What is Kenkyo Investing?
Kenkyo Investing is an investment research service that provides undiscovered gems in the Japanese stock market. We maintain an open blog where we provide regular musings on Japan, some interesting stocks, and answer subscriber and reader questions. We are planning to launch a quarterly “interesting idea” investment newsletter in mid-2017.
After over a quarter century of stagnation combined with concerns over a declining workforce and a large government debt burden, there is almost universal disdain today among foreign investors for Japan.
At the same time, conservatism has been ingrained in the culture of the Japanese, leading to very high savings rates, but most of that savings is directed to cash, insurance, and government bonds, not equities, and those adventurous few among Japanese investors willing to put money in equities are largely technical traders. 80 years since Ben Graham propounded concepts like intrinsic value and Mr. Market, value investing is still surprisingly uncommon in Japan.
With no natural buyer inside or outside Japan, the stocks of financially healthy, profitable, and stable Japanese businesses have languished and currently trade at ridiculously low prices. For example, there are businesses that have posted consistent profits and cash flows over the last 10 years whose stocks are available today at less than half of the net cash on the companies’ books.
Kenkyo Investing was started to broadcast these incredible opportunities to the English-speaking world. With on-the-ground experience in Japan and a quantitative aptitude for finding and processing the cheapest stocks of the best companies in Japan, we hope to create value for our readers and subscribers and turn what is a difficult, lonely endeavor into an easier community effort.
Konnichiwa! I’m Clayton. I’m not a professional investor, but I was introduced to value investing in college and got hooked. My investment style typically revolves around dumpster diving (yes, I like cheap stocks!). I was born in the US, raised in Japan, and returned to the US for college and graduate school. Somewhere along the way, I’ve learned to speak, read, and write fluently in English and Japanese. Despite the long history between the US and Japan, Japan seems to be a mystery box to American investors and vice versa. My objective in Kenkyo Investing is to use my background to bridge the cultural gaps while uncovering value-focused investment opportunities in a mostly technical Japanese market – and share it with the English speaking world!
For anyone who’s interested, here’s a timeline of my life events so far: