Since July 2016 Dr. Elsasser publishes videos regulary. Please click on "Video"-Button.


          Do you want to read the blog? Just click on the headline and you will get the complete article.

           We are happy to inform you about future blogs and videos. Send us an email and we shall keep you updated.

No first class train tickets for poor shareholders

Tuesday 8 March 2016

An unexpected encounter while traveling by train, made me as a shareholder wonder what is going on. A true story. A rare look behind the scenes of a company in the DAX 30 index.

I recently took the train from Cologne to Bremen. I have all my life always travelled second-class. Only after reaching the age of 59 years did I allow  myself the luxury to travel first class. As an private investor I always pay out of my own pocket for all trips.


This time around I did not travel in the large open car but in one of those old style compartments. I was lucky. A nice lady, in her mid-thirties, was already sitting in the compartment. We started talking. She was returning from a training seminar in Rheinland-Pfalz. It turned out that she was working in a laboratory. As she sat in first class, I assumed that she worked for a government agency or a scientific organization of the European Union. Normally I'm not so curious, but I was interested to find out if my assumption was correct.


But far from it: the employer was a world-renowned DAX conglomerate in southern Germany. The company has not been doing very well for a long time .

The share price has for several years been lagging behind the index . Shareholders had little reason to rejoice. As I was somewhat surprised, the lady told me: the management agreement  of the company entitled female employees on longer train journeys to travel first class.


I was somewhat blown away by that. A discussion about the "pros and cons" did not seem appropriate considering the cheerful demeanour of my fellow travelers. I did not say anything. Only two thoughts went through my head. I hope she could not read my mind:

  1. Did I miss anything in Germany and on the train? As a precaution I went directly to some wagons in second class to see how bad it was there for the passengers. I did not find anything remarkable or out of  the ordinary.
  1. My concern was for my stock portfolio and my shareholdings. Did I have this DAX stock somewhere in my portfolio? I was pretty sure that I did not own the stock in the portfolio. Only later when I checked my records, could I breathe a sigh of relief.

I basically wish all people only the best. But: Now I, of course, wonder are we dealing here with an amazing individual case? Or has Germany begun  on a path towards social comfort which I completely missed?


I can twist and turn it around all I want. But this has nothing  to do with a meaningful motivation of employees. Such a policy and condition in a corporation appears to me as unacceptable and a waste of money. I would never have agreed to such a condition. I can not change anything. But this share, will not be placed in my order book. Anyway ...... the poor shareholder ultimately has to pay for such escapades. Late that night I thoughtfully got of the train in Bremen.