Weekly Wrap: Sell in May...?

Friday, May 15 2015 by
Weekly Wrap Sell in May

According to our weathered copy of the Stock Trader's Almanac, May is one of the worst months of the year for the stock market. No surprise then that the old adage “Sell in May and go away, come back on St Leger's Day" still persists in the headlines. More than half the years since 1970 have apparently seen negative returns. And the average performance has been -0.6%. Should you be concerned? Not according to US investor Ken Fisher. He recently wrote recently in Money Observer that selling up in May is 'very wrong and financially bad advice'.

Seasonal anomalies are a huge source of intrigue for academics. Back in 2002Ben Jacobsen and Sven Bouman came up with what's regarded by their peers as the seminal work on the Sell in May strategy. They found that in most countries 'the average returns in the period May-October are not significantly different from zero and are often even negative'.

Alas, a more recent investigation of the strategy tallies with Fisher's belief that it's bunkum. Last year researchers Hubert Dichtl and Wolfgang Drobetz revisited the data and found that this seasonal effect had weakened or even diminished recently. They said it no longer constituted a “free lunch". It turns out that the concept of efficient capital markets has slammed the door on this one.

At Stockopedia this week we had a look at Ten FTSE 350 stocks for dividend growth investors. Alex Naamani covered the The Maiden Dividend Anomaly in his StockRank Movers column, while our small-cap expert Paul Scott was kept busy with his daily reports, which you can read here.

Elsewhere this week, we've been reading:

Safe Investing!

Unlock this article instantly by logging into your account

Don’t have an account? Register for free and we’ll get out your way


As per our Terms of Use, Stockopedia is a financial news & data site, discussion forum and content aggregator. Our site should be used for educational & informational purposes only. We do not provide investment advice, recommendations or views as to whether an investment or strategy is suited to the investment needs of a specific individual. You should make your own decisions and seek independent professional advice before doing so. Remember: Shares can go down as well as up. Past performance is not a guide to future performance & investors may not get back the amount invested.

Do you like this Post?
5 thumbs up
0 thumbs down
Share this post with friends

1 Comment on this Article show/hide all

UK Value Investor 16th May '15 1 of 1

Thanks for the link Ben. In return here's a link to a rather excellent breakdown of UK wages and house prices by county:


Blog: UK Value Investor
| Link | Share

What's your view on this article? Log In to Comment Now

You can track all @StockoChat comments via Twitter

About Ben Hobson

Ben Hobson

Strategies Editor at Stockopedia. My goal is to help private investors learn and invest with confidence through the articles, ebooks and other resources we publish on site. I also occasionally bunk off to interview famous investors at expensive restaurants. I studied History at Aberystwyth University, trained as a journalist and covered business news and corporate finance before settling in as one of the first staff members at Stockopedia.  Away from Stockopedia I'm a mountain bike junkie. more »


Stock Picking Tutorial Centre

Related Content
Weekly Wrap  Contrarian thinking
Weekly Wrap - Contrarian thinking
linkfest 17th Jul '15

Weekly Wrap  Budget Week
Weekly Wrap - Budget Week
linkfest 10th Jul '15

Weekly Wrap Index changes
Weekly Wrap: Index changes
linkfest 5th Jun '15

Weekly Wrap Market bubbles
Weekly Wrap: Market bubbles
linkfest 29th May '15

Let’s get you setup so you get the most out of our service
Done, Let's add some stocks
Brilliant - You've created a folio! Now let's add some stocks to it.

  • Apple (AAPL)

  • Shell (RDSA)

  • Twitter (TWTR)

  • Volkswagon AG (VOK)

  • McDonalds (MCD)

  • Vodafone (VOD)

  • Barratt Homes (BDEV)

  • Microsoft (MSFT)

  • Tesco (TSCO)
Save and show me my analysis