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Subject:  Investment mistakes Date:  3/23/2002  5:56 AM
Author:  Barcoo Number:  3875 of 6186

Things look a bit slow so I thought I would post this that I had already posted on the BRK board.

My mistake was not discovering Buffett properly until after the bubble had burst.
I was up 100% riding the momentum horse and thought a sensible (blue sky) plan
was enough. The bubble burst, I lost 50% to be back where I started 12 months
or so before.
I see it as a very good lesson that was very cheaply learnt. Thankfully I had kept
one blue chip that saved me from a big loss and thankfully it rose as the others
were falling.

The first lesson that I learnt was that I am a fundamentalist.
The second lesson that I learnt was that there is one single most important thing in
fundamental investing. ONE thing that everything else falls back on or underpins.
It is so basic. You see it said all the time without realising it is there because it gets
lost in so much other noise (good and bad).
What is it? Well it's the obvious - EARNINGS - current and future - all the other
noise is just trying to determine what these will be.
It seems stupid to point this out but it is suprising how many people appear to
forget it.
Don't get me wrong. A hell of a lot of the "noise" is very relevant. It's just that the
"noise" is the path not the destination.
One of the best quotes I have ever seen is one of Ben Graham's commentary of
the market. "In the short term it is a voting machine, in the long run it is a weighing machine."

Classon's "Richest Man in Babylon" is at the very top of my list as well as I have
said before. To this I would also add
all of Hagstroms Buffett books,
Mary Buffett's "Buffettology",
Kilpatrick's "Of Permanent Value-The Story of Warren Buffett",
Lynch's "One up on Wall Street",
Ben Graham's "Intelligent Investor",
Phillip Fisher's "Common Stock's & Uncommon Profits" *****
another one I haven't read called "The Essays of Warren Buffett" by Cunningham(?)
and all of the BRK "Letters to shareholders" from the BRK website.

All are easy quick reading apart from "Intelligent Investor" which is a bit slow but thoroughly worthwhile. You will be suprised how quickly you can get through this list. Reading these will probably end up being the best investment you will ever make.
You will not pick the exact path pointed out but you will be making your decision with some of the best information available.

Good luck.
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