Cat out-purr-forms stock brokers
Mon, 14 Jan 2013 12:50p.m.
By 3 News online staff
A common domestic cat has outperformed two teams of humans, including a group of investment professionals, in a year-long stock market challenge.
British newspaper The Observer gave Orlando, a two-year-old ginger feline from London, £5,000 (NZ$9,629) at the start of 2012 to invest in five companies from the FTSE All-Share index.
The paper also gave £5,000 to a team of three stock market professionals, and to a group of 11 students from years 11 to 13 at The John Warner School in Hoddeson, Hertfordshire.
Every three months, the teams had the opportunity to exchange some or all of their original stocks with others from the same index.
The professional team – comprised of Justin Urquhart Stewart of wealth managers Seven Investment Management, Paul Kavanagh of stockbrokers Killick & Co, and Schroders fund manager Andy Brough – presumably used their decades of investment experience to decide where to put their money. Initially the value of that experience seemed to be showing, with the professionals claiming the most profit by the end of September
But Orlando was meanwhile making his stock picks by throwing his toy mouse every three months at a randomly numbered grid, where each number was allocated to a particular stock. And by the end of the year, it was Orlando’s approach that had paid off.
The cat finished the year with £5,542 (NZ$10,688). The professionals were in second place, with a total of £5,176 (NZ$9,982), while the school students had lost some of their starting capital to end the year with £4,840 (NZ$9,334).
At the start of the challenge, some of Orlando’s opponents had been dismissive of their chances of being beaten by a cat.
John Warner School student Taylor Mack told The Observer his team weren’t worried.
"As a group we are quite confident we have good brands to compete with," he said, "especially against a cat."
However the experienced investors did concede from the outset that not being a human could have some advantages.
Mr Stewart told the paper Orlando would have no awareness of financial risk.
"He doesn't appreciate the need for a balanced portfolio and could end up choosing shares which really take off this year," he said.
In recognition of Orlando’s success, his owner Jill Insley has bought him a new red collar.
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14/01/2013 6:00:17 p.m.
Just goes to show these so called professionals are over paid clowns and we all know teens are a screw loose. Cheers to the cat.Although I would like to know the cats technicke
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