Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Eying Wintel

I have been avoiding tech stocks ever since the crash of 2000-2001. Not because I got burned badly, because I wasn't. Sure I lost almost 100% on one stock and more than 50% on a couple, but I also made some spectacular gains on the ones I was wise enough to dump between 1999 and 2000.

The reason why I don't like tech stocks in general is that the field is very competitive and requires huge R&D spending. You can loose your #1 position very fast. There are numerous examples of companies that were ones great, but now are either bankrupt or dimineshed to some niche market.

There are exceptions: the ones having moat.

An economic moat is a competitive advantage that is difficult to copy or emulate, which provides a significant barrier to competition from other firms. Buffett has often referred to an economic moat as being similar to a fortress or a medieval castle that one can not penetrate.

Two companies come instantly to my mind: Intel and Microsoft often referred as "Wintel". Both companies are so strong in their fields that they are close to monopoly without being one. Currently both are trading quite low P/E ratio so many prominent hedge managers characterised as "value investors" have picked up either one or the other. I too am eying both companies.

I could buy them tomorrow, but on the other hand I want to space out my investments in order to keep the market timing minimal. Also, as everyone else, I am still cautious on the "recovery"...

No comments:

Post a Comment