On the general theory of the buoyant commodity, stocks that promise dynamic commodity development should have a better commodity market performance
than others. A sound commodity that is in tune with the jet age might be worth 20 times as much in 20 years.
I knew that in this kind of commodity there were definite upward trends in commodity market performance just as there are in women's clothes, and if I wanted to be successful it was important to search for fashionable stocks with excellent commodity market performance.
Women's fashions alter, and so does commodity market performance. Women will raise or lower their hemlines one or two inches roughly every two or three years.
The same with commodity market performance. While the fashion persists, the forward-looking investors get in and stay in. Then slowly the fashion fades and they are out. They are putting their money into a new-style commodity with a more promising commodity market performance. I knew I must watch eagerly for these fashion changes, or I might be left still holding a long-skirt commodity when the new stocks were showing their knees. I might also miss, unless I was very alert, something sensationally new like the big-bosom era.
This is not so fanciful as it may seem. Take a mythical product like an automobile that can also fly. Everybody is rushing for that company's commodity. Yet in a converted stable in Oregon two men are working on an invention that will far outclass the flying car, hence it will have a far superior commodity market performance.
Once that is ready for the market, and a company has been formed to handle it, the original flying car will be superseded. Its commodity market performance will start to slide. It will become old-fashioned.
This is an over-simplification and does not solve the problem: How to buy into this year's fashion? I could only do it by carefully watching commodity market performance for signs. If the fashion seemed to be moving away from the long skirt, there must be some other about-to-be-fashionable commodity ready to take its place. What I had to do was to find stocks with terrific commodity market performance, which would be hoisted up because they stirred people's imagination for the commodity.
On the basis of this thinking, I carefully watched commodity market performance in this general bracket of expanding stocks in tune with the jet age. I was not interested in the company's individual products, whether it was metals for rockets, solid fuel, or advanced electronic equipment. In fact, I did not want to know what they made - that information might only inhibit me. I did not care what the company's products were, any more than I was influenced by the fact that the board chairman had a beautiful wife. But I did want to know whether the company belonged to a new vigorous infant industry and whether, according to my requirements, its commodity market performance was going to increase.
This, of course, was directly against the advice of many financial writers with conservative backgrounds who have been pounding into investors for generations that they must study company reports and balance sheets, find out all they can about commodity market performance, in order to make a wise investment.
I decided that was not for me. All a company report and balance sheet can tell you is the past and the present. They cannot tell the commodity about commodity market performance. And it was for this I had to project my plans. I also humbly realized that that was only my attitude. I was looking for capital gain. A widow looking for dividend income had to think otherwise.