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I love special situations and I read Greenblatt and Mary Buffett's books on the two investors practicing special situations. Do you have any advice for a special situations investor? How do you find special situations? I love your articles and I'm confused because while I'm always on the lookout for special situations, I never see the ones you post unless through your articles.

Thanks,
Nikhil
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Hi, Nikhil,

Advice #1. I re-read You Can Be a Stock Market Genius every once in a while. It's so well written, insightful, and funny. You'll always get new things out of it. Make Greenblatt your guru. ;-)

Advice #2. If you want to find special situations, I've found it very useful to have a Google Alerts search return the results for a variety of terms, "spinoff" being one of them. That'll keep you well-apprised of upcoming deals and provide you some "free" internet analysis of many of the deals. I keep a spreadsheet of all the special situations I've found, with web links and timing, for easy reference.

Advice #3. Find a copy of Seth Klarman's Margin of Safety (many PDF copies are available). It has a good section on demutualizations, as does one of the Peter Lynch books (tho I haven't read him).

What special situations do you find interesting now?

Jim
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Well I have yet to actually dig deeply into these situations, I have a bunch on my plate at the moment, but I'm interested in Lamar Advertising(REIT Conversion) and Tyco's 3 way spinoff. Still haven't checked them out for value yet though.
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Yeah, the Lamar conversion looks interesting, as do the GET and IRM conversions.

Jim
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