That’s right! Another investing legend just declared stock picking dead.
This time it’s Passport Capital’s John Burbank, who was last seen comparing the US to a third-world country.
MarketFolly took notes from his presentation to the Value Investing Congress:
The most jolting claim in Burbank’s presentation was the notion that classic bottom-up stockpicking is dead. This is intriguing of course because the majority of attendees at the VIC employ such a strategy. Burbank approaches things a bit differently, utilising a top-down approach and actually feels that the next two years in the market could be more tranquil than currently anticipated.
In terms of portfolio allocation, Burbank likes being long countries with high political/economic freedom. He likes a group he refers to as the “new CASSH” referring to Canada, Australia, Singapore, Switzerland, and Hong Kong. Conversely, he likes being short developed countries with large debt.
Yesterday Richard Bernstein announced the launch of a new macro mutual fund that would eschew stock picking.
On this question of stocks and whether people are buying any, Charles Schwab announces earnings today. Should be interesting to see what they say about trading and volumes.