The Buffett Gandhi Syndrome

Amar Pandit , CFA , CFP

Before you read any further, let me tell you that there is no such syndrome.

I made it up based on my observations of investors (professional, institutional, others) and lessons from these two gentlemen. Nonetheless the syndrome is real. You should be able to see this in people all around you.

Here is how I explain this syndrome.

“Many of us love to quote them, but very few follow them.”

Warren Buffett is the most quoted person in investing. Yet the very people who quote him and the ones who read his wisdom don’t do even a bit of what he says.

Many professionals do the exact opposite of what he says while telling investors that they have the foresight and skill to time the markets and beat some arbitrary index.

Investors on the other hand, end up waiting for the right time to invest, seek out forecasters (for the right time not to mention the right product), try to time the markets and try to beat the same arbitrary index (whereas the only index that should matter to them is their own financial life).