A news item that has gotten a lot of attention recently concerned an internal performance review of Fidelity accounts to determine which type of investors received the best returns between 2003 and 2013. The customer account audit revealed that the best investors were either dead or inactive—the people who switched jobs and “forgot” about an old 401(k) leaving the current options in place, or the people who died and the assets were frozen while the estate handled the assets. The next best performers were those with energy, healthcare, and small-cap value portfolios.
My speculation on why dead people beat everyone else is that there is no temptation to employ recency bias and sell a stock simply because the price of the company went down or they assume that the recent bad economic conditions will continue perpetually into the future. Take something like BHP Billiton, one of the jewel companies with … Read the rest of this article!