Motley Fool Performance – December 2014

Here are the latest performance stats for all the Motley Fool services, since their inception. Not all of these are available on their public site.

The returns are calculated using the official methodology of each of the services.

Check the Performance category posts on the right to see if more recent stats exist.

If you find these helpful, please take a second to rate the content by clicking on the stars above. You can sign up via email (in the sidebar on the right hand side) to follow my blog and get instant notifications when my monthly performance stats are updated. And follow me on Twitter (@motleyfoolrview).

And of course, leave a comment below and let me know what you think.

Call it a Wrap

2014 comes to a close and it was a tough year for the Motley Fool Services. While the S&P 500 was up +11.8% for the year, and the Russell 2000 was up +3.8%, most of the Motley Fool services lost ground to the S&P. Keep in mind, most are still outperforming the S&P so hard to complain about that, and their absolute gains were mostly up for the year as well. But it was a volatile market this year with significant dips in January and October, particularly for small cap stocks.

The only Portfolio service with a gain vs. the market was Pro, which went from 0% to 1%. Not a glamorous result, but one of the goals of Pro is to minimize volatility in their portfolio, and when compared to the other Motley Fool portfolios, having a 1% gain against the market shows the benefits of Jeff Fisher’s approach in a more volatile year.  MDP on the flip side really took a nose dive, going to a positive +6% to a -6% outperformance. But particularly concerning was Supernova Phoenix’s slip from outperforming by +24% to only +5%. For a portfolio that is supposed to be geared towards retired individuals, that kind of volatility is particularly scary. Let’s see if they can stabilize here.

On the idea-recommendation services side of the scorecard, Inside Value is the only service with a small 2% gain (not discernible in the chart, however). I’ve really started to focus a lot more on Inside Value in my own investing, as I continue to be impressed with their strong, consistent performance. Rule Breakers got close with only a -2% drop in outperformance, while Tom Gardner’s side of Stock Advisor lost nearly one-third of it’s outperformance. Interestingly, David Gardner’s side is the only recommendation service whose absolute returns dropped.

I want to point out that this month a new portfolio service has been added – Phoenix 2. With the original Phoenix portfolio moving into it’s next phase where it won’t be adding any new money, they’ve added Phoenix 2 which is geared toward retirement-aged investors. As of December, they had only made 1 stock recommendation so the performance measurement is still premature.

Hopefully all of you have had a successful investing 2014 and will find even more success in 2015!

Understand Before You Invest

For those of you who are looking for a deeper dive into the performance of the Recommendation Services, I have recently launched a premium product called Performance Insights.  I’ve calculated Success Rates, CAGR’s and Annualized returns for all of the stock recommendations services. If you ever wanted to look into the historical trends of their performance, or performance by industry, or performance by number of years held, you should check these out.  My Motley Fool Performance Insights page has further details and a sample of what you get.


MF Performance Stats - 2014-12Dec


{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Doug H January 19, 2015, 3:25 pm

    Thanks for the Review and commentary in your email….can’t even buy that type of insight from Motley Fool.

  • Jeff Fischer January 20, 2015, 10:14 am

    Hi Kevin, Thank you for your review of the year. To add more context, Motley Fool Pro was up 17.5% in 2014, while the S&P 500 Total Return was 13.7%. Pro was only about 71% net long on average over the year, and over its history. The portfolio’s annualized return is 14.4% since inception in Oct. 2008, while the S&P 500’s annualized total return is 13.7%. Again, we were only around 70% net long over this time, and even a 1 percentage point difference in annualized results will make a large long-term difference, of course. Pro’s goal, though, rather than the index, is to get somewhere close to inflation plus 7% a year — what we call our North Star. That has been 8.3% annualized since late 2008. In down market years, the North Star will stay positive, of course. Best, Jeff, Motley Fool Pro


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