Article: Who (Almost) Killed Home Capital Group?

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Who (Almost) Killed Home Capital Group?

Featured Posts, Investments, 02 April 2021

I am still coming to terms with the collapse in shares of Home Capital. It wasn’t supposed to play out this way. The Canadian alternative mortgage lender saw its shares fall from an all-time high of $54.86 in August of 2014 to a low of $5.85 in May of 2017. At the time, I was working as an analyst at one of Canada’s largest asset managers. I spent 2014 and 2015 following only the Canadian banking sector. I saw the events at Home Capital up close.

The company was in the crosshairs of short sellers for years prior to its 2017 crisis. As an alternative lender in Canada’s frothy housing market, many shorts saw parallels between Home Capital and some of the worst-performing American subprime lenders. Steve Eisman, made famous in Michael Lewis’ The Big Short for his success betting against the US subprime bubble, was one of the first to come out publicly as a bear on Home Capital in 2013. And from there the criticisms continued for years. Continue reading “Article: Who (Almost) Killed Home Capital Group?”

Article: Why I Will Never Buy Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc, HSBC Holdings plc And Standard Chartered PLC

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Why I Will Never Buy Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc, HSBC Holdings plc And Standard Chartered PLC

Rupert Hargreaves, 10 November 2014

The godfather of value investing, Benjamin Graham, made it quite clear that the process of investing is nothing like speculation: “An investment operation is one which, upon thorough analysis, promises safety of principal and a satisfactory return.” On the other hand, speculation is more akin to gambling, with no return guaranteed.

With this in mind, it’s easy to arrive at the conclusion that banks, which rely on leverage and trading to make a living, can never be deemed true ‘investments’ due to the speculative nature of their businesses. And this is the reason why I’m staying away from banks like Royal Bank of Scotland (LSE: RBS), HSBC (LSE: HSBA) and Standard Chartered (LSE: STAN). Continue reading “Article: Why I Will Never Buy Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc, HSBC Holdings plc And Standard Chartered PLC”