Arthur Levitt Jr.

United States
3 Feb 1931 // 9 Feb 2001
Financial Advisor


Today it's fashionable to talk about the New Economy, or the Information Economy, or the Knowledge Economy. But when I think about the imperatives of this market, I view today's economy as the Value Economy. Adding value has become more than just a sound business principle; it is both the common denominator and the competitive edge.
If past is prologue, many new companies rushing to market today will not be around for the long haul, perhaps not even a few years from now. Investors today cannot fall prey to an urge that tells them it's okay to suspend good judgment and invest with their eyes closed and their fingers crossed.
Much of today's activity highlights an important difference between trading and investing. Trading is buying in the belief that the stock price will rise regardless of what the buyer actually thinks it's worth... Investing for the long term means focusing on the fundamentals that make up a solid company... no matter how revolutionary change is.
Successful investors, through good times and bad, focus a vigilant eye on managing risk. Periods of promise and prosperity are not an excuse for us to let our guard down. In fact, it's times like these when we need to raise it even higher.


On Anger: "For every minute you remain angry, you give up sixty seconds of peace of mind."
On Destiny: "Our destiny exercises its influence over us even when, as yet, we have not learned its nature: it is our future that lays down the law of our today."
Human, All Too Human
On Friendship: "A crowd is not company; and faces are but a gallery of pictures; and talk but a tinkling cymbal, where there is no love."