Ep665: Paul Hodges – There’s No Substitute for Judgment

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Quick take

BIO: Paul Hodges is a trusted adviser to major companies and the investment community and has a proven track record of accurately identifying key trends in global marketplaces. He is chairman of New Normal Consulting and a Global Expert with the World Economic Forum.

STORY: Paul invested in a company in the cinema industry, which according to his research, was a well-performing business. After investing, his bank’s asset manager advised him to sell this stock. The stock grew 10-fold after that. Paul missed out on that windfall.

LEARNING: There’s no substitute for judgment. Distinguish between opinion and knowledge. Opinions are not knowledge.


“Distinguish between opinion and knowledge. Just because someone has an opinion on something doesn’t mean they’re experts in what they’re talking about.”

Paul Hodges


Guest profile

Paul Hodges is a trusted adviser to major companies and the investment community and has a proven track record of accurately identifying key trends in global marketplaces. He is chairman of New Normal Consulting and a Global Expert with the World Economic Forum.

His consulting work focuses on the major paradigm shifts taking place in the global economy in Demand Patterns, Reshoring of Supply Chains, Renewable Energy, Circular Economy, Advanced Manufacturing, and Financial Markets. He is a regular speaker at international and industry conferences.

Worst investment ever

Paul was lucky enough to work for one of the UK’s biggest companies, where he had access to the best pension fund advisors. Paul went to one of those advisors and told them he had 20,000 pounds to invest. The advisor gave him a portfolio of eight businesses.

A couple of years later, Paul started seriously thinking about a company he had kept an eye on for a while. It was in the cinema industry. The company was paying a very high dividend of 10%. It had quite a lot of cash in the bank, but everybody hated it. However, Paul went to the cinema a lot. He figured many other people also went to the cinema, so it would be a good company to invest in. Paul invested some money into that stock and added it to his portfolio.

One day his bank wrote to him, saying they’d happily give him an expert review of his portfolio. They told him he had an excellent portfolio but advised him to sell the cinema company, which he did. The stock went up 10-fold after Paul sold his shares.

Lessons learned

  • There’s no substitute for judgment.
  • The key to success in anything is persistence.
  • Distinguish between opinion and knowledge.

Andrew’s takeaways

  • Everybody’s got an opinion, but not everybody has knowledge.
  • Opinions are not knowledge.

Paul’s recommendations

Paul recommends reading a lot to continue learning.

No.1 goal for the next 12 months

Paul’s number one goal for the next 12 months is to focus on his family, especially his kids and grandkids.

Parting words


“It was great being here!”

Paul Hodges


Read full transcript

Andrew Stotz 00:01
Hello fellow risk takers and welcome to my worst investment ever stories of loss to keep you winning. In our community we know that to win an investing you must take risk but to win big, you got to reduce it. Ladies and gentlemen, I'm on a mission to help 1 million people reduce risk in their lives. Join me go to my worst investment ever.com and sign up for a free weekly become a better investor newsletter where I share how to reduce risk and create grow and protect your wealth fellow risk takers this is your worst podcast host Andrew Stotz from a Stotz Academy, and I'm here with featured guest, Paul Hodges. Paul, are you ready to join the mission?

Paul Hodges 00:39
I'm delighted to join thank you for the invitation.

Andrew Stotz 00:41
I am excited to have you on and we're gonna have some fun chat. Let me introduce you to the audience for a moment. Paul Hodges is a trusted adviser to major companies and the investment community and has a proven track record of accurately identifying key trends in global marketplaces. He is chairman of new normal Consulting and a global expert with the World Economic Forum. His consulting work focuses on the major paradigm shifts taking place in the global economy, in demand patterns, reshoring of supply chains, renewable energy, circular economy, advanced manufacturing and financial markets. He is a regular speaker at international and industry conferences. And where I heard him was speaking on a podcast. So Paul tech, take a minute and tell us about the unique value that you are bringing to this wonderful world.

Paul Hodges 01:34
Well, the way we look at it is that I worked we all our team worked at senior levels in the chemical industry, around the world companies that you know, and maybe love like BASF, shell, I worked for ici LyondellBasell, these BP these companies. And what we realized over the years, is that the chemical industry has a unique vantage point in terms of the global economy, because we're right in the middle of the value chain. So we had to look over our shoulder at what's happening upstream in oil and gas, which means you have to know about geopolitics and what's going on there. But also you have to look downstream, and what's happening to all this stuff when it gets to the car manufacturers, the consumer industries, and so on. And we see things happening around six to nine months before Wall Street, and everybody else. And so that's how we make our calls. And we usually get told you don't know what you're talking about. Most famously, when we were talking about quite financial crisis coming in 2008. And bizarre, you really don't understand No, no, we really, really, really do understand about housing and autos, and there's going to be this financial crash. And of course,that was really how we catapulted into working in the financial community. But after that, it people kind of wanted to know what it was all right. You know,

Andrew Stotz 03:03
There's a question that I have that I was just thinking when you were speaking is like, when the when the let's say the sustainability or the ESG group gets to really put a crimp on the flow of oil. What's gonna happen to the plastics industry? And how, how are we going to substitute the products that people are consuming that had petroleum or plastic as, you know, let's say petroleum as a stores? Is there a substitute now? Or where does that go?

Paul Hodges 03:36
Well, I think that where we're going, it's a brilliant question. And we'll find out over the next five to 10 years, the answer, my guess that is having worked on this area now since 2016, when we've brought out the new plastics economy, is that we're not going to get rid of crude oil or together or gas. That's that I don't think that's possible, because there's so much of our economy. Now, what we have to do is we have to reduce our usage of it. And similarly, with plastics, we don't want to get rid of PVC windows, PVC pipes, water pipes, and all of that sort of thing. It's very, very valuable, that what we do want to get rid of is the single use plastics, the plastic packaging that you go to the store, you get all this out in a plastic packaging. It's solely put in plastic bags, and then you throw it away. That is you've got to get rid of and that is actually a very large volume, polyethylene, which is the largest plastic in the world polythene. Other people out of the 20 million tonnes, about two thirds of that is single use packaging. And the answer to that question is recycling. That what we have to do is instead of throwing it in the sea, I mean 10 million 12 million tons a year gets thrown in the sea at the moment one way or another ridiculous, bad for the fish bad for marine life by bad for everything and So we have to get to a new world where we actually start recycling, which means we have to get together, the brand owners, the retailers, the plastics, companies that waste companies that wish all that waste plastic is not a waste. Plastic is a resource. And you know, we don't think about throwing away and we recycle it, we recycle metals. Why on earth, aren't we doing that with plastics, and there is excitingly, now a UN conference, bringing up a law on marine pollution. And the brand owners are all committed to this WEF and others are. So I think over the next three to five years, we will see most single use packaging disappearing, and it will be recycled. And so that will, that will that will solve the problem.

Andrew Stotz 05:43
I remember when I was a kid, and my neighbor I used to go sleep over his house on Saturday nights. And his parents allowed us to have one bottle of Coke on that Saturday night, we went out into the garage and there was a crate of 24 cokes or whatever. They were only like seven ounces. And they were returnable glass bottles. And you know, we used to have a world of you know, returnable almost everything. So maybe it's time to go back to that. That's interesting.

Paul Hodges 06:11
I had a very interesting conversation, I'm sure he wrote My my, my saying with a senior friend in a PTT type company, where we were doing a project together, talking about exactly this subject. And he said, You know, when I was young, he said, My mother used to send me with a banana leaf, to the shop to buy rice, I'd come back with rice. And then very excitingly is that sometime in the mid 1960s, we actually got it in a plastic bag. And so I didn't have to go and get the barley. And we watched the plastic bag, and then we used it again. And now exactly, oh, we just get all these plastic bags, and we throw them all away. So he said, laughing as everybody in Thailand ask, if I have to go back to using the banana leaf. I know how to do it.

Andrew Stotz 06:55
Yes, we have a lot of good kind of home remedies and simple ways of dealing with things in Thailand, I just, I fear that for you know, let's say in the developing markets, emerging markets, they're just craving development, which is what plastic ends up, you know, being of course, my father had a PhD in organic chemistry. And he went to work in 1965, at DuPont, worked in the labs with polymers. And then Ryan went on to sell. Basically, he sold plastic soup, mainly the automotive industry, in the 70s. And in the 80s. And in the 90s. And then he retired. But the point was, is that he towards the end of his career, he worked on recycling, and it was hard, you know, I mean, I just, it was really hard to get the economics working. And I've recently seen some documentary in the US where they're saying, Stop recycling, we're not doing anything with the plastic that you're sending to our recycling place. Because we can't for whatever reason, and I was like, Okay, that's a little scary. What is the state of you know, recycling these days is there still,

Paul Hodges 08:05
there are people with vested interests, who will find anything to call that problem. At the end of the day, you're dealing with a new industry, and there are going to be bumps in the road. You know, I was joined ici, which largest company, apart from DuPont, in the chemical industry, as you know. And we were, we were pioneering PE T at the time. And all we had to do was we had to take on glass bottles, and we had to take on polyester, or polyester had to replace cotton and all these big, you know, big hairy advances and so on. Of course, it didn't go smoothly, nothing ever does. But at the end of the day, if your logic is right, and if you're persistent, you tend to get there. The recycling has now moved from a fringe activity to something that a lot of people now believe needs to happen. And so now we're you know, I go through the sort of four or five questions of life here, why would you do something? What do you have to do? How do you do it? When do you do it? And who? Now we've gone through the why, and the what we know the answer is chemical recycling, plastic recycling, and so on. Okay, so now we have to decide how do we do that? But who does it now? Is it the plastics companies? Is it the waste companies? Is it local authorities that somebody's got to get in a room and get all that sorted out? Boring, and everything else but that's the next stage. And then when we know when we've got to do it, we've got to do it by some of it by 2025. Some of it by 2030. Okay, one look, I had to get moving here.

Andrew Stotz 09:44
Okay, let's before we get into the big way, given your experience in demographic trends, you know, there are so many different things going on. We have Thailand is aging, for sure. And population growth has been very slow. Here We know, you know, there's trends going on in China, Japan, we know has gotten really advanced in the aging cycle right now. Maybe you could give us some insights as to what you're seeing about demographics in Asia. Right?

Paul Hodges 10:12
Well, I think the issue to explain this is that economists tend to look at money supply. And they say, oh, it's all about money supply. And the Friedman came up with this thing of, you know, inflation is always in everywhere, a monetary phenomenon, which is actually wrong. Unfortunately, it's a correlation. But it's not causation. What you have to look at is, after the war, for reasons which we don't fully understand, but there it happened, we have this baby boom, around the world. And in the States, for example, we have more than 50% more babies born in the 1946 to 64 period than in the previous 18 years. If you look across the g7 countries, they're the wealthiest countries in the world, you didn't have 50%, but you had a sort of 12 15% increase. Now, if you think about that, what that means is that after the war, when Europe was literally bombed to pitch was bomb sites everywhere, the states hadn't been bombed. Apart from Pearl Harbor, of course, that it had transferred all its consumer production, and fridges, and so on into tanks, and warships, and so on. So there wasn't a lot of new supply around. So you got all this demand, and you had inflation. By the time you've got into the 1970s. And then the 1980s, the oldest baby boomers, those born in 1940s 1950s, we're moving into employment. And so you now began to sort of you've gone up this peak of inflation, around 1981 1982. And so on. 1983 was the crossover where the average Boomer became 25. So they've now been to university, they've been to technical college, what it was they were out, now they're producing. And of course, they're also consuming, they were settling down, and perhaps even having families that were buying houses and buying cars, and so on. So you got into a 20 year supercycle. But the world has never seen this before. And my generation, your generation, we were essentially, economic policy went on autopilot. Because every year you had more people going into what we call the wealth creator, generation 25 different people. Aha, this one thing that's different now from them, which is that the when I joined ici, we were told that you're very lucky to join ici because you're going to retire at 62. But normally you retire at 65. And you'll probably die at 66. So you'll actually get three more years on the golf course, this is a great environment, especially told that they were wrong at the time. But we don't actually die average at 65. We die at 80. Now, does that mean that everybody continues to consume as they did after the age of 55? No, they don't. They can't a they're not having children anymore. B, they already own most of what they need. When we moved from the UK. to Portugal, we bought a new saucepan because we had a different type of hub that we had. That was all 100 100 euros, we didn't need new samples, we didn't need new beds, we already had them, and so on. So after. And if you look at the data by 7075, consumption has dropped by around 40%. So you say well, why did we have a big slowdown? Why didn't we adjust to this and so on? Well, because the central banks took this stupid idea and frequent about it big and we can create inflation, they said therefore we can create just by boosting the money supply. Well, here we are 20 years later, and we've got a whole load of debt. Now, coming back to your point, what's the position in Japan and China, Japan is I think risking now a major financial implosion. Because the way I look at it simple man, you've got a binary result. Either they let the 10 year rate move up beyond half a percent, in which case rates will go to three or 4%. They won't stop or whatever, at which point they're bust. Because at the Bank of Japan, after all owns 100% of many of the Japanese government bonds, and it ends an awful lot of shares as well. So it's going to have to do a lot of selling very quickly. Or it sticks with this. And we have a repeat of what we saw in quarter three last year where the yen goes from 120 130 the dollar up to 150. But it won't stop at 150 it will go to 200 or whatever. So you're caught between either A massive rise in interest rates or massive devaluation. Not a very good outcome. Similarly, China, China follow here. And then this is all due to Ben Bernanke, if you read Shirakawa sans autobiography, it's quite clear that Ben Bernanke, even before he went on to the Fed, was going round with his stupid idea that the Fed can buy printing money to avoid recessions. So you've got Galbraith, who wrote the history of the 29 crash, and says it was wild speculation. But like you said, no, no, no, it wasn't a wild speculation at all. It was the monetary policy. So if we get monetary policy, right, you can speculate as much as you like, dear people, that'd be wonderful. We don't worry we can. We've had 20 years of it. So now we're at what he did in China was even worse, because he encouraged what had happened in the States with subprime, but subprime on steroids. So you have 29%, almost a third of China's economy, dependent on housing 10s of millions of empty apartments. And because of China's particular position that nobody actually owned any property at all until 7997 98, that sort of time period, there's lack of experience, about house price, and so on, you've got people who are quite prepared to go and buy a property before it had been built. And when it was time to buy, buy a property and hold it, even though the developers got bloody, oh, it doesn't matter. I've got friends, my Chinese friends who haven't been worried about what yet the fact that this apartment is half built? Oh, no, no, no, it's okay. It's fine. But, but what happened in the last six months was a fantastic loss of confidence in the Chinese government, the incompetence of zero COVID was one thing, but you know, okay, maybe you could justify that, and so on. So forth. Failure to use mRNA, vaccines and so on. Okay. very nationalistic. But that's China for you. But now, this total incompetence of opening up. And so the government has actually lost a lot of companies talk to a lot of senior people in China, they don't believe that the Communist Party can necessarily get it right. So now you have a potential big debt crisis, two biggest debtors in the world, Japan, and China. They're sitting there with assets that aren't worth the money that they've been lent on. Now, this reminds me on a much smaller scale, obviously, in the past, of the Latin American debt crisis of Brazil, and Argentina, which took about 10 years to resolve. And obviously, Japan and China are much bigger. That thing, and I, you know, I don't want to pay people, but I do think that we need to look over our shoulders at what's happening. Because it's quite clear, these people don't know what they're doing. They've been very clear about that for quite some time. And it's quite probable that there could be a major, major issue here. And so I'm not saying this is going to happen tomorrow. But I'm saying we're getting to the point where any prudent investor is going to start to say to themselves, you know, just just gonna have another five, give me five minutes, I'll just want to have a check on this.

Andrew Stotz 18:20
What let's talk about Japan, just because that's also, you know, let's say the US is going to work with Japan in one way or another to try to help them resolve the issue. But you've talked about two different scenarios. One is the yen collapsing because the international investor loses confidence. And the other option was raising rates, I believe, which will prevent the yen from collapsing, but would also put tremendous pressure on the Japanese economy content, particularly considering the amount of debt. what is your kind of feeling or prediction about what direction that will go?

Paul Hodges 19:01
I tend to think that, in the end, the market will win out. And that I so that the judgment call, which can of course be wrong, is that I think interest rates are headed higher. And the reason they're headed higher is because the world is at war effectively, with with with Russia, and various people are taking various sides on this. And wars are always inflationary. And we're about to give you an example of this. Somebody was telling me the other day in the military, that at the moment, Europe is supplying about 15,000 artillery shells a month to Ukraine, America is supplying about 15,000 as well. So 30,000 a month, Ukraine is firing 90,000 Okay, this is Europe. This is the states These are big countries, they've got reserves and so on. But at a certain point, they're going to have to start switching production from whatever it was doing to making more artillery Shell's because you can't run your stocks down to zero, and so on. So, so you're going to see greater pressure on inflation is my view, I don't think it's an accident that we've we we went up to four and a quarter percent or so us 10. Year, we came down a bit expected. And now we're back over 4%. Again, I think we're over 5%. And maybe we go to 7% 8%. It depends how it works out. So if that happens, you get to the point where the Bank of Japan is simply overwhelmed. Yeah. That's my that's my best guess. But it is against it could go the other way.

Andrew Stotz 20:40
You, since you mentioned about Europe, and what's going on Ukraine and Russia and all that? What's your prediction about how this ends?

Paul Hodges 20:51
Um, you probably don't want to know, I think they, the way we're at the moment, is you've got a war, which will only end badly at the moment. So one, one way is that Russia wins. So he takes over Ukraine. And next day, or whatever, he goes into a NATO country, Poland, or whatever, because he's on a mission, he said that the biggest tragedy of the 20th century was the loss of the Russian Empire. He didn't say racking their brains in World War and so on, but he wants to reclaim those countries that Russia took after the war. So that's what he wants to do. If he, if he goes into Poland, is going into an ATM country, then that's probably a nuclear war. Equally, of course, if Ukraine were to win, then what does he have to lose? He's no van, he's lost his dream, he's going to get pushed out by somebody else. Push the button. So, you know, the best outcome of this is to play for time, which is you give Ukraine enough heat to win the game, but not enough to win. Right. And that I think is the military strategy at the moment. And you know, I've been on many deals on so on many rescues and so on in the financial markets, I went to one, which went on for about three or four years, we really couldn't see a way in which it would ever be resolved. And the guy who was running it is a very large company, one of the two of fortune 50 companies, and it was on the edge of bankruptcy for four years. And every Monday morning, we had a meeting, and senior guy would start Well, ladies and gentlemen, we survived another week. And then almost out of the blue, something happened to change the dynamics. And we went, Ah, oh, we could get a signature there. We could get that done there we could get. We're out in the woods. Amazing. So you play for to play pay for time. Mind that the great analogy, this, of course, is Wellington. listeners may not remember this too well. But Wellington who won the Battle of Waterloo with 10 years before that, was in the peninsular wars in Spain and Portugal. And Parliament kept writing to him say you must engage Napoleon, you must fight you must fight. And when I knew that, he'd be did engage. He didn't have enough resources he would lose. So he would write back to Parliament. So I'm very sorry. We raced as fast as we could we knew we were going to go but then unfortunately, our you can't believe how terrible it was. And we just missed it. And they know they can. But in the end, that meant that he got to Waterloo, he won't he won in Spain. But he only won in Waterloo, by about four or five hours, have depressions decided not, not not to what marked on but had they decided to camp for the night, which they were perfectly entitled to do? The polling would have lost. So you know, I what I always think is one has to look at the detail of these things. Because when you look back over history, and people will hopefully look back over history that they'll say Oh, well, it was always going to be well, yeah, but something will turn up. That's where I think we are. I'm curious

Andrew Stotz 24:15
when people talk about Putin's you know, next move I'm trying to think about, is he going to Finland and then on to Sweden, is he going to Lithuania? Is he going to Belarus, to Poland and then on to Germany, or is he going south to Romania? Where do you think is his desire?

Paul Hodges 24:37
Well, I'll be a bit what he wants is to reclaim the old Soviet Union. With that he said many times, and so logic Logically, if you can go in any of those directions. Ukraine is always wanted is always seen as part of Russia. And so That was a logical thing, and he got away with Crimea. So why wouldn't you do it? You know, got away with Georgia and so on. So, you know, I don't think he's terribly rational in his decision making this is an emotional issue, you know, and people when they make emotional decisions, as you know, in trading, the 10, not to work out very well. So, I mean, he could do any of those. Yeah. But the point is, you have an HL agreement, Finland is about to go to Sweden obviously hasn't got it because of Turkey, but Finland is there. So, yeah, he does know if he goes into any of those NATO countries that he will face stiff resistance. Of course, Trump goes back into power in America, which case

Andrew Stotz 25:46
he gets a Trump thump. Alright, now it's time to share your worst investment ever. And since no one goes into their worst investment thinking it will be telling us a bit about the circumstance leading up to an intelligence your story?

Paul Hodges 25:59
Well, I thought about this. There's lots of bad investments that you make. I was an oil market trader, for ici in Houston, in the mid 80s. And a very wise trader said to me, at that point, you have to remember, Paul, that all the academic evidence shows that the best traders in the world gate right about 55% of the time. It's 55%. Because there's only four boxes of any trade. One box is you get it right, for the right reasons. Brilliant. you pat yourself on the back zone. Another box is you get it right, for the wrong reasons. Something happened, you got account in a quiet Oh, yeah, I always have exactly what I still got back. Then, the opposite of that is you get it? Good. You got it, right. But for the wrong, actually, you miss something. And so you were wrong. Effectively, your judgment was wrong, or, you know, your basic thesis was right, but something happened. So you've only got those four boxes, and stuff does happen. You know, I was, it is a terrible story. But just to sort of make the point I was trading puts in just just before 911. And obviously, I didn't know 911 was going to happen. And I thought, well, we're coming to the end of that cycle. So I'll sell my puts this morning, and then I'll buy them back down tomorrow, because I think the market will probably bounce a bit. That afternoon, we had 911. Now, my judgment, you can't anticipate nine elevens. You know, had I held just held on to those puts for another four hours, and not not sold out trying to make a quick buck. But you know, I would have made a lot more money. So it's terrible to say we're making more money out of it's a tragedy, but I'm just giving an illustration. So my, when I thought about this, I think it's a very good idea that you've got here is where I started investing. I knew I didn't know what I was doing. And so I went, I was lucky enough to work for UK's biggest company I see. And I, we had access to the best pension fund advisors and so on. And I'd be the sales rep selling. When I got pension. I got the notes from the analyst and the analyst. And those days were very good. And they will teach you things that you visit in the companies every week, didn't realize. And so I went to one of those analysts and said, Look, now I've got 20,000 pounds now because I'm moving out of London, up to the northeast with ici, I need to invest in order to come up. I know that houses in London won't ever be that. And they gave me a portfolio of eight businesses. And so I began to understand a bit of what was going on. And they worked on. And a couple of years later, I started to think, oh, wait a minute. And there was a company that I sort of kept an eye on for a while in the cinema business called rank cinema. And I thought, well, you know, it's paying very high dividend is 10% paying 10% dividend. It seems to have quite a lot of cash on the bank, but everybody hates it. But you know, I mean, I go to the cinema a lot. We all go to the cinema, you know, and so on yet, so I put, I put a bit of money into that. And then my bank NatWest bank, wrote to me and said we'd be very happy we got to stop breaking. I'm very happy to give you an expert review of your portfolio. The format will be nice, you know, so I trucked along to see them and they said oh, you've got heat very well chosen. But the monster No, no, we don't like ragged Oh, really? No, no, no. not obvious at all. Oh, dear. I think you want to sell that. But of course, it went when tenfold.

Andrew Stotz 29:55
So what's the lesson we take away from this? The

Paul Hodges 29:59
lessons we take The way from this is that there's no substitute for judgment. And the key to success, I think in anything is persistence, that if you've made a judgment, and you think you're right, yes, you listen to other people. But what you have to distinguish, and this has been the whole of my career is between opinion and knowledge. So I bought for 20 years, I lived in Manchester. My boys were at the right age, and we went to watch Manchester United play football. Right? So I have a reasonable idea of what about Manchester United, and so on. I watched it every month. And I can understand two boys growing up the ages and so on. Yeah, that was fantastic. So I have what I would call an informed opinion about what's happening in terms of the buying. I know, of course, Jim record isn't the chemical in the gym for 20 years. But do I actually understand what's happening here? I don't, I really don't. But I can chat to you, that will be goes up, go go go for it, go for it, go to a bar or whatever, we can chat to you about magical hyper, ever, very convincing, because I probably know a bit more than you do. And this is the problem, that you get an awful lot of people who know a bit more than you do about something, but they don't actually know what they're talking about. Yeah. And what we follow all the time, is, we tend to be early without judgments. And I can tell you when we started to talk about financial crisis, but first time we did it was the end of 2005, in a letter in the Financial Times, and we went on from there, digging our own grave. And even in September, October 2008, there were very senior clients, very senior clients, indeed, managing directors, Chairman's and so on. And we're saying, Paul, look, we really like what you're doing with your team is great, and so on. But this idea that was happened at Wall Street at lever Brothers is going to affect the economy, that Paul, you're just losing credibility, for goodness sake, one guy actually, thinking he was helping me came up to me in early October and said, Look, I can show you on Audible for the fourth quarter. It's the strongest audiobook we've ever had. So please stop it. Paul, before you lose all credibility, though. Yeah. So you have to be prepared to go through that. Because otherwise, you could have thrown it all the way at that moment.

Andrew Stotz 32:36
Let me I just love the opinion is not knowledge. And everybody's got opinion, but not everybody has knowledge. Yeah. So I think that's a great takeaway. Let me ask you, for a young person who's coming up in the world, whether it's investing, whether it's business, whether it's, you know, forecasting, what's the resource that you'd recommend for them to strengthen their, their abilities or their knowledge, you know, in the areas that you know, a lot about?

Paul Hodges 33:07
Well, I think what I've always done is I read, I read reading is a much maligned pursuit. You know, you can get everything you need on Twitter, or whatever, and so on. But no, I read. It sounds crazy. But this is my this is what, obviously, when I was young, in the back in the 1800s, now 1980s, we've I worked for one of the best companies in the world, I was a sales rep. And we were taught that you had to look around the landscape. For you had to try and understand what was happening on exchange rates. You had to understand what was happening in oil markets, you had to try and understand what was happening in geopolitics, you had to try and understand what was happening. Even in your own industry, I was sent to the paint and misery, industry and detergents and so on. So I tried to understand that. And you had to understand general, politics and finance, and so on. And so you were forever scanning the landscape. Now, when you got into the supercycle, and when you got into the absurdities of the central banks, all of that disappeared, because you didn't have to, because Don't worry, anything anytime it goes wrong, we'll just print it out a trillion dollars, so don't worry, everything Trump will now with that we're going back to this world of the pre supercycle and read everything you can begin to assess. We used to do this at school. You know, when I was 1415, English master would bring in all the papers, and he gets us to read the same story written in six or seven different papers. And you know, how your parents usually got one paper so you got that view whatever it was. Suddenly you saw Oh, my goodness. And that's what you have to do. You have to read I read Nikkei, I read Kai Shing. I mean, the Wall Street Journal, I read The Financial Times, The New York Times, and so on. I read them every day, what they cover, what they don't cover, how they cover it, and so on. And so you begin to think, oh, wait a minute. That's quite interesting. I, what I always find is that something on page six or 10, or something like that? Is you really anything? Didn't know that. I wonder what that means? Yeah. And, and the question lingers in your mind. And so my advice would be read as much as you can as much too tight, you've got family and everything else. I understand all that I've been through it, but read as much as you can allow yourself to think, Well, that was interesting. I wonder what that means. Because very often, it's those little stories that a good journalist has picked up, and they don't know what it means either. But they just thought, you know, I think this is worth pushing past the editor. And, you know, party comes. And so then you've got a bit of background, and then when it starts to become more important, then you can begin to look at it.

Andrew Stotz 36:20
Great advice. Last question. What is your number one goal for the next 12 months?

Paul Hodges 36:26
Ah, at my age, my number one goal is actually you'll understand my kids and my grandkids, not forgetting my wife, of course. She's been my number one goal for quite some years now. And yeah, so we were lucky enough. Our kids of course, had, they were late, having kids themselves. So we had to last year. And now this year, we're having another two. So I say to them, but they don't like that. It's like buses, you know, you wait for ages and suddenly they all turn up at

Andrew Stotz 37:01
once I'm in threes. That sounds great. Well, listeners there you haven't another story of loss to keep you winning. Remember, I'm on a mission to help 1 million people reduce risk in their lives. If you've not yet joined the mission, just go to my worst investment ever.com and join my free weekly become a better investor newsletter to reduce risk in your life. As we conclude, Paul, I want to thank you again for joining our mission and on behalf of a Stotz Academy I hereby award you alumni status for turning your worst investment ever into your best teaching moment. Do you have any parting words for the audience?

Paul Hodges 37:38
Being great to next time, I hope you're invited me to Bangkok, all expenses paid so that we can do this in style.

Andrew Stotz 37:46
Oh, wow. That sounds exciting. I look forward to it. We'll get an audience here to listen into us. Right. Love it.

Paul Hodges 37:53
That's that's opportunity, Andrew.

Andrew Stotz 37:57
That's a wrap on another great story that was Craig grow and protect our wealth fellow risk takers. Let's celebrate that. Today. We added one more person to our mission to help 1 million people reduce risk in their lives. This is your worst podcast. So it's Andrew Stotz saying. I'll see you on the upside.


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About the show & host, Andrew Stotz

Welcome to My Worst Investment Ever podcast hosted by Your Worst Podcast Host, Andrew Stotz, where you will hear stories of loss to keep you winning. In our community, we know that to win in investing you must take the risk, but to win big, you’ve got to reduce it.

Your Worst Podcast Host, Andrew Stotz, Ph.D., CFA, is also the CEO of A. Stotz Investment Research and A. Stotz Academy, which helps people create, grow, measure, and protect their wealth.

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