Value Investing – Timeless Reading

LAST UPDATED 8/07/2017

Where to start?

  • If you don’t know where to start, we’ve put together a list of must-read resources for value investors. The list can be found here.
  • We’ve also picked out the best value-orientated studies and research papers. This list can be found here.

Several Selected Publications: (see very bottom of page for hundreds of more research papers on value investing) Warren Buffett, one of the world’s most famous and successful investors and CEOs, has granted permission to author/entrepreneur?Mark Gavagan?to publish “Gems from Warren Buffett – Wit and Wisdom from 34 Years of Letters to?Shareholders”?Gems From Buffett

Get The Full Warren Buffett Series in PDF

Get the entire 10-part series on Warren Buffett in PDF. Save it to your desktop, read it on your tablet, or email to your colleagues

The Brandes Institute provides some very well written and value oriented research from a partner institute for the?well-established value investor.??Click here.

Insights from Some of Todays Leading Investment Min

CHarlie munger massive massive archive

Human Misjudgment Revisited -- Philip C. Ordway

SUPER INVESTORS OF GRAHAM-AND-DODDSVILLE Famous Speech by Warren Buffett on Value Investing. I would call this the Gettysburg Address of Value Investing. This is a must read for any value investor.

The Wisdom of Great Investors?The mini-book (FREE!) put together by Davis Funds offers the wisdom of many of history’s most successful investment minds, including, but not limited to; Warren Buffett, Chairman of Berkshire Hathaway and one of the most successful investors in history; Benjamin Graham, recognized as the “Father of Value Investing” and one of the most influential figures in the investment industry; Peter Lynch, portfolio manager and author, and Shelby Cullom Davis, a legendary investor who turned a $100,000 investment in stocks in 1947 into over $800 million at the time of his death in 1994.1

Awesome resource page from Aswath Damodaran Great Professor of Finance at NYU, who teaches value investing.

Jason Zweig Interview With Seth Klarman (Awesome Interview!)

Get The Full Seth Klarman Series in PDF

Get the entire 10-part series on Seth Klarman in PDF. Save it to your desktop, read it on your tablet, or email to your colleagues.



Stocks held by Walter Schloss?

Articles about Benjamin Graham?

Articles by Benjamin Graham

Articles about Walter J. Schloss

Articles by Walter J. Schloss

Graham-Newman Partnership Returns (by year)?

Lectures by Benjamin Graham?

Transcript of James Tisch's Speech?

Articles from "Value Investing Retrospective," Heilbrunn Center Research Project?

Columbia Business School Class Recordings?

Resource websites

Value insights from Redfield, Blonsky & Starinsky, LLC

(A great resource website for value investors)


Free US Stock Index Data

Fama-French (Monthly 1926, Daily 1963)

Free Foreign Stock Index Data

MSCI Barra – See more at:

Jim Grant’s List of Online Resources via GrantsPub

Selected videos



Get The Full Series in PDF

Get the entire 10-part series on Charlie Munger in PDF. Save it to your desktop, read it on your tablet, or email to your colleagues.

Charles T. Munger Letters (Wesco)

Charlie Munger Blue Chip Stamps Annual Letters 1977 - 1982



Full archive of 1983-2009 letters Scribd here2009200820072006200520042003200220012000199919981997

Leucadia Shareholder Letters


Get The Full Walter Schloss Series in PDF

Get the entire 10-part series on Walter Schloss in PDF. Save it to your desktop, read it on your tablet, or email to your colleagues.

Value investing case studies

Value funds websites

A nice Buffett Guide

A great guide?of over 500 Q&As with Warren Buffett, sorted and compiled to find every answer to every question you ever had about Berkshire and/or Buffett



Investing Approach


How to Think About Businesses

Alternatives to Common Stock

Accounting, Corporate Finance & Investing

Foreign Investments

The Investment Industry


Specific Businesses


The Market






The Big Picture

Thanks and Credits

Investing Approach

  1. Have you ever bought a company where the numbers told you not to? How much is quantitative and how much is qualitative?
  2. What is it that really piques your interest in a stock? What tells you that it could be interesting?
  3. What is your investment process?
  4. What's your acquisition criteria? What has made you successful in this area where most others have failed?
  5. What's your acquisition strategy? How do you get deals?
  6. Deal flow?
  7. What sources of investment ideas are available today?
  8. Do you have any investing tips?
  9. How do you build your investment knowledge?
  10. Is there an organizational model that allows you to deal with all the information?
  11. Do you have advice for the individual investor to help them narrow the stock universe?
  12. What advice would you give to new investors?
  13. Advice for getting into investing?
  14. Where is a good place for new investors to invest right now?
  15. What advice would you give to non-professional investors?
  16. Are investors more or less knowledgeable today compared to ten years ago?
  17. How to approach index funds?
  18. If you were today 20-something years old would you primarily be searching for: a) Situations reminiscent of 1957 – akin to Daehan Flour Mills, or b) Situations reminiscent of 1987 – akin to Moody’s Corporation?
  19. What's your opinion of cigar butts vs quality businesses?
  20. If you were starting out again today, what would you do the same or differently?
  21. First, would you say 'I could make you 50% a year on $1 million' again today? Second, what else would you do differently?
  22. Do you believe that we'll have significant mispricings again? And if you were 26 today how would you generate the 50% returns that you said you might do with smaller amounts of capital?
  23. Where Can I Find 50% Returns?
  24. Could you describe the capital allocation process you follow? How do you determine the charges for capital to your different managers?
  25. What filters do you use when looking at companies?
  26. How would you recommend an individual investor who follows the Graham and Dodd philosophy to allocate their capital today?
  27. What impacts have Graham/Dodd and Phil Fisher had on your investment philosophy? What percentage of your investment philosophy would you attribute to each of them?
  28. Since Ben Graham isn't around anymore, what money managers do you respect today? Is there a Ben Graham today?
  29. If you were to teach an investment course, besides works by Ben Graham and Phil Fisher and your book on the instalment basis, what would be on the syllabus
  30. What's the temperament of successful investors?
  31. Do you agree with Philip Fisher's two reasons to sell?
  32. What tells you when an investment has reached its full potential?
  33. Could you explain more about the circle of competence?
  34. What two industries are the first you should learn when developing your circle of competence?
  35. Is there a moral connection to who you invest in?
  36. Who do you think will be one of the next greatest investors and are you partial to favoring someone with a similar investment style as yours?
  37. What do you think of discounted cash flow (DCF) models?
  38. Could you explain your opportunity cost decisions of the past year?
  39. What are your views on diversification?
  40. Would you consider spinning off some companies to realize value?
  41. Why would you hold stocks forever, if the fundamentals change permanently? (Buy and hold)
  42. Why do you think more people don't follow your advice?
  43. Why do you think that despite making your methods publicly available, that relatively few people have been able to emulate your success?
  44. What have been your best investments ever?
  45. Could you give us your definition of stock market risk?
  46. How much and how does risk factor into your investment decisions? Would you invest in emerging markets?
  47. What do you think of setting an asset allocation?
  48. How often do you review each position in your portfolio?
  49. What are your expectations for future returns on stocks?
  50. Do you expect the stock market premium to continue to be 6.5% over bonds?
  51. You have espoused a constant ROE on the stock market of about 13%, over time. Do you think that such an expectation is reasonable if you factor into equity and ROE the effect of stock options granted to managements? When option programs are present in a company, what do you think is a realistic way of valuing them on a cash basis?
  52. Do you think investors expect too much?
  53. What's your investment hurdle rate?
  54. Do you prefer public or private investments?
  55. Investors eventually repeat their mistakes. How can you prevent this--through fast growth or safety?
  56. Why do large caps outperform small caps?
  57. What is the definition of Value vs. Growth stocks?
  58. From the partnership letters in 1964, you had a strategy called ‘generals relatively undervalued.’ We have recently begun to implement a technique where we buy something at 12x, when comps sell at 20x. Comps go to 10x. Is this pair trading?
  59. Importance of filtering out the noise?
  60. What is the benefit of being an out-of-towner as opposed to being on Wall Street?
  61. There is always mention that some of your success could be attributed to not buying in to the Wall Street mania b/c you are in?Omaha—what importance do you give to balance as it pertains to work and life and what do you do to maintain your appropriate balance?
  62. There are a record number of ‘value’ investors here this year. Are there fewer $100 bills? Should I go to run a business instead of being a value fund manager?
  63. Do you ever change your investing standards?
  64. Have there been instances in your career where you have been tempted to deviate from your strategy and if so, how did you handle that?
  65. When did you know you were rich?
  66. How important is conviction in investing?
  67. How do you avoid misjudgement?
  68. How do you improve independent thinking?
  69. What are the key traits needed to correct the crowd mentality?
  70. Don't you have a lot of competition to buy great businesses? For example, from private equity funds?
  71. How do you learn who to trust and who not to trust?
  72. What's your philosophy on partnering with others?
  73. We know that you are a big bridge player. Do you think that bridge correlates to investing? Are there any traits or characteristics that might carry over from one to the other?

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  1. How do you think about value?
  2. How do you calculate intrinsic value?
  3. What do you believe to be the most important tools in determining intrinsic value?? What rules or standards do you apply when using these tools?
  4. Could you comment on the matter of intrinsic value as it applies to some of the Inevitables?
  5. When you estimate intrinsic value in capital intensive companies like McDonald's and Walgreens where a very healthy and growing operating cash flow is largely offset by expenditures for new stores, restaurants, etc how do you estimate future free cash flow? And at what rate do you discount those cash flows?
  6. Is the skill of judging risk just as important as calculating intrinsic value?
  7. What valuation metrics do you use?
  8. What do you think of the use of book values in making investment decisions?
  9. If you can’t talk with management, and can’t read the annual report, and didn’t know the price, but could only look at the financial statements, what metric would you look at?
  10. How do you think about growth rates when you value businesses?

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How to Think About Businesses

  1. What's your philosophy in buying businesses?
  2. What is the ideal business?
  3. What makes a great business?
  4. When you are looking at a business in which to invest, what are your priorities?
  5. What makes a company something that you like?
  6. What types of businesses have the highest ROIC?
  7. What businesses should we avoid?
  8. What have been your business mistakes?
  9. How do you determine what is the proper price to pay for the business?
  10. What do you do if business changes are recognized?
  11. Do you know of any examples of companies that have lost and regained their competitive advantage?
  12. Impact of regulation on businesses?
  13. Would you comment on the quality of earnings in capital-intensive businesses, like utilities?
  14. Please talk about the shift to investing in capital intensive businesses and the ultimate impact on intrinsic value. Help us understand the time value of the necessary capital expenditures.
  15. How do you place a value on intangible assets? What are the signs of great “moats” around a business and great managements? Do you place a dollar value on this? What discount rates do you use?
  16. Not too long ago, a reasonable person might have concluded that Kellogg and Campbell Soup had big moats around their businesses, but that has proven not to be the case and their stocks have languished. What might we learn from this?
  17. What's your opinion of downsizing and outsourcing?
  18. Can you comment on the impact of rising commodity prices on margins?
  19. Could you explain a little more about the mind of the consumer and the nature of the product?? And explain how you actually apply these concepts to find the companies with the best potential?
  20. What do you think the best quality is in a business or a person?
  21. How do you grow a small business into a big business?
  22. How do you build the culture of a new organization or change that of an existing one?

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Alternatives to Common Stock

  1. Your opinion on derivatives? (2003)
  2. What are your views on derivatives and how do you think they have affected the global market?
  3. What's your opinion of stock options?
  4. Would you use stock options to enter a position in a public company?
  5. What's your opinion of gold as an investment?
  6. When would you exchange shares for gold?
  7. What is your opinion on exchange-traded funds and how to do you accurately judge them?
  8. Muni bond defaults you described in 2008 -- they haven’t materialized. Should investors worry about getting higher returns?
  9. Experience with junk bonds?
  10. There are discounts in the fixed income market. Will you take advantage?
  11. Can you give us your insights on the oil and silver markets?
  12. Investing in ethanol?
  13. Any comments on commodities?
  14. What are the future trends in coal? Does the cost advantage outweigh the environmental impact?
  15. Could you comment on your currency position?
  16. Do you hedge and what are your thoughts on the U.S. dollar?
  17. What are your views on the dollar?
  18. Early on in you career you bought some land and then rented this out to some local farmers? Why didn’t you pursue this type of investment in real estate?

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Accounting, Corporate Finance, & Investing

  1. What adjustments to reported earnings do you make?
  2. Recommendation of a book on accounting?
  3. What can be done to improve the accuracy of financial statements of financial institutions? What can be done to improve the integrity of financial statements?
  4. Would you comment on companies you say use questionable accounting practices to make their operations look good?
  5. What does it mean to own stock in a company?
  6. Where can you buy stock with the cheapest commissions?
  7. How do you know when you are going to lose money and when you aren't? Since the stock market changes every minute.
  8. What's the role of the board of directors?
  9. Your thoughts on EBITDA?
  10. Opinion on share buybacks? and dividends?
  11. Why do you not believe in dividends when Benjamin Graham believed in them?
  12. Your thoughts on inflation?
  13. Do you see deflation as a threat to our investments?
  14. What's your opinion of Enron and creative accounting?
  15. What's your opinion of day trading?
  16. What's your opinion on asbestos liability?
  17. What are your thoughts on short selling?
  18. Opinion on IPOs?
  19. Are corporate jets a waste of shareholders’ money?
  20. Can you forecast the continuing debate between Efficient Market Theory (EMT) proponents and value investors? Are your designated successors “outliers” as well?
  21. How did you get to be so rich?
  22. What is your unified principle?
  1. Thoughts on banks willingness to deal with shady characters?
  2. Risk of holding assets at banks or brokerage houses?
  3. Any comments on the behaviour of accountants in tax avoidance schemes?
  4. Does protection of the banking system warrant the lack of public disclosure in Bank of America’s purchase of Merrill Lynch?
  5. What is the main contribution to the stock market crash of this century?
  6. Are investment banks so complex that the head is not aware of the risks?
  7. What are the risks in the financial system?
  8. What can we learn from past blow-ups?
  9. Do you think the bankruptcy process should be reformed?
  1. Insurance pricing and risk?
  2. How do you manage insurance risk?
  3. Can you comment on the consolidation taking place internationally in the insurance industry?
  4. How do you price super cat insurance policies?
  5. Could you comment on fraud in the insurance industry?
  1. Opinion on the likely housing bubble? (2005)
  2. How do you feel about the current real estate environment?
  3. Your views on the securitization of real estate?
  4. Where do you see the residential real estate market going in the next year or two?
  5. Can you comment on the subprime market?

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Foreign Investments

  1. What's your opinion on investing in foreign stocks?
  2. What are your requirements for investments outside the U.S.?
  3. When looking at other countries Mr. Buffett, do you look at the country’s overall financial status or do you look at the financials of that specific company in a foreign country? You mentioned investing in Korean companies – do you ever look at the state of the country you are investing in?
  4. 1/8th of world is in India. Why aren’t you investing in India?
  5. How large is the universe of companies whose intrinsic value you know? Why invest in South Korea or China?
  6. Investing in Brazil?
  7. Investing in Russia?
  8. Investing in Africa?
  9. May I ask you your reasons for coming to Germany?
  10. Are you concerned with the effects of foreign economies and their weak currencies? These have played a role in Coca-Cola’s profitability recently - and Coke is trading at P/E multiple of 75. (1999)
  11. Do you foresee Berkshire buying any businesses in India or China in the near future?
  12. Please talk about Greece, the future of the Euro and fiscal discipline in the world. Greece and other countries are clearly in trouble and BRK has investments in Europe. How is BRK positioned for currency failures? What is your advice to investors regarding the future of the Euro?
  13. What is most important thing you learn from China?
  14. How will Buffett invest in China in the future? What will happen to the purchasing power of China’s large holdings in U.S. Treasuries?
  15. Why is car insurance business not expanding globally? Why not China?
  16. What are your thoughts about Japan?
  17. Does the Japanese economy affect your outlook?

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The Investment Industry

  1. Is the individual investor even capable of assessing the riskiness of securities given the large number of institutions/hedge funds in the market?
  2. What do you think about all the money flowing into private equity and hedge funds? And do you see the future of buying businesses changing based o-n the considerable increase in private equity activity?
  3. What do you think about how most money is managed?
  4. Advice for finding good investment advisors?
  5. Comments on the mutual fund scandal? (2004)
  6. Why don't you start a mutual fund