According to today's Wall Street Journal, page one (below the fold), veteran bandleader Tommy Dorsey has come out strongly in favor of the Indonesian stock market. His top pick: PT Perusahaan Perkebunan London Sumatra Indonesia Tbk. "I can't pronounce it, and I have no friggin' idea what they do. But I know it's number one -- do I need to know anything else?"
Dorsey explained his unconventional technique. "I'm not the guy who cared about love and I'm not the guy who cared about fortunes and such, never cared much," he admitted. But after listening to "Yes, Indeed" (as arranged by Sy Oliver) and "East of the Sun (and West of the Moon)," he had a change of heart.
The rationale for buying only the best-performing investments in any given sector is that of momentum investing on steroids. Has it worked? Dorsey's experience has emboldened him. He and associates have gone from $1.6 billion to $5.1 billion in the last three years. It should be noted that dart-throwing would have produced a similar return in blue chips, with a lot less risk than Indonesia, since 2011, but let's not be killljoys. Dorsey is enjoying his moment in the sun and he has, despite maninfold pressures, maintained eighteen instrumentalists, including Bunny Berigan on trumpet, plus vocalists such as Sinatra and Dick Haymes, always, come rain or come shine.
Should people be tempted to throw caution to the winds, the trombonist quickly reminded them that you should not make an important decision within twelve months of anything major happening in your life. He exemplified his legato approach with a sweet rendering of "I'm Getting Sentimental Over You." With the bursting of the dot-com bubble in 2000 still a painful memory, he reminded people that prudence remains wise when the outlook is gloomy. "I'll never smile again," he remembered thinking. He would discourage anyone who might be tempted to go into hock to buy Asian shares on margin. "Fools rush in where angels fear to tread," Dorsey said.
Thank you, Tommy. I'll be seeing you.
-- David Lehman