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Thursday 28 July 2022

Weekend Reading


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Words of wisdom from Seth Klarman
“I think it’s good to step back from the moment-by-moment noise. Investors sometimes get caught up in the noise, but it’s really important to step back. Investors just should always want to be thinking about their own thinking…we all know we deal with enormous amounts of information we need to filter it down to the useful information.”
“After you buy something you paid for, it doesn’t matter. People cling to the idea that at least they should get their money back; maybe there is bad news, and you should sell before it goes lower; maybe put it into something else where you get your money back, but people prefer to make it back where they lost it. People anchor numbers in their heads, and they hold on to them.”
“A very significant part of my philosophy has to do with managing your psychology. Markets are about the psychology of others.”
“When you focus on return at the exclusion of risk, you try to take more risk to get the return; you get the risk but may or may not get the return. If you focus first on the risk and mitigate or avoid or reduce the risk, then you’ve protected the downside, and then maybe you get the return.”
Make friendship your first priority
Alongside your family, making, cultivating and keeping close friendships may be your life’s most important work.
Yeah, to help your career; building a network is more critical than ever. (I’m the LinkedIn guy, I’m not gonna tell you otherwise). But more than that, friends will be absolutely central to your sense of happiness, connection, and meaning.
Like you, I was able to get a great education, with brilliant faculty teaching enlightening classes. Yet right away it was clear that what would matter much more to me, were my fellow students.
When there’s something important you don’t know, real friends will tell you about it. They might even help you learn it. Your friends can help you see what you can’t see. They’ll help you, you’ll help them, you’ll all do better and go further.
You have a team. Some of your key teammates are your friends. And the ones you share your dreams, fears, and hopes with are the people most able to help you get where you should be going. Because, again: Friends will tell you not what you want to hear but what you need to hear.
Timber trading is soaked in blood of the impoverished
Illegal logging destroys habitats, contributes to erosion and the propagation of invasive species, hurts indigenous communities, and interferes with carbon sequestration and the production of fresh air. It’s also extremely lucrative. Timber trafficking generates $50 to $150 billion each year. Around 10 to 30 percent of the international trade in timber is estimated to be illegal; in the tropics, the figure is closer to 90 percent. The business is violent, often tied up with drug smuggling, game poaching, money laundering, and the persecution of indigenous leaders and environmentalists. As U.S. Customs and Border Protection puts it, “The illegal timber trade is soaked with blood.”
Although it is big business, tree poaching is deeply tied to poverty. The forest offers a last-ditch haven for those whom society has failed.
Master the basics
Everyone wants advanced knowledge. But it’s typically the basics that matter most.
Most math is arithmetic, not algebra. Running a business is largely a matter of keeping revenues above costs. Good writing is the product of clear ideas and clean sentences.
All skills break down into elemental components–coding has commands, painting has brushstrokes, comedy has jokes. Mastery of the performance results from mastery of the parts.
We ignore the basics, not because they’re hidden, but because they’re so obvious. Thoughtlessness saves effort but inhibits improvement. Bringing attention back to the basics doesn’t come automatically. We adjust our habits only when they fail to deliver results.
One more step towards reducing obesity medically
Wegovy, made by Danish drugmaker Novo Nordisk, is the first in what is shaping up to be a new generation of obesity treatments, which use a hormone to regulate appetite.
Wegovy arrived on the market amid a global obesity crisis. Almost half of Americans are expected to be obese by 2030, a Harvard study found, and that could account for up to 18 per cent of healthcare spending on related conditions, ranging from heart disease and stroke to osteoarthritis. Worldwide obesity rates have tripled since 1975, with 650 million adults obese in 2016, according to the World Health Organization.
When we eat, cells in the small intestine secrete GLP-1, causing the release of insulin, which in turn tempers fluctuations in blood sugar levels. While experimenting with how to create a new hormone, GLP-1-based drug, in the 1990s, Novo Nordisk lab scientists noticed their mice and rats began to lose weight. The hormone’s effect on the brain, they discovered, is to reduce appetite and create a feeling of fullness.

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