This archive displays all articles that analyze individual companies. This page does not include articles related to Berkshire Hathaway which has its own archive. In addition to browsing the list of articles, you may also search for a specific company using the search box below.

W R. Berkley Corporation is an insurance holding company operating in a variety of niche markets requiring specialized knowledge regarding a particular territory or product line.  The company was founded in 1967 by William R. Berkley who currently serves as Executive Chairman.  The founder's son, W. Robert Berkley, Jr., has been with the company for eighteen years and became Chief Executive Officer in 2015. W. R. Berkley has expanded mostly through organic growth over nearly ...
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RLI is a specialty insurer offering a variety of property and casualty insurance coverages and surety bonds in a number of niche markets.  The company was founded in 1965 by Gerald D. Stephens who observed a need for contact lens insurance and founded Replacement Lens, Inc.  Over the years, the company expanded into a number of commercial property and liability fields that were historically underserved and required specialized expertise.  From a standing start fifty years ...
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Expeditors International is a leading provider of logistics services offering its customers an international network of integrated systems and personnel specializing in efficient and cost effective movement of goods.  The company is a non-asset based organization that purchases cargo space from airlines and ocean shipping lines on a volume basis and resells the space to its customers.  The company was founded in 1979 by Peter Rose and James Wang in order to offer more compelling ...
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The Progressive Corporation has offered insurance products to consumers since 1937 and is currently estimated to be the fourth largest private passenger automobile insurer in the United States.  Progressive trails State Farm, GEICO, and Allstate and has overall market share of approximately nine percent. The private passenger auto insurance market is highly concentrated with the top four competitors accounting for nearly half of premium volume.  Despite the concentrated market share, competition has become increasingly fierce ...
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With the 13-F filing season underway, investors are again focusing on the equity portfolios of institutional investors who are required to make quarterly disclosures to the public.  Analysis of 13-F reports should be taken with more than a grain of salt given that reported positions are about six weeks old.  Perhaps more importantly, investors are only required to disclose long positions while potentially offsetting shorts are not included.  As a result, it is not uncommon ...
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Markel Corporation is a financial holding company engaged in the specialty insurance and reinsurance markets as well as in a growing number of industrial and service businesses that operate outside the insurance marketplace. Markel seeks to actively invest its shareholder equity and insurance float in a combination of common stocks and fixed income investments in order to achieve higher returns than would be possible in a traditional fixed income portfolio. In many ways, Markel has ...
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Daily Journal Corporation publishes several newspapers and publications with a specific focus on topics of interest to the legal and real estate professions and also provides specialized information technologies to courts and other justice agencies. Although Daily Journal's main lines of business have produced interesting results over the last several years due to dislocations in the real estate markets of California and Arizona, many investors have instead focused on the company's growing and highly concentrated ...
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Loews Corporation is a diversified holding company with the majority of its intrinsic value attributable to majority stakes in three publicly traded subsidiaries: CNA Financial, Diamond Offshore, and Boardwalk Pipeline. Based on market quotations as of May 10, 2013, the value of shares owned by Loews in these three publicly traded subsidiaries was $16,360 million. With Loews Corporation’s market capitalization of $17,721 million, investors are paying $1,361 million for the rest of Loews, commonly referred ...
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Over the past several months, Contango Oil & Gas Company shareholders have received a steady stream of bad news.  The most significant development was the medical leave of absence and subsequent death of Kenneth R. Peak, the company's founder and longtime Chairman and CEO. Mr. Peak was a unique figure within the oil and gas industry and was often referred to as the "Warren Buffett of oil and gas" based on his plain spoken manner, ...
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Over the past month, there have been a number of notable developments at Contango Oil & Gas Company. The company's stock price has remained under significant pressure due to a number of company specific factors including a dry hole and concerns regarding the health of Chairman Ken Peak. We published a bullish profile of Contango on September 22.  Since the article generated quite a bit of interest and reader comments, we will present a summary ...
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Oil and gas wildcat exploration has never been for the faint of heart.  Modern exploration techniques require significant capital investments and the regulatory climate has become more of a burden over the years.  Even with advanced technology, projects are often more likely to fail than to succeed yet the lure of mineral riches is enough to attract significant capital to the industry.  The long period of depressed natural gas prices has led many value investors ...
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"In the short run, the market is a voting machine but in the long run it is a weighing machine." -- Benjamin Graham In this article, we revisit the investment thesis for Investors Title Company which was first profiled on The Rational Walk in November 2010 with an update provided in March 2011. Investors Title is one of the smaller players in the title insurance industry which provides an essential but little understood product required ...
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Loews Corporation is a diversified holding company with most of its value attributed to majority stakes in three publicly traded subsidiaries:  CNA Financial, Diamond Offshore, and Boardwalk Pipeline.  Based on market quotations at the close of trading on March 9, the value of shares owned by Loews in these three public subsidiaries was $14.7 billion. With Loews Corporation's market capitalization at $15.3 billion, investors are paying less than $600 million for the rest of Loews, ...
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Dear Readers: We published a report on Platinum Underwriters in late October 2011. At the time of publication, the report was offered for sale at a cost of $30. Since three months have passed since the report was originally published, we are pleased to now offer the report to readers free of charge. The investment thesis remains unchanged since the date of the report although the share price has advanced slightly. To download the report, ...
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