This website is primarily dedicated to the economic ideas of Harry Browne, the creator of a highly unconventional investment strategy called The Permanent Portfolio. The Permanent Portfolio (PP) approach calls for an equal allocation to stocks, bonds, cash, and gold assets rebalanced regularly. Browne’s idea was that this would create a balanced portfolio that had many different drivers of risk and return.
Other investment strategies tend to have a bias towards one or another economic condition. Usually the economic condition of choice is that of prosperity, which usually means a strong weighting towards stocks. Investors like Warren Buffett very much fall into this camp. Economist Harry Dent is a strong proponent of the deflation scenario, and thus would favour long-term bonds. Former Presidential prospect Ron Paul is partial to the inflation story and has much of his assets tied to gold and gold mining stocks.
The Permanent Portfolio philosophy seeks to eschew this kind of lopsided thinking and simply accepts our collective ignorance regarding the future.
We just don’t know what’s going to happen next.
Since learning about this highly unusual investment strategy I have come to learn that its underlying thinking and perspective has tendrils that branch out into other aspects of life such as business, stoic philosophy, epistemology, and more. I intend to use this platform to write about these topics as well.
Before finishing up this post I’d like to thank two modern thought leaders on this topic that are unfortunately no longer part of the PP community: Craig Rowland and J.M. Lawson. They are authors of a modern treatment to the PP strategy, and I owe much of my knowledge in this topic to them.