Friday File: MORE Insurance Blather, Valuation thoughts, and some buys and sells

Including notes on Berkshire Hathaway, Markel, Fairfax, Axis, Yatra Online and Walt Disney

By Travis Johnson, Stock Gumshoe, September 8, 2017

Weekly escalations in nuclear threats, record-breaking hurricanes… what is it going to take to shake investor sentiment for more than 24 hours? The S&P 500 is ending the week only down about a third of one percent, gold is up less than 2%, this is a market that is reacting to headlines pretty quickly… but recovering almost instantly afterward. What’s an investor to do?

If you trade stocks and think about more than just the blips on the chart, there are a couple things you should read, particularly at times when you’re feeling a little disjointed or nervous — the first is Warren Buffett’s annual letter to Berkshire investors, to give you some long-term perspective and insight into the mind of one of the steadiest and most successful investors in the world (start with the most recent ones, but do go back and read them all… yes, really); the second is the series of memos by Howard Marks, the majordomo of Oaktree who has been publishing widely-followed market memos for almost 30 years. Marks is willing to be opinionated without claiming any certainty that he’s correct, but his long-term success in navigating market cycles with equanimity (and profit) is extraordinary.

Here’s a little s