Dow Jones profiles the investment philosophy and outlook of Scott Black, a Boston-based money manager with $900 million in his care, but also gives a frame for understanding his art buying habits:
Art connoisseur Scott Black is annoyed. Demand from investors in emerging markets has been inflating prices for the impressionist paintings he likes to acquire. But fortunately for his clients, the value investor and money manager sees plenty of bargains in the stock market.
Whether it is the art market or the stock market, Black, founder and chief investment officer of Delphi Management Inc., sails through boom-and-bust cycles by adhering to investment principles made famous by Benjamin Graham and Warren Buffett. The key is to pick stocks with earnings growth, strong cash flow and low price-to-earnings multiples.
“Right now, the market is fundamentally cheap,” Black said. “The problem is the fear factor is overwhelming the fundamentals…I’m not a harbinger of doom [but] I’m not Pollyanna, either.” […]
Black maintains a disciplined approach to paintings as well, buying only high museum-quality pieces by masters such as Pablo Picasso, Edouard Manet and Paul Cezanne. With 49 paintings in his collection, he is limiting himself to one acquisition a year now due to the recession.
Black also takes a value approach to buying paintings, but he collects them because he loves them, not to flip them. He has never sold a painting.
TIP SHEET: Scott Black Focuses On Value In A Trader’s Market (DowJones/WSJ)