Financial Mail - Investors Monthly - - Contents - RON DERBY fol­low Ron on Twit­ter @ron­derby IM

Farewells and fu­tures

THIS IS my fi­nal Editor’s Note for In­vestors Monthly af­ter 18 edi­tions. I have left the Fi­nan­cial Mail and Busi­ness Day fam­ily and have lit­er­ally crossed the floor to be­come the editor of Busi­ness Times.

This stint at In­vestors Monthly has been my first as an editor, and it has been great ground for me to learn the job of putting to­gether a mag­a­zine with the help of great peo­ple in the back­ground, who refuse to be named. But thank you …

It’s hard to find the right words for this fi­nal note, but what I will say is that edit­ing this mag­a­zine has been an ab­so­lute plea­sure.

I’d like to welcome award-win­ning jour­nal­ist Rob Rose as the new editor of the mag­a­zine. I am sure that un­der his hand and with the con­tin­ued sup­port of the writ­ers and pro­duc­tion team across the Busi­ness Day and Fi­nan­cial Mail sta­ble he’ll only im­prove the prod­uct.

From here on, you’ll see my ugly mug only among the mag­a­zine’s colum­nists from time to time, and at the plea­sure of the new editor.

Re­gard­ing this month’s edi­tion, mak­ing in­vest­ment de­ci­sions in a slow­ing econ­omy — which is near paral­ysed by the po­lit­i­cal un­cer­tainty that has gripped SA for close to a decade — is per­haps one of the most dif­fi­cult jobs for any pro­fes­sional, let alone for a re­tail in­vestor try­ing to find his or her way through all the noise. It will pro­vide many col­umn inches for some time to come and I am sure the mag­a­zine will con­tinue to keep you as in­formed as pos­si­ble about the world of mar­kets.

We also ex­plore the pos­si­bil­ity that a new spate of buyouts may be on the hori­zon. Com­pa­nies launch­ing this kind of op­por­tunis­tic ac­qui­si­tion are of­ten ac­cused of snatch­ing valu­able as­sets on the cheap. In some cases, that’s prob­a­bly not far off the mark. But for pun­ters, it raises the in­trigu­ing pos­si­bil­ity that if you iden­tify these “take-out tar­gets” early, there’s a po­ten­tial up­side. We go out on a limb and iden­tify some of these pos­si­bil­i­ties. I sus­pect we may get some strong feed­back about this fea­ture.

Else­where on these pages, we dig into which al­ter­na­tive in­vest­ments are the best bets when the JSE is look­ing pricey. Art is well known, but what about horses or di­a­monds? And we re­visit the de­bate about pas­sive in­vest­ments ver­sus ac­tively-man­aged ones — a dis­cus­sion not about to die down any time soon.

Our pop­u­lar Buy, Hold, Sell seg­ment con­sid­ers some of the over­looked coun­ters on the JSE’s elec­tri­cal board, while vet­eran in­vest­ment writer Stafford Thomas holds some in­ter­est­ing opin­ions about which fash­ion re­tailer is the best one to dress up your port­fo­lio and which could leave you feel­ing drab.

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