News & Views

News & Views

David (Dave) Iben CFA

David Iben is the Chief Investment Officer of Kopernik Global Investors and is the sole Portfolio Manager of the Kopernik Global All-Cap strategy, Lead Portfolio Manager of the Kopernik Global Unconstrained strategy, Co-Portfolio Manager of the Kopernik Global Long-Term Opportunities strategy and Co-Portfolio Manager of the Kopernik International strategies. He is the Managing Member, Founder and Chairman of the Board of Governors of Kopernik Global Investors.

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Changes in Latitude (Feb 28, 2022)

Although our CIO’s commentary was planned to be published last week, in light of current world events, we elected to hold it back and to address more pressing matters first. We reiterate that our thoughts and prayers are with the Ukrainian people during this troubling time. Like all of you, we continue to monitor events and hope for peace.

In this letter, we have the audacity to give a non-standard view of “Buffett” stocks. Fortuitously, Mr. Buffett issued his annual letter this weekend, lending credence to our belief that he may share the view that now is more of a time for investing in real assets than in the stocks of over-earning consumer brands. In his summary, Mr. Buffett writes about how Berkshire Hathaway was a struggling ‘value’ stock in 1965, having just cumulatively lost money over a nine-year period. Its stock had more than halved. This quintessential deep value stock was the only holding that Warren kept when he unwound his investment partnership in the late 1960s.

Buffett made a point to emphasize (headed ‘Surprise, surprise”) Berkshire’s “Four Giants”: a railroad (BNSF), an utility franchise (BHE), insurance businesses, and – yes – Apple. Three of the four are ‘value’ businesses, two of which are clearly endowed with significant Real Asset holdings. Interestingly, he starts his summary with the fact that Berkshire is the single largest owner/operator of infrastructure in the U.S. It is on their books for $158 BILLION. It was fun to see him end his summary with a reference to “Cousin Jimmy Buffett” who apparently will be selling “party” boats at the Berkshire annual meeting in late April. Apparently, a Berkshire subsidiary is building the boats that Jimmy designed, and Warren is buying one from him. We’ve read that they are long-time friends. Apparently 23andme recently disproved years of conjecture that the two are related.

We hope you enjoy the read.

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Sedona (Sep 2021)

In his new commentary, Kopernik CIO Dave Iben summarizes many of his thoughts on the current inflationary environment and gives examples of how this has benefited value investors. They now figuratively have the wind at their backs.

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29 Palms (Jul 2021)

In his newest commentary, Kopernik’s CIO Dave Iben draws inspiration from Robert Plant and the deserts of Morocco to discuss the Fed’s printing press, the Cantillon effect, and the value Kopernik is finding in scarce, undervalued, useful assets.

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Calypso's Market (Dec 2020)

With so much anxiety about the current euphoria in the market, we thought it was a good time to send out a little stocking stuffer with some of our thoughts. In a nutshell, we reach back into Greek mythology to explain why we believe that people are buying great companies but at the wrong prices. Of course, some are buying hopes and dreams at ridiculous prices as well, but that is a story for another time. More importantly, in our opinion, the real-money making opportunities lie elsewhere. This gives us hope as 2020 merges into 2021. Wishing you a Happy and Healthy New Year.

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The Nine Most Terrifying Words in the English Language - Part 2 (Apr 2021)

As a follow up to his last commentary, Kopernik Analyst and Co-portfolio manager for the International Strategy Mark McKinney furthers the discussion that “help” from the government will create more economic harm than benefit, specifically as it relates to inflation.

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The Nine Most Terrifying Words in the English Language (Jan 2021)

In his latest commentary, Kopernik Analyst and Co-portfolio manager for the International Strategy Mark McKinney describes how the “help” from economic policymakers and government officials has historically and will continue in the future to create more harm than benefit economically and societally.

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Fed Bug (Aug 2020)

In his latest commentary, Analyst and Portfolio Manager Mark McKinney discusses the rise of a new group of believers in the omnipotent power of the government and central banks, affectionately nicknamed “Fed Bugs,” who believe that printing more money will solve society’s problems. He argues that these Fed Bugs are missing the point: economic logic always wins in the long run.

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Kopernik Perspective: Mining (Sep 2020)

In this white paper, Kopernik’s Investment Research team analyzes the potential risks and upsides of investing in the mining space and describes how Kopernik values mining companies.

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Kopernik Perspective: Uranium (Aug 2020 Update)

In this update of our 2017 white paper, analyst Steve Rosenthal discusses Kopernik’s perspective on uranium, its unique properties, and the global opportunities Kopernik is currently seeing in the industry.

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Is This An Inflection Point For Passive Management? (Jul 2020)

In this June 2020 white paper, analyst Taylor McKenna explores the similarities and differences between active and passive management strategies. He argues that passive management strategies, such as ETFs and closet indexers, cannot replicate a more active approach. Using the metaphor of a thoughtful baseball manager, Taylor suggests that active management adds value to an investment strategy.

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BNN TV - Featuring Alissa Corcoran - December 21, 2021

Kopernik's Deputy CIO Alissa Corcoran appeared on Bloomberg TV to discuss Kopernik's top picks among gold miners. Watch the full segment here.

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BNN Bloomberg - Featuring Alissa Corcoran - November 9, 2021

Kopernik's Director of Research Alissa Corcoran went on BNN Bloomberg to discuss why investing in gold miners is a great way to hedge against inflation. Watch the full segment here.

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Bloor Street Capital Uranium Conference - Featuring Alissa Corcoran - October 6, 2021

Kopernik's Director of Research Alissa Corcoran spoke with the team at Bloor Street Capital to provide a rundown of how Kopernik evaluates investment opportunities in uranium and explain why we believe it's still underpriced. You can watch the full conference here.

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BNN Bloomberg - Featuring Alissa Corcoran - September 14, 2021

Kopernik's Director of Research Alissa Corcoran went on BNN Bloomberg to discuss opportunities in emerging markets, as well as some specific picks like RusHydro, KT Corporation, and Suzuken. Watch the full segment here.

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Barron's Article Featuring Alissa Corcoran | These 3 International Value Funds Will Shine in a Global Recovery

Kopernik's Director of Research Alissa Corcoran was featured in a Barron's story discussing the top international value funds, where she spoke with the publication about KGIIX and where to find opportunities in emerging markets. Read the full story here.

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Bloomberg TV - Alissa Corcoran - May 27, 2021

Kopernik's Director of Research Alissa Corcoran went on Bloomberg TV to discuss the exciting opportunities she's finding in emerging markets and why Kopernik prefers gold over bitcoin. Watch the full segment here (starts at 15:53)

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