International Financial Securities Regulatory Commission: Seven of Warren Buffett’s Best Investing Advices
About the Talk
July 20, 2006 12:00 PM
Kuala Lumpur, MalaysiaKuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Everyone listens to Warren Buffett’s investing advice. Who will not want to listen to the world’s greatest investor and learn how he earned $72 billion net worth and enhanced his company, Berkshire Hathaway, into a formidable force valued at more than $212 billion.
One fact that sets Buffett apart from others is his refusal to advice the ordinary investor to follow his example. On the contrary, he tells investors to do the opposite. Nevertheless, Yahoo Finance shares the following Buffett’s well-known insights on investing for a long-term, durable growth:
- Cash is the worst investment over time
Having cash around, whether in the bank or at home, can be a reassuring thing. But over time, cash is an unstable investment. That is a fact; and yet people do keep enough cash with them so that they can have a certain degree of financial freedom.
- Invest in diversified index funds that track the S&P 500
If you already have enough experience as an investor, then you need to focus deeply. For the rest of the people, aim for complete diversification. In the long run, the economy turns out well. As such, do not buy at the wrong price or at the wrong time. In general then, buy index fund at a low rice, and gradually level into a dollar-cost average. Spending merely an hour each week investing will lead you nowhere.
Read the book: “Common Sense on Mutual Funds: New Imperatives for the Intelligent Investor” by Jack Bogle, Vanguard founder. Or if you can, read all Bogle’s books to know all you need to know about funds.
- Invest in yourself
Warren Buffett advices people to invest in their own abilities. “Anything you can do to develop your own abilities or business is likely to be more productive.” Even in life, such advice should not be ignored.
- If you intend to invest in stocks, avoid any business you do not understand
Investors must consider only investments they can understand. Assuming you put all your family’s net worth into a business, would they consider going into that business? Or would they refrain from doing so because they know nothing about it? If that case, they should choose another business. Like Buffet and his long-time partner, Charlie Munger, who avoid businesses they do not understand, individual investors should do the same.
- Focus also on the competition
Investing in a company’s stocks means investing in a part of their business. If you were, for example, to invest in a local gas station or convenience shop, how would they run it? Obviously, they would look at the competition, the competitive posture of both the sector and the immediate environment, the people running the competition and other matters.
- Invest for the long-term
Buffett has this to say: “If you aren’t willing to own a stock for 10 years, don’t even think about owning it for ten minutes.” Investing is like planting a tree for yourself: You begin with a seedling and hope to eat from its fruits later on.
- The most difficult part of investing is learning to trust yourself
Stay away from mob-thinking. That is one sure way of becoming dumb. Buffett thinks investors are not really using their intelligence. One can be smart but also be illogical. To succeed in investing, divorce yourself from the greed and fears of the people you deal with even if you think that is very hard to do.