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Top bought shares one year on

I find it curious that most of the large platforms are happy to promote their top bought shares and funds in any given week or month, but to get hands on average performance of accounts is much more difficult. Perhaps it's operationally more complex to produce the latter, but it might improve the value of the information in the former. 

Danny Cox, head of external relations at Hargreaves Lansdown, says: “We don’t think looking at average account performance encourages good investor behaviours or outcomes so this isn’t something we do.” This statement is defensible. As everyone is investing according to their own goals and risk profile, it might not be helpful to compare yourself to an arbitrary average which bears little relation to your own position. 

But does highlighting 'top of the stocks' encourage good investor behaviour or outcomes? A glance at the numbers suggests probably not. Top bought lists are “best ignored”, says Ben Yearsley, investment director at Shore Financial Planning. While it is interesting to see what people are buying and selling, “you shouldn’t make any investment decisions based on what’s on those lists” he says. 

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