I'm pleased to announce an exciting initiative that I believe will have meaningful long-term impact on the quality of long and short ideas we publish on Seeking Alpha.
Starting this coming week (July 28), we’ll be searching through our long and short ideas archives looking for outstanding stock ideas that played out, and awarding two $2,500 "Outstanding Performance" prizes each week.
Here's what we'll be looking for:
1) Performance: Above all, we're looking for ideas that made SA readers money. Risk matters, so we’ll be looking at the stock’s market cap, Sharpe ratio, etc. as well.
2) Confluence: Every idea has a thesis. Did the idea play out for the reasons proposed or not?
3) Compelling: For an idea to be outstanding, it needs to be sufficiently convincing that a reader would have been compelled to take a deeper look at the stock and potentially take a stake. In assessing compellingness, we’ll be looking at a number of factors including article comments (how did readers react?), historical performance (does the author have a track record of well-thought-out stock ideas?), voice of expertise (does he/she come across as someone who has unusual insight into the stock?), and how thoroughly the article covered key issues (reasons for market mispricing, catalyst(s), competitive landscape, company management, key risks, etc.). In other words, we’ll be looking for the same things readers look for when assessing an idea.
To qualify for an award, the idea needs to have been submitted exclusively to Seeking Alpha. We will also be asking award winners to publish an update to their thesis, either as a comment to the article or as a standalone article.
Generally, we'll be looking for longer-term ideas that offered meaningful upside to readers. We'll be going back as far as two years or even further. We may also reward ideas that played out outstandingly over a shorter timeframe. But we will not be using Outstanding Performance awards to reinforce extreme short-term price volatility. Some of the articles we select will be PRO articles. While PRO articles are exclusive to subscribers after 30 days, they were made available to all readers for that initial month.
We expect that by rewarding performance, contributors will be motivated to share more outstanding long and short ideas with SA readers - which benefits everyone.
To contributors: Please note that in order to maintain objectivity, we will not be accepting “pitches” for outstanding performance awards. Please do not attempt to pitch us; doing so will disqualify you from further awards. We have sufficient tools to find great ideas. And with two outstanding performance awards per week, we think we have quite a bit of gunpowder in the keg.
To users: Look out for Outstanding Performance awards starting this coming Monday. We'll be announcing the winners in Monday's Wall Street Breakfast and in an article published on Seeking Alpha. If you have great stock ideas, why not become a Seeking Alpha contributor yourself? Colin and his contributor success team will make it as easy as pie to share your ideas with thousands of readers.