We readily acknowledge that many great investors have gone before us. One such investor we admire greatly is Benjamin Graham. In his epic work first published in 1949, The Intelligent Investor, Graham explained the difference between investing and speculation as follows:
An investment operation is one which, upon thorough analysis, promises safety of principal and an adequate return. Operations not meeting these requirements are speculative.
We embrace this statement, and it is at the core of our investment philosophy. The Cypress "investment operation" revolves around a broadly-diversified portfolio that, generally speaking, favors small companies over large, a value style over growth, and equities over fixed income.
Another investor we hold in the highest regard is Warren Buffett, whose mentor was Benjamin Graham. Buffett has two rules for investing: first, don't lose money; second, don't forget the first rule. Although said somewhat tongue-and-cheek, Buffett's rules make sense to us. Of course, nothing in investing can be guaranteed, but we construct broadly-diversified and strategic portfolios with Buffet's rules in mind. Over the long-term (10+ years), we believe our strategies give our clients a reasonable opportunity to safeguard their principal while providing an adequate return.