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william.b.thomson  William Th

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  • william.b.thomson commented on Joseph L Shaefer's article 03-16 12:59
    Index Investing Is a Delusion
    “Illusion is an impression that, though false, is entertained provisionally on the recommendation of the senses or the imagination, but awaits...
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    william.b.thomson 03-16 13:59
    • Thanks for your response.  While I am sure that you will find support for your arguements in my reluctance, I am uninterested in playing that game.  Let me say only that my performance, as adequate as it may be, says nothing about the arguement.  I could be that monkey with the lucky dart.

      But back to my main thesis, and I am sorry that it was obscured by the "beat" the market talk.  I am uninterested in benchmarking myself against an artificial construct, against an index.  My "bogey" is to be richer next year than I am today.  As I said, let someone else race to the finish line faster than me. 

      Let me add that I like to use the metaphor of basketball in discussing investment performance.  I ask how many world class basketball players are there in the US?  Maybe 100 or 200?  So it is with investing.  The good news is that there are tens of thousands, who are better than average, not world class, but perfectly adequate to be better than average, to beat the indices.  All it takes is the right temperment and the right fee structure.

      Of course, if it were easy, we would all be playing golf with a 0 handicap.  Mostly we are not, but many of us get around 18 holes in good form, with acceptable scores and grins on our faces at the end of the day, better for the effort.  Don't be too sceptical.  It is a hard way to live.
  • william.b.thomson commented on Joseph L Shaefer's article 03-16 09:09
    Index Investing Is a Delusion
    “Illusion is an impression that, though false, is entertained provisionally on the recommendation of the senses or the imagination, but awaits...
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    william.b.thomson 03-16 10:09
    • Warren's point is that "most" investors will not have satisfactory results.  I absolutely agree with the author that our goals should drive our decisions.  My goal is to have more money tomorrow than I have today, on an inflation adjusted basis, after all living expenses.  I couldn't care less what the market does.  Benchmarking yourself against the indices traps you into hazy thinking, such as, "The market is down and so am I.  That is acceptable."  Remember, the goal is to make money for you and your family, not to get to the finish line at the same time everyone else does.

      Back to Warren.  Certainly, "most" will be unable to "beat" the market.  If you know who you are, and what your inclinations are, you will know if you are among the "most" or among the few.  If you have a contrary streak, you should try to make money the old fashion way, by buying low and selling high.  BTW, if you ignore the indicies in your investment decisions, you will probably beat them almost by definition.  In the long run, of course!
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