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Subject:  Re: Q1 2015 letter Date:  4/24/2015  10:00 AM
Author:  MartianRtns Number:  694 of 3782

I wanted to make a couple points about your response:

*I thought you might like some feedback on the letter.

I am 100% sure this is why IC posted his letter. And yours is the sort of helpful commentary that anyone would be thrilled to have. Many years ago there was a 'big time money manager' who posted on the BH board and if you had anything remotely negative to say about his letters he would react with a fit of rage. Thing is, all he was doing was running continuous advertising with no thought of learning from the little people on the boards or getting any sort of constructive feedback. That is not how this board is run, and it isn't how any person - whoever they are - should be in trying to perfect his or her craft. Unless they reached the point where asset gathering skills translate into their minds as superiority to their fellow man.

*The main comments I have are that I think I would try to put a more optimistic spin on everything and write more in the passive voice when discussing positions that didn't work out.

I agree 100% but with slightly different language. I don't think this even requires optimism - sometimes, things just don't work out. At times, this IS the fault of the money manager, but sometimes predictions about future success don't work out. It is important to point this out. Lynch himself wrote that if you buy 5 stocks, 3 will do as expected, 1 will do better, and 1 will do worse. The future is unknowable.

*If you are going to discuss underperformance, I would also try to say some positive things. For example, you are holding a lot of cash - maybe you believe you are taking less risk than the market; you are well positioned to take advantage of opportunities as they arise; you expect to outperform over the cycle; etc.

Again, a super comment. Everything should be placed into context, esp. on the heels of a terrific period before the underperformance began. There are a gazillion studies that most long-tenured successful money managers endure a period of significant underperformance. It is the way it is.
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