Even Wall Street’s best are having trouble getting investors to show interest in owning US stocks. Maybe the answer is dropping the logical argument based on experience. Instead, adopt a strategy proven successful with consumers: Change the name and, thereby, the perception.
|It started ages ago – the word for thorn/bramble morphed into “rose.” || || |
|More recently, “prune” became “dried plum.” || || |
|More creatively, by opening the cage door 5 minutes daily, poultry graduated from “cooped up” to “free range.” || || |
|Just this week, the Corn Refiners Association asked the FDA to permit changing “high fructose corn syrup” to “corn sugar” saying, “We hope to erase consumer confusion.” || || |
That’s it! Confusion means uncertainty. And in the investment world, uncertainty doesn’t sell. Moreover, Wall Street previously has had success simply by changing labels.
|After “junk bonds” had a particularly bad stretch, Wall Street renamed them “high yield,” shifting from a derided label to one picturing desirable results. || || |
|With the advent of investment advisory service industry, the term “stockbroker” became equated with huckster. So, brokerage firms designed new business cards that read, “Financial Adviser.” || || |
Today, the term, “US stocks,” reminds investors of unhappy times and broken dreams. So, Wall Street could, through simple relabeling, alter that perspective for the better. For example, imagine looking at a shiny brochure describing “All American Growth Certificates.” Name change magic! An upbeat mood created by association with patriotism, positive payoffs and security.
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Is it a cure for the US stock market? Judging by previous results, it could work. Disclosure:
Client positions: Long stocks and stock funds