Heavy Hogs (2014): Invest With Your Friends

Heavy Hogs (2014)

The Groundhog Challenge is our 9-year running stock picking contest that runs from Groundhog Day to Groundhog Day.  The results over the years have been pretty special and we’ll be back soon with the 2014 finish line results. The “Heavy Hogs” is the annual tracking portfolio for the consensus favorites.

The overall results for Groundhog VIII (2014) were … for lack of a better word, a little stinky. (I have high expectations and you’ll see why when we report the comprehensive results)

Collectively, we stumbled to multi-year lows for relative return and accuracy.

Not all of us were blessed with the luck of the Irish like Mr. McManus, so it probably makes sense to remind ourselves that there seems to be better performance in “numbers.”

As of 2/1/2015, 10-of-the-20 (50%) most frequently chosen stocks by 2014 Groundhoggers had outperformed the general stock market over the annual contest – racking up an average return of 18.1% (+3.9% RR) led by Apple (69.4%)

When nobody else is selecting that hidden gem you’ve identified, be careful. Confirm your assumptions. And when legions of our your friends hold their nose at your selection (think BODY) — you might be right, but ignore them at your peril. It’s also worth noting that there’s no escape hatch in this contest version. You’re stuck with the selections made in early February for 52 weeks until Punxsy Phil stirs again.

Don’t get me wrong. This lack of an escape hatch is often a virtue. We generally believe that hyperactivity in “investing” is erosive and history rhymes with us.

But when the consensus selections outperform the vast majority of hundreds of participants, it’s probably worth heeding the group. Investing with your friends can be a very good idea.

Heavy hogs 2014 20150202

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