What It Takes To Be A True Value Investor

In a recent CNBC interview, New York University Professor Aswath Damodaran discusses Apple’s valuation, and in the process lays out a great example of what true value investing is. Damodaran says Apple shares are worth $600, about 30% more than their current price, based on his analysis. While the firm’s recent earnings report, which showed low growth and compressed margins, wasn’t great, he says “that would be a problem only if Apple [had been] priced on the basis of the expectation of high growth. … This is a company that’s being priced for no growth and compressed margins already.” He says that part of why the shares haven’t rebounded is that many people who claim to be value investors aren’t really willing to be value investors when times get tough. “If you’re a value investor, a true value investor, you’ve got to invest when you’re not comfortable,” he says. He says he’s not totally comfortable buying Apple right now, but he will because, while others have been focused on Apple’s share price and downward momentum, he’s looking at the firm as a business. “And I think I’m getting a pretty good business for the price I’m paying,” he says.

Screen shot 2013-02-06 at 12.56.47 PM