John Verhallen [john6731]
What business are you in and what is your position? Are you an owner or an executive?
Im in the equity business of investing and am owner of Verhallen International.
What is your professional position? What responsibility do you have in your work?
My professional position is an investor which includes, managing, buying and selling among my holdings of stocks in publically traded companies.
Which has your career path been like? How would you summarize your experience in the financial arena?
I like to summarize my experience by my previous mistakes. I think the mistakes really makes you much more experienced and this type of financial knowledge you can't pay for at any university or college.
Is there a link to a website or social network site where we can see something more about you or your business?
I make most of my financial or investment comments from twitter. People follow me there.
How do you develop an investment strategy? What factors must one keep in mind for this?
I believe you really need to research the basic fundamentals of a company before making a purchase of their shares. I beleive you become a better investor when you look at where the company is fundamentally. You really need to know what management is thinking. Other factors for investing are very clear. I look for companies that have smart managers, a business that is a leader in their sector and that values their shareholders.
What are the most frequent errors that people make when investing?
I think where people make most of their mistakes is either by not listening to their own gut instincts or by paying to much attention on fear factors. These mistakes can prove to be very costly and a good investor always listens to their own instincts and filter out nonsense.
There are people that prefer to invest in things that can be touched, like houses, art, gold, etc. Is this a bad idea?
I don't think its a bad idea. Most of my holdings produce things that you can touch but, I also think you can make good investment choices through things that are also done behind the scenes. For example, Dupont makes a lot of things that you don't realize that are part of products until they go into a finished product, and that is a real business with real value. Dupont is a world supplier of food enzimes, industrial coatings and seeds which in my opinion is where the real money is.
What percentage of income should a 30 year old professional invest for the future?
I think you have to spend what is within your comfort zone while keeping in mind, the more comfortable you are with spending more money on your investments the more successful you are going to become.
If a friend invites me to invest in his/her business, what precautions should I take?
I think a huge factor relies on trust. Can you really trust who you are paying on return. Another factor would be to consider how good of management skills do they have to really get their business to be a success.
How is personal economics taught? At what age should children learn to handle their own budgets?
I think personal economics is taught by actually hiding your finances from your kids. When you show you have money your kids know you have it. What lesson is that teaching when they know you have money? I would say the earlier you can teach children about finances and the importance of investing, the better. Something like this should be taught in schools.
How secure are banks and government guarantees on deposits?
Like a lot of people have been saying over the years if they are like the Canadian banks they are very secure. Other countries really need to learn from their business models when it comes to banks.
Are there any well-known millionaires that you admire for the way they have made their fortunes?
I really admire Donald Trump senior. I think he is a true businessman in every sense of the world. Hes a very smart man that is a real thinker.
Where do you seek counsel and information when working on something bordering on illegality?
You need expensive lawyers that will go that extra mile for you. Expensive lawyers are smart and this is really something you cannot afford to cut yourself short on. Pay your lawers well and they will fight. For example, all Duponts lawyers are all multi millionaries. If you don't have good lawyers working for you, you will lose a lot of battles you cannot afford to lose.
Which are the most trustworthy and objective market information sources that you rely on?
I like to rely on the news for market information. Or sometimes I obtain the email of a CEO of one of my holdings and ask them directly. The more you know or can find out, the better your investment decissions become.
Always have high respect for privacy.
How do you see your future in the long term? Where is your career headed?
In the long term I hope to achieve billion dollar status as an investor. My career will always be as an investor. I love the deal makings and the fact that money never sleeps.
Do you have a handy saying or a relevant expression on the subject of money?
Its always easy to spend money. Making it, keeping and getting it to accumulate have always been the hardest tasks of all.
London - Canada