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The Efficient Market Paradox

by Eugene Robin  |  Research Analyst, Cove Street Capital I’d like to share with you a great book on the basic mathematics of the stock market written by John Allen Paulos that has a section on the efficient market. Briefly, if […]

The Annual Pilgrimage to Omaha

Berkshire This past weekend’s trek to Omaha for the Berkshire Hathaway annual meeting represented the fifth consecutive time I have ventured to see the Oracle of Omaha and the man they call Charlie share their wisdom. Sorry folks, I didn’t […]

Tessera: Our Vote is In

Our premise is simple: we bought Tessera because the stock was cheap and we received nearly free optionality on either the development of a new technology or improvement in the managing of the core business.  In a very short period […]

Ben Claremon and the Great White North

Under normal circumstances, the prospect of leaving sunny Southern California to travel to a place where the day-time temperature encourages the wearing of fur is not particularly appealing. But I decided this year to make the slog to attend Fairfax […]

CSC Strategy Letter | Number 11 | Call Him Ishmael

Download Cove Street Capital’s March 2013 Strategy Letter Number 11, “Call Him Ishmael”

Proxy Season and the Unusually Juicy Soap Opera at Tessera

We own Tessera at a cost of approximately $16 per share. Our thought process was simple: a conservative analysis of their IP portfolio’s current cash stream plus cash on the balance sheet suggested a valuation of $15 per share, leaving […]

Hello Ruby Tuesday

A few weeks ago, Cove Street was asked to present a small cap stock idea for the 2013 Small-Cap Investing Summit. Our analyst Ben Claremon chose to discuss the investment thesis for Ruby Tuesday (RT) and created the attached presentation. Despite […]

The Worst Piece of Corporate BS

The proposed management buyout of Dell is an abomination of corporate governance and decency on an extraordinarily large scale. While we have been too busy losing money in Hewlett-Packard to own Dell shares, I will take the liberty of being […]

CSC Strategy Letter | Number 10 | The Lost Decade…Found?

Download Cove Street Capital’s January 2013 Strategy Letter Number 10, “The Lost Decade…Found?”

What Were We Thinking—Central Garden and Pet

Central Garden and Pet (CENTA) has been in and out of the portfolio several times over the last eleven years with results varying from stunning (a 6-bagger from the 2002 lows) to a lot less than that (repurchased the stock […]

The Nonsense Math Effect

Please insert the phrases “money manager,” “hedge fund,” “large pension plan,” and “underperformance” at will throughout this piece.  The Nonsense Math Effect  Mathematics is a fundamental tool of research. Although potentially applicable in every discipline, the amount of training in […]

Our Roots For Sale

Warren Buffett: Former Executive Offices – 97 Cove St, New Bedford MA 02744

CSC Strategy Letter | Number 9 | Idiosyncratic Risk…and the Other Kind

Download Cove Street Capital’s November 2012 Strategy Letter Number 9, “Idiosyncratic Risk…and the Other Kind”

Increasingly Obvious Unintended Consequences

While we prefer not to opine in a macro-economic sense on most occasions, THIS PIECE sourced from Grant’s, nicely sums up thoughts expressed in a number of our strategy letters. Artificially depressed interest rates are killing us.

Jefferies: Possible Postscript

Funny things often happen on the way to the bank. It is also fair to say that sometimes you never reach the bank, or you end up taking a cab when you thought you were walking. Where this fits with […]

Well Worn and Well Worth Re-reading

We have embarked on a longer term project to digitize about 6 yards and 28 years of collected investment “literature.” Because this is the age of social media, we will share the more timeless pieces. Pardon their appearance. Click here […]

What is Really is Wrong with This Country and the Economy?

Please read this and try not to weep. Let me see if I understand this correctly. The President of the United States gathers together a task force of government lawyers in order to coordinate the ability to sue private companies? […]

Other People’s Thoughts – Jim Bianco of Bianco Research

As someone who does not watch CNBC unless I’m away from the office and utterly trapped in a small hotel room that only offers 5 stations and is located in a remote region of the country, I wasn’t aware that […]

CSC Strategy Letter | Number 8 | You Didn’t Build This Rally

Download Cove Street Capital’s September 2012 Strategy Letter Number 8, “You Didn’t Build This Rally”

Cove Street Capital Calling

Despite twenty-eight years in the investment management industry and the natural cynicism that comes with experience, I nonetheless retain the ability to be amazed at what can pass for normalcy in the full light of day. Case in point is […]

Summer Reading Continued

The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves… The latest in a long line of thought provoking pieces by investment consultant guru Charles Ellis about what ails the “business” of investment management and the propensity for all actors—clients, consultants […]

Munger Reprise

I sometimes have a dim realization that I need the same intellectual lessons pounded into me over different time periods in order to avoid the regular and robust temptation to do something stupid.  We will be regularly posting pieces on […]

Now About that Factory Tour…

Following last week’s Fender post: Why Fender Pulled Its IPO

Buy a Used Guitar, Not the Stock

In my analytical career, there is a laundry list of things I have studied for investment purposes, including such topics as life insurance, cement, pet products, pension accounting, high speed disc couplings, polymers, mattresses and urea. So it has only […]

Summer Reading

Good investing is  a continuous evaluation of business characteristics, valuation and judgement about the people running the show. Valuation is math and perseverance. The changing natures of business models and the wonder and flaws of people are shifting sands requiring […]

CSC Strategy Letter | Number 7 | Volcker Does Not Rule

Download Cove Street Capital’s June 2012 Strategy Letter Number 7, “Volcker Does Not Rule”

The Next Generation: An Interview with Ben Claremon & Eugene Robin

CSC research analysts and blog contributors Ben Claremon and Eugene Robin were recently interviewed for The Wall Street Transcript. CLICK HERE to download the article.  

What We See Versus What We Infer

CLICK HERE to download a superbly interesting thought process that is eminently applicable to investment management, and it can be argued that i have seen balance sheets that look worse than some of the included slides. – Jeffrey Bronchick, CFA | […]