Everything affects the market in some way or the other. That is because all that is happening in life around us affects and that in turn, decides the direction and qualify as well as the depth of our thinking. Our actions are completely dependent on the way we process our thoughts and this goes too for our actions in the market. What we all perceive at the end of the day as ‘the market’ is finally the sum and substance of all that thought processes. Therefore anything and everything in life is worth noticing!
Looking around, I learnt last week that Chandrakant Sampat, the original Warren Buffet equivalent in India (many subsequent claimants to that throne later) passed away last week. I remember Sampat back from the days I was in the trading ring, in the 80s. He used to be a striking figure back then too- tall, wiry frame, long hair swept back, erect frame always, aloof from the hoopla going on in the ring. Even in those days he was known as a savvy investor and most of us in the ring used to be in slight awe of him. He was disciplined man, I read from the accounts of his life in a few magazines and websites, and I think I can vouch for that from 30 years ago. I was a strapping youth, impetuous and adventurous, moving from stock to stock and wanting to win all my battles not realizing that a calm approach, studied and deliberate, is the answer to creating wealth. He flourished. I survived. In later years I would lean that lesson and that transformed my life to a good degree but the advantage of an early start down the right road cannot be overstressed. Parag Parikh, one of the prominent members of the broking community, says of Sampat, “If you listened to him, the only thing you would get is wisdom,” I would like that to be on my tombstone as an epitaph! It requires us to lead life in a certain way. Sampat did. RIP.
Delhi elections are done and look like AAP is going to win. Complacence did the BJP in? Or is the electorate still dumb as ever? My sense is that the Congress voters swung around to AAP. Lots of debate on whether the market will tank or not. It all depends on how much is priced in. And that is a mental arithmetic rather than an actual one. Similar is the story on Greece. Plenty of noise relating to that too. We all need some topic to keep ourselves occupied and rationalise our actions on the basis of our view on that topic. Or what we think is our view. Many times it is other people’s views that we adopt. Or simply accept. Few really reason it out and arrive at their own view. But in the end it all looks and feels like our view! Markets reflect back to us what we form as a view about what impacts it. Today it is Greece and Delhi. Tomorrow it shall be some other geography. And so it will go on. Is crashing oil no longer news? Are gold import figures no longer as relevant? Not too long ago these events rocked trends in the markets. Oil just made new lows while gold import figures shot up once again but apparently had no impact on the markets this time. Why? It’s the same thing like Greece and Delhi. Market looks at immediate events. A little into the past and it slides from the attention span of traders and investors. That is why they call sentiment as a fickle woman. Let’s not give any event more importance than it deserves. All is fleeting in the markets.
So it all boils down to what you think. And the way you think it. And how deeply do you think it. And finally, what you do about what you thought. Chandrakant Sampat did a lot of things with what he thought. The rest of us can’t really say the same thing about what we think. The day we do, we may also get written about when we die!
And for doing, I leave you with this wonderful link. Do watch it. Very inspiring and touching.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K9vFWA1rnWc#t=70.