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Month: November 2011

Flight Of The Permabulls?

Flight Of The Permabulls?

Legg Mason’s Bill Miller, famous for being permabullish during the entirety of the world’s largest bubble of all time (essentially his whole career, when he kept catching his one card straight draw on the river with bailout after Fed-engineered bailout over and over again), is finally calling it quits (Bloomberg):

Bill Miller, the Legg Mason Inc. (LM) manager famous for beating the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index for a record 15 years through 2005, will step down from his main fund after trailing the index for four of the past five years.

Miller, 61, will be succeeded by Sam Peters as manager of Legg Mason Capital Management Value Trust (LMVTX) on April 30, which is the 30-year anniversary of the fund, the Baltimore-based firm said today in an e-mailed statement. Miller will remain chairman of the Legg Mason Capital Management unit while Peters will be chief investment officer.

Miller, a value investor known for his bullish views of the economy and stock markets, became mired in the worst slump of his career as he wagered heavily on financial stocks during the 2008 credit crisis. Value Trust lost 55 percent that year as the S&P 500 dropped 37 percent, including dividends, prompting a wave of withdrawals. The fund’s assets have plunged from a peak of $21 billion in 2007 to $2.8 billion.

Bill Miller is a living example of selection bias at work. Notice what happens when his coin-flipping strategy of “heads” stops working.

We’ll likely see more announcements like this from other “top stock pickers” of the past few decades in the coming months and years. Good riddance!