Howard Marks: Origins and Inspirations

The Most Important Thing – “Origins and Inspirations

Warren Buffett said “When I see memos from Howard Marks in my mail, they’re the first thing I open and read.” Howard is the Co-Chairman of Oaktree Capital Management. He is known in the investment community for his “Oaktree memos” to clients which detail investment strategies and insight into the economy. He treats investing as equal parts psychology and finance, and his book The Most Important Thing provides “uncommon sense for the thoughtful investor.”

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  1. jeisenhauer commented on Mar 30

    Very good talk with sound principles. However, I thought his description of index investing was a bit shortsighted and perhaps self-serving.

    True, an index investment may not allow you to beat the benchmark but you still, 1) avoid much of the downside risk (which he advocates), 2) keep fees low (which he avoids talking about much), and 3) can use a diversified portfolio with rebalancing to further mitigate risks. In many ways, this approach allows you to use a contrarian strategy because the rebalancing allows you to invest in assets that are out of favor, which inevitable come back at some point (there are exceptions).

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