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URL:  http://boards.fool.com/lesson-6-i-have-had-some-of-my-best-scores-from-26317238.aspx

Subject:  Re: why shorting wins, why long term loses Date:  1/24/2008  11:37 PM
Author:  majakblue Number:  90 of 180

Lesson 6: I have had some of my best scores from calling outperforms on cheap stocks.
Lesson 7: Sometimes the cheap stocks have just had a run-up unjustified by the financials and are backing off to a reasonable valuation. If its a good company, call an outperform when the stock price drops and watch the score soar.

I find the value in CAPS is as a teaching tool. Sure, I could probably get the highest scores by calling primarily underperforms and few outperforms, because there are more turkeys than good companies. But the value of CAPS is in learning to tell the difference.

Recently, I haven't been bothering to make calls on companies that already have large numbers of calls unless I really like the company. I try to find one-star companies that I think will outperform, five-star ones that I think will tank and unrated companies.

I try to pick cheap companies because that is the point where I want to learn to find the 10-baggers. I just watched one of my outperforms go from $1.98 to $.26 (splat!). Now I am watching if the company will go under, and analyzing where I went wrong.

I just ended 40 picks that I realized were started at an unjustified price and am restarting them when and if I like the price for the call.

I would never use the approaches I use in CAPS in real life because my strategies are experimental and for learning to evaluate companies. I short in CAPS and not in reality because I need to evaluate why I think a company that interests me will not outperform. I will call an outperform on a company that I wouldn't consider investing in because I first need to learn how to evaluate an early stage company. When I am satisfied with a call, I follow it long-term. I don't get the best scores, but my real-life portfolio is looking better than when I first started.
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