My dad was amongst the best stock market track records in history. Almost all of the stocks he has bought immediately gapped up and near all of them turned into multi-baggers. He has never taken a loss. Additionally, he has never paid a cent in brokerage or trading commissions.

How did he achieve this spectacular run? I should further mention he doesn't know how to value a stock, doesn't follow the stock market or news and could not tell a Warren Buffett from a breakfast buffett.

He told me of his great trading feat the other day. During the eighties he invested beer money into every state IPO offered by Maggie Thatcher. Dutifully, having seen the advertising campaigns, he filled out the retail forms sent to the voters, received his share certificates, put them in a draw and forgot about them for twenty years. He recently found them in a drawer and it seems that beer money has magically turned into enough to buy a small car.

It is interesting to contrast the recent state IPO of Royal Mail, for which Vince Cable has been hauled over the coals. The media seem irresistibly to take the stance of a playground bully, pricking their ears for whatever is the dominant theme and using it as cudgel.

For Mrs. Thatcher, the discounted IPO was a venerable thing, enfranchising the working saver and teaching him about the value of compound returns in business. The media applauded. For Mr. Cable, the sale of Royal Mail has been branded a waste of the taxpayers money and a freebie for louche speculators.

It seems then that today's everyman with beer money will not be sitting so pretty in his own two decades time. He will perhaps have to inject his grubstake into spreadbetting and day trading instead, and make his vigorish tribute to the god Plutus.





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