Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Larry Coats: Riding Out the Storm with Quality Stocks

This summer's rumble on Wall Street doesn't faze Larry Coats, portfolio manager of the Durham (N.C.) Oak Value Fund. He has seen his share of ups and downs, and has learned to avoid companies heavily reliant on the credit markets.

Sticking to the investing principles taught by Benjamin Graham and Warren Buffett, Coats buys companies that he can understand and put a price tag on. "This is a great time to be able to say: I know what this business is worth," he says. "It makes it a lot easier to sleep at night."

Coats also likes to find companies that aren't being appreciated in the market. "Our goal is not to eliminate risk," he explains. "It's to identify and understand the pricing, and take advantage of the mispricing whenever we see it."

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