Anti-Tilson ETF Basket Leads The Way Early In 2012

The most popular talking-head on financial TV (after Bill Miller and Byron Wien), Whitney Tilson, has not had a #winning year so far. In fact the simple pair trade Anti-Tilson (Long GMCR-Short Netflix which we closed when it returned 50% in just over a month), that was so popular last year, has been expanded to include his biggest shorts (as we promised yesterday). While we do not know weightings (obviously), on an equal-weighted basis from today's price, Tilson's 10 largest shorts have managed an impressive 7.37% gain on the year, handily outperforming his 15 largest longs which have managed a sub-market performance gain year-to-date of 1.45%. So being long Whitney's shorts and short the-ever-smiling manager's longs (on an equal weighted basis) would have made you around 6% year-to-date - considerably better than the +2.5% move in the S&P itself.

Tilson's longs have managed a 1.45% equal-weighted (based on today's price) performance YTD - compared to +2.5% YTD for the S&P 500. The list of 15 longs is: BRK, BUD, C, GS, HHC, IRDM, JCP, MRVC, MSFT, NFLX, PBY, PRIS, SDK, and WFC.

Tilson's Top 10 shorts (CRM, ESI, ETH, FSLR, GMCR, GRMN, IOC, LULU, NOK, and PVH) has managed to gain 7.37% (equal-weighted based on today's price) year-to-date which given it is short is not so good...

The 6% loss (+1.45% - 7.37%) overall (which reflects our equal-weighted indices) offers a healthy +6% gain for our Anti-Tilson ETF (no it doesn't really exist) and we suspect will be the new year's gift that keeps on giving.


Chart: Bloomberg