Travis Johnson, Stock Gumshoe

Author Bio

Travis Johnson, Stock Gumshoe
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

“Company that Doesn’t Make or Sell Anything” to “Double Your Money Year After Year?

Here’s the beginning of the latest teaser pitch from the Eagle Financial folks… “There is a company that doesn’t make or sell anything—yet, it earns over $3 billion a year. “It occupies this futuristic-looking building (its world headquarters) in the heart of New York City. “And it’s been turning ordinary investors into multi-millionaires.” And, actually, […]

Mengel’s “Next King of Cannabis”

Jimmy Mengel is out with a new marijuana stock ad for us, teasing the “next king” of the sector as he looks for more winners… and, of course, he’d like you to subscribe to his newsletter to learn what this next winner might be (actually, he’s pitching this as “you buy my $99 report, nonrefundable, […]

What are “Prime Profits” from Amazon? The Wealth Advisory teases that “you can claim your slice of this jackpot and collect up to $48,000 over the next year.”

ed. note: The first version of this article was originally published in September of 2018, when we first saw these ads rolling. It has been re-circulated several times, most recently because of the attention Amazon is getting as it overwhelms the holiday season, so readers are asking again and we’ve lightly updated this teaser solution. […]

Friday File: Dividends Keep Climbing

It’s “goodwill toward all” season, right? So now is the time to get ready to be nice to yourself. I don’t know whether this trade war will end, or if impeachment will lead to something bigger, or whether President Trump will find a way to goose the stock market again next year to boost his […]


Company that offers several memberships and services, including an online course called The Early Stage Playbook, and tries to connect investors to appealing private investments and support decisionmaking about those investments. Pitches some of these private companies as appealing investments in their special reports, and offers a variety of other paid subscriptions.

Profit Line

Service that recommends one or two trades per month, with some connection to insider buying signals — they say they “have a strategy that allows us to follow insiders into their next massive gain, allowing investors to profit.”

“How Did a Tiny, $20 Million Startup Make Tesla’s Entire Product Line Obsolete?” — What’s the tiny electric motor stock teased by Alex Koyfman?

This article was originally published on October 18, 2018, we’re re-sharing it here with a minor update because Koyfman is now apparently taking advantage of the fact that Tesla’s in the news again by teasing this as a new spiel, his emails catch your attention with “Here’s why Elon’s Truck is Dumb” subject lines, but […]

Jeff Brown’s “New CURE” Tease

I’ve gotten a big pile of questions about the latest teaser pitch from Jeff Brown, who is now taking credit for the rise of the CRISPR stocks and sees another big surge coming. And for what it’s worth, he was one of the early newsletter guys promoting the three primary CRISPR stocks a few years […]

2019 Turkey of the Year

Turn down the football game and bring out the pies, it’s that time again! Stock Gumshoe is mostly closed down for the holiday week, but we do have to continue our annual tradition of calling out our “Turkey of the Year” … so take a pause from arguing with your family and join us, won’t […]

Recent Author Comments

On Elfenbein's "ONLY 5G Stock You Need to Buy"
For the very fastest speeds using millimeter wave, yes, there need to be a lot more antennas and base stations since the highest bandwidth connections can only transmit 1,000 feet or so and can’t go through obstacles (walls, trees, etc). There are also[...]
On Elfenbein's "ONLY 5G Stock You Need to Buy"
Maybe, but I imagine we’re a long way from that — particularly from shrinking satellite modems into phones and building a satellite network with enough bandwidth for millions of phones.[...]
On Microblog: Jeff Brown's timed stocks
There are no secrets about specific stocks or drug approval schedules in the CFR, that’s just to make it sound more official and mysterious.[...]
On Navellier's "The #1 Investment for the Coming 5G Revolution" and "Most Disruptive Innovation in 45 Years" Pitches
It is counterintuitive, but in a bull market you’ll do well by just buying those best real growth stocks at all-time highs. Of course, if market sentiment turns the trip down can be violent.[...]
On Microblog: Teeka Freedom 2020 Pre-IPO
Why would you want to invest in a private company that won't answer your phone call?[...]
On What's Jeff Brown teasing in his "Timed Stocks Summit?"
Lockup periods are generally for six months for new companies, though that shouldn't be relevant to any new information being released about the company -- the only thing that would reasonably be announced because of the expiration of a lockup period is th[...]
On Fool's "Small-cap 'Amazon of the North'"
On "Linchpin Device... and the Next Tech Giant" -- What's Fessler's "$7 Tech Stock" to "Hand You Up to 24 Times Your Money?"
I didn't know who they were until I looked into them and realized they changed their name from Novatel Wireless -- I imagine Cramer remembers those guys and their boom/bust periods.[...]
On What's "The Pot Stock of the Decade" pitched by The Wealth Advisory?
I don't believe there are any Canadian cannabis-focused REITs. At least, not publicly traded.[...]
On What's Jeff Brown teasing in his "Timed Stocks Summit?"
Yes, as I noted above, that section of the CFR covers the procedures and rules for FDA submissions. Which has a loose connection with some timelines for expected catalysts for particular companies who are developing drugs... but yes, of course, the ad exa[...]
On What's Jeff Brown teasing in his "Timed Stocks Summit?"
Please do come back in a few months or a year and let us know whether his picks are 100% successful :)[...]
On What's Jeff Brown teasing in his "Timed Stocks Summit?"
All I can tell you is that the clues match FULC precisely, and ALEC not quite. Which stocks he actually recommends from the many possibles is another question. As always, the point is not to follow a tease blindly — it’s to satisfy curiosity, offset[...]
On What's Jeff Brown teasing in his "Timed Stocks Summit?"
The presentation said that this #1 “timed stock” hasn’t been recommended yet and might not be, so there’s plenty of room for squishiness.[...]
On Annual Review Part One
No, it’s not a static or model fixed portfolio — cash is added regularly and occasionally cash is withdrawn. Makes the math tricky for an accurate total return for any given time period.[...]
On Manward Letter
FYI: Comments are often held for moderation, particularly from new commenters, but are not often deleted.[...]
On Annual Review Part One
The economics are more likely to Create a profit than, say, Uber or Lyft in the next five years... but, of course, that makes a lot of assumptions about the business, and is definitely not guaranteed. People are buying because of the cool story, not becau[...]
On Annual Review Part One
The full portfolio, including all the funds and ETFs and such, has tracked fairly close to the S&P over the past year or two but I haven't calculated the annual cash return for either the whole portfolio or my equity selections. Probably a good thing to [...]
On What's Jeff Brown teasing in his "Timed Stocks Summit?"
Could be... if they lie in their ads, the answers will be wrong.[...]
On What's Jeff Brown teasing in his "Timed Stocks Summit?"
Wouldn’t be surprised if he likes that one, the reward potential of Alzheimer’s Disease drugs always tempts newsletter guys, even in Phase 1... but that’s not a match for the hints in this ad for that #1 stock —- could just be another of the recomm[...]
On What's Jeff Brown teasing in his "Timed Stocks Summit?"
Years, not months on that one.[...]

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