I don’t enjoy investing. Good thing, too.

Personal finance, Value investing

Personally, I see investing as a necessary chore, not something to look forward to, such as traveling to foreign places or reading a good book. Investing for me is like brushing your teeth. You do it, and on a regular basis, because it’s good for you and the alternative is worse, not because you enjoy it. But this, if is to be believed, is exactly how it should be:

[While] enthusiasm may be necessary for great accomplishments elsewhere, on Wall Street it almost invariably leads to disaster….We have seen much more money made and kept by “ordinary people” who were temperamentally well suited for the investment process than by those who lacked this quality, even though they had an extensive knowledge of finance, accounting, and stock market lore. (From Introduction to The Intelligent Investor)

My personal modus operandi so far has been to invest mostly in ETFs (both domestic and foreign), keep some cash in a money market fund, and see if I can find a handful of stocks that meet Graham’s stringent requirements to qualify as value investments. I do this about once a quarter for dollar cost averaging purposes, to check up on , and to see if there are any opportunities to invest in specific stocks. On the year to date, I’m up 11.4% (vs. SPY’s 7.36%) using the spreadsheet I came up with to measure performance against a benchmark, including dividends. The time to renew and review my investments coming up soon again, so this week I’ll be posting a few of my experiences so far, and anything interesting I find.


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