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Monday, October 12, 2009

Want to earn like Warren Buffett? 24 tips

One of the world's most successful investors, Warren Buffett is the richest man on earth. Chairman of the Berkshire Hathaway, Buffett's wealth jumped by $10 billion to hit $62 billion during 2007. Buffett's life is an inspiration for investors across the globe.

So what makes the world's wealthiest man so rich? Buffett believes that successful investing is about having common sense, patience and independent research.

'How Buffett Does It', by James Pardoe is a great guide for investing in any market. A look into Buffett's simple, yet intelligent mantras for investing and minting millions.

1. A frugal billionaire Buffett believes in simplicity. He advises investors to take easy decisions. Never buy when you are doubtful. Invest only if you understand the businesses well.

2. Focus on not losing money rather than making it. Don't own any stock for 10 minutes that you wouldn't own for 10 years.

3. A proponent of value investing, he believes that one must take decisions on his own. He doesn't believe in listening to analysts or brokers. The best investing decisions come from oneself.
"It is not necessary to do extraordinary things to get extraordinary results."

4. Buffett advises to invest in 'old economy' businesses, companies, which have been around for fifty years and will continue to have a long innings.

5. We have often heard of people suffering heart attacks when markets crash. Well, Buffett advocates a sound temperament for stock market success.

6. You don't need to be a genius to succeed in the stock markets. People who can stay cool will succeed in the long run. Always keep in mind the hidden costs, from commissions on active stock trading to high mutual fund fees.

7. Buffett always looks at businesses he can understand, look at the profits in the past, long-term potential of the company, good top level management of the company and companies that have a good value proposition. The strategy is to think about the business in the long term.
"You are neither right nor wrong because the crowd disagrees with you. You are right because your data and reasoning are right."

8. Invest in businesses with great management. Always keep a track of the management of the company. The top decision makers have a lot to do with the company's performance.

9. One of Buffet's biggest strengths is independent thinking. Many people go by what the experts says or what others do but belief in one's own judgement is the key to stock market success.

10. Patience pays, says Buffet. He says one must not worry too much about the price of the stocks. What's more important is the nature of business of the company, earnings capability and its future potential.

11. Don't target just stocks, look at businesses. How a company performs is key to its stock market performance. You must know the track record of a company before you invest in it.
"Price is what you pay. Value is what you get."

12. Prices keep changing. Don't get worried by the ups and downs. Investing is all about creating wealth. It's important to understand the value of a stock than its price.

13. He believes that franchisee businesses are good opportunities to invest in. Avoid hi-tech, complex businesses. Look for businesses that are set to diversify and grow.

14. Never be disappointed when markets fall. Take it as a buying opportunity. Buffet says one must have lesser number of investments with more money in each lot.

15. He advises to avoid diversification. Invest in companies with sound business models. Choose a few good ones and stay invested, it will give you the benefits.
"I don't look to jump over 7-foot bars; I look around for 1-foot bars that I can step over."

16. Doing nothing pays at times! One must not jump at price fluctuations and take impulsive decisions.

17. Don't get carried away by market forecasts. Ignore market swings and remain an investor with a good business sense.

18. Buffett advises to be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful. Buy when people are selling and sell when people are buying.

19. Make a list of companies, sectors that you find safe to invest in and try to stick to the list.

20. A sound business, strong management, good fundamental and low stock price should be a must-buy.
"Most people get interested in stocks when everyone else is. The time to get interested is when no one else is. You can't buy what is popular and do well."

21. Try to ignore stock charts, says Buffett. They may not give the right indicators. A stock which may have done well earlier may not do so in future.

22. Buffet spends a lot of time on reading and more importantly thinking. Reading helps investors, so spend a lot of time reading about the stocks, companies and markets. A good investor must have a good knowledge base.

23. A good investor also needs to be efficient. Investors may have great capabilities but many do not make use of it. One needs to hone skills to meet the targets.

24. Good investors never rush to make money. They give time, thought and work on investment decisions. The mistakes that others make should be a lesson for you.

Business and Financial Journalism
Osmania University MCJ Second Semester Syllabus for Print media specialization:-

Unit - I: Finance and business journalism. Financial and Business newspapers, and magazines, Areas of reporting financial and business aspects. Sources of Financial and Business news. Characteristics of financial reporting, Trends in financial and business journalism.

Unit - II: Understanding broad features of economy. Structure of finance and banking sector, regulatory, institutions - Reserve Bank of India, SEBI, Indian Banks Association, Chambers of Commerce & Industry. Policies - fiscal, industrial, agricultural & trade.

Unit - III: Importance of budgets - national and state. Analysing business trends, interpreting and presenting statistical data of business, industry & finance.

Unit - IV: Importance of science journalism. Role of science and technology news, sources techniques, writing science for various audiences- science news & features in various media interpreting research reports, use of illustrations- problems, emerging areas- medicine, energy, science magazines,. Research and development agencies.

Unit - V: Reporting specialised areas like human rights, child rights, terrorism- war guidelines, propaganda, abuse, standpoint of warring parties, embedded journalism

Business journalism is the branch of journalism that tracks, records, analyses and interprets the economic changes that take place in a society. It could include anything from personal finance, to business at the local market to the malls, to performance of well-known and not-so-well-known companies.
This form of journalism covers news and feature articles about people, places and issues related to the field of business. Almost all general newspapers and magazines, radio and television news channels carry a business segment. But one finds detailed and indepth business journalism in dedicated business or financial publications, radio and television channels.
Business coverage gained prominence in the 1990s, with wider investment in the stock market. The Wall Street Journal is one such example of business journalism, and is amongst the United States of America's top newspapers in terms of both circulation and respect of journalists.

A stakeholders' view of environmental reporting

In practice, environmental reports can range from a simple public relations statement to a detailed and in-depth examination of the company's environmental performance, policies, practices and future direction. The central objective of any environmental report has to be to communicate the company's environmental performance to the report reader. This article is based on the assumption that the vast majority of existing environmental reports are unable to satisfy all of the information requirements of the target groups for which they are written. To try and rectify this situation the article first of all defines the different audiences, or ‘target groups’, of an environmental report. The authors have then consulted with key representatives of each of these target groups and identified the most important issues that they want to see presented in an environmental report. This information is summarized in tabular form, and from these findings the article proposes two separate reporting strategies which companies may pursue for a more effective environmental report: (1) they can produce a ‘generic report’ concentrating on the key points which all target groups accept as being of primary importance; or alternatively (2) they can produce ‘specialized’ environmental reports which address all of the requirements of a specific target group. It is the authors' intention in this article to provide companies with the information necessary to choose and then be able to undertake either of these scenarios.

Science journalism is a relatively new branch of journalism, which uses the art of reporting to convey information about science topics to a public forum. The communication of scientific knowledge through mass media requires a special relationship between the world of science and news media, which is still just beginning to form.
The first task of a science journalist is to render the very detailed, specific, and often jargon-laden information produced by scientists into a form that the average media consumer can understand and appreciate, while still communicating the information accurately. Science journalists often, but not always, have advanced training in the particular scientific disciplines that they cover — they may have been scientists or medical doctors before becoming journalists — or have at least exhibited talent in writing about science subjects.
In recent years, the amount of scientific news has grown rapidly with science playing an increasingly central role in society, and interaction between the scientific community and news media has increased. The differences between the methodologies of these two "pillars" of modern society, particularly their distinct ways of developing their realities, have led to some difficulties. Journalism tends to have a stronger bias towards truth and speculative theories than science, whereas science focuses more on fact and empirical measurement.

Following are some of the key highlights of the Economic Survey 2008-09 tabled by Finance Minister P Chidambaram in Parliament today.
Economy moves decisively to higher growth phase
Economic growth in 2007-08 projected at 8.7 per cent
Overall inflation projected to decline from 5.6 per cent in 2006-07 to 4.1 per cent in 2007-08
Acceleration in domestic investment and savings rates
Buoyant growth in Government RevenuesInvestment climate full of optimism
Concern over slowdown in consumer goods segment of industry and infrastructure constraints
Indian economy at market exchange rate to cross 1 trillion dollars in current fiscal
Growth in service sector continues to be broad based with 'transport and communication' being the fastest during the Xth Five Year Plan
13.9 per cent growth in financial services in 2006-07
Annual average growth of money on an accelerating trend since 2003-04 reaching 19.5 per cent in 2006-07
Considerable uncertainty in quantifying the downside risk arising from the housing market and sub-prime mortgage market crisis in the US150 per cent increase in net foreign direct investment inflows in 2006-07 to US dollar 23 billion. Trend continues in the current financial year with gross Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) inflows reaching US dollar 11.2 billion in first six months
Trade to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratio increases from 22.5 per cent of GDP in 2000-01 to 34.8 per cent of GDP in 2006-07
Heightened urgency to augment and upgrade infrastructure both physical as well as social and in particular power, roads and ports
Persistent institutional weaknesses and implementation constrains at different levels of government need to be addressed
Private sector requires policy and regulations that are comprehensive but simple and clear and credible
Share of Central Government expenditure on social services, including rural development, in total expenditure (Plan and Non-Plan) increased from 10.97 per cent in 2001-02 to 16.42 per cent in 2007-08
Agricultural growth, dependent as it is on monsoon, continues to fluctuate. Overall foodgrains production in 2007-08 expected to fall short of the target by 2.2 million tonnes. Need for second green revolution particularly in rainfed areas emphasized.

Science journalism: bright future ahead
"There's never been a better time to become a journalist," declared Dianne Lynch, dean of the Park School of Communications at Ithaca College, in her talk at a two-day MIT Knight Science Journalism Fellowships symposium last week on the future of science journalism.
Some people might have thought otherwise, given the spate of reports recently about the falling circulation and revenues of newspapers and the resulting staff layoffs and buyouts. But those problems have nothing to do with journalism itself, Lynch said, but only with "the demise of a business model" that's based on "an outdated delivery system."
The news business is changing fast, but it's not going away. In fact, more people than ever are reading about science and technology, but just doing it in different ways--for the most part, online instead of in traditional printed newspapers, Lynch explained.
The symposium, held to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the MIT fellowship program that has become the leading professional program for mid-career science journalists, drew 192 ex-Knight fellows (or Bush fellows, as the program was known in its initial years) and other journalists from around the country and several other nations.
The event also marked another milestone, the impending retirement of the program's director, Boyce Rensberger, after 10 years. He will be replaced in June by Philip Hilts, who teaches science journalism at Boston University. The program was founded by Victor McElheny in 1983.
MIT President Susan Hockfield opened the meeting by stressing the importance of good science communications in this era when people are constantly faced with increasingly complex scientific and technical issues. "We need to help the public make decisions based on fact, not fear," she said. "Without incisive, nuanced writing, we at MIT might as well fold up our solar collectors and go home."
The role of journalists is changing in this evolving media landscape, said Tom Rosenstiel, director of the Project for Excellence in Journalism. While their role has often been described as that of gatekeepers, the more appropriate role is now that of authenticator--helping readers figure out, from the vast array of sources of information now available, what can be believed and trusted and "where the good stuff is." Comparing science to sports, he said the journalist's role is evolving from that of color commentator to being a referee on the field.
But as much as the means of distribution may change and business models may need to shift accordingly, people's interest in reading authoritative reporting has not diminished, Rosenstiel said. "The problem is not a demand problem," he said. For example, "more people actually read what comes out of The New York Times newsroom" than ever before. Although we are now in a period of transition in terms of how people receive their news and information, "things will work out," he predicted. "There's a golden age of science journalism ahead."

Propaganda is a concerted set of messages aimed at influencing the opinions or behavior of large numbers of people. Instead of impartially providing information, propaganda in its most basic sense presents information in order to influence its audience. The most effective propaganda is often completely truthful, but some propaganda presents facts selectively (thus lying by omission) to encourage a particular synthesis, or gives loaded messages in order to produce an emotional rather than rational response to the information presented. The desired result is a change of the cognitive narrative of the subject in the target audience. Propaganda is most frequently employed in the service of political and military ends.

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