Mr. Market’s Ways

Jul 1995

Benjamin Graham said it best when…he likened investing to having a volatile business partner this way: ‘Every day, Mr. Market—your partner in a private business—appears and names a price [for which] he will either buy your interest or sell you his.  Even though the business that the two of you own may have economic characteristics that are stable, Mr. Market’s quotations will be anything but.  For, sad to say, the poor fellow has incurable emotional problems.  At times he feels euphoric and can see only the favorable factors affecting the business.  When in that mood, he names a very high buy-sell price because he fears that you will snap up his interest and rob him of imminent gains.  At other times he is depressed and can see nothing but trouble ahead for both the business and the world.  On these occasions he will name a very low price, since he is terrified that you will unload your interest on him.