29 investment quotes from Michael J Burry (The Big Short)

Michael Burry is considered as one of the best investors of all time. 

He managed to predict the financial crisis of 2007/2008.

Here is a little story about him.

Born and raised in San Jose, California.

He did pre-med studies at UCLA and got his medical degree at Vanderbilt.

Burry left work as a Stanford Hospital neurology resident to start his own hedge fund.

He had already developed a reputation as an investor by demonstrating success in value investing, which he wrote about on message boards on the stock discussion site Silicon Investor beginning in 1996.

He was so successful with his stock picks that he attracted the interest of companies such as Vanguard, White Mountains Insurance Group and prominent investors such as Joel Greenblatt.

You will find the best quotes on investing from one of the best investors of our time.

We should take each opportunity in our lives to learn from others.

Here are Michael Burry quotes:

Michaeal Burry quotes


“I knew I was getting attention when I said something I think in late 1999.

I said that Vanguard funds are the worst funds to invest in now.

Those index products are going to do horribly over the next decade and I linked to the site and I got a cease and desist from Vanguard.

So I realized, oh, people are reading this.”


“I started getting paid a dollar a word to write, which was — I didn’t have a lot of money, and I was actually in a lot of debt.

So that was tremendous validation for what I was doing in that space.”


“I prefer to look at specific investments within the inefficient parts of the market.”


“The bulk of opportunities remain in undervalued, smaller, more illiquid situations that often represent average or slightly above-average businesses”


“Fully aware that wonderful businesses make wonderful investments only at wonderful prices, I will continue to seek out the bargains amid the refuse.”


“It is likely, however, that the investors in the habit of overturning the most stones will find the most success.”


“My firm opinion is that the best hedge is buying an appropriately safe and cheap stock.”


”It is a tenet of my investment style that, on the subject of common stock investment, maximizing the upside means first and foremost minimizing the downside.

The deleterious effect of permanent capital loss on portfolio returns cannot be overstated.


“Lost dollars are simply harder to replace than gained dollars are to lose.”


“The Fund maintains a high degree of concentration – typically 15-25 stocks, or even less.

Some or all of these stocks may be relatively illiquid.”


“Volatility does not determine risk.”


“I certainly view volatility as my friend; volatility is on sale because 99% of the institutions out there are doing their best to avoid it.”


“In essence, the stock market represents three separate categories of business.

They are, adjusted for inflation, those with shrinking intrinsic value, those with approximately stable intrinsic value, and those with steadily growing intrinsic value.

The preference, always, would be to buy a long-term franchise at a substantial discount from growing intrinsic value.”


“ ‘Ick investing’ means taking a special analytical interest in stocks that inspire a first reaction of ‘ick.’

I tend to become interested in stocks that by their very names or circumstances inspire unwillingness – and an ‘ick’ accompanied by a wrinkle of the nose on the part of most investors to delve any further.”


“One hedges when one is unsure. I do not seek out investments of which I am unsure.”


“I will always choose the dollar bill carrying a wildly fluctuating discount rather than the dollar bill selling for a quite stable premium.”


“With all seriousness, a 2,500-share sell when no one is looking could torpedo the apparent market value of several of the Fund’s holdings.”


“Common hedging techniques include shorting stocks, buying put options, writing call options, and various types of leverage and paired transactions.

While I do reserve the right to use these tools if and when appropriate, my firm opinion is that the best hedge is buying an appropriately safe and cheap stock.”


“I seek individual investments that will allow me to target total portfolio returns of at least 20% annually after fees and expenses on an annual basis over a period of years, not months.”


“At one point, I recognized that Warren Buffett, though he had every advantage in learning from Ben Graham, did not copy Ben Graham but, rather, set out on his own path and ran money his way, by his own rules… I also immediately internalized the idea that no school could teach someone how to be a great investor.”


“If you are going to be a great investor, you have to fit the style to who you are.”


“I try to buy shares of unpopular companies when they look like road kill and sell them when they’ve been polished up a bit.”


“I seek individual investments that will allow me to target total portfolio returns of at least 20% annually after fees and expenses on an annual basis over a period of years, not months.”


“Regardless of what the future holds, intelligent investment in common stocks offer a solid route for a reasonable return on investment going forward.”


“However, if one has been playing the buy-and-hold game with quality securities, one has been exposed to a substantial amount of market risk because the valuations placed on these securities have implied overly rosy scenarios prone to popular revision in times of more realistic expectation.

This is one of those times, but it is my feeling that the revisions have not been severe enough, the expectations not yet realistic enough. Hence, the world’s best companies largely remain overpriced in the marketplace.”


“My positioning with my investors was always, I need three to five years.”


“I don’t believe anything unless I understand it inside out. And even if I understand something, it is not uncommon that I disagree with accepted view (even if it’s a Nobel laureate).”

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