Hot Stock Tips - What to be Wary About

Hot Stock Tips - What to be Wary About Call it an occupational hazard but at some point at any social engagement I am asked "So what are the hot stocks"?

I don't give hot stock tips because, as a practicing financial professional committed to long-term financial solutions, I don't believe they really exist. I believe information that is distributed through dinner parties or on fairways falls into one of three categories:
  1. Inside information which if acted upon could result in fines, jail time or both for the investor as well as the financial professional.
  2. Rumors which if true and acted upon could later be construed as inside information or if false could net a loss or be construed as market manipulation-either way you lose.
  3. Public information which, by the time you hear it, has lost its value.
Today's technology gives public information complete instantaneous distribution. This virtually eliminates the time lag between the release of the information and the adjustment to the price of the security. It's called the Efficient Market theory. And although it has been around for many, many years, today's speed of communications make it more fact than theory.

So where's a good place to put your money? Invest rather than speculate. Have your financial professional recommend a good portfolio manager who can help you meet your objectives. There are no shortages of quality managers out there. Most employ teams of researchers who study data, do site visits and are on the inside of the circle of information.

Home grown research and speculation may pay off from time to time but for my money and my client's money I want a full-time professional.


The author is a CLU and ChFC designee, a Registered Investment Advisor and registered representative of Jefferson Pilot Securities Corporation, member NASD, SIPC.