Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Successful Investing Seminar

Following the successful conclusion of our first-ever Successful Investing Seminar in early February, we will be running this four-part seminar on Sucessful Investing again in April/May 2009, with Yours Truly being the presenter. This seminar targets:

- Investors who want to gain all-round, in-depth knowledge on the subject of investment;
- Investors who want to manage their own investment portfolios and be successful;
- People who want to study to become CFA;
- Finanial planners who want to become specialists in investment planning.

The seminar will consist of 4 four-hour sessions, from 9am to 1pm, on the following days:

Saturday 18 April 2009
Saturday 25 April 2009
Monday 27 April 2009
Friday 1 May 2009

Venue: Oak Park, 352 Oak Avenue, Ferndale, Randburg

The seminar will cover:

- The concepts of money and investments;
- Investments and financial planning;
- The basics of investments;
- Various types of investments;
- Fundamental analysis;
- The Warren Buffet Way of investing;
- Introduction to technical analysis;
- Behavioural finance and investor psychology;
- The practical steps of selecting an investment and putting together a portfolio.

Some comments from the previous participants:
"... Very informative ..."
"... The course is very comprehensive ..."
"... the course contents and the interactions among participants have helped me broaden my investment horizon ..."

If you are interested in finding out more about the seminar, please email info@daberistic.com.

Regards, Kevin Yeh

Friday, March 13, 2009

ABSA Select Equity Fund

A fund that performs well relative to its peers in a down market deserves a closer look. ABSA Select Equity Fund is such a fund.

I have been following the development of ABSA Select Equity Fund for some time, and it's time for me to recommend it to investors who want to invest for longer term. It has outperformed the JSE All Share Index, and it seems to follow a very sound investment philosophy.

ABSA Select Equity Fund
Fund Manager: Errol Shear
Fund Size: R260m. Not a big fund, and the fund has not attracted a lot of attention, but I think as long as they do not change the fund manager, this fund will continue to perform well.

Friday, March 6, 2009

A tale of two life assurers

Over the past week a number of companies in the financial sector have announced their results. Two companies that have drawn my attention are Old Mutual and Sanlam. If you compare the performance history of these two companies, it makes quite a constrast in their investment case.

Sanlam is the second largest life assurer listed on the JSE. It was demutualised in 1998, and listed on the JSE at the price of R6 per share. On the other hand, Old Mutual is the largest life assurer listed on the JSE. It demutualised and listed on the LSE, JSE, ZSE, MSE and NSE. It listed on the JSE at the price of R14.10.

The dividend history of the two companies is as follows:

Year Sanlam Old Mutual
1999 25 20.77
2000 30 49.5
2001 35 72.3
2002 37 66.05
2003 40 56.01
2004 50 61.82
2005 65 61.34
2006 77 88.83
2007 93 102.07
2008 98 42.8

The closing share price as at 31 December 2008 is R17 for Sanlam and R7.60 for Old Mutual.

Assuming simplistically that the dividends are paid at the end of the year, the annualised rate of return produced by Sanlam and Old Mutual since listing are 15.61% and -0.25% respectively.

The return produced by an investment in Sanlam shares is respectable, while the return produced by an investment in Old Mutual shares is negative, both in nominal and in real terms.

The strategy followed by Sanlam, especially over the last few years, has been successful, and stands the company in good stead going forward. The strategy followed by Old Mutual has mixed results.

As an investor, I do not see the investment case for Old Mutual over the long term.

The above also shows how investors should not blindly invest in (large) companies due to their market capitalisation. Over the long term an indifferent investment approach can result in indifferent or pedestrian performance.