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Investment is most intelligent when it is most businesslike.
- Benjamin Graham, 1973

Investment is a term with varying meanings in economic, financial and military contexts; in economics, investment is related to saving and deferring consumption, and being involved in managing resources of time, energy, materials and efforts in many areas of an economy.

CONTENT : A - F , G - L , M - R , S - Z , See also , External links


Quotes are arranged alphabetically by author

A - F[edit]

  • SWA Magazine: How about orbital space colonies? Do you see these facilities being built or is the government going to cut back on projects like this?
Asimov: Well, now you've put your finger right on it. In order to have all of these wonderful things in space, we don't have to wait for technology - we've got the technology, and we don't have to wait for the know-how - we've got that too. All we need is the political go-ahead and the economic willingness to spend the money that is necessary. It is a little frustrating to think that if people concentrate on how much it is going to cost they will realize the great amount of profit they will get for their investment. Although they are reluctant to spend a few billions of dollars to get back an infinite quantity of money, the world doesn't mind spending $400 billion every years on arms and armaments, never getting anything back from it except a chance to commit suicide.
  • The line separating investment and speculation, which is never bright and clear, becomes blurred still further when most market participants have recently enjoyed triumphs. Nothing sedates rationality like large doses of effortless money. After a heady experience of that kind, normally sensible people drift into behavior akin to that of Cinderella at the ball. They know that overstaying the festivities — that is, continuing to speculate in companies that have gigantic valuations relative to the cash they are likely to generate in the future — will eventually bring on pumpkins and mice. But they nevertheless hate to miss a single minute of what is one helluva party. Therefore, the giddy participants all plan to leave just seconds before midnight. There's a problem, though: They are dancing in a room in which the clocks have no hands.
  • Long ago, Sir Isaac Newton gave us three laws of motion, which were the work of genius. But Sir Isaac’s talents didn’t extend to investing: He lost a bundle in the South Sea Bubble, explaining later, “I can calculate the movement of the stars, but not the madness of men.” If he had not been traumatized by this loss, Sir Isaac might well have gone on to discover the Fourth Law of Motion: For investors as a whole, returns decrease as motion increases.
  • ... there are three connected realities that cause investing success to breed failure. First, a good record quickly attracts a torrent of money. Second, huge sums invariably act as an anchor on investment performance: What is easy with millions, struggles with billions (sob!). Third, most managers will nevertheless seek new money because of their personal equation – namely, the more funds they have under management, the more their fees.
  • With all the clever brains in America it would be great to see more investment and focus on this essential research!
    • Louise Burfitt-Dons Video message sent to Joe Biden in response to his suggestions for green jobs (2009).
  • Every child in American should have access to a well-stocked school library. … An investment in libraries is an investment in our children's future.
    • Laura Welch Bush As quoted in Biography Today : Profiles of People of Interest to Young Readers, Vol. 12, Issue 2 : Laura Bush by Joanne Mattern (2003), p. 34.

G - L[edit]

  • To achieve satisfactory investment results is easier than most people realize; to achieve superior results is harder than it looks.
  • The landlord, qua landlord, performs no function in the economy of industry or of food production. He is a rent receiver; that, and nothing more. Were the landlord to be abolished, the soil and the people who till it would still remain, and the disappearance of the landowner would pass almost unnoticed. So too with the capitalist. ... By capitalist, I mean the investor who puts his money into a concern and draws profits there from without participating in the organisation or management of the business. Were all these to disappear in the night, leaving no trace behind, nothing would be changed.
  • Investment of capital, to yield its fruit in the future, must be based on expectations, of opportunities in the future. When I put this to Hayek, he told me that this was indeed the direction in which he had been thinking. Hayek gave me a copy of a paper on 'intertemporal equilibrium', which he had written some years before his arrival in London; the conditions for a perfect foresight equilibrium were there set out in a very sophisticated manner.
    • John Hicks, Money, Interest and Wages (1982), p. 6.
  • The capitalists of a country which manages to capture foreign markets from other countries are able to increase their profits at the expense of the capitalists of the other countries. Similarly, a colonial metropolis may achieve an export surplus through investment in its dependencies.
    • Michal Kalecki (1965) Theory of Economic Dynamics Chapter 3, The Determinants of Profits, p. 51.
  • As this State's income rises, so does the income of Michigan. As the income of Michigan rises, so does the income of the United States. A rising tide lifts all the boats and as Arkansas becomes more prosperous so does the United States and as this section declines so does the United States. So I regard this as an investment by the people of the United States in the United States.
    • John F. Kennedy Remarks in Heber Springs, Arkansas, at the Dedication of Greers Ferry Dam. October 3, 1963[1]
  • Professional investment may be likened to those newspaper competitions in which the competitors have to pick out the six prettiest faces from a hundred photographs, the prize being awarded to the competitor whose choice most nearly corresponds to the average preferences of the competitors as a whole.

M - R[edit]

  • The intention of the US found its feature through a clear formulation in the Agreement for the IBRD. The “purposes of the Bank” were defined as follows: “To promote private foreign investment by means of guarantees or participations in loans and other investments made by private investors; and when private capital is not available on reasonable terms, to supplement private investments by providing, on suitable conditions, finance for productive purposes out of its own capital, funds raised by it and its other resources”
    • Nico Perrone The international economy from a political to an authoritative drive p. 130.
  • It is the rate of investment which governs the rate of saving, and not vice versa.
    • Joan Robinson (1966) An Essay on Marxian Economics (Second Edition) Chapter VIII, The General Theory of Employment, p. 66.
  • … If you want more work and investment, you hold a sale on economic activity by cutting tax rates, thereby reducing the cost of productive activity and increasing the prospect of after-tax returns on work and investment."
    • Mike Rosen July 22, 2005 Rocky Mountain News column.

S - Z[edit]

  • With joint-stock corporations, investors can place bets on the success of many different companies, without having to play a central management role in any one of them. This allows investors to diversify their financial holdings. It also allows them to capture profits on their investments, without having to get involved in the dirty, troublesome business of actually running a company.
    • Jim Stanford (2008) Economics For Everyone Part 2, Chapter 7, Companies, Owners, and Profit, p. 91.
  • It can be argued that the U.S. brokerage and investment banking industry has transformed the modern American stock market into nothing more than a mechanism for transferring wealth from shareholders to management.
  • The principles of investment are involved in activities that do not pass through the marketplace, and are not normally thought of as economic. Putting things away after you use them is an investment of time in the present to reduce the time required to find them in the future. Explaining yourself to others can be a time-consuming, and even unpleasant, activity but it is engaged in as an investment to prevent greater unhappiness in the future from misunderstandings.
    • Thomas Sowell, Basic Economics, 4th ed. (2010), Ch. 12. Investment and Speculation
  • Economic life should be definancialised. We should learn not to use markets as storehouses of value: they do not harbour the certainties that normal citizens require. Citizens should experience anxiety about their own businesses (which they control), not their investments (which they do not control).
  • I wonder if those who advocate generosity for its rewards notice the inconsistency, or if what they call generosity is an attractive investment strategy.
    • Nassim Nicholas Taleb, The Bed of Procrustes: Philosophical and Practical Aphorisms (2010) Preludes, p.6.
  • What fools call “wasting time” is most often the best investment.
  • The writer, who as an engineer has spent most of his life in factories, is inclined to look at the basis for investment from a technological point of view... Consider … the class of industrial investments only... The situation is one of entrepreneurs and boards of directors considering, from time to time, various ’possibilities of investment’, such as extra lathes or looms, an extension to a factory, a venture in some completely new product, and so on. It is helpful to think of these ’opportunities for investment’ as existing, in a given situation, in great number and variety, whether they are at that moment under active consideration or not. When any such possibility is considered it is assessed in respect of ’expected profitability’. One may conveniently think of all possibilities of investment as ’quanta’ that can be placed in a schedule of small ranges of expected profitability according to these assessments. The placement of a given ’opportunity for investment’ on this schedule has some ’margin of uncertainty’ (a curious analogy with the case of the quanta of physics).
    • Arnold Tustin (1953) The Mechanism of Economic Systems p. 103; As cited in: Prices Revalued as Information: Circuit Elements, online document 2013.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

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