Summary of Gurufocus research on Buffett-Munger style investing

Investors are always looking for a system to achieve higher returns with less risk. How to find such a system? Why not start by looking at what one of the world’s greatests investors, Warren Buffett has been doing for many years? Buffett has said many times that he likes to buy companies with the following characteristics:

  1. Simple businesses that he understands
  2. that have predictable and proven earnings
  3. with economic moat
  4. which can be bought at reasonable prices.

The people at Gurufocus have tried to convert the last 3 characteristics in rules for investing, thus creating a system. They also conducted a back test study of parts of their system and also the system as a whole over the period between 1998 and 2008. In this post, I will give a summary of their publication. The original articles can be found here:


Buffett-Munger style investing means buying stocks of great companies at good prices. (Actually Buffett also invests in different ways, like buying companies outright, but this is not possible for the average investor. Also he invests in other securities like bonds, but this is not the focus of this post.) Good companies will continue to increase their earnings per share in the future and the stock value will eventually increase to reflect the growing earnings (in the long the stock market is a weighing machine). If the stock can be bought at good prices, you have now found a good investment. We are searching for a system to help us find Buffett-Munger type investments. The system should work in all markets to help us find investment which have a high potential return while simultaneously having a low risk for permanent loss of capital. That is, it should follow Buffett’s rule number 1: ‘Never lose money’. The 2008/2009 recession is a great period to test the system, since if the system contains fundamental flaws, these will probably be exposed in this crisis.

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Jamie Dimon speech at Harvard Business School, 2009

I found this great speech of Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase & Co.

I liked every part of the video, and think that one of his final remarks was right on the mark: that the whole solution to all our energy problems, is taxation on energy. If people are willing to make this sacrifice, energy usage will go down, renewable energy will be more competitive compared to non-renewable energy.