AH, I love the smell of fresh stock picks in the morning. A hardy (or foolhardy) band of racers marched once more unto the breach this week, to be duly laid low by a barrage of negativity. The market dropped 1 per cent over the first five trading days of our competition. There seems to be only two types of news these days: bad and worse.
Only our pair of early leaders managed to do better than the market. The ever mysterious Doreen Daze surprised even her Orphic self by claiming an early lead after marine services company Miclyn Express was catapulted a full 2 per cent higher. Ever hopeful AFR associate editor Philip "the Teflon Don" Baker is just a couple of hundred bucks behind. A remarkable four of Phil's picks made money - led by Primary Health Care - only to be let down big time by Buru Energy.
A hearty shares race welcome to reader John Wyatt, up there mixing it with the veterans. John's choice of medical-devices maker GI Dynamics was an inspired one, and a clutch of other stocks also made him money. But while John showed a high level of acumen in half of his portfolio, the other half displayed his more - ahem - charitable side. Qantas, BlueScope Steel and Smart Investor Money mothership Fairfax Media staggered lower.
Chart supremo Richard Pritchard had some good picks but also a couple of howlers. Meanwhile, Pottsy distinguished himself with the worst pick of the week - the much beloved Gold Anomaly. Lawyer Amy Dobbin and musician Jason Contos didn't have the greatest weeks. But despair not, it's early days and anything can happy in this crazy, mixed up market.