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Don't invest an entire year's income in a billboard newcomer!

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July 16, 2007 – Comments (4)

Sounds like common sense, right? But alas, we're still promoting this sort of careless behavior with our Fool ads about "next home run stocks." Either that, or we're glossing over reality because is sounds better. "$10,000 in Wal-Mart in 1975 is $25 million today!" Sounds easy? Too good to be true, in all likelihood.

See this post for details.

Sj, heretic, fan of critical thinking...

4 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On July 17, 2007 at 4:57 PM, dwot (45.64) wrote:

I noticed that, all the eggs in one basket promotion...

 

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#2) On July 18, 2007 at 10:33 AM, TMFBent (99.80) wrote:

Yeah. Or how about this: half your life savings in BRK? Sure, looks amazing in hindsight, but that's an extremely silly maneuver. I don't understand why we promote it in an advertisement. I guess there's a reason I'm not in sales.

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#3) On July 18, 2007 at 8:19 PM, davidjon13 (74.27) wrote:

I hate to say it, but it's not a question of the quality of thought; it's a question of honesty, or, to be more precise, dishonesty.

Go to the front page, http://fool.com/ . On your left you'll see a link that says "Broker Comparison". Hit it. You'll reach a page which looks like it's giving the Fool's advice on choosing a broker. It also displays a table comparing four brokers with respect to several parameters. If you hit the tiny link saying "Fool Disclosure" you will discover that the whole table consists of paid advertising. But this does not seem to be the impression which the main page is designed to make, and most of its readers will never read the page hidden behind that tiny link.

It may or may not be legal, but it's not what I was taught to call 'honesty'; it's not the way my parents taught me to behave. I certainly have nothing against making money, but is this the only way the Fool can find to do it? Is it worth it? Is self-respect dead?

Thanks, TMFBent. It's encouraging to see that someone can receive a salary from the Motley Fool and still ask about this kind of thing.

David.

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#4) On August 10, 2007 at 5:14 PM, PoorLibrarian (< 20) wrote:

Well put, all -- though this is standard material for ads for any financial newsletter ... "what if you had invested in X back when?  Well I've got today's X, just about rock solid guaranteed!"

The latest one I've seen (for a different newsletter company, of course) is for secret 801K plans, which of course don't exist (teaser for DRIP plans) -- the ads get everyone's interest, though: 

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