SigNet Slides 1 – Big Picture Investors

Big Picture Investors

Today’s post contains slides from a presentation that I gave to the London Branch of SigNet back in October.


You might have come across SigNet at one of the investor shows, where they often have a recruitment stand.

SigNet stands for the Serious Investors Network, although as you will see, I would argue that they are not very serious at all.

  • They’ve been around for twenty or thirty years, and there is a loose national association between what amounts to a series of local groups organised along similar lines.

The network was started by a single person travelling from town to town.

  • That individual is now getting on a bit, and the baton has passed to a committee of three or four.

Annual membership costs £25, and that entitles you to attend as many local meetings as you wish.

  • If you live in London, where there are several groups, this can be quite good value.

On top of that you need to pay for a meal, as this is usually the basis on which the venue – often a room above a pub – was obtained for free.

  • As the last meeting I attended, the whip round for lunch and a coffee was £15 a head.

If there’s any money left over at the end of the year, it usually goes behind the bar at the end of the December meeting.

A typical meeting agenda includes:

  1. A review of everyone’s trades since the last meeting.
  2. A couple of presentations, sometimes from group members, other times from external people.
  3. A detailed analysis of a stock that someone is thinking about buying.

There are no presentations from companies, and it’s not an investment club in the original sense of pooled money being invested as one portfolio.

  • It’s more of a social club for people interested in stocks – a nice day out.

There’s no “homework” between sessions, and indeed, there’s usually nothing actionable which emerges from a meeting.

Me & SigNet

I joined Signet in late 2016, after attending the London Investor Show.

  • I went to around 20 meetings of two of the London groups (one daytime, one evening) before deciding not to renew my membership after the February 2018 meeting.

I felt that the formation of the new committee was an opportunity to bring the practices of the group up to date.

  • But instead they reaffirmed their commitment to the original principles of the 1980s and 1990s.

I kept bumping into Ray, the chair of the London day group (and indeed, now the chair of the new committee) at investor events, and eventually I persuaded him that I should explain to the group why I left.

My presentation

My presentation was a long one (90 slides) though on the day it was divided into two parts by lunch (since the presentation before me overran, and lunch arrived early).

I would say that at least two-thirds of the very mixed audience had no interest in what I had to say.

  • Perhaps the readers of my blog will agree after they have seen the slides.

Since my blog posts are an average of 1,500 words and are designed to be read mostly in five or six minutes, I have divided the slides into sections:

  1. Big Picture Investors
  2. Overview of 7 Circles
  3. It’s Good To Talk
  4. Psychology
  5. Decumulation
See also:  Why I am not a Value Investor
Big Picture Investors

Big Picture Investors (BPI) is a mythical investor group that I invented to illustrate what I don’t like about SigNet.

  • BPI is the opposite of SigNet – an idealised gathering for which it would appear there is zero demand from anyone other than myself.

I had a similar experience when I tried to get a virtual investor club off the ground.

Anyway, enough preamble – here are the slides.

  • If there’s anything you don’t understand, or there’s stuff you disagree with, let me know in the comments below and I’ll try to sort things out.

I have zero previous experience with embedded Google Slides, but I know that you can enlarge the window by clicking on the broken box icon to the bottom right.

  • I’ve added a slowish time out to advance the slides, but if you want to go more quickly, use the right arrow to he bottom left.

You can go back and / or pause with the controls next to that.

Until next time.

Mike is the owner of 7 Circles, and a private investor living in London. He has been managing his own money for 39 years, with some success.

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2 Responses

  1. James says:

    Mike, hi
    Good set of info here – although I can only see the first 20 slides of the deck ?

    • Mike Rawson says:

      Hi James,

      Yes that’s right – the full deck has around 80. But they would take much longer to go through than a regular post, so I’ve split the presentation into four sections.

      The rest will be along soon.


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SigNet Slides 1 – Big Picture Investors

by Mike Rawson time to read: 3 min