Entries by David Nathanson

Dare to be Different

Investment managers are generally split into two categories: Active and passive. Active managers aim to outperform a certain benchmark index by being different from it. Passive investors seek to replicate an index. Both have their proponents and their detractors. Recently there has been a strong trend towards passive investment following a number of studies which […]

Too Much Information

The conventional wisdom in investing is that more information is better than less. In the past Peter and I have sometimes questioned whether we have an informational deficit, but over time we’ve realized that it is not quantity of information that counts, but knowing which information is important and analyzing it correctly. In fact, to […]

SA Foie Gras

AfrAsia’s latest South Africa Wealth Report found that wealthy South Africans have 83% of their assets invested locally. According to the report, their asset class breakdown between South Africa and the rest of the world is: Let’s exclude properties, businesses and alternatives, which tend to be illiquid and might correlate with where you live or […]

Consistent Profitability

Return = Yield + Growth + Revaluation = Sustainable Return + Revaluation This understanding of return is central to our investment philosophy and process. We’ve written about this on numerous occasions. Those who have followed our writing will recall that revaluation, though dominant in the short-term, tends to cancel itself out over long periods of […]

Don’t let the Rand dictate your portfolio

For many South African investors, the Rand exchange rate is the single most important variable they consider when deciding whether to invest money offshore. It crowds out every other consideration. We think this is a mistake. If you’re thinking about investing globally, but you’re worried about timing the Rand, ask yourself the following questions: 1) […]

Investors should Ignore Annual Predictions

After reaching new all-time highs in September, the S&P 500 lost nearly 13.5% in the fourth quarter of 2018, while MSCI World ex-USA declined by 11.4%. Equity markets have recovered somewhat from their December lows – the S&P 500 came within a hair’s breadth of official bear market territory (-20%) on 24 December, before rallying […]

Global Diversification: Are you doing it right?

Most investors would agree that diversification is a good thing, but how many of us really understand what it means? All too often, South African investors think about global diversification as fleeing risk. Diversification is about managing risk. It is not about avoiding or eliminating risk, which cannot be done without sacrificing investment goals. It […]

Get the Most out of your Global Equity Exposure

Investors who ignore offshore opportunities deny themselves the significant benefit of exposure to a far wider range of stocks. While more South African high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs) are investing globally, many are still missing out on the opportunity of including direct offshore investing in their financial plan. Purchasing foreign equities is a great starting point for […]

Why wealthy South Africans are investing in Global Equity

A recent report found that South African High Net Worth Individuals (HNWIs) substantially increased the share of their assets allocated to equities from 23% in 2007 to 28% in 2017, with the majority of this growth in equity exposure having been through increased foreign equity allocations. Although local political uncertainty likely played a role in […]

Investment Case: Netflix

Over the last decade, Netflix, the world’s largest online TV subsription service, has grown its revenues roughly 10 times, its earnings per share 15 times and its share price nearly 100 times. Netflix has become a household name and an investor favourite, earning its place amongst the market’s most high-flying tech stocks, the FAANGs. But […]