Warning: semi stream of consciousness follows. The demise of the Boring Port raises serious questions regarding the Motley Fool. Consider these numbers: 11.76% on the last day the Bore was reported as its annualized return compared to the 17.68% for the S&P 500 and 18.35% for the S& P (DA). First, the new investor learns in various publications that all that is necessary to be successful is commit your dollars to the Foolish 4. Then, when probing deeper, you find other stategies modify that approach for hopefully more powerful returns and moreover criticism of that approach, including the person who orginally proposed that method who says it no longer works. However, the Fool continues with the port and approach. The Foolish 4 shows a 3.68% annualized return today, while the S&P 500 (DA) was an annualized 5.45% which beat the Foolish 4 and and the DJIA shows an annualized 8.22%. That is approximately 5 % off just like the Bore, isn't it? So what kind of improvement is it really, you're off 5% of the market under either approach, right? Maybe keep both approaches? All kinds of approaches don't always work well at all times, right? Confused, well these numbers of the Bore and Foolish 4 are different days and the market changes daily, you say, apples and oranges. So, no big deal, right? Besides, the Bore was Boring. The Bore was bad. After all, even if value investing has a long horizon, it should have performed faster to create the pile of gold, never mind its long term horizen. (Ignore Buffett referred to later in this post, he obviously hasn't known what he's doing for years [like last year - forget all of those other years].) O.K., so you say, I'll avoid index funds (those are for the really unsophisticated and with some small amount of attention we can beat them - like using the Foolish 4?). Well, I'll pick some Rulemakers, educating myself (not simply copying the Fool), but then a change in portfolio managers and the GAP which slips a bit is dumped. No long term investing there. The GAP had a gap in the last quarter. Meanwile, Buffett is touted as one of the greatest investors,http://www.fool.com/specials/2000/sp001109.htm, but instead of the Fool studying and following his approach in a portfolio like the Bore which educates you to his approach, the portfolio is dumped. Maybe long term investing (where you only get 12 punches on your card [or maybe even a few more]) can't be done (Buffett and Munger are fools not Fools?). More exciting times are had in the Rule Breaker Port. Lucent hits hard times, but if you'd been watching the flow ratio you could have seen it coming writes a Fool writer (good educational point, encourages me to learn to do some math). So, what's a person to do? I can't (seriously) add that well anyway. Day trade? If you day trade, you can lose your money fast according to the Fool. You can also lose money no matter what approach you pick. But, let's just forget this long term stuff, except in a Rule Maker context and the Drip Portfolio. We'll have to satisfy our curiosity with articles by Whitney Tilson. I'm sure they will continue to be thought provoking, but a live portfolio (show me the money) is his-tor-y. I don't get it, but like I said I can't add that well and those financial statements can lose me in a flash. Here, some effort had been made to explain the unexplainable. Maybe it's like fine wine and dark beer, while the mass market drinks lite. It raises questions about what education is being provided. If I pick the most successful investor I know, I wanna be like Buffett and learn to analyze like he does. [Hey, I heard what he and Charlie said about the likes of people like me. Doesn't discourage me, maybe with practice I'll get better at adding.] No portfolio at the Fool presently tries that analysis and approach. At times it's not that popular, it just seems to have worked. Wonder why and why a port that espouses those priciples and approaches is no longer at the Fool? With apologies for the pun, it just doesn't quite add up.
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