The Vice Fund is a mutual fund investing in companies that have significant involvement in, or derive a substantial portion of their revenues from the tobacco, gambling, defense/weapons, and alcohol industries. A primary focus of stock selection is the ability to pay and grow dividends.
Electric cars have joined the long list of mendicant mendicant businesses that have been backed by the New Zealand government of late. Picking winners again.
The payrolls of entire government departments in New Zealand are not enough to hire a single successful hedge fund manager to pick winners for their political masters. To get on the list of the top 25 hedge fund managers, you need to earn at least $300 million a year.
The 25 highest-earning hedge fund managers and traders made a combined $12 billion in 2015, slightly less than the $12.5 billion the 25 top-earning hedge fund managers together made in 2014.
Why do investment advisors sell and often give away their sage advice? If their insights were any good, they could trade on the share market before others caught on and make a killing!
I will give a personal example based on the skills of bureaucracies in picking winners. The test of my hypothesis is based on the transferability of human capital across jobs.
My graduate school professors in Japan included many retired bureaucrats from the Ministry of Finance and MITI. These agencies were heralded by Joe Stiglitz and others for picking winners and guiding Japanese companies to choose the right technologies and what to export.
The skills that my graduate school professors learned at picking winners over their careers with the Ministry of Finance and MITI in the high-growth years in the 1970s would now be available to them in their retirements to trade on their own account.
My graduate school professors should quickly become very rich after retiring because of the skills they learned in picking winners while at the Ministry of Finance and MITI, which should cross over into their private share portfolios. The rich lists world-wide should be full of retired industry and finance ministry bureaucrats.
Instead, my graduate school professors took the train and bus to work and their families lived off their salaries in standard sized Japanese government apartments. All looked forward to their annual bonus of 5.15 months salary.
If governments are any good at picking winners, people should be willing to pay big time to get jobs at ministries of finance and ministries of international trade and industry to get access to their unique and highly secret skills they learn therein on how to pick winners.
I am still waiting for that tell-all book by an insider on these skills. Why is there no Picking Winners for Dummies on Amazon kindle as yet?