MENSA is the group for individuals with IQ's in the top 2% of the population. They have an investment club, and Eleanor Laise looked at this investment club in an article entitled ?If we are so Smart, Why Aren't We Aren't Rich?'.
Over the period 1986 to 2001 the Mensa investment club managed a return of 2.5% a year. The average market return for this period was 15.3% a year.
From the MENSA club chair: "it was my hope that a special-interest group within MENSA would have the intellect that would give us some kind of advantage."
What, then, explains the disparity between club members' formidable IQs and derisory results? Laise provides a strong hint: during the past 15 years its chairman-editor has also been "a committed chartist and incorrigible techie [who] has transformed the club, which has $70,000 in assets, from a small-cap, value-oriented group to a highflying, momentum-buying Nasdaq nightmare. The centrepiece of his strategy is the TC 2000, a technical charting program that seems like a prop from the set of Star Trek. [According to the chairman-editor], ?this program is the coolest thing. You can show various types of graphs and add indicators, like linear regression, moving average, Bollinger bands. Then there's volume, stochastics, MACD, time-segmented volume, stuff like that. You can add all kinds of indicators and really confuse yourself.'"
It is an interesting story - and interesting to see the ?smartest guys in the room' with the best software support struggling to generate a reasonable rate of return.
As Warren Buffett - one of the world's great investors - has said, "Investing is not a game where the guy with the 160 IQ beats the guy with 130 IQ..What's needed is a sound intellectual framework for making decisions and the ability to keep emotions from corroding that framework."
(source: sensible stocks . com - original article in Smart Money)