Author: A Pen Quotes

Golden Agri (Better days ahead?)

Golden Agri as a stock or company presents a very interesting study. I was prompted by a post I saw on Golden Agri by another blogger. (read here) It is at the mercy of Palm Oil price fluctuation despite increasing productivity. In addition, the Indonesian government will likely follow and adjust its crude palm oil (CPO) export tax policy which may adversely affect sales of Palm Oil from the country. Macro economics aside, let’s study the fundamentals of the company internally. Currently profit has fallen and debt rates are increasing, the trend has not been moving in a positive trend....

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Market timing, bubbles, war chest, property…. value investing skills.

Taking a break away from the media and Lee Kuan Yew state funeral. I find myself tearing every so often when listening to the eulogies. The sadness can be overwhelming at times (whether you love him, hate him…. he is to me what defines Singapore as I was growing up), and the only comfort is that LKY has lived a full life and he wouldn’t like the sentimentality. We have to look forward and build on what he has achieved. Is the market due for a correction? No doubt it has been 7 years since the last major recession. Technically, a correction...

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Business moat

I chanced upon an interesting article by another blogger. In it he talks about business moats (read here). His definition of true business moat is: Brands (eg. Colgate, Swatch & Kao) Scale Eco-system Switching cost Distribution (eg. Facebook, Alibaba, Honda & Johnnie Walker/Diageo for item 3, 4 and 5) The definition of moat by Morningstar is here. Low-Cost Producer or Economies of Scale (eg. Wal-Mart) High Switching Costs (eg. Autodesk) The Network Effect (eg. eBay) Intangible Assets: intellectual property rights (patents, trademarks, and copyrights), government approvals, brand names, a unique company culture, or a geographic advantage. (eg. Harley-Davidson) To me the definition of a business moat is one critical feature which distinguishes...

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Finding the right investing style

You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go. — Oh, the Places You’ll Go I have previously written about finding the right companies to invest in. Now let’s think about finding the right style. I think investing style is very personal. It is influenced by your past experience / age, your temperament, your risk tolerance, what you have read / observed / understood, etc. You can take...

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Vicom (Crack in Paradise?)

As mentioned previously, I like simple understandable companies. Sort of like lemonade stands – with simple business model, simple cash flows, and hopefully increasing earnings. However, even lemonade stand owners have worries eg. price fluctuation of lemons, declining customer traffic, increasing rents, a new lemonade stand next door, etc. I am sure many Value Investors in Singapore would be aware of Vicom (read here). It is a small fish in the big ocean of our financial markets with a market capitalisation just north of S$570 million. To me it is one of the first original Singapore Value Growth Stock I...

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Nagacorp (literal fortress with a moat)

I never ask if the market is going to go up or down, because I don’t know, and besides it doesn’t matter. I search nation after nation for stocks, asking: “Where is the one that is lowest priced in relation to what I believe it’s worth?”       John Templeton, November 1978 NagaCorp Ltd (3918.HK) operates the largest casino hotel in Cambodia, NagaWorld, and its shares have been among the top performers on the Hong Kong stock market since listing in 2006. (read here and here)   NagaCorp operates NagaWorld, the only licensed casino in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The company...

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Seeing the world upside down

Is the glass half full or half empty? What’s your answer? When you are assessing a company and its economic context, can you see what others can’t? Think about “areas that other people are not thinking about.” Jane Siebels remarks in the book about Templeton’s passion to “open other people’s minds and broaden their scope.” 1) Competitive Industry. Top names like SIA / Emirates / Qatar are in a highly competitive unregulated over-saturated industry. Samsung / LG / Sharp / Apple are also in the cut throat LCD TV and Smart phone industry. Tough luck – tough making money. Or as...

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Finding the “right” company

There are certain companies I seek out for: 1) Companies in boring industry selling low cost disposable items that people need. Repetitive simple products that do not require much innovation or invite competition. Think Gillette, Riverstone (Gloves), and Super Group (3 in 1 coffee). 2) The “secondary” or sister companies providing services to companies in competitive industry. Well companies in a competitive industry are often willing to spend money to differentiate themselves from their competitors (not that they end up with high profit margin). The companies in competitive industry get all the limelight but it is the “secondary” or sister...

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Short note on Colex

It has been a busy week for me. Some of my colleagues have resigned and new-comers are not on board yet. Sad to know that one of the greatest (and oldest) investor Irving Khan has passed away. And I wonder why he bought BlackBerry stocks not too long back. I reckon only a few can see what Khan saw in the beleaguered device maker. I am also curious about Airbnb which Warren Buffett has been advocating. (read here) Coincidentally I read an article (in the Sunday Times) talking about an old couple using Airbnb services to travel around the world. Don’t think it is listed...

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Earnings and Riverstone Holdings Limited

“A lot of money managers today worry about quarterly comparisons in earnings,” he said. “They’re up biting their fingernails until 5 in the morning. My dad never worried about quarterly comparisons. He slept well.” Walter Schloss I do hope I can buy at a point whereby I can sleep well no matter what happens. As years go by, I tend to prefer the peace of mind rather than excitement of profits. Nevertheless, I have look at the recent full year earnings of some of my holdings. Some are expected good news: Vicom, Riverstone, ISOTeam & SMRT.  CapitaLand surprised me.  Super Group seems...

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My report card & Super Group Ltd

I treat studying companies and investment strategy as my hobby. During the recent Lunar New Year break, I managed to have some time alone to surf the internet on these. I get to read all kind of nonsense on the web (on top of watching all kinds of crappy chinese movies on TV yippee!) :P So far, this is the report card for my portfolio (as of 18 Feb 2015). Well, I am only showing the percentage in terms of unrealized loss & profit (excluding dividends). There was a time not too long back (3+ years is not long) when it was all...

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