Why do I invest?

I have thrown some pieces of information about this in my book, “The First Book on Value Investing” but never went into detail.

I lived in the US for almost a decade working on a visa. I loved the country, its beautiful landscape, its entrepreneurship rich population, its big hearted presidents, history and culture. There is something unique about that country, that makes it special. I know what it means to be an American. But, there is always a but :). Yeah, but, working on a visa is a modern day slavery. You can kid whatever you want, it is a leash. I pity the folks who work in the middle east on a visa, life is even harder on them. If you think I am biased or lying, ask your friends/family who work on visa. Their lives are crippled. Their dream/liberation begins at a green card. Most of them work on their visa because of only one word – hope. They hope they can cross that green card magic line.

Today, my focus is actually about another type of slavery, that is even bigger and dangerous. It is your job. It is the place where you do – “work”. Look at any survey, most people are extremely unhappy with their job. Yet, they still work and work. Many, many of them work in their jobs because they have bills to pay. Their needs increase and hence the need to make more. The pressure of family, children is an icing on the top. This modern day slavery makes people cheat, lie and do things that no one would do. The examples are too much. Touch your heart and ask that question to yourself. You may have lied to your boss about estimates. If it is not your boss, it is your customer. We do terrible things to our children, spouse, parents and even god. We all are too scared to talk the truth and be happy about it. So, when we make villains out of just the wall street folks, we are actually the best hypocrites on earth !!

Yet, there is a very small minority of people, who work on things they like. There is something common among them, which is very easy to miss. It is their freedom from money constraints. I follow a blog called Mr. Money Mustache, who teaches about financial freedom. He beautifully sums up what I wanted to say on this subject –

Freedom and Investing
Freedom and Investing


I have nothing more to add. Today, I am working so hard, that I barely notice that I am working :)

Investing properly brought me to this destination and hence I do more investing :)

So do you invest? 

Please follow Mr. Money Mustache. He is one of the greatest philosopher around on finance and life.

Canadian, Real Estate and other things

Disclaimer: You should do your own research and make decisions on your investments. Blindly following what I do, can result you in significant loss and I am not responsible for it.

For the first time in 5 years, I am not owning any Canadian Stocks. If you are a regular reader in 5reds, you know that I am not a fan of the Canadian Real Estate market. I refused to buy a home in Canada and rented all along. It was a lot cheaper to rent and I invested that money in RRSP and TFSA making a lot more.

My largest holding today is Cash !! Yes, I am finding fewer and few opportunities to invest and hoping there will be a market correction  !!!

So, where are you investing your money today???

Jamie Dimon of JPM is a billionaire

I will tell you a truth. I am surprised he was not one before.

Jamie was the person who was responsible for building and developing the two of the largest banks in the world – Citibank and JP Morgan Chase.

Yeah, he was the #2 guy at Citibank and was kind of forced out because he was too good and the CEO didn’t want to retire :)

In any other company, if a person who creates hundreds of billions of dollars for shareholders and was NOT a billionaire, that would be considered a joke. Banking is hard and one needs guts to stay in the industry for this long and I am surprised that his rewards have been much slower compared to his peers. Investing Banking on the other front is a different kind of money ball game. Look at folks from Goldman Sachs or for that matter Lehman Brothers. Dick Fuld, the infamous CEO of Lehman was a billionaire and I could say he was single handedly responsible for Lehman going under. Of course he lost most of his money because they were tied up with Lehman.

Jamie’s money today is tied up with JPM stock and of you saw how he has made JPM a strong financial fort. See my write up on JPM here.

Here is the article from bloomberg on Jamie. Please watch the video in full.



JPM’s tangible book value per share


Disclaimer: I am huge Jamie Dimon fan just like Warren Buffett. I used to be invested with JPM but not any more. This may change any time :) As always, I am completely BIASED in my views.




John Malone, TCI and an Analyst’s Complaint

John Malone is one of my favorite manager of all time. I was introduced to him long time ago but only in the past few years I have been able to read his achievements, his financial prudence and business shrewdness.

I was reading an interview of Bill Nygren, one of the top 10 Mutual Fund Managers in the world and his experience in attending a TCI Analyst Lunch.

This is from Bill’s own words –

“Many years ago I attended an analyst lunch for Tele-Communications, Inc. John Malone, its CEO, was chastised by one analyst for not having alerted the analyst community to how attractive its Liberty spinoff was going to be. I’ll never forget John’s answer; “Next time you get a 600-page document from us; I suggest you read it.” There are no shortcuts.”

So yeah, you have to work hard to find great companies.. but once you find them, never, never sell them.

Full Disclosure: Long and invested with John Malone and most of the companies he is associated with. So I am heavily BIASED !!!!

Jamie Dimon and JPM

I am big fan of Jamie Dimon and you probably have seen me write about JP Morgan and how it is a no-brainer investment.

On the other hand, we all remember the 2008 Wall Street Collapse and how we felt that all the Wall Street bankers were so over paid. It is true that many of them were over paid. But if you look at great banks, most of their CEOs are underpaid.

Brooklyn Investor, a very well-respectable, value investing blogger today writes about JPM and Jamie Dimon here. I highly suggest you read it.

Personally I do not own JPM today due to other reasons (No it is not the Macro-economic) , but it is one hell of a company and I would certainly be owning some shares of JPM again in the future.

JPM and WFC are just no-brainer buys and Brooklyn Investor clearly makes the case why they are so under-priced given the market conditions.

Please see my earlier writeup about JPM and Jamie here:

  1. A Boring Stock that can make you 14% per Year
  2. How are the “Too Big to Fail” Banks today?

Yes, my current investment page is a bit very outdated and I will update it soon.

Please also read Brooklyn Investor’s write up on Wells Fargo, it will give you a great understanding of its business and value.