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Howard Marks on investing: 'The best opportunities are not in the public markets'

Well-known billionaire investor Howard Marks said some of the best investment opportunities at the moment are not in the run-of-the-mill stock market.

"The best opportunities are not in the public markets,” the co-founder and co-chairman of Oaktree Capital Management said on Yahoo Finance Live. “The public markets are just too easy to access, it’s just too easy for people to find out about and hop on the opportunities until they get fully priced. A great deal of what we are doing is in private investing, private lending, emerging markets or the things that are off the beaten path."

Oaktree Capital Management has more than $150 billion in assets under management. Marks has made his name on Wall Street by taking contrarian bets, ones that aren't so apparent to the mere mortals on the Street.

So it's no surprise Marks isn't being persuaded by the negative market reaction to the hawkish Federal Reserve meeting on Wednesday.

"This is a good time to be at our normal neutral position between offense and defense," said Marks. "There are some good things going on in the world like the economic growth — which is very exciting — and the return of the economy. But there are also worries like the return of inflation. So I would say steady as you go — not more aggressive than usual but also not much more defensive."

Beyond continuing to stay a student of investing, Marks is teaming up with his colleagues in the alternative investment industry to improve diversity.

Howard Marks
Howard Marks

Apollo Global Management, Oaktree and Ares Management said this week they are committing $90 million over 10 years in an effort to attract more Black talent to the alternative investing space.

The AltFinance program will include a mentored fellowship (run by nonprofit Management Leadership for Tomorrow), a scholarship program and a virtual institute offering courses designed by the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School.

AltFinance will be launched in partnership with Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College and Spelman College.

Brian Sozzi is an editor-at-large and anchor at Yahoo Finance. Follow Sozzi on Twitter @BrianSozzi and on LinkedIn.

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