Interesting interview with Rakesh Jhunjhunwala

As a retail stock investor, I found the pessimism among my fellow retail investors quite inexplicable. So many fundamentally solid stocks are well off their intrinsic values and yet, they seem to find no buyers! After doing a bit of research into whether I was missing something, I found this interview of Rakesh Jhunjhunwala. Apparently, he too shares my confusion! But his claims that this is one of the best times to buy equities got me excited about it and I thought I should share it with our readers. The interview dispersed pearls of wisdom, which reiterates the fact that disciplined investing into good fundamental stocks reaps long term benefits for retail investors.

One of the Best Times to Buy Equities:

When the ‘Big Bull’ speaks, everyone pays rapt attention, and I too got absorbed listening to his keen observations about the stock market, the macros of the economy and his sectoral views.

Reflecting on the possible causes of pessimism in the emerging markets in general, low commodity prices and basic structural imbalances (especially in China) were cited as the reasons for growth moderation amidst high expectations. Calling US as ‘economy on steroids’, he mentioned that the hyped recovery in its economy, as shown by improvement in housing sector, is not backed by the savings and earnings growth rate, making it less real and less sustainable. Though unemployment rate in US fell to 7.4% in first half of 2013, quantitative easing is not expected to end any time soon. However, the quantity of bond purchases might be reduced.

Let’s hear it in his own words!

His proclamations about the Indian markets, though, were quite optimistic and were validating my line of thought. The depreciating values of the Rupee, exit of FIIs and low corporate earnings have impacted the stocks without a doubt, but the fact that the Nifty has not cracked the psychological 5500 barrier, is certainly a cause for some cheer. Commenting on the good monsoon and improved agricultural production in FY 13, his belief in the macro-economic prospects of the Indian markets remains strong. He shared his belief that some stocks are receiving ridiculously low valuations. So low that even if uncertain macro-economic conditions are considered, they appear to be ‘chori ka maal’.

Given how far off their intrinsic value these fundamentally strong companies are, it wouldn’t be too much to expect a growth of 17-18% CAGR from the Indian markets over a period of the next 7-8 years. In his view, the Indian retail investors should, in fact, go head-on into the market and pick fundamentally strong stocks for the long term at these ‘chor bazaar’ rates.

Talking about the potential upside, he said that it is quite possible of getting even a 24% CAGR on solid stocks – with the assumption that the macro environment might cause some short term pain to investors.

Sector-specific Views:

When asked about his views on specific sectors, Jhunjhunwala said that he is extremely optimistic about the pharmaceutical sector for the next 10 years. He also felt that investors need to revise their expectation from the IT sector. Since the sector has now ‘matured’, even the Rupee depreciation would not be able to push the returns of this sector beyond 12-18%.

Regarding the Banking sector, especially PSU banks, he said that investors need to choose their picks carefully, keeping in mind the fundamentals of individual companies. India is a fairly unbanked country, thus, huge potential for financial inclusion points towards good growth expected from banking sector; and going by the valuations of  PSU banks, there is a lot of money to be made on those in the long term as well.

Regarding the current account deficit (CAD) issues, India is currently reeling under; all the possible measures are being taken to reduce the import of gold. Recent RBI regulations on gold import have therefore, impacted Titan Industries. When asked about his crown jewel, Titan Industries, which forms a decent portion of his portfolio, he shared his optimism about the stock despite the short term pessimism hovering around it. He claimed that while Titan might post low ROCE numbers, owing to a high capital employed, but the overall ROE will still remain high. What remains to be seen is if Titan can pass on its high interest costs on to their customers.

The message from the ‘Big Bull’ is loud and clear to me. This is hardly a time for pessimism. On the contrary, investors should be going head-on into to the stock markets as from these valuations, there is no way to go, but up. The key message is to have a 5 year horizon and be ready for some short term pain. But investing in good stocks at these levels will certainly give solid returns in the long term – provided investors are willing to assess the risks associated with investing in stocks and picking fundamentally strong stocks.

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8 Responses to “Interesting interview with Rakesh Jhunjhunwala”

  1. in every down cycle the five years horizon is a catch, and lo a nad behold since 2008 there is a down cycle every alternate year atleast………..stay away from stocks, sip, mutual funds …….these tulsians, sukhanis, etc are in cahoots with the likes of rathi, angel and other broking firms to cajol u to invest or trade and eventually empty your pockets……….but yes 5 years hence L&T, sbi, bob, lic hsg, ril, will rally……..can it match property investment is your luck……buy banks, realty now….be a contrarion it can get much better for them rather than a Godrej, hdfc, HDFC BANK or ICICI ………believe it or not the luck factor is more important

    • Well said gaur…. Contrarian approach is wise but all the luck and no research is not very wise….. I agree on the sectors and some of the above mentioned stocks….

  2. Dinesh K / vasai 08. Aug, 2013 at 7:17 pm

    RJ looks at present scenario from future perspective, he looks at positive possibilities in the plethora of problems and extreme negativism India is experiencing. Having filters for investing in stock markets and applying a check to companies which have performed and believes in cracking the grim situation will be winners. Take Eicher motors Limited as an example. The news that volvo its JV partner has planned to get its products manufactured by the JV for the world is a great achievement of Eicher and its engineering capabilities. Salute to such corporates inspite of global/local problems. remember this will also pass and after dark night there is a next day… sunrise… which will come though it may come a little late this time

  3. lalit, ahmedabad 12. Aug, 2013 at 1:28 pm

    90% of stocks have have not recovered since 2008 downfall, but in fact collapsed in spite of sensex or nifty almost recovered fully. e.g, suzlon, dlf, punjllyd,gvk, gmr, hcc, lanco,tatasteel,aban, all these are A group stocks. all other stocks are down to a level of 2008 collapse. at that time also said pick for long term, 6 years passed i dont think that any delivery based buying gave returns, but i m sure all the investors have lost money more than 50% of their investment, in many cases more than 80%

  4. lalit, ahmedabad 12. Aug, 2013 at 1:45 pm

    day trading and positinal trading is extremely compulsory for consistent profits in markets. LONG TERM WEALTH CREATION HAPPENS IN DREAMS, BUT THE FACT IS YOU HAVE TO TRACK MARKET DAILY FOR PROFITS WITH SOUND FINANCIAL BACKGROUND. TRADE WITH FUNDAMENTAL AND TECHNICAL ANALYSIS. ONLY TRACK ESTABLISHED BRANDS BUILDER STOCKS LIKE MARUTI, BRITANNIA, DRREDDY, WITH SOUND MANAGEMENT AND GOOD QUATERLY RESULTS

  5. lalit, ahmedabad 12. Aug, 2013 at 2:01 pm

    RJ IS FINANCIALLY SOUND PERSON AS SAID IN HIS INTERVIEW, HIS STOCKS PICKS LIKE A2Z MAINTANCE(DOWN MORE THAN 80%), INFOMEDIA(FROM 100 TO SINGLE DIGIT), PRAJ(DOWN MORE THAN 55%), NCC(DOWN MORE THAN 60%), AND MANY MORE HAS DESTROYED WEALTH MORE THAN 80%, IN LAST 10 YEARS. IN 2008 COLLAPSED HE SAID THAT THIS MARKET IS NOT FOR RETAIL INVESTOR. OTHER THING ASK UR BROKER THAT HOW MANY CLIENTS HAS MADE WEALTH CREATION IN LAST 10-12 YEARS? U WILL GET THE RESULT.

  6. RJ SAID IN 2007 THAT MARKET WILL NEVER GO BELOW 4500. AT THAT TIME HE SAID THAT THIS IS THE BEST TIME TO INVEST IN BOOMING INDIAN MARKET AND ALSO SAID EVERYTHING WILL GO UP. AFTER THAT IN 2008 NIFTY COLLAPSED TO 2400. IN 6 YEARS ONLY HIS INTERVIEW WILL NOT MAKE WEALTH CREATION. WE HAVE TO UNDERSTAND MARKETS. AM I RIGHT

    • I don’t think year’s 2008 to 2009 should be counted to disparage anyone’s call. Those were extremely peculiar years and reasons of the volatility were far beyond our continent, let alone the country.

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