Investing in undervalued securities worldwide

Weekly Update 29 May 2023

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May has been a weak month for our strategy and Value stocks in general.

US ($VTV) and International ($EFV) Value stocks have lost 3% in May.

Our strategy has lost 4%, underperforming the Value stock indices due to unsuccessful investments in precious metal miners, US real estate and negative news from a couple of individual positions (Bayer, Suncor).

Since the beginning of the year, the strategy has, however, outperformed US and International Value stock indices (which have returned -3% and +6% respectively).

The outcome is that the strategy has managed to match the overall market’s performance in a bad year for Value stocks. That’s not a great result on the surface, but we are not entirely unhappy with it because the sectors that have done well this year are the ones we generally don’t invest in.
www.sectorspdrs.com/sectortracker

The good news (and the usual consequence of weak past performance) is that the upside potential of the portfolio is significant. The banks in the portfolio are valued at 4-6x 2024E earnings. In a normal environment these companies have traded closer to 10x earnings, indicating at least 50% upside, perhaps more, is theoretically available.

Similar 50% upside potential is available from the auto companies in the portfolio. The oil companies have upside potential of 20-30%.

All of this assumes that analyst forward earnings estimates turn out to be more or less accurate. The valuations of the banks are now so low, though – near financial crisis levels – that plenty of bad news is in the price. It would take a financial crisis to push the banks’ shares permanently lower, in our view.

2023 performance YTD
@triangulacapital +11.1%
$SWDA.L +9.6%

Portfolio changes
Precious metal and tobacco positions and Suncor were sold. New positions are MetLife, Prudential and Shell.

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Disclosures

eToro is a multi-asset platform which offers both investing in stocks and cryptoassets, as well as trading CFD assets.

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 76% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work, and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

eToro (Europe) Ltd., a Financial Services Company authorised and regulated by the Cyprus Securities Exchange Commission (CySEC) under the license # 109/10.

eToro (UK) Ltd. is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) under the license FRN 583263.

Your capital is at risk. Other fees may apply. For more information, visit etoro.com/trading/fees.

Pietari Laurila is not a registered investment advisor and does not offer investment advisory, fund management or wealth management services.

Triangula Capital is a brand name, not an incorporated entity.

This page is provided for information purposes only. It is not a recommendation to copy the Triangula Capital strategy or to invest in any fund or security.

2009-2020 performance figures are from Pietari’s personal Interactive Brokers account. They are time-weighted returns calculated in accordance with the Global Investment Performance Standards (GIPS).

From 2021, performance is calculated by eToro.

Past performance is not indicative of future results.

Track Record

It is often said that past performance is not a guarantee of future performance.

That is true. But there is also some evidence indicating that portfolios that performed better in the past, do perform better in the future.

“[…] top-decile prior-alpha funds produce annual future alphas of about 150 bps, net of fees” Source

Risk warning: That is only one study. In general, past performance is not indicative of future results.

Aligned Incentives

Pietari invests the majority of his net worth in the strategy. This ensures that his interests are aligned with investors who copy the strategy.

“Funds with high-incentive contracts deliver higher risk-adjusted return, and the superior performance remains persistent. The top incentive quintile of funds outperforms the bottom quintile by 2.70% per year” Source

Risk warning: Pietari holds accounts with multiple brokers and may therefore have a conflict of interest when deciding which accounts he should trade in first.

Unconstrained Investments

The strategy has fewer constraints on its investments than traditional mutual funds.

The strategy portfolio can be invested in stocks, bonds or cash and these allocations can vary over time.

Compared to traditional mutual funds, the strategy also:

  • holds fewer securities
  • trades more
  • avoids following the index

Each of these points has been shown to be an important predictor of portfolio performance.

“We […] find that portfolio concentration is directly related to risk-adjusted returns for institutional investors worldwide” Source

“A one-standard-deviation increase in turnover is associated with a 0.65% per year increase in performance for the typical fund” Source

“We find that truly active funds significantly outperform closet indexers. Further, we find that the truly active funds are able to outperform their benchmarks on average by 1.04% per year” Source

Risk warning: Concentrated portfolios with few positions can suffer large losses if bad news arrives about any of the companies in the portfolio.

Cheap Stocks in Cheap Sectors

The strategy invests in geographies and sectors where values have collapsed due to macroeconomic problems.

Within these geographies and sectors, the strategy overweights stocks that trade at low valuations on measures such as price-to-earnings or price-to-net asset value.

Every stock in the strategy portfolio must also be a good company, with no obvious red flags or long-term threats to its business model.

The aim of the strategy is to maximize returns, even if this means taking more risks than usual.

Risk warning: The strategy portfolio tends to be concentrated in risky stocks, which means that its losses in any market downturn will likely exceed those of the market index.