Gustavo Ballvé on October 3rd, 2013

An CNN interview with illusionist Franz Harary, which seems so out of place in this blog, actually resonated deeply with me: Mr. Harary is very honest about what glitches in how we think he taps into, and describes his work/craft very interestingly as “a catalyst for creativity”, imagination and curiosity.

Read more about Illusions, or magic, as a catalyst for creativity

Gustavo Ballvé on August 29th, 2013

It’s been a while since my last post and the explanation is simple: earnings season, a perfect occasion to test hypotheses and reconnect with contacts in the industries we cover – but also a perfect storm of incoming noise regarding companies we own (or would like to, at the right price). In any aspect, a huge but immensely rewarding time drain (I should say “investment”)! Farnam St. blog has just interviewed Michael Mauboussin and it’s a good read, especially because Shane Parrish asks about how Mauboussin developed into his current role and it’s an interesting story.

Read more about Farnam St. blog and Mauboussin

Gustavo Ballvé on April 8th, 2013 has a pretty good interview with Jim Chanos. He mentions some of the frameworks he uses, his influences and his focus on incentives. What he has to say about the current system of incentives in the US capital markets should be interesting to everyone.

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Gustavo Ballvé on April 1st, 2013

Interesting article about Carl Icahn at It certainly mentions Herbalife and Netflix, but it also mentions Icahn’s older investments and his listed company. It’s also a nice reminder about the benefits of permanent capital – if you’re a super-investor…

Read more about Carl Icahn profiled by Forbes

Gustavo Ballvé on March 25th, 2013

H/T to My Investing Notebook, and his emphasis on what Buffett says of Jeff Bezos is spot-on as the best part of an altogether interesting interview. Just yesterday I had read an interesting piece on how well Amazon Prime is doing, so this connected immediately. Disrupting innovation indeed.

Read more about Buffett on and Jeff Bezos

Gustavo Ballvé on November 30th, 2012

Interview with Michael Mauboussin about his new book, and a link to his 42-page paper in 2010 about precisely the same subject.

Read more about Luck, skills and déjà vu

Gustavo Ballvé on June 22nd, 2012

An interview with Tom Russo highlights an interesting and recurring theme: sometimes stocks get hammered because they’re associated with out-of-favor geographic regions despite being much more globally exposed. In Mr. Russo’s example, big-brand “European” companies.

Read more about Global big-brand investing

Gustavo Ballvé on February 2nd, 2012

Interesting, short interview with Athenahealth CEO Jonathan Bush. A reminder of the sometimes almost insurmountable barriers of inefficient habits and practices in some sectors. The potential for IT-based revolutions in healthcare is huge, however the questions of “when” and “how” are still hard to answer. Yet keeping track of the “cost control/ accountability” trend in HC is vital.

Read more about The wired doctor

Gustavo Ballvé on September 16th, 2011

Roger Lowenstein (author of “When Genius Failed”) wrote a very favorable review of Sylvia Nasar’s “Grand Pursuit: The Story of Economic Genius” book. Now Booz & Co’s Strategy & Business magazine has published a “Thought Leader” interview with her, 10 pages strong. Sylvia Nasar is famous for her book on John Nash, “A Beautiful Mind” (yes, the one made into a blockbuster movie). We haven’t read the book yet and suspect both “heroes” in general (interestingly, each reviewer had a list of ‘heroes’ missing from the book!) and the ascribing of too much importance to Economics – and risk it looking like a “hard” science. We respect it and it belongs to our mental models/ toolkits, but we prefer to seek the high quality companies and business models, with great and aligned managers and controlling shareholders, trading at a price that allows for significant margin of safety.

Read more about Economic “Genius” – a history

Gustavo Ballvé on June 2nd, 2011

Mr. Van Den Berg of Century Management has just given an interview to, an interesting source keeping track of big-name investors. We took the opportunity to link to several articles and interviews, but it’s nice to note that Century’s own website is filled with good material in their Library page.

Read more about Linkfest: Arnold Van Den Berg

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