Editors Note: For the first time in Katusa Research history, a superstar guest has taken over Marin’s weekly Investment Insights column. Today, it’s none other than Brent Johnson of Santiago Capital.
You can only imagine my day.
It’s filled with a number of conference calls, client calls and zoom meetings.
My favorite is fielding cold calls from college students looking for employment or service providers trying to sell me something.
In order to focus, I often let phone calls go to voicemail and then return the calls I want to. When I can.
But there are a few people for whom I always pick up when I see their names pop up on my phone. Marin is one of those people.
Before we even get to exchange “hello” and “how are you”, he’ll often say something to the effect of “I’m working on something big and I want you to tell me if or where I’m wrong.”
While we are both sarcastic and like to jab at each other in person, on the phone or even on Twitter… He’s also someone for whom I have tremendous respect.
Mainly because he’s a self-made man and because I know whether I agree with his take on market conditions or an investment or not — I know he’s done his homework.
And when I say that, I mean he’s done his own homework.
He’s not just repeating an idea he read on Twitter or heard on Bloomberg.
And he’s done it to a deeper degree than most investors would even think about.
These are not “have a hunch buy a bunch” type calls.
So I was excited when Marin called and put a great deal of trust in me last fall…
Based on previous conversations, I knew he had been working on a monumental project, but he never revealed to me exactly what it was (typical…!).
He then mentioned he was writing something that would lay out some of the most ground-breaking theories of his career.
But he was going to publish it via a book rather than his usual research notes.
He flattered me by asking me to read it top to bottom and poke holes in his assumptions, theories and strategies.
After sending him back my comments and edits, we had another one of our calls.
But this time, before we got to the “hello” and “How are you”…I can tell you exactly what I said…
Look, the monetary system is not moral, just or fair. Neither are the markets.
They’re unforgiving, relentless and will march on with or without you and your feelings. This is an absolutely critical lesson for all investors to learn.
It’s simple terms… It is what it is. And you can choose to believe in a fairy tale world and invest in what you would like to see happen.
Or you can take action and invest in the world based on how it actually is.
If you’re in the camp that the U.S. is an evil empire, then expect the empire to act evil. And understand that it will use all the tools and weapons in its arsenal to maintain its position in the world.
If you follow today’s common narrative, you’d be led to think the American Empire is falling apart…
That catastrophe is only a moment away…
That destruction to financial stability is imminent…
And there is nothing the U.S. (with all its vast resources) can do about it…
But you’d be wrong.
Marin makes the soundest arguments you’ll hear — challenging all your confirmation biases — to never bet against America.
Or at least not to bet against America right now, even though it’s very in vogue and a popular idea to do so.
Many of you will be brand new to a lot of the topics he’s going to cover.
And even the investors that have seen mine or Marin’s interviews in the past will know we’re at a very important inflection point…
The Rise of America is coming. Whether it will be wearing a white hat that reflects its historical virtue, or whether it will remove its veil of altruism and proudly brandish the black hat of the school yard bully, is yet to be determined. But rise, it will.
And you can either position your portfolio and strategy to benefit from this rise, or sit by and say, “This isn’t fair and shouldn’t be happening.”
In this interview you’ll hear:
Finally, people often ask me what advice I would give them in order to better understand the world and its various markets. My answer is always the same.
“Keep an open mind, do your own research, and then decide for yourself.”
And when you hear an idea or answer that you hate, ask yourself why you are having such a strong reaction?
Do you hate it because it’s wrong?
Or do you hate it because you just don’t want it to be that way…?
I hope people will read Marin’s book. I hope they will keep an open mind.
And I hope they enjoy it as much as I did.