Motley Fool

Motley Fool

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Who Are These FOOLS?

Feb 28, 2001
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros: The discussion boards

Cons: Poor half-baked investment advice.

The Bottom Line: The FOOLS are entertaining, but I don't buy their act.


The Motley Fool is the financial supersite of brothers Tom and David Gardner. It is the wildly successful offspring of a financial newsletter the brothers started in 1993. After receiving only 38 subscriptions after their first publication, the brothers made the fateful decision to start a financial conversation on the then small America Online. This popular discussion site led inexorably to The Motley Fool website and, the best selling books, The Motley Fool Investment Guide and You have More than You Think .

David and Tom Gardners basic premise is that you can soundly outperform the market professionals by implementing the thirteen simple lessons explained in " Fool's School". The Fools borrow liberally from Micheal O'Higgin's book, Beating The Dow , in which O'Higgins espouses a Dow beating strategy that is commonly referred to as buying the "dogs of the Dow". Simply stated, O'Higgins argues that the beaten down stocks in the Dow Jones Industrial Average will tend to outperform the average if held for twelve months. The Gardner's tweak this formula and come up with a formula for a portfolio they call,"the Foolish Five".

Over time Tom and David and their fellow "Fools" have added other model portfolios that, it is suggested, lead to riches. Amongst these are, The Rule Maker Portfolio, The Rule Breaker Portfolio, and The Drip Portfolio.

These Fools Have also discontinued several portfolios such as; The Boring Portfolio, and The Harry Jones Portfolio. After the Rule Breaker Portfolio lost over half its value, The Motley Fool published an article advising fellow Fools-"Don't Mimic Us ". Thanks for the heads up, guys!

The Motley Fool always has many well written articles. Such diverse topics as car buying, house purchasing and, planning for retirement are featured. The discussion board are good, with little of the riff-raff seen on other sites. There are also many articles that give the 'party line' on the subject of investing.

This leads to my main criticism of The Motley Fool and the Gardners in general. At this website, there is a chronic lack of balance and objectivity on the serious subject of money. Often editorials and articles appear to be defensive rationalizations of ill-conceived investment strategies gone wrong.

I feel the Brothers Gardner are truly victims of the explosive success they have attained via the internet. They find themselves seated aside a world-wide cash cow. They seem content to milk it dry.


Recommend this product? No

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