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Collection: Charlie Munger - #155 'How Are They Similar or Different; Investors and Chess Players'



Nisha Patel in Toronto says, I enjoyed your Caltech interview and wanted you to elaborate and provide more insights on your point of great investors and great chess players. How are they similar or different?

And Nisha also want to know Charlie, if you have seen the television show Queen’s Gambit on Netflix?


Well, I have seen an episode or two of the Queen’s Gambit.

And what I think is interesting about chess is, to some extent, you can’t learn it unless you have a certain natural gift. And even if you have a natural gift, you can’t be good at it unless you start playing at a very young age and get huge experience. So, it’s a very interesting competitive field.

And I think that great investment – I think people have the theory that any intelligent hardworking person can get to be a great investor. I think any intelligent person can get to be pretty good as an investor and avoid certain obvious traps. But I think that – I don’t think everybody can be a great investor or a great chess player.

I knew a man once, Henry Singleton, who was not a chess champion. But he could play chess blindfolded at just below the Grandmaster level. But Henry was a genius. And there aren’t many people that can do that. And if you can’t do that, you’re not gonna win the great chess championships of the world and you’re not gonna do as well in business as Henry Singleton did.

I think some of these things are very difficult and I think, by and large, it’s a mistake to hire investment management — to hire armies of people to make conclusions. You’re better off to concentrate your decision power on one person the way the Li Lu partnership does and [inaudible] choose the right person.

I don’t think it’s easy for ordinary people to become great investors.



[YAPSS Takeaway]

Any intelligent hardworking person can be a good at investing, but it is different if you want to be great. Perhaps, it's a natural gift.

Being good is not bad:

Having 1% of Charlie Munger or Warren Buffett Net Worth is more than enough for most people :)

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