Nobody Can Time the Stock Market, Vol. 220S

Ever since the New York Stock Exchange was founded in 1792 amid the horse poop and scurvy of lower Manhattan, Ye Olde Stocke Prognosticationists have stood ready to predict how stocks would to in each upcoming year, in order to make YOU wealthy beyond your wildest dreams. And now, 220 years later, it is still not any more possible to predict the future of the stock market than it was then.

David Weidner takes a quick look back at how various stock pundits did this year, and this is all you really need to know:

Of the 65 market "gurus" tracked during the last few years by CXO Advisory Group, the median accuracy for market calls is 47%. If that sounds low, or you wonder about the quality of the pundit, consider that the list includes such well-known names as Bill Fleckenstein (37%), Jeremy Grantham (48%), Bill Gross (46%) and Louis Navellier (60%).

The record speaks for itself. Most of the smartest guys in the room are usually about as reliable as a coin flip.

The paid professionals are almost as good as a dart-throwing monkey. Maybe next year. In the meantime, index.

[WSJ]