I spent the last few days in Rancho Santana in Nicaragua — a real estate development I am partially responsible for. Rather than attempt more market commentary, I’ll tell you what I have learned there over the last 18 years as an “accidental developer.”
A nice thing about long trips is that they take you away from your routine and give you time to review your assumptions. What do you really think? Is it supported by the most recent evidence?
Fellow members often ask good questions. Often, we don’t have a good answer. One member asks, for example, if the retirement of the baby boomers will mean that “quasi-automatically […] stocks should head back down as those baby boomers sell in order to finance their retirement.”
An old friend and I recently had a philosophical discussion. “What’s the point of it? What’s the point of life?” he wanted to know. I don’t think he intended to get much of an answer from me. Instead, he has reached the stage in his life when the question naturally comes up. He’s in his mid-60s. Like all of us, he’s had his successes and his failures.
Last week, we looked at cash. As our friend Rick Rule puts it, cash will give you the ability and the courage to act in down markets. But we are reluctant holders of cash in its paper form. As a long-term store of value, practically anything else – maybe excluding yesterday’s newspaper – is better.
Last week, we began to think more deeply about cash. The trouble is there’s nothing deep about it. What you see is what you get. Paper. It is all on the surface. Below – there is nothing.