Losing a Million (or R18,000 at least) (updated)

In How Not to Lose Money in Make a Million I showed that the game was massively more likely to lose you money than make you money.  It may be a great way for the promoters to gain some new client and some media coverage, but it’s a really poor way to introduce the masses to trading and investing.

I noticed that the number of people reading that post had increased recently – large numbers of people were checking out the post weeks after I wrote it.

Then I checked the competition’s leaderboard.

Only 41 participants (out of 421) have made money (as of today). Fewer than 10% of the participants have made money.

I’m also concerned by the 123 participants who have R0 balances. I honestly don’t know whether they haven’t yet paid (why are they on the leaderboard?) or whether they have really managed to spectacularly lose everything in the short time the competition has been over. (Updated) I checked: The 123 participants with 0 balances haven’t yet funded their accounts. So not as dramatic as having already lost all their money, but still telling that so few people are actually prepared to play the game. Ironically, with the R1m prize money now spread over fewer players, the game just got less bad. At least for the players.

There are also 105 participants who are still on exactly R18,000 suggesting they haven’t traded yet. These guys have the best strategy for not losing money.

Published by David Kirk

The opinions expressed on this site are those of the author and other commenters and are not necessarily those of his employer or any other organisation. David Kirk runs Milliman’s actuarial consulting practice in Africa. He is an actuary and is the creator of New Business Margin on Revenue. He specialises in risk and capital management, regulatory change and insurance strategy . He also has extensive experience in embedded value reporting, insurance-related IFRS and share option valuation.

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