by Jim Stevens (JimStevens@aol.com)
Burlington, VT (January 21, 1999) -- Something that I put up here once every three months for new and old readers alike, tonight I give you the Tour de 'Shop.
Hear ye! Hear ye! You have entered the Foolish Workshop! Every weeknight, tune in here to see one of a quartet of Foolish commentators wax poetic on the ins and outs of buying and selling stocks with a heavy lean toward backtested quantitative methods. The different destinations along the side of your screen are Foolish Workshop stops to enhance the experience.
We track a number of "mechanical models" here in the Workshop. For 1999, we'll be tracking 10 hypothetical annual portfolios. The Screen Explanations link is where you can find out how the stock list for each model gets generated. Although we only track them with a January start date, we generate current stock lists every week. TMF Bogey puts up new rankings every Friday. Get to these by clicking Workshop Rankings. This year, right next to ones established by the TMF staff, we've added some kick-butt models that were discovered, tested, and put fourth by Workshop visitors.
Check the Workshop Returns link to see the week-by-week progress of the ten mechanical approaches as if the companies had all been bought in equal dollar amounts at the start of 1999. The returns page gives each model's composite performances (listed in descending order), along with the performance of a hypothetical S&P Depositary Receipts (AMEX: SPY) port begun on the same day for a benchmark. All models are tracked annually, even though that's not been the best holding period for some.
Once each month -- the Monday after the first Friday, usually -- a column will be devoted to two monthly-traded models. It's an ongoing case study of the Unemotional Growth model and, by popular demand, a look at another hypothetical monthly-traded portfolio. This second one is the Relative Strength-IBD, as described in the Screen Explanations. Another gem you'll find is the UG History page. The Unemotional Growth has a nice well documented backtesting, and we keep this tradition going. In the Workshop of the future, we hope to add other screens to this comprehensive history coverage.
Fellow Fool Ethan Haskel writes about one of the popular value style screens that's regularly batted around in the Workshop, the Beating the S&P model. Check the Beating the S&P home page for more info.
This is what we have now. The strength of the Workshop is based on a team effort, and I'd like to give a shout out to everyone that makes this place so cool by sharing so many great ideas. What becomes obvious very quickly here is that there are lots of folks with a long-term view of their investments and an aversion to baseless hype. Many are quite willing to share their extensive knowledge and experience with the less experienced Fool, at extremely reasonable rates!
Which brings me to the most attractive feature of the Workshop, the Message Boards. Please join us there to share your latest theory or ask a Foolish question about anything you see here. You'll be glad you did.