It's just a bit of fun, but each year briandeer.com is glad to publish the tracking Porter Poll, which monitors visitors' opinions of the Baltimore-based stock tipster Porter Stansberry, and his company Stansberry and Associates. I've followed Mr Stansberry's career since the late 1990s, and the poll is one window on his world.
Each year, we offer visitors a menu of four choices from which to select the phrase which best describes their view of Porter Stansberry. These range from strong praise ("If you ask me, Porter Stansberry is #1 for investment advice") to stern criticism ("If you ask me, Porter Stansberry belongs in jail"). And, this year, here are the results:
(a) "Is #1 for investment advice" - 8% (145)
(b) "Always deserves to be listened to" - 14% (254)
(c) "Has good and bad days, like us all" - 16% (299)
(d) "Exploits the gullibility of naive investors" - 42% (784)
(e) "Belongs in jail" - 21% (389)
Most striking to me is that, year-on-year, the figures have remained remarkably constant. The view that Porter Stansberry is #1 has held firm at 8%, with the biggest single group - believing that he exploits naive investors - is also steady since 2013. Meanwhile, the idea that Mr Stansberry has "good and bad days" is down only from 17% to 16%, and that he "belongs in jail" is up only a little: from 20% to 21%. The one result to move two percentage points is that Mr Stansberry "always deserves to be listened to", which is up from 12% to 14%.
A small change for a big name.