Jake Taylor: The Stoic Path To Investing

Johnny HopkinsJake TaylorLeave a Comment

In his recent interview on the Millennial Investing Podcast, Jake Taylor discussed the importance of having a stoic mentality in investing. Here’s an excerpt from the interview:

Taylor: But at the same time, a big part, I think of figuring out how to be a good investor is actually understanding your own strengths and your own weaknesses. And that just so happens through upbringing or wiring or whatever that I have a strength in that I really don’t care what other people are doing. And if they’re doing well on something, I’m very happy for them, but I’m just going to be doing things the way that I want to do them and what makes sense to me.

And with that kind of a little bit of stoic mentality, the public markets offer the best opportunities because that’s where the most noise is. You get just wild price swings, which for me, that volatility is not something that scares me, because I don’t care what the last person wanted to buy or sell their shares at. I have what I think the company is worth. And then when that price moves around from it, that’s for me to take advantage of. It’s not for the market to tell me what my shares are worth.

So that mentality, for whatever reason, it’s not like anything that’s like… It’s no skill of mine. I think it’s just a natural inclination. I don’t care what other people want to sell their shares for. The public markets offer the best opportunities for me. Private markets don’t dislocate like that often enough to be where I feel like I would have as much opportunity as I do in public markets.

But if you’re not someone who’s like that, and most people aren’t actually, like they care about the price. It’s hard for them to watch the price move down and feel good about it. It’s hard for them to not get too excited when the price moves up.

You have to know that about yourself and then try to steer yourself, I think, towards the markets and the opportunities and the asset classes that make the most sense and offer the most opportunity for you, for your investment style, how you see the world. And like, maybe you’re one of those people who identifies a trend before anyone else knows about it. Maybe you know what the cool technology’s going to be before anyone else. Hey, go find that market, find that investment opportunity.

You’re likely to do just as well, probably better than I will But that doesn’t fit how I view the world. I have my version and I just have to stick to what makes sense to me. A lot of these things are sort of cliches about like know thy self and stick to your circle of competence, stick to what you understand. But it’s when you stray away from those things that you end up getting your head handed to you.

You can listen to the entire interview here:

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