November 24, 2010
There are only two types of investors at the moment. On the one hand are the pessimists who worry about deficits, inflation, and the sinister policies of the Fed. These folks see gold as the best, perhaps only, investment now. On the other hand are the sunny optimists. They're confident that America will rebound as always, and they're happy to buy great stocks like Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL ) . Surely, you can only be in one camp or the other, right?
Wrong. David Einhorn, the renowned hedge fund manager from Greenlight Capital who alerted the world to Lehman's problems and who has waged a one-man crusade for truth against Allied Capital (NYSE: AFC ) , is bullish on both gold and Apple. In a rare interview, he provides us with his current thinking on stocks, the economy, and investing in general. Here are some of the highlights:
- The big banks still have a lot of leverage, according to Einhorn. He would not invest in a major bank right now.
- He's very critical of QE2. He feels it will be harmful for growth right away, and that the Fed won't get the inflation level it wants. It wants inflation in house prices, but may just get more of it in energy prices. This would hurt consumers, thereby slowing down economic growth.
- Gold is Greenlight's largest position at the moment. Gold, to him, represents money. Given our monetary and fiscal policies, Einhorn sees gold as the money of choice that "Bernanke can't print more of."
- He's long on Pfizer (NYSE: PFE ) , because it may cost-cut itself to profitability. And it pays a nice dividend, too.
- He has gotten very comfortable with Apple's valuation in recent months. He strongly believes that the company is in the early stages of what it can accomplish, and has a lot of growth left in it. The fact that many people think that everyone already owns it only makes it more attractive to him.
- Einhorn likes CareFusion (NYSE: CFN ) , which is a spinoff from Cardinal Health (NYSE: CAH ) , and feels that the rest of Wall Street is missing its story. He likes the business and believes it can expand its profitability.
- He's short Moody's (NYSE: MCO ) because he believes the company shouldn't exist in its current form, and hopes others will come around to his point of view.
Einhorn concludes the interview by urging investors to "trust themselves," because nobody else will care more about your investments than you do. That seems like pretty solid advice from someone I admire tremendously.
And it's also nice to know that there's a place for both gold and Apple in all of our portfolios. For additional stock ideas, be sure to check out the latest thinking from our Rising Stars.
Happy Thanksgiving, Fools!