Long-Term Investing with Russ Kaplan
Are you a value investor? Can you go on a two-week vacation without checking on your portfolio? Is Warren Buffett one of your investing heroes? If that sounds like your investing style—or like a style you might want to emulate—then you’ll like today’s interview with Russ Kaplan, President of Russ Kaplan...
Are you a value investor? Can you go on a two-week vacation without checking on your portfolio? Is Warren Buffett one of your investing heroes?
If that sounds like your investing style—or like a style you might want to emulate—then you’ll like today’s interview with Russ Kaplan, President of Russ Kaplan Investments and publisher of Heartland Adviser. Read on for Kaplan’s advice on stock picking and, even more importantly, stock holding.
Chloe Lutts Jensen: Hi Russ. Thanks for talking to me today. Let’s start at the beginning. When did you start publishing Heartland Adviser? Why?
Russ Kaplan: I started publishing Heartland Adviser in 1983. For a long time I had been fascinated with investing. Since I was unsatisfied with the job I had at the time, I went back to school for an M.B.A.
The best part of my job as a financial adviser was spending a great deal of time on researching stocks and investing for myself. I also enjoy writing about various stocks that I have invested in and the variety of aspects of financial education. It then seemed natural to write a Stock Market Newsletter to keep people informed on the happenings of their stocks and also give them educational tips on investing.
As a matter of principle, I always invest in the same stocks I recommend to my clients.
CLJ: Can you give us a brief explanation of the newsletter’s investing system or philosophy? How do you pick the stocks recommended in Heartland Adviser?
RK: The main thing I am interested in is long-term performance, and not making the quick dollar. The criteria I use for investing is to look for good companies that are in solid financial shape which, for some reason, are undervalued at the time.
CLJ: Your long-term holding strategy reminds me of Warren Buffett’s. (And you’re also located in Omaha!) Would you say you have similar styles?
RK: Regarding my investment philosophy, I consider myself to be very much like Warren Buffett. Although we have never met, I live in the same city and have basically read all of his letters to shareholders (since I am also a shareholder of Berkshire Hathaway) and perhaps all the books written about him.
CLJ: What’s one of your favorite stocks to buy today?
RK: One stock that I think is one of the most undervalued stocks trading today is Apple. Apple demonstrates the effect of investing based on emotions. Last Fall, the company could do no wrong, and since its stock dropped, it has become unpopular with most analysts and investors.
CLJ: What’s one important piece of advice you think more investors need to hear?
RK: I believe that when you buy a stock, you are buying part of a business, so use the same criteria someone would use that is buying the entire company.
I invest for the long run. Frequent traders and those who try to time the market rarely win. Buy stocks at a reasonable (undervalued) price. You will rarely get in at the bottom value of a stock. However, as long as your reasons for owning the stock are valid, stick with it despite what the media or others say. Do not react to the news headlines, and there is no need to follow your stock every day.
CLJ: What do you see as the biggest challenge in the market right now?
RK: The biggest challenge involving the market today is all of the uncertainty concerning the United States’ economy, politics and issues concerning Federal Reserve. These challenges are making people afraid to invest. Yet, I have made some of my best buys during these periods of uncertainty.
CLJ: Let us get to know you better—what else do you like to do besides investing?
RK: I enjoy spending a considerable amount of time reading, mostly non-fiction. Also I am involved in philanthropy because I believe it is very important to give back to a society which has enabled me to successfully accomplish what I have done. Last but not least is that I love to play with my six-month old grandson.
CLJ: Thanks, Russ! Great talking to you.
Wishing you success in your investing and beyond,
Editor of Investment of the Week
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