October 7, 2010

Human Stock Market: Valuation

This week, we're trying to figure out how to create a Human Stock Market, for both charitable and investment reasons.

Two great questions yesterday.

1) How do we valuate the person before investing?

Why do you invest in the stocks you do? Some people like Walmart because they see it has a monopolistic hold in its market. Some invest in Whole Foods because they not only believe in the growing market for organic goods, but feel like the company is creating a social "good" in the world as well. Some people invest in guitar manufacturing companies because they own one of the guitars and they believe in the product.

There could a whole lot of reasons for investing. Why do people pick the kids they choose to sponsor through World Vision? Probably the kid's face. If they seem cute, you want to help. Same reason you pick the puppy that seems the nicest at the animal shelter. But again, that's strictly for the charitable side of this human stock market.

As far as picking a long-term investment (assuming we keep our 18-year and older rule), IQ, high school academic record, career goals, parental background, country of origin and opportunity in that country, etc.

2) How do we track performance post-investment?

This gets harder. I think earlier in the week, we talked about how we'd probably only have access to a person's personal financial statement, since they're not a corporation. But maybe they'd need to be in order to get the debt information investors would rely on? But the individual has a vested interest in keeping their investors up-to-date with status reports and new goals in order to get new investments and keep their current ones.

Any big hangs up with either of these? I think I need help thinking the 2nd one through.