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Our Strategies Get Recognized

Just thought you’d like to read the article about me (actually I’m barely more than a footnote in the article) on MSN Money’s website today:

Also, here is the Press Release from MSN that went national this week:

StrategyLab Open: Stock Genius in Action

The Finalists have been Chosen…

The first round of the StrategyLab Open (SLO) has come to an end. The best of the best in the financial blogging kingdom have gathered here to compete for the chance to enter into MSN’s Strategy Lab competition: The gateway to stock picker stardom. Thousands of guru investors and financial bloggers from all over the United States have completed the grueling five-month competition. After intense deliberation, the minds behind SLO have decided on the five finalists…

About The Strategy Lab Open

StrategyLab Open is the home of the brand new MSN Money Strategy Lab Qualifying Tournament. The competition is hosted by InvestorPlace Blogs and Marketocracy, and gives regualar members of the investing community a place to show their “stuff.” We are looking for the next great undiscovered investing guru: Someone who can not only pick profitable stocks but someone who has a sound investment philosophy and can teach others through blogging.

Each one of the StrategyLab Open participants is given $1 million to manage for a period of five months. Contestants invest their mock-portfolio as they see fit and write about the decisions behind their buying and selling in their personal blog, which is hosted by InvestorPlace Blogs. Each contestant’s portfolio is maintained and validated by

The winner of the StrategyLab Open is determined by a combination of overall portfolio performance and the quality of their corresponding blog posts. All entries are judged by an expert panel and the winner is selected based on the following criteria: 50% Portfolio Performance, 25% Quality of Blog Posts, 25% Investment Strategy.

Readers also have a part to play in picking the winner. Each blog post has a comment and voting section (Register to comment and vote) – and believe us, reader ratings go a long way toward picking the final winner. Not to mention that you can use the reader ratings to help find the advice that other investors have found extremely valuable.

Click here to start investing, blogging, and voting. Enjoy the StrategyLab Open – ride the train – no one wants to be left behind…

The Finalists

1). Sayed Shah of Stocky’s Picks – 49.02% five month return.

Sayed’s primary tool for picking stocks is Google search – which he uses to find details about a company’s operations, results, products, services, management and any thing related. He also scans through the corresponding company’s website, announcements, insider activity, major holders and previous results or significant announcements. Sayed uses simple technical analysis and doesn’t play with fancy software or services. He thinks that good judgment matters the most when it comes to picking stocks…

Sayed Shah’s Top Weighted Stocks:

· GLD – StreetTracks Gold Trust (SLO Related Article)

· PG – Procter and Gamble (SLO Related Article)

· GOOG – Google Inc. (SLO Related Article)

2). James Shao of MyIRA Picks – 45.88% five month return.

Throughout the contest, James always held several solar stocks and paid great attention to any relevant news. He truly believes that the Solar Sector will achieve unparalleled growth and earnings over the foreseeable future. James feels that this is due to the high demand in renewable clean energy.

es Shao’s Top Weighted Stocks:

· LDK – LDK Solar Co. (SLO Related Article)

· DRYS – DryShips, Inc. (SLO Related Article)

· EXM – Excel Maritime Carriers (SLO Related Article)

3). Vad Yazvinski of Vad’s Best Ideas – 34.18% five month return.

Vad had spent the last five years intensely studying the stock market. He has passed all three levels of the CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) exam. In addition, he has also built a very solid and auditable track record on Vad therefore has been selected as one of the top 100 virtual fund managers on the Marketocracy website.

He sums up his investment strategy as 50% event-driven and 50% value investing. He approaches investing from a very fundamental prospective. Vad believes that a stock is only worth as much as its cash flow can generate in the next 5 years.

Vad Yazvinski’s Top Weighted Stocks:

· MGI – MoneyGram International, Inc. (SLO Related Article)

· PTNR – Partner Communications Co. (SLO Related Article)

· GEOY – GeoEye, Inc. (SLO Related Article)

4). Keith Barton of Complete Stock Idjit – 34.28% five month return.

Keith started his career as a computer technician for a major brokerage house. By watching the industry from within (not a broker) he learned a very valuable lesson: Not all brokers are created equal. He thinks that the Stock market is similar to Las Vegas – where the “house” controls the odds.

Keith is a “common sense” investor. He uses his knowledge of current events, trends, and history, to suggest what may be appropriate for investing. During the SLO contest, his strategy was scarcity – natural resources and minerals used by both developing and developed countries to build products and infrastructure.

Keith Barton’s Top Weighted Stocks:

· AAPL – Apple Computer Corp. (SLO Related Article)

· BG – Bunge Ltd. (SLO Related Article)

· GLD – StreetTracks Gold Trust (SLO Related Article)

5). Mark Ballard of Mark’s Strateg
– 34.32% five month return.

Mark watches the Federal Reserve with an incredulous eye. He knows that the markets are extremely sensitive to Fed movements and invests accordingly. Mark speculates that the continuation of interest rate cuts will drive up inflation and investors will eventually wise up and act accordingly.

Mark has a penchant for Agriculture stocks, gold, and energy – all sectors that benefit from inflationary forces.

Mark Ballard’s Top Weighted Stocks:

· POT – Potash Corp. (SLO Related Article)

· FCX – FreePT Copper & Gold (SLO Related Article)

· MON Monsanto Co. (SLO Related Article)