Matthew Waterman
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Matthew Waterman in Brand Power,

Relax. Breathe Deeply. Let The Gains Happen.

So the Baltic Dry Index is apparently alive and well now. 

I misquoted the resistance level on my update about that, it's 715 set on 4/27/16, not 710. Sorry about that. Still, the BDI has gone up every day since June 21st, and we could be inside of just a single trading day before we break through that resistance:

As a result, as of right now, I am showing trading profits on two of my four Navios stocks. 

The largest of that group being on Navios Holdings (NH), up a little more than 20% on my average cost. Navios Maritime Partners (NMM) I'm just above breaking even on. Navios Acquisitions (NNA) briefly swung into the green before selling off into the close, along with Navios Midstream (NAP)

At one point Navios Holdings had been up nearly 15% on the day, so I started seeing people ask if they should be selling and taking a quick profit. I'm going to continue to hold for a while. And this is why:

One of the most difficult decisions for me is knowing when to sell. 

You might think that's a contradictory statement based on my recent decisions about letting General Electric (GE) and Paychex (PAYX) go. There are important differences in the reasons for doing that, and they have to do with the business cycles of each, and really nothing at all to do with timing the market. The biggest difference is that both of these companies are healthy, and the Navios holdings are distressed.

Discovering something that seems undervalued in a "normal" market isn't really that hard, you're basically just looking at other stocks in that industry and kind of making a comparison to how much others are earning. With selling, it's similar, but there needs to be a new opportunity to move that money into, or you're just wasting your time, as well as potentially limiting your future gains. 

Capping your gains is one of the hazards that people talk about when they say that you should not try to time the market. And I agree with that. You can move some of your profits out to hedge, but that just makes 35% of what you made instantly due in taxes, so why do that to yourself if you think the thing has more value?

So how much longer are we talking about holding here? What is my exit strategy?

Truth told, I don't have a specific exit in mind. I don't really have a price target in mind right now. That's because of these investments being distressed. I can't make a sell decision until the environment starts to stabilize. I made the initial decision to buy because I could see that internally, there were various small improvements in the company's financial statements, and I knew some things about the economics of these businesses.  

In my opinion, these shipping stocks continue to be very undervalued against what they'd be worth in a normalized market environment. Particularly Navios Holdings and the partnership. While they probably won't get back to 100% of where they once were, even a 50% clawback means that I could get trading gains in the range of a few hundred, to as much as a thousand percent from here if things go better than expected. 

I made that mistake in 2008 when I guessed that the worst case scenario on homeowners walking away from mortgages might be 50%. It actually only ended up being less than 20% of them. As a result, I sold out of my mREITs like Annaly Capital (NLY) too early because these companies had been selling for 1/10th of their previous highs. The environment for mREITs has changed since then, so understand that I am certainly not saying to go pile into those things yet. But it won't be much longer before it's clear who has advantages.

So no, not selling my Navios in spite of being up more than the others I did just sell. 

All I can do for now is continue to absorb and research the earnings reports as they come in. However, I will most certainly tell you when I believe that anything looks like it could sidetrack these businesses from improving.