Sunday, 14 August 2011

Bill Miller's Inglorious Demise

"Gone are the days when Legg Mason Value Trust's Bill Miller was a sage stock-picker. Under Miller's management, the fund beat the S&P 500 for 15 years -- until 2005. Since then, Value Trust's assets have dwindled from $20.8 billion at its peak in 2006 to $3.4 billion."

Bill Miller outperformed the S&P 500 in the US for 15 years but has since then failed quite badly. Was he lucky before (there are so many fund managers in the US that some are bound to have had good results just because of randomness), or was he really good and did he lose his touch due to complacency (a very human characteristic)?

We can and should learn from success stories, but also from failure, here is a slide show of Miller's worst stock picks:


  1. It's been ages since I last read about Bill Miller.

    I do have several postings on him The one that stands out a lot is - thaat was the letter after his long streak ended.

    And of course, this one also:

  2. Thanks, will read them.

    Yes, interesting case, was he really good, or was he just lucky ..... guess we will never know.

  3. You know very much that I so believe in investing but to be a good investor, you need strong conviction and you need the believe that what you are doing is correct... in regardless of what the market thinks.

    And here lies ... the very fine thin line... what if you are wrong?

    For me, I believe BM just didn't know when he was actually wrong... and for me... that newsletter... was rather revealing.

  4. The only coincident gathering knave is that most of these fund managers are also close to the government. When they beat the market, it does not help me to imagine whether they have a better hand information than us.