Today we have the uncertain pleasure of checking out a teaser pitch from James Altucher, who one of our readers referred to as the “white Don King of the stock gurus” — he’s peddling subscriptions to Altucher’s Investment Network (that’s his “entry level” letter, $79/year), and the bait he dangles out is his “special report” entitled “Weed-tirement: The Key to a Seven-Figure Pot Pension in the 21st Century.”
Altucher gives me more of a headache than most of the promo-kings, but several readers have asked about this one, and the furor over anything marijuana-related seems to be unquenchable (which is why, of course, the newsletters keep coming out with new weed-related stock picks), so we’ll have a quick look for you today and see what this “Weed-tirement” idea is…
Here’s the lead-in to the pitch:
“Urgent: June 13th Deadline Approaching!
“Learn how this massive payout plan…
“Offered by the most profitable company in marijuana…
“Could double your retirement savings starting with as little as… $50
“Wall Street will not advertise it.
“Your 401(k) can’t compete with it.”
So what is it? More from the ad…
“Did you know that ordinary Americans can legally access an almost unheard of “secret” plan that could allow anyone to retire rich from marijuana?
“And even though it’s got nothing at all to do with the government…
“This plan is much safer compared to other investment strategies.
“This 100% fully legal plan could be your ticket to financial independence, once and for all, using a strategy that goes back over 40 years…”
Huh? We know there was no legal “weed” investing back in the 1960s and 1970s… we weren’t far removed from “reefer madness” back then. So what is he talking about when he says that “just a single dollar in what I now call ‘Weed-tirement’ could have grown into $6,638 by 2015?”
Must be something that was not weed-related before, but somehow is now… right? Let’s get into the clues:
“With a tiny initial commitment of less than $100…
“You could be on your way to receiving regular payments that start adding up to $10,000, $20,000 or more every year.
“And over the long run, simply by participating, you could even be seeing payments adding up to six figures each and every year!
“The best part about this alternative investment program is it works the same way a 401(k) fund does.
“But you don’t have to wait 20 years or more to start seeing the results.”Are you getting our free Daily Update
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OK, fine, so what is it?
“It all works by tapping into the revenue of one of the most profitable companies ever to enter the marijuana trade.”
Ah, OK. So that almost certainly means we’re talking about one of the large companies that has begun to invest in marijuana… but that also has been around for a long time and, I’m guessing from the “payout” talk, pays a solid dividend. That narrows it down quite a bit.
What else? We get some hints about folks who are already collecting payments…
“It took a little digging around, but I found some people who are already benefitting from it.
“They’re picking up payments that arrive like clockwork.
“People like 58-year-old Jenny Skeine, from Nevada. She collected an extraordinary payment of $4,587.20 in early January.
“And another for the same amount in April.
“55-year-old Norman Markum, from Delaware, got his scheduled payments for $7,380 in January and April too.”
And the near-term urgency:
“And with the next scheduled payment set to arrive on July 10…
“If you registered and contributed to this plan today, you’d be about to receive your first payment too.”
At least he talks about “contributing” to the plan, and about how your payouts will be determined by the amount you invest — so many of these kinds of ads imply that the dividends you receive are somehow a “payout” that you can just “enroll” to receive, and gloss over the fact that you have to put money at risk to make a share of corporate profits.
So what is the investment in “Weed-tirement” all about? More from Altucher:
“The contributors to ‘Weed-tirement’ just committed almost $2 billion to marijuana growing operations.
“And they’re about to throw another $1.05 billion in to boot.
“This is why this plan is available to anyone looking to make real money off of the explosive growth in the demand for marijuana.”
And we’re told that this company has been “constantly expanding and diversifying” for years, but that they raise money for it with an “alternative investment plan” that pays out such extremely high returns that it “seems ‘too good to be true.'”
This clearly has something to do with compounding, here’s more of the tease:
“Payments this size four times every year, year in and year out, can stack into seven figures much faster than any comparable retirement plan could deliver.
“And if you’re willing to stick with it over the long term…
“You’re looking at an investment vehicle delivering fi