Spoiler alert: It turns out we are all awesome. Except for one person. He sucks big time.
Approximately one year ago, I asked hundreds of your favorite personal finance bloggers (and Financial Uproar) to submit their four favorite stocks for 2016. And some even responded!
The rules of the contest were simple. Pick stocks or ETFs that trade on major North American exchanges. The average return of the four stocks (including dividends) would be used. If a stock got acquired during the year the participant would be locked into that gain. And that was about it. It’s a pretty simple contest.
When we last left the stock picking contest, two competitors were running away with things. Blog reader Doug’s mini portfolio was up 116%, while Janine from My Pennies My Thoughts was up more than 72%. My Own Advisor was a distant third, with his picks up more than 24%.
The fourth quarter was a good one for the stock market. For some reason, people are actually excited about a President Donald Trump, something I still can’t believe is a thing. Well played, America. I’m happy to see you guys like jokes.
This bump helped our stock picks. A lot. Let’s take a closer look, shall we?
Let’s do things a little differently this time around. We’ll start with the guys who suck and work our way up to the champion.
14. Boomer and Echo
Lol look guys it’s like he tried to find the next Apple over and over again only to fail more badly than that time I tried to pick up crazy Amanda Bynes. How did she not die in 2016?
I have already sent the Golden Toilet award to Robb’s house. I didn’t even need to know the address. It turns out Canada Post was well aware of his suckage too.
|Sprouts Farmers Markets
Honestly, I should have expected this. He can’t even spell Capitalist right.
12. Don’t Quit Your Day Job
OH HOW THE MIGHTY HAVE FALLEN. Last year’s runaway champion is now almost last, much to my delight. This happened in 2015, too. It’s almost like this is luck or something LALALALALALALA I CAN’T HEAR YOU.
11. Blog reader Ben
|Dream Office REIT
|Bank of America
You know it’s going to be a good year for everyone when a guy who gains 12% is outside of the top 10.
10. Blog Reader Jeff
|Pro-Metic Life Sciences
|New Residential Investment
|Bank of America
New Residential Investment still has a succulent 11.7% dividend if y’all are into such things.
9. Avrex Money
|Richie Bros Auctioneering
I’m going to just go ahead and assume that Molina Healthcare is both owned and operated by Yadier Molina, catcher for the St. Louis Cardinals and highest earning man on the planet with a neck tattoo.
8. Freedom 35 Blog
Do you guys think if I invested in the garbage company they’d pick up my damn trash more often than once every three weeks? It’s beginning to be a real problem. If they don’t get better I’m going to be forced to take up hoarding.
7. Vanessa’s Money
|iShares Canada ETF
HA HA MY WIFE SUCKS AND NOW SHE GETS TO HEAR ABOUT IT ALL DAY EVERY DAY. I WILL NOT RELENT. Only a quitter will let her forget about the ABSOLUTE THRASHING SHE TOOK FROM ME.
6. Financial Uproar
I would just like to thank Directcash for boosting me up. I owe you guys one. FINE, I’LL GO TAKE SOME CASH OUT ONE DAY GEEZ.
(takes cash out)
“$3 service fee? Go straight to hell.”
Disclosure: I still own Corus and Hammond. Sold Directcash the day the buyout offer came in.
The top five
Pretty impressed at results this year. I returned 24% and didn’t even crack the top five.
5. My Own Advisor
|Bank of Nova Scotia
Mark’s picks are pretty solid. Maybe he should expand into being other people’s advisors. I’ll pay him $9 a year to promptly ignore his advice.
4. Blog reader Tyler
|Dundee Preferred shares
Remember when I talked about preferred shares as an income stream? If you identify the right company they can be a massive capital gain opportunity too.
3. Holy Potato
|Freddie Mac Preferred Shares
|Dundee Preferred Shares
|American Hotel REIT
*Potato’s Dundee preferred shares were a different series than Tyler’s. His were swapped out for other ones much earlier in the year. The rules state he’s locked into that return. Not that it would have mattered anyway.
2. My Pennies My Thoughts
|Dupont Fabros Technology
Don’t let Janine’s fantastic returns fool you. Pot stocks are going to end badly. Although I may just want them to fail because of morons like this out there:
“Weed cures cancer, man. They already know it. There’s just too much money to be made treating it!”
(takes bong hit)
(eats handful of Doritos)
1. Blog reader Doug
|Painted Pony Petroleum
Hot damn, kids, that has to be some kind of record. Well played, Doug. Considering his fondness of weed stocks maybe we should call him Snoop Doug.
How’d we do versus the index?
We kicked that index’s ass, son!
The TSX Composite Index was up 17.51%. It paid 2.72% in dividends for a total return of 20.23%.
The S&P 500 was up 9.84%. It paid 2.41% in dividends for a total return of 12.25%.
If all our stocks would have been organized in one giant portfolio, we’d be up a collective 30.54%.
That’s the kind of ass kicking Warren Buffett would be proud of. Well done, team. Look for our collective hedge fund to launch in the next couple of months. The working name is Nelson and 13 other morons who are just bringing me down capital management. LLC.
Stay tuned for tomorrow when the much larger 2017 contest will be unveiled, along with my TOP stock pick of 2017. Oh my, what a tease.
It’s time for the latest update of the stock picking contest, where a dozen or so of your favorite personal finance and investing bloggers (along with Financial Uproar!) pick their four favorite stocks for the year.
When we last left the contest, blog reader Doug was giving us a whipping worse than was administered to the protagonists in Leather Bound Hotties 6, a movie I assure you guys I only watched out of intellectual curiosity. His portfolio was up more than 76%. Janine from My Pennies My Thoughts was in second place, with her four stocks increasing a mere 52.7%. Or, as I call it, THE WORST YEAR EVER.
YOUR BOY Financial Uproar was comfortably in 5th place, showing that, somehow, 5th place is the new winner. Whatever kids, it takes real skill to not win and embarrass the whole lot of ya.
Without further adieu, let’s take a closer look at the current results, as of Friday. We’ll then take a look at how well we did collectively against the index.
|1. Blog Reader Doug
|2. My Pennies My Thoughts
|3. My Own Advisor
|4. Blog reader Tyler
|5. Avrex Money
|6. Holy Potato
|7. Freedom 35 Blog
|8. Vanessa’s Money
|9. Financial Uproar
|10. Blog reader Jeff
|11. Blog reader Ben
|12. Don’t Quit Your Day Job
|14. Boomer and Echo
First of all, you can see everyone’s picks here. The next few sentences will make more sense if you check out the original choices.
- Blog reader Doug had three(!) stocks that went up more than 100%–Aurora Cannabis, Painted Pony Petroleum, and Nemaska Lithium. The other, Knight Therapeutics, was up a terrible 22.8% in comparison.
- I’ve decided to let Doug invest my portfolio from now on. I will pay him $20 per quarter for this privilege.
- My Own Advisor, who I mock for having boring picks every time, continues to post solid results that beat most of us. Well played, Mark.
- Don’t Quit Your Day Job sucks and I couldn’t be happier.
- I am being beaten by my wife, which I’m sure I will hear about relentlessly over the next weeks/months. Or only once and then she’ll forget about it until next quarter.
- Boomer and Echo continues to suck. There’s also at least a 42% chance he intentionally tanked the competition like Joe from Timeless Finance did a few years ago. I mean who intentionally picks both GoPro and FitBit? It’s like his uncool cheap friend was over when he made his picks, and just choose what that friend was wearing.
- No, I was not over at Boomer and Echo’s house. He has a restraining order against me. 🙁
- Kapitalust picked Chipotle, Sam Adams Beer, and Sprouts Farmers Market, showing once and for all douchey food stocks will never be the answer to any investing question. His other pick was Lululemon, which I will always approve of. Even when I see dudes wearing their sweat pants. In public.
- When was the last time you saw somebody wearing Lulus in public? It’s been a while for me, I think.
- The rest of y’all are so boring I have nothing left to say to you. You’re all dead to me.
How’d we do against the index?
Glad you asked. Here’s a summary of us versus the main indexes.
- Finance bloggers: 17.5%
- TSX Composite Index (dividends included): 15.4%
- S&P 500 (dividends included): 7.6%
Congratulations, y’all. We have beaten the index thus far this year. Will this be enough to silence all the indexers forever? Yes. I am 100% confident of this.
When we last left the 2016 edition of the stock picking contest, Janine from My Pennies My Thoughts was giving the 13 other contestants a through ass kicking, posting a return of 23.2% over only three months. Annualized, I’m pretty sure that works out to about a BILLION PERCENT annually.
I’m good at math.
She was almost six percentage points above blog reader Doug who posted a 17.4% return. Doug was closely followed by Tyler, who was up 16.3%. And My Own Advisor was comfortably in 4th, posting a total return of 13.8%.
The rest of us, apparently, sucked. You can check out the full results if you want here.
A whole quarter has passed since, and plenty has changed. Donald Trump went from being a legitimate presidential contender to being a slightly less legitimate presidential candidate. And the Toronto Maple Leafs went from a gong show to a gong show with the first overall draft pick.
Okay, so it turns out not much has changed. Except for some stock prices, I guess.
So without further adieu, let’s look at the latest results.
1. Blog reader Doug (+76.5%)
No, that’s not a typo. That’s truly a performance for the ages.
Doug had one stock that went up more than 200% (Nemaska Lithium) and one that went up more than 100% (Painted Pony Petroleum). His other two selections didn’t do much at all. The scary part is if the end of the quarter would have come on May 31st, Nemaska would have been up more than 300%.
Hey Doug, if you’re reading this, leave a comment about what attracted you to Nemaska. Or Painted Pony. ALLOW US TO LEARN FROM YOU, OH GLORIOUS MASTER.
2. My Pennies My Thoughts (+52.7%)
Janine improved considerably over her first quarter performance, increasing her imaginary mini portfolio by more than 50%. And all she gets is my all-caps scorn. SECOND PLACE IS THE FIRST LOSER, LOOOOOOOOSER.
Most of Janine’s success came from Barrick Gold, a company no legitimate investor would have touched at the beginning of this competition. It just goes to show you “legitimate” investors often do get stuff wrong. Go ahead and laugh at them, all they’ve got going for them are consistent appearances on CNBC, great high-paying jobs, attractive spouses, and billions under management. JOKE’S ON YOU, SUCKERS.
3. Blog reader Tyler (+23.2%)
Tyler picked the first preferred share of the history of the competition, choosing the Dundee Corp Series 3 Preferred shares, a very boring name for an interesting stock. The pick proved to be a great one, increasing more than 56% including dividends. Who said preferred shares had to be boring?
Tyler also picked CRH Medical Corp, which increased more than 22%. But more importantly, here’s what CRH Medical does:
“The company specializes in the treatment of hemorrhoids utilizing its treatment protocol and technology.” Finally, medicine is starting to tackle the issues that really matter.
4. My Own Advisor (+21.8%)
Mark from My Own Advisor continues to finish somewhere in the middle of the pack using his dividend/value approach, a fine strategy for real life. All four of his picks of Bank of Nova Scotia, TransCanada, Crescent Point, and Emerson Electric finished up double digits.
5. Financial Uproar (+12.0%)
TWO CONSECUTIVE FIFTH PLACE FINISHES? I’LL TAKE IT.
My best stock was Corus, which ended the six month period up 28.6%. I also got solid performances from Hammond Manufacturing and Directcash, which were up 18.5% and 10.1% respectively. My only dud was dividend aristocrat Franklin Resources, the owner of Franklin Templeton investments. It turns out that betting against ETFs wasn’t such a smart move. At least I talked myself out of buying it with real money.
Disclosure: I own Corus, Hammond, and Directcash.
6. Freedom 35 Blog (+10.9%)
The owner of this particular blog likes to refer to himself as “Liquid Independence”, which is kinda gross. What kind of liquids are we talking here? I hope it’s not pee.
Anyhoo, his relatively standard picks of Starbucks, Waste Management, Equifax, and Royal Bank finished a relatively standard middle of the pack. It’s a very beige result and My Own Advisor is a little jealous.
7. Holy Potato (+10.6%)
As mentioned last quarter, Holy Potato chose a different Dundee preferred share than Tyler. Turns out it was the wrong one, since the company decided to just redeem the stupid thing, locking him into a 14.7% gain. That’s not terrible, but it’s nothing compared to the 56% Tyler made.
Holy Potato’s other picks included a Fannie Mae (or Freddie Mac, like I can tell the difference) preferred share, Canexus Corp, and American Hotel Income Properties. Y’know, the blue chip household names we’ve all grown to love.
8. Vanessa’s Money (+5.4%)
If it wasn’t for Vanessa’s smart ass pick of ISIS Pharmaceuticals (which is since changed its name and fallen more than 60%), she would be near the top. Other picks of Wal-Mart (+20%), iShares MSCI Canada Index (16.4%), and Bombardier (+44.8%) performed pretty well. I thought the iShares pick was particularly clever, which was both a bet on Canada and a bet on the U.S. Dollar.
Still, I feel like I must alert the authorities of Vanessa’s obvious LOVE OF ISIS. HEY, AMERICAN GOVERNMENT. DO NOT LET THIS WOMAN INTO YOUR COUNTRY.
9. Avrex Money (+3.1%)
Andrew chose eBay as one of his stocks, that website you might remember from 2006. Well, it turns out it’s still around and losing him imaginary money, falling 13.5%. Richie Bros Auctioneering did much better, rising some 30%.
10. Blog Reader Ben (-1.4%)
Even Ben’s excellent pick of Dream Office REIT (up 11.6% and a personal holding of mine) wasn’t enough to offset his loss in Bank of America, which declined more than 20%. I haven’t been this mad at the U.S. banks since they almost caused the collapse of the financial system as we know it, a comparable offense to not increasing to help out a Financial Uproar blog reader.
11. Kapitalust (-2.3%)
After posting double-digit negative returns from three of his four picks (Chipotle, Sprouts Farmer’s Market and Boston Beer), I think it’s obvious Mr. Lust should spend more time ogling stacks of $100s or jerking it to balance sheets or whatever his perverted mind thinks is normal.
And in case you needed further proof he’s a DEPRIVED SICKO, his only positive pick was Lululemon. Disgusting.
12. Blog reader Jeff (-7.8%)
Jeff lost money on Bank of America, ATS Automation, and ProMetic Life Sciences. At least two of those companies are 100% fabricated.
13. Don’t Quit Your Day Job (-11.7%)
After winning last year’s contest, PK’s picks are almost in the basement, showing the fickle nature of the contest. One year you’re on top of the world, winning the coveted golden plunger award I physically mail to each winner’s work so they get embarrassed by it. The next you’re in the gutter, getting beaten by said plunger by some local youths.
This contest is surprisingly violent.
14. Boomer and Echo (-38.7%)
Here’s an actual conversation I had with Robb’s wife, who asked I keep our conversation anonymous. I AM NOT TO BE TRUSTED.
“How does it feel to be married to such a terrible stock picker?”
(Signs divorce papers, moves to North Korea)
How’d we do versus the index?
Overall, our 56 total stock picks were up 10.99%, handily beating the year to date returns of the TSX Composite (+8.1%) and the S&P 500, which increased 2.9%. Look for our ETF in the next few weeks, further proof they’ll give an ETF to anyone. It’s pretty much the stock picking equivalent of the NBA free agency market.
Oh boy, boys and girls (and whatever else you FREAKS identify as)! It’s time to reveal the results of the first quarter of the 2016 stock picking contest. If you want a recap of what everyone picked, point yo mouse towards the 2016 picks.
In case you need a reminder, let me go over the rules. Each contestant picks four stocks that trade on any North American exchange. I tabulate the results including dividends but excluding any changes in currencies. ETFs are allowed, but not anything weird that I haven’t heard of (this is known as the DQYDJ rule). The average of the four picks is the result. As a new wrinkle in this year’s contest, I gave the contestants the option of picking cash as a position, something that would return a guaranteed 1% per year. Not surprisingly, nobody took me up on the offer.
ENOUGH PREAMBLE. It’s time for the results, yo, followed by my ever so witty commentary. Better dial 91 on your phone to call the fire department because the burns are going to get pretty hot and heavy up in here.
|1. My Pennies My Thoughts
|2. Blog reader Doug
|3. Blog reader Tyler
|4. My Own Advisor
|5. Financial Uproar
|7. Freedom 35 Blog
|8. Avrex Money
|9. Blog reader Ben
|10. Holy Potato
|11. Vanessa’s Money
|12. Don’t Quit Your Day Job
|13. Blog reader Jeff
|14. Boomer and Echo
Now, onto the chuckles and random observations.
Chuckles and crap
- The best pick for the first quarter was Barrick Gold (a company I’ve taken to calling Barrick GoLOLd) by My Pennies My Thoughts. Barrick went up 72.6% in the quarter because gold had its best quarter in the last 30 years. It just shows how a truly depressed asset can really deliver stellar returns when something happens to snap it out of its funk.
- After Barrick the best performing stocks were Nemaska Lithium (chosen by Doug, up 54.6%), Lululemon (chosen by Kapitalust, up 29.1%), the Dundee preferred shares (chosen by Tyler, up 38.8%), and DuPont Fabros Technology (again chosen by My Pennies My Thoughts, up 29%). Good luck predicting those results. Who would have thought a preferred share would have done so well?
- Mark from My Own Advisor had all four of his stocks go up double digits. His best performer was Emerson Electric, up 14.7%. His worst performer was Crescent Point, which went up 13%.
- Don’t Quit Your Day Job won the 2015 edition of the contest. PK is now in 12th out of 14th. Finally, justice prevails. Good triumphs over evil and whatnot.
- Robbbbbbb (actual spelling, check his birth certificate) from Boomer and Echo told me “I’m terrible at this” when he submitted his picks. That foreshadowing was eerily accurate. His terrible picks included Fitbit (down 48.8%) and GoPro (down 33.6%).
- Holy Potato picked the Dundee series C preferred shares. They traded at $14.25 at the end of last year. They’ve been taken private by Dundee for $16.34 each, locking in a 14.7% gain. The rules state he’s locked into that return, which isn’t the worst result out there.
- YOUR BOY Nelson joined Mark by having all of his picks in positive territory. My worst performer was Directcash, which was up a measly 1.7%.
- Vanessa claimed she was a better investor than me in a recent blog post. She was wrong.
So, did we beat the market?
In the first quarter, the TSX Composite returned 5.1% and the S&P 500 returned 3.06%, at least according to their respective ETFs. We’ll use those as our benchmarks.
As a group, we generated returns of 3.79%, which beat the S&P 500 and lost to the TSX Composite. The TSX Composite is probably the more accurate index to use to gauge our results since the majority of the picks were from the Canadian markets.
Six out of 14 contestants beat the TSX Composite while seven out of 14 beat the S&P 500. If we take away Robb’s terrible last place result — remember, he finished a full 12% behind the second-worst competitor — we collectively do pretty well against the market. But we can’t really do that, because it’s not like the market can retroactively remove its worst performers too.
Besides, I fully encourage competitors to swing for the fences for this contest. Big gains are fun; so are big losses. I don’t ask the competitors for disclosure because it’s just a dumb contest, but I’d bet most don’t even own the stocks they chose. Nobody is building a portfolio using these picks. They lack the kind of diversity needed in a good portfolio.