The Intelligent Investor - Benjamin Graham

A Rediscovered Masterpiece By Benjamin Graham

A Rediscovered Masterpiece By Benjamin Graham via Jason Zweig

Here is the original typewritten text of a speech Benjamin Graham gave in San Francisco one week before John F. Kennedy was assassinated.

I am grateful to Richard A. Rigg of San Francisco, who was in the audience that day, for providing me with this copy of Benjamin Graham’s speech, which to the best of my knowledge had previously been undiscovered.  After I sent a copy to Warren Buffett, he told me that he hadn’t been aware of it but regarded it as one of the best of Graham’s speeches.  I first posted it online in 2010 and am re-posting it now because 1) I discovered it too late to include in the anthology Benjamin Graham: Building a Profession..

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A Rediscovered Masterpiece By Benjamin Graham

Click below to download “Securities In An Insecure World, A Lecture by Benjamin Graham,” delivered at Town Hall, St. Francis Hotel, San Francisco, CA, November 15, 1963:

BG-Speech-SF-1963

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  • Serenity Stocks

    Buffett describes Graham’s book – The Intelligent Investor – as “by far the best book about investing ever written” (in its preface).

    Quoted from Chapter 14 of The Intelligent Investor – Stock Selection for the Defensive Investor:
    “In setting up this diversified list he has a choice of two approaches, the DJIA-type of portfolio and the quantitatively- tested portfolio. In the first he acquires a true cross-section sample of the leading issues….[shortened]… This could be done, most simply perhaps, by buying the same amounts of all thirty of the issues in the Dow-Jones Industrial Average.”

    You can see Graham make the same point again in this lecture (Page 8, paragraph 1).

    Benjamin Graham’s first recommended strategy – for casual investors – was to invest in Index stocks.
    For more serious (Defensive and Enterprising) investors, Graham recommended three different categories of stocks – Defensive, Enterprising and NCAV – and 17 rules for identifying them.
    For advanced investors, Graham described various “special situations”.

    The first requires almost no analysis, and is easily accomplished today with a good S&P500 Index fund.
    The last requires more than the average level of experience, intuition and talent. Such stocks are not amenable to impartial quantitative analysis, and require a case-specific approach.

    But Defensive, Enterprising and NCAV stocks can be reliably detected by today’s data-mining software, and offer a great avenue for detailed objective analysis and profitable investment.

    April 8, 2015 at 4:53 pm

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