Markets Making A Monkey Out of You?

If you’ve ever felt like the markets were making a monkey out of you – you might want to consider keeping an eye on the stock picks of Adam Monk.

Monk (not to be confused with the obsessive detective of the USA television show) works for the Chicago Sun-Times. He picks stocks, and he reportedly has a winning track record over the past four years. He’s not obsessed with money. In fact, he works for peanuts…and bananas, among other things.

Monk happens to be a cerebus monkey, and he serves as the inspiration for the Sun-Times Monkey Manager stock-picking contest, “celebrating the wisdom of the everyday investor and primate.’

Monk’s a bit of a traditionalist in his stock-picking approach. At 35, he still crawls over newspaper stock pages and marks his five favorites with a pen. And, according to the Sun-Times, in the four years since Monk has chaired and inspired the Sun-Times stock-picking contest, his stocks have posted annual returns that beat the major indexes each time – earning 37%, 36%, 3%, and last year, 36%.

His picks for 2007? Health care looms large, he apparently has an eye on ladies’ fashions – and he even has an exchange-traded fund in the lot. However odd the apparent combination, it’s hard to argue with his track record.

Here’s the lot:

  • Cygne Designs
    Ticker: CYDS
    Business: Women’s clothes
  • Fresh Del Monte Produce
    Ticker: FDP
    Business: Fresh fruits, vegetables
  • West Pharmaceutical Services
    Ticker: WST
    Business: Health care packaging, testing
  • American Medical Systems Holdings
    Ticker: AMMD
    Business: Urological disorder devices
  • Market 200 HOLDRS
    Ticker: MKH
    Business: Shares of 50 large-caps