This Week at MANIFEST (5/27/2016)
“Decidedly older.” (Women)
The scene was the Better Investing national convention last weekend in Chantilly, Virginia. It was the last session of the conference. The words rang out during Ken Kavula’s presentation of Ulta Salons (ULTA) as his shared stock idea for the May Round Table. He was — of course — talking about the differential between his teenage granddaughters and some of the “more experienced” clientele that may linger longer in the salon portion of the establishment. Sitting directly on Ken’s right (and within elbowing distance) frequent guest damsel Kim Butcher reacted immediately. “Decidedly older??? I’m fairly certain, Ken, that NONE of us ever want to be referred to as ‘decidedly older’ [Ken was probably grateful that his spouse, Natalie, was not in the room, too.]” The audience roared a second.
“Women, traditionally, become the subjects and objects of other people’s lives.” — Jane Fonda
And for that, we’re infinitely thankful.
Those words are from a TedX speech by Jane Fonda, delivered back in 2011 on the subject of “Life’s Third Act.” It features a perspective on longevity, aging and the shift to living longer and contributing more substantially during our last 30 years on the planet. If you liked Jane in her role on The Newsroom, you’ll probably like these 10-12 minutes via TedX.
The audience at the BI national convention is still not getting younger from a demographics perspective. That said, I’d argue that the shift described by Fonda has been a work in progress for some time and that investment clubs and individual investors have indeed been transforming for a few years. We’re witnessing the transformation of rote methods into deeper understanding and in so many cases, pervasive market beating performance over decades. The Super Investor session that I delivered in Chantilly (Beltway Super Investors) featuring Eddy Elfenbein, David Gardner and a slipstream sample of investment club leaders was very well received and we’ll do more.
Ken and I (and many of you) make “coaching club visits” to a fairly large number of clubs. We’ve witnessed an evolutionary shift. Few clubs make some of the traditional mistakes and the portfolios we see are better designed, better positioned and better maintained. So many clubs embrace our efforts at interpretation, innovation and implementation of the delightfully few things that really matter and we’re grateful for this evolving simplicity … and the results we observe.
During a few moments with some decidedly experienced investors in Chantilly, we were encouraged to keep seeking the foundations of Nicholson’s vision. Some observed that the Nicholson moments we reinforced back at the national convention in Chicago a few years were landmark. And most welcome. We were encouraged to do more. A dear friend who knew Nicholson well urged us to continue to re-discover and reinforce … Press on.
The modern investment club movement is less obvious at a time when it’s probably needed the most. Diebold is back to 98% institutional ownership from the 54% it achieved less than ten years ago. It’s enormously challenging to engage the interest of most people, most young people, and even most decidedly older people in ownership of individual common stocks. (By the way, RPM presented at the conference and appears to be stronger than ever)
I think Jane Fonda is right, an opportunity lies ahead. In her words (with a dash of paraphrasing) …
“Circle back to where we started — and know it for the first time. We could be a necessary cultural shift in the world.”
Inspire younger generations to optimize and maximize their investing experience.
Be decidedly older. Do it well.
MANIFEST 40 Updates
- 11. FactSet Research (FDS)
- 30. Starbucks (SBUX)
- 32. Buffalo Wild Wings (BWLD)
Round Table Stocks: Buffalo Wild Wings (BWLD), C.H. Robinson (CHRW), Copa Holdings (CPA), Forward Air (FWRD), Knight Transportation (KNX), Maximus (MMS), McDonald’s (MCD), Panera Bread (PNRA), S&P Global (SPGI), Stericycle (SRCL), Waste Connections (WCN)
Results, Remarks & References