What if I told you that by buying a used car, you would be buying an appreciable asset? I am not talking fancy antiques, but good old Chevys, Hondas, and the like.
You do not actually possess the vehicles, but nonetheless these used cars would be worth more in the future. Someone else would be in charge of storing them, finding buyers, and selling them.
Two incredibly sharp investors apparently feel that used cars are an excellent long-term investment. Sears Holdings
Anyone paying attention to Lampert knows that he devotes an enormous amount of time to performing due diligence on his investments. Rumor has it that when he was building his stake in auto-parts giant AutoZone
Warren Buffett, an investor Eddie Lampert seems to be emulating, recently disclosed that his holding company, Berkshire Hathaway
Imitation is the sincerest form
Sure, it would have been nice if both Lampert and Buffett owned the same stock, but there's usually not enough room in the same playpen for these big hitters. With billions at their disposal, it's a task on its own to allocate a meaningful amount of capital.
Investors can benefit from following the tracks of the best. Sometimes you get lucky and have the chance to invest in a business at a lower price than they paid. In fact, Lampert recently disclosed a big investment in Citigroup
With the auto and retailing industry suffering in the credit turmoil, these investments by Berkshire and Lampert appear to be classic out-of-favor investments. And given the long-term bent of Lampert and Buffett, it could be a couple of years before investors realize substantial gains on their investments.
Yet the facts and results speak for themselves. Buffett and Lampert are extremely good at what they do, and they devote a high degree of intensity to analyzing their investments. Why not follow on the heels of two of the greatest analysts? Odds are you will do better than most pros.
Fool contributor Sham Gad is managing partner of Gad Partners Funds, a value-focused investment partnership based after the 1950s Buffett Partnerships. He has no stakes in the securities mentioned in this article. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Motley Fool holds stock in Berkshire Hathaway. The Fool has a stop-on-a-dime disclosure policy.