A Great Business Isn't a Great Investment at the Wrong Price or Wrong Terms 
如果價格或者條件不合適,那大公司也不是好的投資之選

We spend a lot of time talking about the various traits of a good business - high returns on equity, little or no debt, franchise value, a shareholder friendly management, etc. 
我們花了大量時間討論好的投資產品的多種特點:股本收益高、基本沒有債務、特許權價值、對股東有益的管理等等。

Although Charlie Munger's dictum, "it's far better to buy a good business at a fair price rather than a fair business a great price" is true, it is important for you to realize that good results are not likely to be had by those that buy such stocks regardless of price. 
雖然查理·芒格說的“以相對公平的價格買下好的投資產品要好于以高昂價格買下一個相對公平的投資產品”是對的,但對你來說,懂得不考慮價格就買這樣的股票也不一定會有好的收益,這一點很重要。

It's a fine distinction, but one that can mean the difference between good results and disastrous losses. At least, not within a short period of time.
這是細微的差別,但它指的是高收益和災難性損失之間的區別。至少短期內是這樣的。

Back in the late 1960's, Wall Street became enthralled with a group of stocks dubbed The Nifty Fifty. Perhaps the online encyclopedia Wikipedia sums it up best, "[These stocks] had everything going for them - brand names, patents, top management, spectacular sales, and solid profits. 
回顧20世紀60年代末期,華爾街迷上了一批稱為Nifty Fifty的股票,可能網絡百科全書Wikipedia總結得最到位“這些股票有所有讓你買下的理由:大牌、專利、高層管理人員、可觀的銷售額和穩定的利潤。

They were thought to be best stocks to buy them and hold them for the long run, and that was all you needed to do.
人們認為這些是可以買下并長期持有的最好的股票,你只需買下就好。

These were the stocks 'dreams' were made of ...for the long haul to retire with."
這些是做夢都想買的股票,可以長期持有,退休有它就夠了。”

The fatal flaw in this logic is that investors believed that these companies - enterprises such as Eastman Kodak and Xerox - were so inherently good that they could (and should) be bought at any price. Of course, this is simply not the case. 
這一邏輯的致命缺陷就是投資者認為這些公司如柯達公司和施樂太好了,以什么價格都能(而且應該)買入,當然事實并非如此。

Although a stock trading at a high p/e ratio isn't always overpriced, more often than not, a stock trading at a price-to-earnings ratio of 60x is almost assuredly going to generate a rate of return less than that of a so-called "risk-free" U.S. Treasury bond. 
雖然以高市盈率交易的股票并非總是價格偏高,但往往以60x的市盈率交易的股票產生的回報率的確會低于所謂的“無風險”美國國債。

What makes this discussion complicated is:
導致這一問題復雜化的因素是:

First, many inexperienced investors fail to realize that, even though companies like Eastman Kodak went bankrupt, long-term investors still should have walked away with a lot more wealth than they had prior to their investment.  
首先,很多缺乏經驗的投資者沒有意識到即使像柯達這樣的公司破產了,長期投資者仍然可以帶著比投資之前賺到的更多的錢轉移資金。

This can be difficult to grasp if you aren't aware of how dividends, spin-offs, split-off, and even tax loss credits work but it is, nevertheless, the case.
如果你不懂股息、剝離、分拆,甚至抵稅是如何操作的,那這個很難掌握,但事實仍然并非如此。

Second, for 20 to 30 years after the Nifty Fifty peaked, the basket of stocks, as a whole, underperformed the market.  
其次,Nifty Fifty火爆之后的20-30年間,股票籃子整體市場表現不佳。

However, by the time you started getting into the 30 to 40-year range, the underlying businesses were, in fact, so good that they ultimately ended up beating the market as the core economic engines were so superior they burned off the excess valuation. 
然而你買了30-40年之后,這個潛在的投資產品其實也很好,最終能戰勝股市,因為核心經濟引擎太好了,能消耗掉過剩價值。

Not only that, but the Nifty Fifty would have had better tax efficiency than an index fund. When dealing with excellent businesses, the ghost ship approach, historically, has won in the long-run but how many investors are willing to stick with 30 or 40 years of near total passivity in a lifetime that, for most people, will last only 80 years or so? Again, it's an issue for behavioral economics.
不僅如此,Nifty Fifty比指數基金的稅收效益更好,從歷史角度來看“幽靈船”的方法針對好的投資產品具有長期優勢,但有多少投資者愿意一輩子幾乎完全被動地等上30或40年呢?大多數人只能活80歲左右。再強調一下,這是行為經濟學的問題。

All else equal, though, try and avoid investments that are priced to perfection with no margin of safety because a mere blip in operating performance could cause a long-term, catastrophic loss in principal as fickle speculators flee to hotter securities. 
然而其他的都一樣,你要盡量避免定價完美但利潤沒有保證的投資,因為操作時的一點波動,都會對本金造成長期的巨大損失,因為變化無常的投機者會轉向更熱門的證券市場。

Even then, if you are going to consider it, stick solely to the bluest of the blue chips. You can probably get away with overpaying for a company like Johnson & Johnson if you're going to hold it for the next 50 years - nobody knows the future but the odds seem to favor it - whereas I wouldn't be so keen on doing it for a firm like Facebook.
盡管如此,如果你想,你還可以堅持只投藍籌股中最穩定的,強生這種公司的股票如果你在手里存50年也能避免花冤枉錢,誰也不能預測未來,但勝算還是有的,否則我也不會熱衷于長期持有臉書這樣的公司的股票。

 

翻譯:菲菲