Capital Allocators Monthly – March 2019

A few announcements before my favorite content this month.

* Sign up here to receive our new weekly blog focusing on Endowment & Foundation news compiled by Marcelino Pantoja. 

Special thanks to Canoe Intelligence for sponsoring the podcast.  Canoe’s software employs machine learning to help allocators efficiently and accurately get information from managers into their reporting system. The software is simple and elegant, and I’m excited to help them get the word out. 

Podcast guest Mark Baumgartner is looking for an analyst to join his team at the Institute for Advanced Study.  It’s a great position with a terrific mentor in Mark.  Check it out here..

*Barron’s named Capital Allocators as one of seven Best Podcasts in Business and Finance

Reading (Ordered by reading time: tweets first, books last, and blog posts and articles in between) 

1. Tweets
Patrick O’Shaughnessy asks “Name a product, company, or service that you use that you would pay a lot more for than you do.”   Among the responses were podcasts, twitter, Gmail, Google Maps, and water. 

Meb Faber asks “For the investment professionals out there. What belief do you hold that the vast majority of your peers do not share?”

2. Gabelli Connect’s summary of my talk. Jon Brolin, founder of Edenbrook Capital, interviewed me about my career, podcast, and future.

3. Graham Duncan’s blog. Graham was a colleague of mine in the early years at Protege.  He is an extraordinary thinker and has created innovative frameworks for manager selection. Start with his letter to a friend who may start a new investment platform.  It’s spot on.

4. The Misuse of Pre-Mortems on Wall Street, by Paul Johnson, Paul Sonkin and Gary Klein. Paul and Paul have a gift for breaking down investment concepts into first principles. Our podcast episode discussing their book, Pitch the Perfect Investment, is a great listen. This time, they define how to properly conduct pre-mortems alongside cognition expert Gary Klein.

5. John Skjervem, CIO of Oregon Investment Council, released his annual presentation to the Board, including a thorough review of Oregon’s massive private equity portfolio.  Verdad Capital wrote a summary blog on the report. I particularly enjoyed Skjervem’s rebuttal to those castigating the fees Oregon pays to external managers: “spending millions to get billions seems like a pretty good deal.”

Listening
Capital Allocators
Episode 89:  Thomas Russo – All About Berkshire Hathaway and Episode 90:  Thomas Russo – All About Google
In a two-part episode, Thomas Russo rejoins me on the show to talk about his longest standing position (BRKA) and his newest portfolio holding (GOOG).

Episode 91:  Manny Friedman – EJF on Economic Opportunity Zones
EOZs are a hot topic of conversation among taxable investors.  I first heard about them from Manny last year, and dove in with him for a second go-round.

Episode 92:  Jordi Visser – Next Generation of Manager Allocation
Jordi runs $1.7 billion Weiss Multi-Strategy and offers an inside view of blending quantitative tools and qualitative input in assessing risk and determining allocations across fundamental long-short equity managers.

Best of the Rest
Graham Duncan on The Tim Ferriss Show. Graham offers great nuggets of wisdom about investing, talent assessment, and life.

Michael Kitces on ILTB. Fascinating in depth conversation on the past, present, and future of financial advice.

Have a good one,
Ted