How many people could end their career with the vice chairman of a huge corporation and a son living in China coming to attend their retirement party?
Well, Clyde Krause did on Monday.
After serving 43 years as an investment broker, Krause is getting ready to hang up his ticker tape at Piper Jaffray at 304 E. Fifth in Storm Lake. Not that he's going to completely get out of trading any time soon, though. Krause says he's going to taper off for a while.
Krause started 43 years ago working for the E.I. Du Pont company, through the years working his way up to Piper Jaffray branch manager. Piper Jaffray, a Minneapolis-based company with 110-year-old roots, does most of its business west of Chicago, according to Brad Beukelman, current branch manager.
Also at Krause's retirement party Monday were his son, Brett Krause, a banker with Citi Bank in Shanghai, China, along with his wife Isabelle and son Quentin; Tad Piper, vice chairman of Piper Jaffray; and Bill Benjamin, Piper Jaffray regional director.
"This is a good guy, been with us a long time," said Piper, explaining his reason for making his appearance at Krause's retirement party.
"That's the feeling you get from Piper Jaffray," said Rick Peterson, who has brokered in the office with Krause for several years. "The family does care about its people."
Krause offered some observations about how trading has changed since he first started.
There were about 3.5 million shares traded a day when Krause began 43 years ago. Now, that same volume of trading can happen the first few minutes on the floor.
Some people may have an image of stock market investors as day traders, wheeler-dealers who make hard and fast deals. "Very few people can be very successful at it," Krause noted. "That's not really investing-that's speculating."
As for arbitrage, when an investor transfers assets from one market to another, such as hoping to make money overnight on a spike in the Euro, said Krause, "It takes a bit more sophisticated investor."
Krause said he believed his son Brett may have gone into banking because of some influence of his father's profession. Krause said he and Brett had some father-son talks about saving at a very young age for Brett.
"We went through that very much in detail," Krause said.
Some of the best training in investing for both Clyde and Brett, though, was actually the family farm. The homegrown investment savvy required to ride out grain and livestock highs and lows and the fickleness of weather taught the family more about investing than anything on Wall Street. Clyde's grandfather Will Mauser bought the farm that was later to prove to be the best lesson investing the family could ever get.
"If we only treated investing the same way..." Clyde said, pondering the possibilities.