Some milestones bring a sense of gratitude and reflection. This is true for me today – Lunt Capital Management, Inc. officially celebrates its 20th anniversary. Warren Buffett famously said, “Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.” While enjoying some of the shade today, it is worth reflecting on the initial planting. The genesis of Lunt Capital goes back further than its official founding on January 9, 2003. The seed was planted in 1997 during graduate school at New York University. I had a Dow Jones terminal wired into our New York City apartment, started building quantitative investment models, and gathered some family money to manage. The confidence of my wife and parents made all the difference, and this instilled trust and stewardship as the foundation principles in our money management DNA.
This seed continued to sprout after returning home to Utah to help manage our family office. I joined with Ryan Hessenthaler, my childhood friend, to continue building investment strategies. We started trading some of the very first ETFs, and we added some additional capital from family and friends as the years progressed. The seed had become a healthy, young tree by the time regulation required registration as an investment advisor in 2003. By that time, we thought we had experienced plenty of investment victories and scars to last a lifetime, including the dotcom bubble and bust, the September 11th attacks, and an extended bear market. It turns out that a lifetime of dramatic market events seems to happen every few years!
The Lunt Capital tree would have withered away years ago without the kindness, support, and trust from amazing family, friends, clients, partners, and employees. There have been countless lessons learned over the years about people, investment strategies, markets, the economy, investment products, and businesses. There are many more chapters to be written on these topics, but I’ll mention five lessons learned in our first twenty years:
Mark Twain is purported to have said, “Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” If this is true for people, it is also true for companies. At Lunt Capital, we feel the same enthusiasm and optimism as we did over 20 years ago, but with an investment lifetime of experience added to the mix. We are grateful for the privilege of working with so many amazing people. Lunt Capital’s Investment Trek continues!
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