Tim Price

The only 2 words you need to know in 2018

The only 2 words you need to know in 2018

7 mins. to read

To Benjamin Braddock (Dustin Hoffman in Mike Nichols’ film The Graduate), the well-meant one-word piece of advice was “plastics”. To the godfather of value investing, Benjamin Graham, the well-meant three word piece of financial advice was “margin of safety” – and that one happens to have lasted the test of time. Faced with the challenge…

Were we wrong to rescue the banks?
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Were we wrong to rescue the banks?

8 mins. to read

There are times when certain decisions have an unusual impact on subsequent events. We reach, in other words, a ‘fork in the road’, and the choices taken – or not taken – have an incalculable impact on the future. The weekend of 13/14 September 2008 represented precisely one of those forks in the road. At…

The 1930s: a warning from history

The 1930s: a warning from history

7 mins. to read

If what you were ‘taught’ about the Great Depression is anything like my school time experience, it will go something like this: There was a Great Crash in 1929, which ushered in hard times, notably in the US. Someone called Franklin Delano Roosevelt then rode in to the rescue, and set up a bewildering array…

Why you should be worried about higher interest rates

Why you should be worried about higher interest rates

1 mins. to read

One of the most intriguing investment books I have ever read is Forty centuries of wage and price controls: how not to fight inflation. You can download a free PDF copy of this highly recommended book here. Forty centuries is a history of market rigging. As its title suggests, governments try their hand at this…

The wisdom in books

The wisdom in books

1 mins. to read

“If I wanted to become a tramp, I would seek information and advice from the most successful tramp I could find. If I wanted to become a failure, I would seek advice from men who had never succeeded. If I wanted to succeed in all things, I would look around me for those who are…

Is this the best-kept secret in finance?

Is this the best-kept secret in finance?

1 mins. to read

Historians, in their quest to make sense of the past, refer to two types of source material. Primary sources are those artefacts, diaries or documents created more or less at the same time as the events they depict. Secondary sources, as their name implies, are somewhat second-hand; they refer to books or articles written subsequently,…

The slow death of the Anglo-Saxon stockbroker

The slow death of the Anglo-Saxon stockbroker

1 mins. to read

Back in 1998, the author Michael Lewis, then a columnist for Bloomberg, wrote as follows: “When historians of everyday life look back on 20th-century American capitalism they will be astonished by the role played by our stockbrokers. Certainly, it will be hard for them to explain to their readers the willingness of a prosperous American…

The death of narrative
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The death of narrative

0 mins. to read

2016 incorporated many themes, but the one I would suggest is most pertinent to private investors could be called ‘the death of narrative’. To put it another way, whenever Groupthink encountered the prospect of a geopolitical sea change, it would turn out to be irretrievably wrong. Brexit couldn’t possibly happen – until it did. Trump…