Be wary of the Prophets of Saint Hindsight
January 2, 2004
I fired off this "complaint" today after reading how briefing.com boasted about their performance in 2003. I figure you all will see a lot of this kind of hindsight-rich celebratory, pats-on-the-back, so I decided to post this. And I am not salty just because I didn't believe in the rally 100% from the very bottom to the very last day of 2003!J
Over the past year or more, I have come to really appreciate your "In Play" service (I typically view it through ETrade). However, some of your end-of-year commentary struck me as a bit odd. In that summary, you claimed to have made your subscribers/readers a ton of money from picks that doubled, tripled, etc... I find this claim odd because I have always thought of you as a price/volume/news alert service and not a trade recommending service. Indeed, I cannot think of a single time when one of your alerts came with a trading recommendation - e.g. go long, go short, and hold position for the short, medium, or long-term. Without such recommendations, I cannot understand your claims of making readers money. I cannot even make sense of the "return" you claim to have generated with your picks. For example, are you suggesting that all price/volume/momentum break-outs be bought and held to the end of the year? How about some shorts? Or do you only recommend going long?
Your alert on FALC today is an excellent example. I find the alert extremely informative, but nowhere in it did I see a trading recommendation. Yet, if FALC manages to survive as a big mover to the end of the year, you will lump it in with the rest of your successful "calls" of 2004.
Finally, you did not list the losing picks of the year. Without a more balanced picture, it is hard for me to give much credibility to any claim to the "accuracy" of your picks.
Again, I want to emphasize that I find your service extremely valuable, but some clarification on these claims of implicit returns would help a lot of us understand better what kind of service you believe you are providing to us.