15 cracking quotes from Kerr Neilson

James Marlay

Today Kerr Neilson has announced his intention to step back as CEO of Platinum Asset Management. Platinum is the very definition of active management and was a pioneer for international investing. To this day Neilson remains one of the most respected and revered investors by his clients and peers.

In a statement released on the ASX, Platinum said Andrew Clifford, co-founder and Chief Investment Officer, will take over as CEO effective July 1. Kerr has said he looks forward to remaining involved and active in the investment process at Platinum.

We thought it would be a fun tribute to highlight a couple of quotes that capture the essence of Neilson’s investment philosophy

Here’s 15 cracking quotes from Kerr Neilson

“We’re reluctant to chase the market leaders because it’s just not how we invest.”

“We simply do not believe that one can systematically add value by being with the in-crowd.”

“The arbitrage lies in complexity and uncertainty not the other way around!”

“It is not enough simply to be contrary… If the stock is cheap you must presume generally the market gets it right and an intelligent investor will start by trying to assess where he or she has got the wrong end of the stick.”

“Dividends play a very important part in rewarding shareholders for the risks they take.”

“The behaviour of the crowds invariably results in imperfect pricing.”

“There is a natural predisposition towards extrapolating the present situation far into the future.”

“Give your investment thesis time to work out but be decisive when the facts change.”

“We have made some good money… by ignoring the noise.”

“We tend to hold our value and build wealth by avoiding the downturns, so we give away some of the upside in boom times. If we lose money, our clients aged 55-70 are not going to get it back. This is the product of their life's work. That's our attitude it's other people's money. And the market is your ultimate judge.”

“As investors, the paradox is you have to listen to the market and yet form an independent opinion. You cannot ever be in a cocoon of isolation where you pay no heed. At times you will be at total disagreement and that's where you need a lot of character. That sense of independence is rare as there's a tendency to benchmark hug ... We think that's a silly way to run money.”

“Some are good at telling the story but forget to pull the trigger.”

“Being thankful for the abilities one has been given and not wasting them.”

“Hold your poise, do your work, remain independent in thoughts and action, and wealth will accrue.”

“The stock market owes you nothing”


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Michael Dorrough

To one of the most decent, respected and great minds in finance thank you for setting such an extraordinary standard and for your excellent performance and communication over your career.

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Cedric Robin Hingee

I wrote to Kerr on a couple of occasions as a small investor. He responded to me in person. A real gentleman.

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Lin Mal

Well said Michael D. Hear,hear!

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