In our August piece, The Solvency Debate Continues, KCR updated our 2021 missive Junk Stocks Funded by Junk Bonds. We observed that 2023 had seen speculators return with a ferocious appetite for low-quality stocks. Our focus in that piece, and again today, will be on a group of companies that failed the Federal Reserve’s test for financial fragility as defined by interest coverage ratios (“ICRs”).
KCR has written a blizzard of material on the increasingly dire investment implications of market capitalization weighted index funds due to the outsized performance of large stocks that now sit at brutally high multiples.
This is hardly a new topic for us. In 2014, as “smart beta” strategies became wildly popular, we penned Indexing Dilemmas, which laid out the following facts:
Hello everyone. This is Matt from KCR. Today we will do what is effectively a tardy half-year update. The speed and tone will be quick and sharp as the year has been challenging for evidence-based investors like us.
The summary is that the sharp speculative rally we have seen YTD
Our recent pieces, How to Value Tech Companies and External Obsolescence: Tech Investors’ Newest Nightmare?, discussed how AI algorithms, big data, and machine learning could be undermining the moats of tech stocks that now sport multiples last seen during the dot.com mania. We noted that our empirically
“Didn’t we just learn that pouring trillions of dollars into technologies with uncertain profit profiles we didn’t fully understand was a bad idea? Tech investors seem to be most aggressive when they have the least visibility on the IP and valuation provides them with no margin of safety.” -Zac M., KCR Subscriber
After the entirely predictable and crushing losses in novelty tech stocks and the collapse of the market’s leaders post the Covid peaks, both groups are ripping in 2023.
In April last year, KCR penned What is Accounting Quality and Why it Matters. The work discussed the abysmal state of financial reporting and used our earnings quality score to demonstrate that high-quality firms trounced low-quality firms’ performance.
“We’ve had 40+ years where all the money went into broadband, or internet, or Netflix or the cloud and no money went into basic productive capacity…”
-Robert Friedland, CEO, Ivanhoe group of companies
“During the latter stage of the bull market in 1929, the public acquired a completely different attitude towards