Welcome to the first quarter update of the Third Annual Bloggers’ Stock Picking Contest.
This will always seem somewhat paradoxical to my regular readers as I pretty much never talk about stock picking or individual investments that I would make. Further, you’ll know that my position that a one year competition is pretty much useless. In fact, my strategy last year was to pick four stocks at random: I ended up in 2nd place overall for the 2010 contest with a total return (including dividends) of 26.56%. Compare that to the TSX Composite Total Return Index (17.31%) or the S&P 500 (8.73% in Canadian dollar terms).
Continuing in that vein, I didn’t put much thought into this year’s picks (we were allowed four, and they are equal weighted at the beginning of the year, dividends are included but not re-invested). I took the first four ideas that popped into my head, taking no more than 10 seconds.
I’m including my original rationale, followed by the performance update. Make sure to click the links to the other bloggers to see how they are doing and the reasons behind their selections.
My Shoot From the Hip Picks for 2011
Ford Motor Company: They didn’t need a bailout. Strongest of the big three.
- F (NYSE) – Start price was $16.79. March 31st closing price was $14.91. Total return to date = -11.20%
Silver: Been on a tear, but the historic gold/silver ratio seems off. Might have legs.
- SVR.UN (TSX) – Claymore Silver Bullion Trust, an ETF that tracks the price of silver bullion – Start price was $18.33. March 31st price was $22.40. Total return to date = +22.20%
Emerging Markets: Only a few years ago, emerging markets were 8% of the total market cap of the world, but about 50% of GDP. Being the world’s creditors doesn’t hurt.
- VWO (NYSE) – Vanguard Emerging Markets ETF – Start price was $48.15. March 31st price was $48.95. Total return to date = +1.66%
CIBC: Me and a lot of friends refer to CIBC as “the bank that runs with scissors”. It’s a double-edged sword – it can really hurt you, and it can really help you.
- CM (TSX) – Start price was $78.33. March 31st price was $84.86 + quarterly dividend of $0.87. Total return to date = +9.45%
Overall performance so far is +5.53%.
As with the last few years, the competitors and myself will provide quarterly updates. Here are the links to there picks and rationales. Pretty much everyone else puts thought into this, so it would be fun if I placed well again. Wish me luck!
The Financial Blogger +12.41%
Million Dollar Journey +12.16%
My Trader’s Journey +11.77%
Beating The Index +3.08%
Intelligent Speculator +1.66%
Dividend Growth Investors +1.43%
Wild Investor +0.28%
MoneySmarts Blog -1.17%
I’m going to copy and paste my original disclaimer used for the first contest:
The Financial Blogger had asked a bunch of other personal finance bloggers if they wanted to participate in a stock picking contest for 2009. The criteria was to pick four securities in equal dollar amounts listed on a Canadian or American exchange (not including derivatives) to just sit on for the duration of 2009 with no changes allowed. We are to provide updates every quarter and the contest ends on the last trading day of 2009. The initial prices will be based on the closing prices of December 31st, 2008 (i.e. yesterday).
I Shy Away From Talking About Individual Picks
I initially hesitated since I was worried that some readers might take some of these picks to heart and actually buy them themselves as part of their investment portfolios. However, I decided to participate anyways deciding that I’ll just disclaimer the heck out of it. To that end:
This Is Just For Funsies
THIS STOCK PICKING CONTEST IS JUST FOR FUN, IT IS NOTHING MORE THAN GAMBLING. DON’T EVEN THINK ABOUT BUYING THE STOCKS LISTED HERE OR ON ANY OF THE OTHER BLOGGERS’ SITES WITHOUT FIRST CONSULTING A PROFESSIONAL FINANCIAL ADVISOR. IF YOU BUY THEM ANYWAYS, YOU MUST RAISE YOUR RIGHT HAND BEFORE PLACING THE ORDER AND REPEAT, “I AM A NUTBAR”.