A Primer On Terrible Investing

About this time last year, GT Advanced Technologies announced its surprise bankruptcy filing. The company was known for its enthusiastic shareholders that had the zeal of the St. Louis Cardinals fan base, and stood to make shareholders a lot of money by manufacturing the sapphire glass that would be used in iPhones and Apple watches across the world. When GT Advanced missed a production deadline, Apple switched suppliers and simultaneously demanded debt payments from GT Advanced. The sapphire glass manufacturer created the Bill Buckner mistake of going deep into debt against the company that also had full control of its earnings.

In the aftermath of the bankruptcy, I received quite a few e-mails from readers asking what kind of elements can signal a threat to a potential investment before the benefit of hindsight kicks in.

Aside from valuation concerns, a bad investment occurs when: (1) a company has bad management, … Read the rest of this article!