Summary: As I learned from reading from Warren Buffett, when we invest our money in a stock for the long-term, we buy a part of the company. I look for a corporation where executives manage everyone for results. I believe that we should sell a stock when we think the company is no longer going to outperform. Understanding our investments serves my clients well.
Laurent J. LaBrie, management and financial consultant

Who is he?


Bio (basically the same, just more personal detail)



What is his perspective on investing?

Investment portfolios (.pdf format - Adobe Acrobat necessary to read)

How we are swimming in a sinking US dollar.

His stock picks and pans.

What articles has he published on management?

Investigating problems in the workplace (.pdf format)

Mentoring, correcting, and disciplining employees

An inside look at a peer evaluation system

Preparing your children for success. (in Romanian)

Examples of Websites created, maintained, and promoted:

Healthcare Technology Management work in Kosovo
Healthcare Technology Management work in Kosovo (Logo by LJ LaBrie)

Romania's #1 site about HIV
Romania's #1 site about HIV
(Logo by LJ LaBrie)

Romania's #3 site in its market segment
Romania's #3 spiritual site (Logo by LJ LaBrie)

navigator for the writings of Laurent J. LaBrie

How my investment techniques compare to those of Warren Buffett, Part 1

Markets Outlook: 
Helping your talents bear more fruit Click here to add this page to your favorites folder!

Part 2:
The company

  • Staying with the well established
  • Seeking value and growth
  • Share buy-backs are positive indicators~~sometimes
  • Other factors
The price
Conclusion and charge

Apologies to the expert

Warren Buffett is one of the most successful investors in history. The danger of the title I have given this article is that the reader may think I have the audacity to believe I am in the same league as he is. I have much respect for him and would be satisfied with my talents being in the same order of magnitude as his. One book of required reading for any investor is The Essays of Warren Buffett: Lessons for Corporat America by Lawrence A. Cunningham (which page numbers are referred to below). Although there are some differences in our thoughts and I learned a lot from the book, I was amazed that my techniques align so well with his. This helps explain my excellent results over the past couple of decades of bull and bear markets. (Click the logo to the left for details.)


If you want a long-term positive relationship with your investment advisor, I am convinced that you must understand a certain amount about his or her methods. Surprises are often not fun if it involves your money. My results will likely fall short of Mr. Buffett's, and perhaps they will sometime stop outpacing the market as they have done for decades.

I write this because good results come from good procedures. I enjoy the intellectual process of finding a new movement, a good company, and good management far more than the proceeds from beating the market and doubling its returns, though my clients and I have learned to live with those also. In searching for the right purchases, like Warren Buffett, I "adopt the same attitude one might find appropriate in looking for a spouse: It pays to be active, interested, and open-minded, but it does not pay to be in a hurry." p. 149 And in investing, just as I learned in Little League Baseball, to put runs on the scoreboard I must be more interested in playing than watching the scoreboard.

Going against the flow

Professionals will try to tell you the market is no place for the small fry like us. We disagree and have shown for 30 years that this is the perfect place for David to beat Goliath. As opposed to in the Bible, on Wall Street, Goliaths are always getting beaten by Davids but there are too many Davids for the media to cover, so they choose the Goliaths like Enron, WorldCom, etc. The problem is that when an individual manages his portfolio, he is too emotionally engaged like the others in the game. If you buy when everyone else is buying, the price will be high. If you are emotionally detached from your portfolio by having someone else manage it for you, you will do much better. "A recent study by researchers at Carnegie Mellon, Stanford and the University of Iowa found that people with stroke- or disease-induced damage to the emotional areas of the brain outperformed those with undamaged brains in an investment game, because emotions didn't get in the way of their market calls." (Fortune "A meditation on risk" October 3, 2005 p. 50)

I don't believe in the presently popular inefficient market theory that all the good and bad news is always immediately calculated into the value of the stock. This is why our results are so good. As Buffett says, "What could be more advantageous in an intellectual contest--whether it be bridge, chess, or stock selection--than to have opponents who have been taught that thinking is a waste of energy?" p. 63 "Most men would rather die than think. Many do."---Bertrand Russell.

I disagree with Buffett's idea that the market prices follow GDP and company profits he presents on page 96. I have developed a computerized model for predicting the long-term course of the market that has predicted every major rise and fall since the 1920s and is applicable to other developed countries like Japan, predicting their crash in the 90's. It is based on a great book, The Great Boom Ahead by Harry S. Dent. It says that the American stock market will rise until somewhere between 2007 and 2010 and then will crash. This will guide my investment decisions.

Regardless of your portfolio size, I think it is best to own stock in about 10 companies. Records show that I make better decisions than most professional money managers, but it is too hard to analyze and make hundreds of good decisions, so I try to make about a dozen a year. I agree with Buffett that conventional wisdom of holding a mutual fund of 100 companies is not proper diversification. If I can identify 5-10 reasonably-priced companies that I understand, that are well run and that have long-term competitive advantages, this is proper diversification. Conventional professional investors do the reverse, trying to anticipate what other people will want to buy instead of what is serving the public with quality products and services that they will demand for years to come.

I tend to be conservative and not take positions in companies or industries that I don't understand or don't see the value in just because everyone else is making money there. This is demonstrated by my positions during the dot-com boom. People were making lots of money on stocks of companies with little hope of making a profit. I didn't understand this mentality. It makes little sense to me to risk the finances my friends have and need in order to try to earn what they don't have and don't need. In the peak of the technology boom at the turn of the century, my positions were in real estate, housing construction, gold, and finance stocks. These rose while tech fell. We may not be able to replicate this in the future, but if you are looking for someone to earn money on high-risk investments, you should probably look elsewhere.

Unlike mutual fund managers, I focus more on long-term returns, so when a company's market price falls for no good reason, I will tend to hold on to it or even purchase more. Likewise, I don't do the popular "window dressing" of stocking my clients' portfolios with the high-flying stocks so that it looks like I have them "in the party." If we have missed the party, we'll wait for the next one instead of going in at the end when there is nothing left but a mess to clean up.

Hopefully, I will be underweight in stocks when everyone is buying and the stock market is expensive and will be loading up when everyone is selling. This might unnerve you but it is no different than buying a house when the price is cheap and selling when the price is expensive. Or as Wayne Gretzky advised, "Go to where the puck is going to be, not to where it is." Since I like serving customers, even the ones that don't subscribe to my services, I try to oblige them by buying when the most people want to sell and selling when the most people want to buy. Like Buffett, I welcome change, crashes, and crises and "attempt to be fearful when others are greedy and to be greedy only when others are fearful."

If the market is undervalued, we would like to have a portfolio with a beta greater than 1. If the market is overvalued, we want to have a portfolio with a beta less than one or even negative.

Warren Buffett's standards for investing in a business are also ours. In his 1977 annual report he wrote, "We want the business to be one (a) that we can understand; (b) with favorable long-term prospects; (c) operated by honest and competent people; and (d) available at a very attractive price." p. 86

Part 2:

The company
  • Staying with the well established
  • Seeking value and growth
  • Share buy-backs are positive indicators~~sometimes
  • Other factors
The price
Conclusion and charge

Write me at e-mail address if you would like to discuss my managing your portfolio. Minimum $100,000.

e-mail: e-mail address Y!messenger ID: laurent_labrie

"A good manager is a man who isn't worried about his own career but rather the careers of those who work for him... Don't worry about yourself! Take care of those who work for you and you'll float to greatness on their achievements."---HSM Burns Copyright Laurent J. LaBrie 2004-2010

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