Travis Johnson, Stock Gumshoe

Author Bio

Travis Johnson is an individual investor who founded Stock Gumshoe in 2007 as a way to air his dissections of overhyped marketing pitches... and to share the "secret" stocks that stock newsletters hype to get your attention and your subscription dollars. His thinking? If you already know what the "secret" stock is, you can make a much more reasonable and thoughtful decision about whether or not to commit to an expensive newsletter subscription. (And if you don't pay for the info, you'll be more free to think for yourself about whether or not the investment is worth your money.) In his charmed life he has been, among other things, a university faculty member, a fundraiser, a writer, and a world-champion ice-cream scooper. Now he runs Stock Gumshoe for you, allowing us all to discuss and dissect the latest overheated stock ideas... as well as review and talk about investment newsletters and enjoy the commentary and opinions of Stock Gumshoe's other special contributors and the discussion with our unusually attractive, erudite and polite readers. He lives with Mrs. Gumshoe and all their little Gumshoes in the wilds of Western Massachusetts.

Author Archives

Friday File: Gold, Shop and China

So… what’s going on this week? The world watched Congress actually pass something last night, on the 30th anniversary of the 1987 stock market crash (they passed their spending framework bill for 2018, which is importantly mostly because it sets the stage for tax reform legislation to proceed in the coming months), so that made […]

A New Stock for the Watchlist

Today I’ll try to keep my blather a little more limited than usual… I have one update on a stock that I bought recently, and a couple updates on our watchlist this week (that list always lingers down there at the bottom of the Real Money Portfolio, in case you’ve missed it). The update is […]

Solving Iskyan’s tease: “buying this stock today is like buying Priceline or Expedia, well before online booking got popular in the U.S.”

I’ve written a couple times about Kim Iskyan’s teaser ads over the past year, but this is the first time I’ve seen ads for his higher-end International Capitalist (the last offer was a $3,000 “lifetime” subscription). Iskyan has sold a few investment newsletters over the past decade, first with Stansberry, then later on his own […]

International Capitalist

Monthly newsletter focusing on speculative investments for “adventure capitalists” in frontier and emerging markets. Iskyan also contributes to the lower-priced Churchouse Letter and previously published his own Asia Alpha Advisory and edited the short-lived S&A Global Contrarian for Stansberry.

Recent Author Comments

On Friday File: Gold, Shop and China
Not right now. I can’t make any rational assessment of what the valuation “should” be, so I took my profits (and missed another 30% so far) and I’m out. I keep coming back to the notion that no alt-currency represents “ownership” of the blo[...]
On What's "The H.E.I.S.T. Moneybomb" from Extreme Alpha?
Interestingly, I see that the budget vote included both a $1.5 trillion deficit placekeeper and also extended the time to 20 years from ten, so that gives some more flexibility in making tax cuts look fiscally reasonable (as does their agreement to use "dy[...]
On What's "The H.E.I.S.T. Moneybomb" from Extreme Alpha?
Senate spending bill passed this evening by 1 vote, with a placeholder inserted for the reconciliation process that will allow for $1.5 trillion in new deficit spending... so the deficit hawks have kept their peace for now, and the path is clear for a vote[...]
On Fool's "Could This $4.05 Small Cap Be the Next Netflix?"
Doesn’t match the few clues very well, and I can’t see a Fool newsletter putting a formal recommendation on an itsy bitsy little company like that (market cap is below $20 million and average trading volume is only $70,000 a day — not nearly enough t[...]
On What's "The H.E.I.S.T. Moneybomb" from Extreme Alpha?
A shocking number of otherwise sane and intellectually competent people turn off their skepticism and begin to believe in magic when it comes to the stock market. One of my hopes is that I can do a little bit to help those folks by giving their skepticism[...]
On Friday File: "Cash for Patriots," plus some Gumshoe Sentiment as vacation begins
FYI, four months later the Fear and Greed Index is now firmly back in the "Extreme Greed" category at http://money.cnn.com/data/fear-and-greed/ -- a "hated" bull market it might be, but those who say they hate it aren't betting against it or sitting on cas[...]
On Friday File: Fairfaxes, Blackbirds, Nodaks and more
No, I haven't done anything with my position -- but I've been looking it over to update my thoughts on it this week, so there should be an update in the next Friday File. Thanks for the reminder![...]
On Fool's "Could This $4.05 Small Cap Be the Next Netflix?"
I don't think Porter knows more than anyone else on that topic, and I think we're a ways from knowing what the end result of the current cryptocurrency mania will be -- I see the potential of blockchain technology, but can't get past the logic of bitcoin p[...]
On Fool's "Could This $4.05 Small Cap Be the Next Netflix?"
DHX Media used to have a OTC symbol (ending in "F"), but that stopped being used when they got a formal nasdaq listing a couple years ago. The original listing is in Toronto.[...]
On Massengill's Two Picks for the "BIGGEST defense boom in American history"
Keaton’s has been picked by a few newsletters, but wasn’t teased in this particular ad[...]
On Friday File: Fairfaxes, Blackbirds, Nodaks and more
I browse them in spreadsheet form, usually, on the CBOE announcements -- unless I'm specifically looking at a handful of stocks to see what their LEAP pricing is. Generally I'm most interested in far-out-of-the-money LEAPS on growth stocks that alread[...]
On Friday File: Fairfaxes, Blackbirds, Nodaks and more
Could be, we'll see -- thanks for the feedback![...]
On Fool's "Could This $4.05 Small Cap Be the Next Netflix?"
Peanuts still likely generates something in the $80-100 million range for annual licensing and rights fees revenue and clearly has some staying power (at least 5-10 million people tune in for prime time rebroadcasts of the Peanuts holiday specials each yea[...]
On Friday File: Fairfaxes, Blackbirds, Nodaks and more
Sorry, I expect they’re probably U.S.-only.[...]
On Fool's "Could This $4.05 Small Cap Be the Next Netflix?"
Dividends are pretty much always paid to all shareholders, regardless of where you bought shares. Canadian stocks held outside a retirement account often have a withholding tax taken out of the dividend, though you’d presumably get to claim credit for[...]
On Friday File: Fairfaxes, Blackbirds, Nodaks and more
It certainly shot up today after the FDA approval. Will be interesting to see if they can create the infrastructure and demand for their robotic surgical systems -- the approval is obviously a huge step, but sales will be the key now and, as we saw from [...]
On Hodge's "November 1: New FDA Mandate Sends This Device Into EVERY Restaurant in America"
No one is producing this particular device right now, you must have lost patience with my blatheration and skipped over the paragraphs where I name and describe the company — don’t worry, you’re not the first. It’s Lexagene, listed in Canada and al[...]
On Tear Sheet: CohBar Inc. ($CWBR)
Should be. That's Cohbar's real market listing, on the venture exchange in Canada -- the US ticker trades OTC. Both trade in US$. Usually the volume will be on the real exchange, but in this case there's more volume on the OTCQX trading for Cohbar than [...]
On Microblog: Shopify: Travis , what are your thoughts on this claim by Citron.?
I posted some initial thoughts in the Friday File last week. I'm letting a broad stop loss make my decision on[...]
On Microblog: Social Capital Hedosophia Holdings Corp
Social Capital is an established VC fund, and they have made a lot of investments over the years. This new vehicle, Social Capital Hedosophia, is a joint venture between Social Capital and Hedosophia and is itself a blank check/SPAC -- essentially, it's $[...]

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