HUBRIS & HUMILITY

“The humility required for good judgment is not self-doubt—the sense that you are untalented, unintelligent, or unworthy. It is intellectual humility. It is a recognition that reality is profoundly complex, that seeing things clearly is a constant struggle, when it can be done at all, and that human judgment must therefore be riddled with mistakes.” Philip Tetlock

"Pride of opinion has been responsible for the downfall of more men on Wall Street than any other factor.” Charles Dow

“Markets taught me humility”  Ray Dalio

"It can be granted right away that if you have been a brilliant decision-maker, over a long enough period of time, maybe that's who you are, and it won't hurt you to walk around feeling brilliant.  But it is a dangerous procedure, for the market has a way of inducing humility in even its most successful students"  Adam Smith, The Money Game

"We think humility is essential, especially concerning the ability to know the future.  Before we act on a forecast, we ask if there's good reason to think we're more right than the consensus view already embodied in prices.  As to macro projections, we never assume we're superior"  Howard Marks

"It’s when you’re not humble that you end up doing things that will make you humble." Francois Rochon

"I would recommend being humble. Be open-minded, and do not be conceited." Sir John Templeton

"Humility is an enormously important quality. You can’t win without it. Survival in the end is where the winners are by definition, and survival begins with humility" Peter Bernstein

“If you allow yourself to start thinking you’ve got it all figured out, that’s probably the beginning of the end” Chris Mittleman

“I think the biggest driver for me is humility. By that I mean that I constantly question my thinking on a stock. I am not wed to any particular view” Josh Resnick

“To make money in the markets, you have to think independently and be humble” Ray Dalio

“There’s obviously a balance to maintain between confidence and humility. You have to be humble enough to recognise when you’re wrong. I’m willing to look silly” Bill Ackman

"Successful investing is a delicate balancing act honed over years of training. It requires enough confidence to hold onto positions when every bone in your body suggests you are wrong. And it requires the humility to recognize when you are wrong."  Christopher Parvese

"The balance between confidence and humility is best learned through extensive experience and mistakes"  Michael Steinhardt

"Good investors have to be able to balance humility and self-confidence in just the right amounts." Francois Rochon

"You need humility to say 'I might be wrong'.'' Seth Klarman

"You keep an open mind, keep trying to learn, stay humble and keep trying to learn from your mistakes and other people's mistakes" Ken Shubin Stein

"A lot of my investing is I have humility in that I don't know.  I have a hypothesis, an idea, a belief.  I try and get information" John Burbank

Hubris increases risks more than any other factor. Hubris decreases the quality and quantity of work. Hubris ignores advice. Hubris causes people to treat people badly (and for the ‘treatees’ to decrease their loyalty to the ‘treator’ and fail to inform him of his errors).” Paul Singer

“One of the greatest dangers that confront those who have been through a period of successful investment is hubris – the conviction that one can never be wrong again. An ability to see the funny side of oneself as it is seen by others is a strong antidote to hubris” Peter Cundill

“You need humility because you know you can be wrong, and when you admit that you stress caution by assigning a margin of safety to your investments so that you don’t overpay for them.” Jean-Marie Eveillard

"This is a world of very smart people and you can't enter that marketplace without a profoundly humble view about how you're going to win" James Chrichton

"We regard investing as an arrogant act, an investor who buys is effectively saying that he or she knows more than the seller and the same or more than other prospective buyers.  We counter this necessary arrogance with an offsetting dose of humility, always asking whether we have an apparent advantage over other market particiapants in any potential investment.  If the answer is negative, we do not invest"  Seth Klarman

"We remain humbled by the day-to-day vagaries of our capital markets, and how little control we ultimately have over our investment fortunes in the short term"  Tweedy Browne Co

"Humility is essential in this business.  If you don't listen to others, it's a danger for you, a danger for your clients, and a danger for the portfolio.  If you think you know, you get killed.  It's the end of the game because you stop learning"  Vincent Strauss

"I think a good trader has to have three things: a chronic inability to accept things at face value, to feel continually unsettled, and to have humility, because you are made humble very often in this trade" Michael Steinhardt

"There are two kinds of people who lose money; those who know nothing and those who know everything"  Henry Kaufman

"A cocksure approach to investing will lead, probably sooner than later, to disappointment if not outright disaster" Sir John Templeton

"We make a lot of mistakes each day… You need to have humility in investing"  Francois-Marie Wojcik

"We know that we are fallible and must therefore consider the possibility that for every investment we make we may be wrong"  Seth Klarman

“Become more humble as the market goes your way.”  Bernard Baruch

"I had a great martial-arts teacher who said, “You can’t pour any water into a cup that’s full.” Without humility, no learning. If you think you know, you don’t know. Humility is the most important risk-management characteristic." Adam Weiss

"Humility is the fertilizer of a mind in a constant mode of learning." Francois Rochon

"We welcome rewarding periods of portfolio performance with humility—and with joy. While it’s not always easy, we try to remain unaffected by short term results, both good and bad." Francois Rochon

"The other thing I look for [in a money manager] is open-mindedness and humility.  I have never interviewed a money manager who told you he'd never made a mistake, and a lot of them do, who didn't stink.  Every great money manager I've met, all they want to talk about is their mistakes.  There's a great humility there"  Stanley Druckenmiller

"While we invest with strong conviction, we also know that we do not know everything as humility is an important part of investing" Corsair Capital

"Self awareness is a really important quality to have, as is humility" John Phelan

"Investment success can breed overconfidence and a resulting unrealistically low assessment of risk.  Luckily, I have made a sufficient number of mistakes in my life that there is little danger that I will become over-confident.  In my opinion, a good investor needs to strike the right balance between confidence and humility" Ed Wachenheim

"Self delusion is a powerfully democratic force. It cuts across all social classes. You can be richer, smarter, and more successful than anyone else. But if you're not brutally honest with yourself about your own potential for failure, you're going to have a problem and you're going to lose money, maybe a lot of money." Scott Fearon

"The only thing that could hurt me is if my success encouraged me to return to my childhood fantasies of omnipotence - but that is not likely to happen as long as I remain engaged in the financial markets, because they remind me of my limitations"  George Soros

"Success inevitably breeds hubris in one form or another, and in the hedge-fund business, arrogance eventually levels the exalted"  Barton Biggs

"This is a world of very smart people and you can’t enter that marketplace without a profoundly humble view about how you’re going to win."  Adam Weiss

"After 20 years of investing, I've naturally gained humility the hard way, by making some humiliating mistakes.  Experience reinforces a certain level of intellectual honesty that helps avoid crippling blunders" Allan Mecham

“Generally I think arrogance is not a virtue, humility is.  If you look at the most valuable, most impressive people in the world, they are generally people who have a certain amount of humility to them.” David Rubenstein

"There is a thin line between confidence and arrogance. Humility is a necessary virtue in our business." CT Fitzpatrick

"One of the most important continuums for us is confidence versus humility. It is especially important for a value investor to have the confidence to take a position when the vast majority of investors are on the opposing side. But without humility, one loses the ability to admit a mistake." Bill Nygren

"Ignorance is born of an outsized sense of self-importance. Never let yourself become arrogant. Study hard. The more you learn, the more you will realize how little you know - and armed with this humility, you will never lose sight of the distance that separates self-confidence and self-importance" Jim Rogers