Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Presentation gives valuable stock-picking tips

By Jason White, Ph.D.

Family Investment Center recently hosted the latest installment in its investor education series. The event was held at the East Hills Public Library rotunda classroom at 7 p.m.

Jason Votruba, CFA and portfolio manager for the UMB Scout Small Cap Fund (UMBHX), shared his philosophy of stock-picking in the small company investment universe. Votruba currently hold about 120 different positions in his small company fund. Since Votruba took over management of the fund on January 1, 2001, he has earned a total return of 24 percent, soundly outperforming both the Russell 2000 (2 percent) and the S&P 500 (-21 percent) benchmark indexes.

Votruba's strategy is to invest in stocks that have the highest probability of going higher, and sell those that are likely to decline. His philosophy involves studying the biggest winners in the stock market to find common shared characteristics of company's prior to a big upside move. He describes his approach as 80 percent fundamental analysis and 20 percent technical.

Attendance at the event was good for a beautiful summer evening in St. Joseph. Several investors in the crowd asked thought-provoking questions. Overall, the event was viewed as quite positive.

The next Family Investment Center education evening will be held in mid-summer.

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