Here's another absurd study. It looks at the returns over the past three years of S&P 500 Index (SPX) stocks based on the second letter of their stock symbol. I'm using the second letter because I've heard a theory that, during bull markets, stocks starting with a letter near the beginning of the alphabet may tend to outperform, since investors often see lists in alphabetical order and buy the first good-looking stock they see. I don't subscribe to that theory, but, by using the second letter, this study doesn't allow for that kind of interpretation.
The studies above indicating the market outperforms when the NFC team wins the Super Bowl, or that a stock with a "T" as the second letter in its symbol outperforms, are very clear examples of randomness leading to erroneous conclusions. They are reminders, though, that randomness is present in any stock market study you do.
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