Consensus picks diy tools, top 20 small-cap newsletter, trade alert service (auto)
Consensus Picks DIY Tools, Top 20 Small-cap Newsletter, Trade Alert Service (Auto)
Contributor since: 2011
I am not sure how you even arrive there, so I will not entertain that anymore. But I will just repeat for clarity, we have not and have no intent of taking any position in SYRX, precisely for the reasons mentioned in the article. Our trade alerts portfolio has average holding periods in the many (2-3+) weeks and many months, so there is little chance we would take a position in it in the foreseeable future - unless it becomes something we see fit for at least an intermediate-term investment. That's the reason to keep our options open, not just in SYRX, but in any stock.
Numbers tell the story.. the stock is down 40% from its intra-day highs, near the open, when the story was written... continuing the trend of past rallies and blowups.
The disclosure about initiating a long position in the next 72 hours in SYRX is to keep our options open for our Trade Alerts Portfolio that we run for our subscribers on It is standard disclosure we apply to all of the stocks we write about.
Hi platts3:
Please read the comments by readers on our prior article published earlier this week, esp. the ones after the company announced the offering. You will see that almost all of them reflect that sentiment, so that's what it is based on.
Individual shareholders that are pleased with the way CEO Marsh is performing are at least not vocal about it, and that is the only way we have of knowing how investors are feeling.
Hi Princezane,
You can read more about it on our website,
But, in summary, it is our hand-picked list of 78 legendary or guru fund managers that have a long-term track record of beating markets (like Buffett, Icahn, Klarman, Paulson, and other mostly hedge fund managers). Also, it includes other fund groups, that in total include 330+ of Wall St.'s top fund managers, including also 27 of the world's largest or mega fund managers (with total AUM of over $30 Trill.), 160 Sector-focused funds (funds that make most of their investment in only one industry or sector like in tech, biotech, REITs, consumer, financial services, energy, gold), 59 billionaires, 54 new masters, 40 tiger funds, and 52 activist fund managers.
What we track is their latest collective or consensus buying on our website, based on their latest quarterly 13-F and daily SC 13D/G filings, and rank each of over 5,300+ stocks owned by these top funds, on a 1-to-5 rating scale, our proprietary GuruRank scale, that measures the attractiveness of each stock relative to all other stocks to these top fund managers. In summary, what we are looking for is the stocks that most top funds agree on as a top buy or sell based on their actual buying & selling activity - the rationale being that if many of these top funds see that as a top buy or sell, then it is worth looking into, and maybe buying or selling.
Our portfolios based on these top fund manager picks have beaten the markets, with our Top 20 Small-Cap Picks returning 88.4% last year vs. 37.0% for the Russell 2000 small-cap index, and YTD they have returned 6.2% vs. (0.7)% down for the index.
We offer consensus picks memberships for DIY investors (tools, screens, etc. to find top fund manager buy & sell picks in over 200 industry groups), and newsletters. Also, on our site, we offer our Alpha NewsEdge trade alert service for active investors.
Hi MrHexusThe1:
Our article makes precisely that point - that the secondary was not unexpected ("such an announcement should not have been a surprise for sure, but maybe even expected."), and a net positive. Thanks for providing another explanation for it.
Hi Eldrake:
Thanks for your comments.
Responding to you and to several others, you may be inadvertently putting institutional investors taken as a whole, that includes well over 10,000 funds, in the same bucket as our hand-picked list of say, 78 legendary or guru fund managers, and others totaling about 330+ top Wall St. funds.
Yes, institutions as a whole, just because they account for most of the trading on the exchanges, by default, will have a bad timing, i.e., in the massive sell-off when a stock bottoms, a good proportion is bound to be institutional money. So, using them in totality could actually be a contrarian signal, as many have rightfully observed.
Our Consensus Picks is different in a number of different respects.
First, these are hand-picked to include only the best funds that, for example, in the case of 78 legendary or guru fund managers (like Buffett, Icahn, Klarman, Soros, and 74 others) have great long-term performance over many market cycles.
Second, the number is indeed very small, whether you compare the 78 guru funds or the 330+ total leading funds vs. over well 10,000 funds.
Third, we are not looking at a single fund or even 2-5 funds. What we are looking for in our system is when a large number of these leading fund managers take a trade in the same direction, and very often, when they bet large in the same direction. Our Consensus Picks' system ranks over 5,300+ U.S. exchange traded stocks on our proprietary GuruRank scale, a 1 to 5 rating scale, that rates each stock relative all 5,300+ others based on their attractiveness to Guru funds as defined by their buying and selling activity, and comes up top industry buy and sell picks for over 200 industry groups.
Finally, we have the numbers to prove that it works. Our Top 20 Small-Cap Picks Newsletter, based on our Consensus Picks system, has outperformed the indexes by over 5,500 basis points, returning 88.4% in 2013, and was up 4.4% year-to-date (as of today) vs. (2.2)% down for the comparable Russell 2000 small-cap index.
I hope that helps in understanding the difference between inferences you may make about institutions taken as a whole, and our Consensus Picks' system based on 330+ leading funds.
Hi barnsey and fungkaic:
Guru fund managers are legendary fund managers, like Buffett, Icahn, Cohen, Klarman, Paulson, and 73 others that we have hand-picked to be included in our Consensus Picks' system (and our system includes 330+ leading fund managers including also 27 of the world's largest or mega fund managers, 160 sector-focused fund managers (in tech, biotech, gold, consumer, REITs, finance and energy), 59 billionaires, 54 new masters, 40 tiger funds, and 52 shareholder activists). So, it is anything but A FEW SELECT MONEY MANAGERS. These are all hand-picked, and our system based on their picks has been outperforming the markets, with our Top 20 Small-cap Newsletter returning 88.4% in 2013 and 8% YTD vs. comparable returns of 37.0% and 1.0% resp. for the comparable Russell 2000 small-cap index.
You can check out more info on our services at
You have a vivid imagination. Thanks for the entertaining comment.
Hi daugherty:
As we have explained in our responses to other comments, the position being 3 mos. old while not ideal is the best we have, and based on our extensive testing documented in many articles on SA and on our website,, we know that our Consensus Picks' system works very well despite that. Part of it is because almost all of the 78 guru fund managers we have hand-picked to be included in our database (among 330+ total leading fund managers) have multi-quarter and very often multi-year holding periods.
Hi TJ Lee,
Stick with your system if it works for you.
Based on our experience, documented here and in many of over 900 articles on SA, and many examples on our website, GuruFundPicks, we know that this strategy works. And most of our subscribers use it as either supplementary information, added to their own research, or as a means of screening for picks that they can do more intensive research on.
So, as in your case, even if you do your own intensive research, you could if you wanted to use it such as we described above.
Hi Corey,
Thanks for your comment.
We mentioned initiating a one-third position right now, and adding to it IF AND WHEN it gets lower. Most gurus or expert fund managers, call them what you will, but the ones like Buffett, Icahn, Klarman, etc. don't buy the entire position at once, rather if you look at their 13-F's, they typically scale-in (or out) over multiple quarters and years.
This is because NO ONE HAS A CRYSTAL BALL, and if it suddenly goes up, then you at least have a small position in it, and if it goes down, and you still believe in the company, you can accumulate more shares while averaging down in the price you paid for the stock.
What you mention is a fast trading way of playing the markets. And the beauty of the stock market is that you can play whatever strategy best suits you.
Generally, most value investors, gurus, will balk at that strategy. And about 40% of our 78 guru fund managers are billionaires, and many others are in the $100's mill., and they have been hand-picked by us to be included in our system due to their consistent long-term returns, so there is A LOT OF PROOF THAT THE STRATEGY WORKS.
On the contrary, there is not too much out evidence in terms of consistent long-term returns using a fast trading strategy, i.e., most billionaires and gurus, Buffett included, have made money the old fashioned way, as value investors, often averaging down, while acknowledging that they can't prognosticate the market, but just make an educated guess.
Second, we will know what they are doing right now in mid-May. Anything else is just opinion.
Our system takes into account the delayed availability of data, and it still works. Our Top 20 Small-cap newsletter, based on the Consensus Picks' system returned 88.4% in 2013 vs. 37%, and is up 8% YTD vs. 1% for the comparable Russell 2000 small-cap index. And we have given numerous examples on our website,, and in many of our over 900 articles on Seeking Alpha proving that very point.
Almost all of the 78 guru fund managers hold the vast majority of the stocks over multiple quarters and years, scaling in and paring down based on their convictions, so I don't buy the idea that the data is too old to act on. Sure, in a perfect world, it would be nice to get instantaneous information, but that is the best we got under the present system until the SEC changes that. And either way, as we explained above, due to the multi-year holding periods, the system still works even with the delayed availability.
And finally, I am mentioning about buying a third now, and more as it drops lower. That is a typical value investor approach. There is nothing 'short' about that thesis.
One thing, we did forget to mention in the article -
Facebook was highlighted as a top consensus pick in the Q2/2013 issue of our newsletter, published late-Aug'2013, based on collective or consensus buying by our 300+ leading fund managers.
Facebook shares subsequently doubled to $72 in the next seven months.
Hi gausmus,
I see your point, conceptually. Kind of "Show me the money" approach.
Except that investors routinely value stocks based on future earnings and growth.
The only reason I can think it would be different in Gilead's case is because most of the 'volatility in valuation', if you will, is dependent on investor perception about the value of this one new drug to Gilead's overall valuation. But even that argument is tenuous at best, as there are far too many pharma/biotech, tech and other companies (smaller ones though) with one main new drug or platform that trade based on future earnings.
Hi b3player,
We were looking to compare in this article vs. mega-caps (i.e., >$100 bill.) in the drug sector.
A prior article, linked below,
did compare it with BIIB, CELG and AMGN, if you are interested.
On the reasons why it is selling at such an attractive price, one can only speculate. The easy explanation is the one you mentioned first, that weak hands are being shaken out, but that I agree is probably just too easy or obvious. Mispricings of this or even greater magnitude can be found routinely in the equity markets, but not in a well-covered mega-cap like Gilead.
If it is that first reason, then the correction will be 'corrected' upwards very quickly once we hit bottom, as smart investors rush in to acquire shares once the bottom is obvious. If there are unknowns out there that most retail investors are not privy to, or haven't yet figured out, then the stock will likely linger at lower levels.
Facebook is correcting with the broader market.
Based on the timing of their buying in Q3 & Q4, most shares were bought in the $35 to $55 price range, average price $45. Analyst estimates on Facebook are up 15% in just the last 90 days, and significantly more, in the 30%-40% range, since most leading fund managers thought it was a good buy. At today's lows in the $57-$58 range, and our recommended scaling in up to $48-$50, Facebook shares are within buy territory.
Granted, some may have lightened up on FB in the $70's, but we would bet that they would be buying in the mid-$50's and as it gets closer to its 200-day MA in the $48-$50 range.
What a monumentally bad call you made, after unduly criticizing our call on TC earlier.
$1.83, the price at which someone would have bought the morning after your article was published
$0.50, your regurgitated guidance on target price
$3.00, price at which it trades exactly a month later, and it went straight up after your article
500%, the amount you were off by, so far, and the clock is ticking.
60%, the losses to any investor if they had listened to your advice, sorry TD's advice & your regurgitation.
Infinite long-term losses if someone shorted based on your (nay, TD's, just your regurgitation) target price of $0.50
This may prove to be a mistake of monumental proportions. I hope no one took your advice here on TC, selling short or throwing in the towel on a position they were holding prior to the article.
Our record:
TC recommended on Aug. 12th when at $3.34
TC exactly two weeks later on Aug. 26th: $3.95
Profits if you timed the exit, or exited on weakness: 15% in two weeks
Losses if you still are holding, 10%
Long-term profits, time will tell, but it is looking positive right now. And our guidance was based on 12-18 mos. time-frame.
You also have some nerve. You scathingly criticize our article for not analyzing issues like, "What labor issues exist in Northern British Columbia? Is there an ample supply of low cost labor? Do highly qualified engineers and their families like the amenaties the local area provides?" and "It's these little details which are missing."
Then you turn around and write a regurgitated piece on what TD said, no analysis at all to speak of!
Just Bob's opinions based on TD's analysis. I respect the analyst at TD, as even if he made a bad call, he backed it up with some analysis at least.
Well, the result of following Bob Johnson's opinion, since that's all there was in the article, an immediate loss of 60% in this case.
And then as java12jack said earlier in this article, that bears repeating, "You writing a hatchet article then turning around after it sinks and buying is unbelievable."
We have never left negative comments anywhere (you can check), and always take the high road. But your blatant comments on our article deserved an answer. In the future, you should consider being more civil in your own discourse before threatening someone else who criticizes you of libel with crude language like you did to "Illuminati Investment", saying "And if you are not old enough to be responsible, perhaps I will be compensated by your mommy."
And a piece of advice, don't say anything unless you have to offer something positive. It is very easy to criticize someone's analysis or opinion. And if you are doing that, do so in a civil manner, not attacking them personally, as you did saying to us, e.g., "you don't know enough about mining to write about it with any credibility" or "It was an ill considered effort to hype a stock in a field you know so little about" and other personal attacks.
We have very high credibility and fantastic educational background and experience, including MS (Engg.) and MBA from top schools, top-tier management strategy consulting experience, and over a decades of full-time investing experience. Also, you may have heard of something called generalists in equity analysis. Not everyone needs to have sector expertise. And in fact most leading fund managers tend to be generalists. The focus then is on financial issues affecting the stock price, not on labor issues, e.g., like you were looking for.
Ultimately, Tim Stabosz many comments here summarize very well what many may feel about your article,
"The problem with the article, in the first place, is that it was just a reckless regurgitation of the TD report, without doing enough original work on your own part, to justify even writing the article. But you like attention. And you like getting paid. And THAT's the problem here."
And also from him, "The crime you committed is that you then masquerade as an authority, when you haven't done the work to justify all of your pontificating."
And also from him, "it FEELS to me like you are on here (exclusively?) to puff yourself up. It feels distasteful to me"
And also from him, "I think you are a legend in your own mind, and that is the problem."
And lest you still want to bask in your own attention and adulation, you should carefully read all of the negative comments to your article, including ones by steady88, Illuminati Investments, java12jack, Investor Talkroom, SilverPoole, hudget, Alfie1, DNA Decoder, sho, Martin Hutchinson and others.
Again, we firmly believe that investing is a difficult business, and writing about it sometimes even more so, for you are then subject to evaluation or ridicule by the broader public. So, we would never criticize anyone's call like we have here. And we never have before. Again, you can check this. But you brought yourself this by doling out undue criticism and making personal attacks, not just on us but other readers as well commenting on your own article, as illustrated above in the case of Illuminati Investments.
Please consider being less abrasive in the future, .
Doesn't matter whether you agree with the bulls or the bears for the long-term, the short-term blow-off rally and coming technical breakdown on PLUG was becoming very clear yesterday afternoon, as it traded in the $4.60s.
We issued a sell advisory to our trade alert clients at 1:17 PM on Wednesday when it was at $4.67 (our buy alert was at $1.95, and sell alert at $2.59). The sell advisory was a courtesy to those who may have (luckily) not sold on our sell alert at $2.59.
At this point, it looks likely to cut $3 to the downside before significant buyers will emerge, unless of course, the company surprises again like they did with the FedEx announcement.
This news, released today at 7 AM, via all newswires. What you are referring to was only on the Energy Dept. site and not well disseminated. Kudos to you for having dug that up.
Hi SmokeyNYY,
We have moved on. There are other fish in the sea, over 5,200+ U.S. traded stocks alone. But good luck, this could be in for a multi-year run, possibly.
GuruFundPicks, LLC
Honestly? I don't think so.
Our article was bullish on PLUG from a long-term perspective. Quoting from the article, "PLUG is at the beginning of a strong ramp-up, the proverbial hockey stick in revenue growth going forward" and then we clarified that even more in our comments about our bullishness on PLUG.
We work with probabilities, and the probability was still low at the time that PLUG would continue riding up the way it did. As we said before, "stocks can pretty much do anything in the short-term." In the case of PLUG, the story worked out good in the short-term for holders, but there was no way to predict when they would release the next bit of good news. And if they hadn't, PLUG would most likely have pulled back like we predicted in the short-term, based on our study and observation of 1000's of such rallies.
The fact that they released more good news, today, was improbable, and could in no way have been predicted, without inside knowledge, and we are definitely not in the business of making predictions like that, for there is no rational way you can make that prediction. Long-term, we did believe in the stock, so its ride up confirms our thesis of the value of PLUG shares.
With market-timing, you win some and lose some. Our batting average has been far above average, as you can learn that by just going to our website, and looking at the trade alerts sent to subscribers of our Alpha News Edge trade alerts service - average 18% gain, with average holding period of about two weeks. That's excellent, by any measure.
To longs that made money off of holding the stock, I congratulate you and wish you well, but don't get too comfortable that your prediction was right in holding it, unless you were willing to hold it for the real long-term, even if it went through another 30%+ correction like it has many times before. And in that case, I salute you.
Rather, the truth, rationally, is that you lucked out (and that's a good thing) in this case. Rationally, our strategy of taking gains - in our case, we bought the prior day at $1.95 and sold the next day at almost $2.60, is in our opinion a far better strategy, when replicated over many trades.
We planned on holding it long-term as well, and we have many holdings that have been in our portfolio for months, but the quick appreciation from $1.95 made us want to take the gains off the table.
Hi thotdoc:
Just to add and clarify, we don't necessarily try to time the markets. We started out with the intention of holding it intermediate- to long-term, but the sharp rally convinced us to take it off the table for now, to try to capture the gains, and minimize the downside risk (our entry, including for our 'Alpha News Edge' trade alert subscribers, was at $1.95).
Hi thotdoc:
Good comments, and your approach sounds rational, esp. if you cannot devote the time & energy to track it closely, as most can't. And more power to you if you also have the emotional wherewithal to hold it through any serious dips, as very often follows such massive spikes.
I suspect though that a good number buying into the spike may not hold out for the potential long-term gains if it takes a really serious dip, i.e., you bought in the $2.70's, say, and it dips to the $2.00-$2.25 range, a possible, maybe even probable, scenario, but one that could leave one questioning their confidence in the position in the light of massive losses. A good remedy to that is to diversify your portfolio, so that you take a 3% to 5% stake in any one stock, but again many traders or short-term investors(?) fail to diversify as much.
Hi Everyone:
Thanks everyone for all your comments, including the negative ones. Investing is a tough game, and we all have our biases based on our positions, and the author cannot be completely immune from that, although we think we are and try our best to achieve that standard.
That being said, a couple of points. While stating the obvious, if you have read the article, you can easily surmise that we are bullish on Plug Power. That's the whole thesis behind the article, and we are looking to get back in, if Mr. Market lets us, at prices where we believe that the downside risk is minimized - which in our case, means a target price south of $2.25, maybe as low as even $2 on a quick technical dip lower.
While stocks can pretty much do anything in the short-term, if you study past spikes, as we have, most do not end well for people getting in late in the game, at least in the short-term. In the case of PLUG, shares were at 12 cents about a year ago, and they gave gone almost straight-up from 45 cents just less than months ago, and the recent rally lifted shares 83% low-to-high in the past two days (from $1.55 close on Tuesday to $2.84 intra-day high on Friday).
That, to put it mildly, is not a sustainable pace. And it is highly probably based on a study of similar past spikes, even in companies that went on to go up many 1,000%'s in the years ahead, to correct in the short-term, often severely. One possible explanation is that it is due to the short-term focus of many traders that feel comfortable buying after massive spikes; for many rational investors, usually sharp spikes like this signal downside risk and they stay away.
A little background also is relevant here. When we wrote the article as submitted to Seeking Alpha originally on Thursday, it said, "Plug Power Still has x% More Upside Despite Its Massive Run", but with the price spike late in the day on Thursday and then by mid-day Friday, we sold the position, as also signaling an exit for subscribers of our 'Alpha News Edge' trade alert service (see for more info).
The position was originally intended for the intermediate to long-term, as indicated to our subscribers, but we were getting very nervous about the short-term downside risk, i.e., giving back most of the gains by mid-day Friday. Since Seeking Alpha still hadn't gotten around to processing the article, it is then that we pulled the original article and title and revised it to the present one, as given our revised position and our short-term outlook, the original title would have been a disservice to our readers, especially if prices reversed as we had suspected they would.
Of course you can still make your own interpretations based on the above, as many surely will, and that's okay. We are all entitled to our opinions. But just to reiterate, we strongly believe in the long-term outlook for PLUG, as stated many times in the article. We believe it is likely that we are at the beginning of a long-term proverbial 'hockey stick' kind of rise in revenues, and ultimately earnings, based on not just its current markets, but potentially much larger new markets, as outlined in the article. However, we are concerned about the short-term downside risk, and such price spikes can correct as swiftly and deeply to the downside once shares start to fall - and despite one's belief in the long-term, sometimes many investors find it difficult to hold a stock through massive short-term losses. It is with that concern that we highlighted the short-term risk in the article.
I welcome any disagreements, but it would be more helpful if they were constructive and focused, after thoroughly reading the article. And private messages are also welcome. Usually we always respond to them, provided they are constructive.
Greetings everyone,
IMUC is already trading above $1 before end-of-year, like we predicted in the article.
For those interested, we offer our 'Alpha News Edge' trade alerts service on our website,, where you can get our latest ideas, like IMUC and many others, including buy and sell signal alerts. Please check out our trades and performance results of our system on our website if you are interested.
will_da_man and fredmertz85,
Thank you both for trying to bring some rationality to the debate, but sometimes that is a hopeless cause with 'emotionally charged' biotech investing.
And fredmertz85, you are right on, the article does not say sell, as many seem to have interpreted. It just highlights the assumption you may be implicitly making when you hold it or buy it here - that maybe your belief is high that Iclusig will be able to address the larger patient population. This does not appear to be supported by the data, however that can change, as things often do in biotech, and then it would become a more attractive investment. And again your opinion based on your position may be different than mine.
Hi Jon Jegglie,
We haven't looked at KERX closely. From what I recollect, their Zerenex drug phase 3 study focuses on serum phosphorus in CKD patients on dialysis, so similar patient focus, but different end-point. However, they do have an earlier phase 2 study that focuses on both serum phosphorus and iron deficiency in CKD patients on dialysis.
Yes, you are right, overall ownership by Inst. stands right now actually at almost 8%.
The <3% ownership as we clearly stated in our article was by our hand-picked top 300+ Wall St. Funds.
From our testing, the overall ownership by all Inst. has little correlation with price performance going fwd., rather it is the ownership by top funds, the top 300+ Wall St. funds that we have hand-picked (including 79 Guru, 27 Mega, 141 Sector - incl. 25 in biotech, 57 Billionaire, 54 New Masters & 40 Tiger funds) that is a better predictor of price performance going fwd. For example, these funds were heavily selling AAPL before the turn in late-Summer'12. You can see many more examples of that here,
Second, as you can see, the number has changed since you may have last seen it, as stragglers come in after the end of the filing period deadline of 11/14/13, and the last ones get cataloged. So, wait for a few days before the final numbers are in.
For ownership by top Wall St. funds for ONVO, and 5,300+ other U.S. traded stocks, and top industry picks by our 300+ top Wall St. funds, please visit us at
Hi Prohost:
Thanks for the compliment.
I agree, we live in a wonderful age, with innovations in healthcare & technology, from companies like ONVO, maybe, that continue to drive our progress forward.
FYI, I have read and learnt a lot from your articles on biotech stocks on SA.
Hi Terry,
Thanks for the compliment. I agree, while RMTI may at some point consolidate its recent gains, it is a long-term story that is bound to play out going fwd. as the company reports improving quarterly numbers, first with the commercial impact of Calcitriol next year, and then the potential commercial impact of Triferic in FY 2015.
Hi nearmiss:
I will second what you said here. You can definitely invest with "play money" even at these elevated levels, knowing very well that you are betting on a lottery here - you could win big or lose your shirt.
And that may happen, even if it does ultimately make a multi-fold huge move over the next decade or two, for not too many people would be able to hold it all through that volatility, and for the long-term.
Hi ceristeare,
Thanks for the compliment.