presentation, somebody asked me what I considered to be the “best investment?” I responded after some thinking that I considered the best investment to be the education of one’s children. Later that day I thought that the answer might not have been interpreted the way I meant it. What I meant in terms of education was not the University or School that mattered, but the values parents can teach their children. And by values I mean tradition, culture, manners, ethics, humility and also – politeness, integrity, punctuality, reliability and dependability – as well as compassion and generosity toward people who are less fortunate.
Mark Hulbert recently penned an article in Barron’s entitled “In Picking Winning Stocks, Boring is Best” with the subtitle “A study of bourses throughout the world concludes that a portfolio of ‘low-volatility’ equities outperforms riskier alternatives.”
According to Hulbert, “the portfolios that perform the best, over time, are those that contain stodgy and uninteresting stocks that are the very antithesis of the exciting and volatile issues that get most of the financial press.”
I am interested to take the low-volatility approach a step further. If we hold a diversified portfolio of different assets – say properties, equities, bonds, precious metals, and cash – we can reduce the overall volatility of the portfolio somewhat.
I am enclosing an article entitled, “It’s time to ‘Bet the Farm’ on farming and farmland” by Coast Sullenger.
I wish my readers a harmonious 2013.