Morningstar’s Katie Reichart recently interviewed David Herro, Manager of Oakmark International, to discuss how international investing has changed, or not, since the 1980s.
Here are some highlights:
- Herro said that one of the biggest changes since he started his career in 1986 is “the pace at which information flows around the world.” He describes it as having both positive and negative repercussions: “I think all too often people may react too rapidly without thinking. They get the information, they do a knee-jerk reaction and maybe do something they wish they wouldn’t have done.”
- What hasn’t changed, Herro contends, is “fear and greed,” citing the “basic elements of people wanting to like a stock that goes up and wanting to dislike a stock that’s gone down.” Herro explains that psychology drives us to want to be invested in something that “goes up even if it’s expensive,” and that this hasn’t changed over the years.
- Corporate governance has improved, Herro asserts, but hasn’t improved enough. “It’s better,” he says, “but we still don’t have what I think should be a laser beam focus on value creation. We as investment managers have a responsibility to take people’s savings and to invest them into businesses and their responsibility should be to create shareholder value.”