The Bettr Blog

Cool for Cats

Jan 31, 2013 | Stock Markets

[vc_row row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”full_width” anchor=”” in_content_menu=”” content_menu_title=”” icon_pack=”font_awesome” content_menu_fa_icon=”” content_menu_fe_icon=”arrow_back” text_align=”left” video=”” video_overlay=”” video_overlay_image=”” video_webm=”” video_mp4=”” video_ogv=”” video_image=”” background_image=”” pattern_background=”” section_height=”” parallax_speed=”” background_color=”” border_color=”” side_padding=”” padding_top=”” padding_bottom=”” color=”” hover_color=”” more_button_label=”” less_button_label=”” button_position=”” css_animation=”” transition_delay=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]The Observer newspaper staged an experiment, pitting a panel of market professionals against a ginger cat called Orlando in a competition to see who would have the most success in picking stocks in 2012.

Each team invested a notional £5,000 in five companies from the FTSE All-Share index at the start of the year. After every three months, they could exchange any stocks, replacing them with others from the index.

The professionals used their experience, insights and market knowledge to select stocks. The cat’s method was rather less elaborate. Orlando simply threw a toy mouse onto a grid of numbers allocated to stocks in the index.

The newspaper reports that Orlando out performed the professionals by 4%. While hardly scientific, this does provide another reminder about the difficulty of generating consistent above-market returns by picking individual stocks or making forecasts. And it’s something to keep in mind when you are confronted by media and market prognostications for 2013.

Many forecasters began 2012 by issuing downbeat calls for equity markets – but according to MSCI nearly all share markets posted very strong returns in 2012.

It should be plain by now that basing your investment strategy on someone else’s forecast is a haphazard way to build wealth. No matter how diligent and expert your forecaster is, unexpected events have a way of messing up their expectations.

The good news is you don’t need a crystal ball to build wealth. You just need a regularly rebalanced diversified portfolio of assets designed for your needs and risk appetite. You also need to keep an eye on costs and taxes.

Most of all you need to keep your cool and exercise patience. Like a cat.

1. ‘Orlando is the Cat’s Whiskers of Stock Picking’, The Observer, Jan 13, 2013[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”full_width” anchor=”” in_content_menu=”” content_menu_title=”” icon_pack=”font_awesome” content_menu_fa_icon=”” content_menu_fe_icon=”arrow_back” text_align=”left” video=”” video_overlay=”” video_overlay_image=”” video_webm=”” video_mp4=”” video_ogv=”” video_image=”” background_image=”” pattern_background=”” section_height=”” parallax_speed=”” background_color=”” border_color=”” side_padding=”” padding_top=”” padding_bottom=”” color=”” hover_color=”” more_button_label=”” less_button_label=”” button_position=”” css_animation=”” transition_delay=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_empty_space height=”32px”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”full_width” anchor=”” in_content_menu=”” content_menu_title=”” icon_pack=”font_awesome” content_menu_fa_icon=”” content_menu_fe_icon=”arrow_back” text_align=”left” video=”” video_overlay=”” video_overlay_image=”” video_webm=”” video_mp4=”” video_ogv=”” video_image=”” background_image=”” pattern_background=”” section_height=”” parallax_speed=”” background_color=”” border_color=”” side_padding=”” padding_top=”” padding_bottom=”” color=”” hover_color=”” more_button_label=”” less_button_label=”” button_position=”” css_animation=”” transition_delay=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_googleplus annotation=”bubble”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”full_width” anchor=”” in_content_menu=”” content_menu_title=”” icon_pack=”font_awesome” content_menu_fa_icon=”” content_menu_fe_icon=”arrow_back” text_align=”left” video=”” video_overlay=”” video_overlay_image=”” video_webm=”” video_mp4=”” video_ogv=”” video_image=”” background_image=”” pattern_background=”” section_height=”” parallax_speed=”” background_color=”” border_color=”” side_padding=”” padding_top=”” padding_bottom=”” color=”” hover_color=”” more_button_label=”” less_button_label=”” button_position=”” css_animation=”” transition_delay=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_tweetmeme type=”horizontal”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”full_width” anchor=”” in_content_menu=”” content_menu_title=”” icon_pack=”font_awesome” content_menu_fa_icon=”” content_menu_fe_icon=”arrow_back” text_align=”left” video=”” video_overlay=”” video_overlay_image=”” video_webm=”” video_mp4=”” video_ogv=”” video_image=”” background_image=”” pattern_background=”” section_height=”” parallax_speed=”” background_color=”” border_color=”” side_padding=”” padding_top=”” padding_bottom=”” color=”” hover_color=”” more_button_label=”” less_button_label=”” button_position=”” css_animation=”” transition_delay=””][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_facebook type=”standard”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Disclaimer: This document is intended for informational purposes and no action should be taken or refrained from being taken as a consequence of it without consulting a suitably qualified and regulated person.  It does not constitute financial advice under the terms of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000. It is not an offer to sell, or a solicitation of an offer to buy, the instruments described in this.

Investments involve risks. The investment return and principal value of an investment may fluctuate so that an investment, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than its original value. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. There is no guarantee strategies will be successful.