Stock Spam Works... For The Spammers

from the as-if-you-didn't-expect-that dept

Last year, one guy got a lot of attention for tracking a portfolio of stocks made up entirely of ticker symbols promoted in various spam messages. We all get them in our spam folder: stocks insisting that some unknown penny stock is about to shoot up to some ridiculous level. They've been around for ages. Obviously, the spams must work, because otherwise why would they continue? While most people know better than to buy a stock based on a spam message, there are clearly enough suckers out there to make it worthwhile. A new study has checked in on the numbers, doing a bit more academic version of the portfolio tracker above. They found that (as you would expect) people who invest in stock that was spammed tend to lose money. However, the people (the spammers) who bought the stock a day or two before the spam tend to make a decent return (sometimes depending on how proficient they are as spammers). While this certainly fits into the "no duh" category of things for most of us, it's still fascinating to see that there are enough gullible folks out there who actually buy stock based on spam.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Joshua, Aug 25th, 2006 @ 1:49pm

    Spam Stock Flood

    I enjoy reading this blog. Thanks for the link. In my spam stock site I actually stopped tracking stocks for a while because it became so time consuming. I am back doing it again every few days when I have time. I get 15-50 a day depending on the day (more on monday, less on friday).

    I plan to work on the spamstocktracker site this weekend to actually show each and every spam indexed to each stock ticker. Maybe the someone can use that to track the spam back and do something about it.

     

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  2.  
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    Augh, Aug 25th, 2006 @ 2:42pm

    Augh

    I say someone needs to find these people that actually read and get suckered in to answering spam. Shouldn't be hard to do... just get a linux machine and send out your own spam. When these spam 'victims' answer, they should be reeducated with a baseball bat.

     

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  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2006 @ 2:45pm

    I love the fact that right after an article about penny stock scams, there's the google add advertising one of them.

     

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  4.  
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    Annoying Bastard, Aug 25th, 2006 @ 3:21pm

    Mike listens to NPR

    Funny. I just heard the same thing on NPR during my drive home.

    Ah...

    Regurgitation.

    For some reason it just doesn't taste as good the second time around.

     

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  5.  
    identicon
    Annoying Bastard, Aug 25th, 2006 @ 3:23pm

    Mike listens to NPR

    Funny. I just heard the same thing on NPR during my drive home.

    Ah...

    Regurgitation.

    For some reason it just doesn't taste as good the second time around.

     

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  6.  
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    Mike (profile), Aug 25th, 2006 @ 3:34pm

    Re: Mike listens to NPR

    Funny. I just heard the same thing on NPR during my drive home.

    Or. Um. Maybe I just read the news online, such as the BBC which is where I found the story, as the link in the story shows.

    For some reason it just doesn't taste as good the second time around.

    Which is why you posted it twice? :)

     

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  7.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2006 @ 3:39pm

    Sell short

    Based on the #'s, why not sell short all the stock spam recommendations?

     

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  8.  
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    hautedawg, Aug 25th, 2006 @ 4:11pm

    Re: Sell short

    I'm an idiot when it comes to investing, but have been rather fortunate to be involved with a woman who is NOT an idiot ( although she is involved with me, but that's another story ). She does well with unknown stock, but the idea of short selling this stock sounds appealing. Can short selling be done with penny stocks? AND...there were a few ( very few ) that actually went up. Go figure, even the spammers get it wrong on occasion.

     

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  9.  
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    Mike J, Aug 25th, 2006 @ 4:32pm

    The trick is to buy in, then sell just before the spammers do, lol, if you could profit from it, might be worth it if you got both spare time and money, I have plenty of spare time, just no spare money to toss out the window at some spam attack lol.

    Always remember you cant win a contest you never entered. no matter how many times they tell you click here for your free computer that you just won from spamvill spamsilvania hehe :-)

     

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  10.  
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    PJ, Aug 25th, 2006 @ 6:14pm

    I hope this fad ends soon because it's very, very annoying to get these emails several times a day. For some reason my spam filter is not catching them either.

     

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  11.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 25th, 2006 @ 6:16pm

    Re: Augh

    Why linux? You don't need a linux box to do that.

     

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  12.  
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    Jon, Aug 26th, 2006 @ 6:52am

    Re: Augh

    If hitting them in the billfolds doesn't reeducate them, why think a baseball bat will? Or maybe they have enough that what they lose on spam-advised investments doesn't bother them.

    If you could buy the stocks when you get the spam, then sell the next day, you might make something. If you could find out before, it would be even safer.

     

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  13.  
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    Dave, Aug 29th, 2006 @ 5:50pm

    Short Term Stock Tracker

    I came across this site that does something similar to the stock tracker site mentioned in the article. The only difference is that it tracks the short term...

     

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  14.  
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    amx222, Sep 1st, 2006 @ 5:23pm

    Crazy

    Dave, that site poses a pretty ambition concept. Its a rather risky idea but Im pretty curious to see if he makes any money doing this. Hey...maybe we could all look at stock spam differently now...

     

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  15.  
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    stopstockspam, Sep 6th, 2006 @ 1:31pm

    Back Up

    Had some hosting trouble so the site has been down for the past few days. Its back up now. I documented a couple more spammed stock trades which did pretty well.

     

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  16.  
    identicon
    Will, Sep 19th, 2006 @ 10:28pm

    Stockspam

    I have been receiving stock spam for close to 8 months now.
    I realize that most of the tips are vacuous with unyielding results; however, if you are more clever than the spammers---which takes only a little education in securities---one will not act upon fear alone and can use these tips as I have to make some fun returns. i have always used spammer's tips to help in my endeavors. I have yet to lose. One must do his/her research on the so-called hot tips they send. After careful scrutiny, I have fun buying these hi volume stocks and make a few dollars. I like stock spam. Send me all the spam you want.

    Will

     

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  17.  
    identicon
    Will, Sep 19th, 2006 @ 11:01pm

    Stockspam Why are You angry!?

    Well, After reading many of the comments I realize that we have many people who have an odius opinion about our wonderful yet uneducated spammers who probably know very little about securities---yet they hope to draw in a number of people, suckers as most refer to them as, in order to fulfill some agenda. Come on folks! It is not the stock spammers you hate. It is the fact that you probably chose to buy into one of their hot juicy tips and watched your stock drop like a lead rock. If the stock would have jumped to the moon, you would have tuned in to every tip afterward and prayed for more. Fact is, stock spam is not the issue. the issue is, are you more intelligent than the spammer? Do your diligence on the stock. You are more intelligent than to just blindly leap into a stock spam without researching the tributaries of company's portfolio--- are you not? Use the spam tips wisely. Most, I admit, are ridiculous and abstruse; however, I have always been able to sequest the good tips from the bad and make small profits. It is the greed in people that leads one to blindly follow the spam into the field of a non-yielding stock pick. It is not the spammer. You, not the spam, make the choice. You choose blindly with greed in your heart and without thinking or researching, and you will pay the consequences of your bad choice. Read the stock spam. Carefully examine the company and their stock charts and digests. Use stock spam intelligently and you can actually have a fun time making a few bucks. Use it with the thought of becoming rich overnight, and this will lead you to make a pitiful choice in greed and lose money. Now, who is really to blame for the loss? I don't think I have to answer this question for you.

     

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  18.  
    identicon
    Fred, Sep 20th, 2006 @ 3:50pm

    Re: Stockspam Why are You angry!?

    Not exactly angry---just that these darn sammers get their filthy mitts into my box and cause me too much time in deletion. I do extol you for your efforts, and I understand some people may use this form of spam for fun and a few bucks, but I wish they would stay away from my email. Remeber many people do not use these so called hot ips as you. Is this really freedom of opinion or speech or an infringement on my rights as an individual???

     

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  19.  
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    karen, Nov 4th, 2006 @ 12:17pm

    Re:

    Spammers are getting trickier. No spam filters are picking up these bogus stock emails! The spammers have learned to bypass all the spam software out there by hiding they're crap in image files. Currently to my knowledge there is no spam filter out there to stop this so I'm sorry to say we'll be dealing with problem for awhile!

     

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  20.  
    identicon
    Nik, Nov 21st, 2006 @ 5:13am

    Re: recommended Spam filters

    Which filters are doing a good/bad job filtering this bilge?

     

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  21.  
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    nik, Nov 21st, 2006 @ 5:20am

    Re: by karen on Nov 4th

    Karen, Which spam filters have you tried?

    You are absolutely right that image spam is tricky
    http://www.commtouch.com/downloads/Image%20Spam%20Defense1.pdf

    Actually Im suprised it to the spammers this long to come up with it.

    Good luck with your spam wars!!

     

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  22.  
    identicon
    Jim Smith, Jun 28th, 2007 @ 1:07am

    Re: Sell short

    Most are pink or otcbb stocks which cannot be shorted by the regular guy. Just market makers.

     

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  23.  
    identicon
    le /Roy, Sep 21st, 2007 @ 7:30am

    Re: Re: stock spam

    i think it's interesting as i took a $200 risk on a spam stock which sounded good (as i had never been stock spammed)!! it went from 8c to 12.5c that day, and is now at 3.9c, putting me $100 up, and now i am $100 down bcoz i didnt think to sell quickly..

    i think if you get the first round of spamming, then buy quickly, watch it go up and sell it later that same day!

    anyway, just in response to karen, who complains about spam filters.. i use yahoo.com and these e-mails are always filtered out. I still get my daily e-mails from "The Desk of ABU ZARIM ZONGO, head of filing department at Bank of Africa"

    if people are still falling for that, i think we'll have stock spam for a looooooong time

     

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  24.  
    identicon
    harrismartinx, Apr 2nd, 2012 @ 3:26am

    penny stock

    penny stock do the help of the people. Some people take the lone of the company penny stock.

     

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