My love for investing began with my late grandfather, who prepared the soil, planted the seeds, and kept the garden fertile. My grandfather was born in 1905, and as was common in the farming community in the early decades of the 1900’s wasn’t formerly educated beyond the 6th grade. After the Great Depression he formed a commercial painting and contracting business with his brothers that found a niche in painting the large electrical towers along the highways in eastern Kentucky that proved to be profitable.
Although this small family business was eventually successful, he realized to have real wealth he needed to invest. His investment philosophy was formed by trial and error, and after enough losses he learned that the key to success in the stock market was to focus on quality companies that paid dividends.
When I was old enough to pay attention, my grandfather began to teach me the fundamentals of business and when you invested you needed to know how to recognize quality and good value. In college I made a connection between these lessons and my course work in business and economics. During the introduction to securities analysis, I discovered the lessons from my grandfather were similar to the basics of value investing as taught by Charles Henry Dow and Benjamin Graham. This link from the past to the present was the linchpin that cemented my interest in all things associated with stocks and investing.
I entered the financial services business in 1984 at a privately held boutique in La Jolla California. One day the owner handed me a copy of Investment Quality Trends. “I think this is right up your alley Kelley. You and Mrs. Weiss appear to share the same philosophy. What she has is a system, and if you learn it and follow it I think you will do right by your clients.” Needless to say, he was right, and I became a big fan of hers.
In 1987 I moved on to Dean Witter Reynolds. While working at a NYSE firm had its advantages, I came to realize that the “sell” side of the business wasn’t for me as I wanted to be on the same side as my clients. Eventually I moved on and in 1997 I sold my share of a financial planning firm I had started in 1990 to my partners to focus solely on portfolio management as a Registered Investment Advisor.
In 2002 I was offered an opportunity to meet Geraldine Weiss, the aforementioned Publisher and Editor of Investment Quality Trends, and the author of Dividends Don’t Lie, large portions of which I had committed to memory since I purchased it when it was published in 1988.
What was supposed to be a short visit where I told her I was a big fan, etc., turned into a lengthy discussion of investment philosophy and that we shared many of the same influences, primarily Dow and Graham. At the end of two hours Gerry (as she was known to her friends) leaned over, patted me on the knee and said, “Honey you get it, I think you should run it.”
Now, I am not a writer by any means, which was frightening as Gerry had an elegant and eloquent writing style. I was convinced the subscribers would revolt en masse, because seriously, who could ever fill the shoes of the legend, the Diva of Dividends, the incomparable Geraldine Weiss.
With Gerry’s faith, love, and support, the subscribers embraced me and allowed me to continue her work. I will be forever indebted to her for entrusting me with her baby, but more importantly for her accepting me as her son from another mother.
So, there you have it. The layout and appearance of IQ Trends has evolved, but the approach and philosophy has remained as Gerry created it in 1966. Today we have subscribers in Canada, the U.K., Asia, Australia, and much of the Middle East. A sister company, IQ Trends Private Client Asset Management, is a Registered Investment Advisor that offers managed accounts according to the IQ Trends philosophy. In 2009 I published a follow up to her seminal work, titled Dividends Still Don’t Lie, which has been translated into the Chinese, Japanese, and Korean languages, as well as a digital version and an audio book.
Like Gerry I enjoy teaching and have followed her lead as an active lecturer at The MoneyShow and other tradeshows across the U.S. and abroad. I have also been a guest and contributor to CNBC and Fox Business. At some point along the way my writing skills improved sufficiently that my commentaries have been published in Barron’s, Forbes, The Economist, MarketWatch, and many other business and financial periodicals.
Investment Quality Trends is the creation of our Publisher Emerita, the incomparable Geraldine Weiss. From the first edition of the newsletter in 1966 to her retirement from day-to-day operations in 2002, Mrs. Weiss is a pioneer in the investment advisory community. In the previously male-exclusive world of investment analysis and advice, Mrs Weiss was the first woman to be a licensed investment counselor and registered investment advisor to publish a stock advisory newsletter.
A graduate of the University of California at Berkley, Mrs. Weiss is an analyst, author, lecturer and long-time guest and contributor to financial radio & television. Barron’s, The Wall Street Journal, Fortune, Forbes and the New York Times are just a few of the major financial periodicals and newspapers that have published her analytical work and interviews. Prior to her retirement, Mrs. Weiss was a frequent guest on Wall $treet Week with Louis Rukeyser, Marketwrap, Moneyline and CNBC.
Dubbed “The Grand Dame of Dividends” by the Los Angeles Times, Mrs. Weiss co-authored the seminal work for dividend-centric value investing; Dividends Don’t Lie. Her follow up best seller, The Dividend Connection, cemented her reputation as the undisputed expert on dividends and value investing.
We love to hear from our subscribers so reach out any time. Kelley will answer your emails and calls personally. Send to email@example.com.