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

This article was originally published in October, but we’re getting more reader questions about it and Matthew Carr has a second version of the ad that focuses a little less on Apple and the iPhone, so we’re re-sharing our solution below. What follows is based on a slightly different ad, but the “secret” $10 growth […]

Here’s a little lead-in to the ad we started to see rolling on Friday from Empire Elite Growth ($5,000/yr, no refunds “on sale” for $2,000): “This the first page of a 49-page document officially released in the same year that President Trump promised “a new American moment.” “The document struck down a federal law, which […]

Upgrade service from StreetAuthority that recommends one “takeover trade” per month, with more frequent updates on companies that are recommended because of the potential that they’ll be acquired at a premium price.

Mike Barrett has been an analyst for Dan Ferris’ Extreme Value newsletter over at Stansberry for several years now, and apparently he has also suggested several other high-return investments that ended up being recommended by other Stansberry newsletters. And now he’s getting his own newsletter, with a pretty splashy teaser presentation to introduce it — […]

New upgrade service launched by Mike Barrett and Dan Ferris, who also partner on Extreme Value from the same publisher. Focused on finding early investments in companies who have “10X” potential, often because they are early on in their development but have intellectual property that Barrett forecasts will be very valuable in the future. Launched […]

This week, as I check in on my portfolio and my watchlists, I feel a little greedy… there seems to be a bit of panic in the air, and that means I want to buy a little of almost everything. It’s a bumpy time in the markets, for sure, and I have no idea what […]

I’ve gotten a ton of questions about Alex Koyfman’s “AirTesla” pitch over the past week, so we’ll spend a moment on that today. This all ends up being a “next Tesla” pitch to a large degree — essentially, saying that if Tesla can create this trillion-dollar company to lead the electric vehicle revolution, and grow […]

For our 14th annual Turkey of the Year we’ve got a little something new… I always include my worst pick of the year when I’m covering the Turkey of the Year, too, to be fair… but this time around, they are one and the same. I too bought the Turkey, and I too paid the […]

I don’t know what will happen in the world, but I just looked over my regularly updated Annual Review spreadsheet… and it looks like about a dozen of the stocks I owned as of last February are in my “buy” range right now. Those are in many cases contextual, otherwise we wouldn’t be able to […]

I’ve seen this ad circulated so many times, with adjusting deadlines, that I didn’t realize I hadn’t specifically covered this pitch for my favorite readers… at least, not in its current iteration with a new company in that “Day Zero” position. “Day Zero” is now trumpeted as being December 9, 2021, but a year or […]

Infrastructure week! Looks like there’s a big ol chunk of cash that will be rolling downhill in the coming years for all the construction companies, broadband companies, materials companies, etc. after Congress finally passed the bipartisan infrastructure bill that they’ve been sitting on for months. Certainly our roads and bridges and public transport systems and […]

The National Institute for Cannabis Investors (NICI), a publishing subsidiary of Money Map Press, is pitching its entry-level membership now ($39/yr) by dangling the promise of a “next IIPR” stock… and that’s a stock I own and have written about a lot over the years, so the ad caught my eye. Innovative Industrial Properties (IIPR) […]

Recent Author Comments

On Friday File: Finding Solace in Asset Allocation

I don’t worry so much about daily hedging, which is what those levered ETFs are good for, I prefer to have some longer-term hedges in place that I don’t have to watch as closely… but sure, it can work if you’re alert and can be more active. Just d[...]

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On Friday File: Finding Solace in Asset Allocation

Don’t know those, but I like the strategy. How are their production deals structured, are they paid for content or do they get per-view royalties?[...]

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On Friday File: Buying at lower prices, Selling at higher risk levels

No idea on the timing, but I bet those AI models will be wrong about the future, too. There are rhythms to cycles of excess and collapse, if you look at the past, and the patterns can probably give you better odds of being accurate in your projections, bu[...]

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On Friday File: Finding Solace in Asset Allocation

It’s probably true that I don’t deeply understand the bull case, you state it well. We’ll see if they can execute on it, I remain on the fence.[...]

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On Answers: Fool's "Tiny Unknown 50X Potential" Stock teased as one of "12 Top Value Stocks for 2022"

Those aren’t the most critical markets, but the impact investors seem to be worrying most about there is in mining — particularly copper and lithium. Who knew that investors might start to be happier with Argentina than with Chile?[...]

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On Roundup of "Forever" EV Battery Pitches: Who's Teasing What?

Sorry, I oversimplified -- but yes, I think you're right that most of the current smaller-volume cars use standardized pouch batteries in blocks instead of the standardized cylinders like Tesla pioneered.[...]

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On Are Psychedelics Starting to Emerge as Legitimate Therapies?

Never heard of it, but that's a true penny stock -- market cap below $5 million, administrative costs far higher than R&D spending, no cash on hand to speak of. Don't know what their business is, or whether they're doing anything unique in the psychedelic[...]

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On Revealing Whitney Tilson's Five secret 'Connexa Terra' (Metaverse) Stocks

It's usually best to trade on the home exchange if you can, so UMG in Amsterdam would be best... otherwise, I'd generally go with the US OTC ticker that's more liquid, with more shares trading each day, that's where you're most likely to get a fair price a[...]

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On Revealing Whitney Tilson's Five secret 'Connexa Terra' (Metaverse) Stocks

I can't believe that brand has any value at all, but I guess you never know.[...]

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On Roundup of "Forever" EV Battery Pitches: Who's Teasing What?

Definitely not qualified to really parse the merits of the different technologies, but CATL certainly has the size and scope to really jump start any new chemistry if they decide it’s worthwhile. SolidPower is a sodium tech as well, among others, don’[...]

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On Roundup of "Forever" EV Battery Pitches: Who's Teasing What?

Good one to look into, I haven’t written about it yet or done much research — it’s one of the companies trying to do a “stepping stone” to solid batteries, I think they use lithium metal but a liquid cathode. Every design seems to have tradeoffs[...]

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On Fool's "Buy Alert: Self-Repairing Technology"

Thanks for reading![...]

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On Friday File: Buying at lower prices, Selling at higher risk levels

QTS was bought by Blackstone last year. Part of the rationale for Switch is that the little guys are disappearing — COR bought by AMT, CONE by KKR being the other dominos to fall recently. SWCH has a control founder/shareholder so may well not ever be[...]

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On Microblog: Quadrillion dollar tech?

That's a repeat of a "presentation" we covered here: https://www.stockgumshoe.com/reviews/near-future-report-the/25-could-let-you-profit-big-from-the-global-shift-to-tokenization-whats-up-with-jeff-browns-g-t-e-and-world-ipo-day/[...]

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On Microblog: Lou Basenese's pitch regarding Amazon Project Kuiper

We just passed the one-year anniversary of that teaser pitch, but I guess he's continuing to update it with new dates -- the pitch is for Gilat, I covered it originally here: https://www.stockgumshoe.com/reviews/lou-baseneses-trend-trader/trend-traders-the[...]

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On The "12 Million Mile Battery" -- Checking in again on Paul Mampilly's tease

Definitely not, you really can't recommend a penny stock junior mineral exploration company to a mass-market newsletter that has at least tens of thousands of subscribers (probably more)... and if Mampilly had done so, the stock would have gone bonkers (no[...]

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On Friday File: Buying at lower prices, Selling at higher risk levels

No. The kinds of companies they’ve been buying are too small to easily go public and not sexy enough to be SPAC targets. Selling MKL at 1.2X book value strikes me as silly and impatient. It’s never going to be the most exciting growth story, but I [...]

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On Basenese's "Buy Low/Disappear High" pitch for a penny stock Walmart Takeover

I have, I think it’s a great product — opinions differ, I guess :)[...]

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On Friday File: Buying at lower prices, Selling at higher risk levels

Oops, sorry about that. Update fail, will fix that.[...]

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On Friday File: Buying at lower prices, Selling at higher risk levels

Will try to do that as I run through the Annual Review over the next month or so.[...]

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