If you’ve been tuned in to financial news over the first half of the year, you’ve undoubtedly heard and read about the stream of initial public offerings (IPOs) hitting the markets over the past few months. From ridesharing behemoths to producers of plant-based meat alternatives, the majority of these share offerings have belonged to emerging tech companies which have shown tremendous growth and now seek public investment following multiple rounds of private funding. These companies often see stratospheric returns in their initial days of public trading before cooling and returning to Earth. This post will address the recent IPO craze from our perspective and highlight why we steer clear with our investors’ capital.
Over the past decade, I was continually asked by prospective clients at the beginning of every year what they should do with the cash they have been sitting on as they have been too afraid to get back into the market after the financial crisis. Year after year rolled by with sound returns missed by these individuals who sat on large cash positions. Their usual response was that they were "waiting for the right time to invest and for a 10% or 20% market sell-off to do so". Unfortunately for them, every time a ~ 10% market correction occurred they were still too afraid to get into the market as whatever event was currently occurring kept them from investing. Now that the stock market has sold off more than 20%, one would think investors would be clamoring to finally enter again. However, we know that isn't the case as more investors are currently selling than buying and individuals are again too afraid to purchase equities.
With a bear market upon us and volatility continuing this New Year, fears are arising that a recession may be at hand. During such times, I believe it important to gain a perspective from past bear markets and recessions as we develop an investment plan going forward. Reacting to 500 point Dow rallies or tumbles certainly isn't prudent, thus I recommend turning off your televisions and reading books which may give us an historical viewpoint and strategies for surviving such tumultuous periods. Though I unabashedly recommend my recently published book, I also include a list of some books I would highly recommend and which have had the most influence on me.