Many investors cherish the notion that if they only had instant access to the information sources of market professionals—the stock research and broker calls and economic forecasts—their wealth-building dreams would be much further advanced. So, what if you had acted on those big professional calls in the past year?
Financial information group Bloomberg1 recently carried out an analysis of broker recommendations for stocks in the US equity benchmark, the S&P 500 index. It found that the companies that analysts recommended most highly rose by 73 per cent on average in the period from the trough of the market in March 2009 until early 2011.
That sounds pretty good until you realise that the index itself rose by 88 per cent in the same period. Now, compare the performances of the most loved stocks against those with the fewest buy recommendations in the Bloomberg survey. This latter group rose by 165 per cent on average during that period, or more than twice as much as the “top” stocks.
Why analysts get it so wrong can be easily explained: [Read more...]