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An investing site called Piqqem just added some new features that make it easier to sort through its data on “the wisdom of crowds.”
On the surface, Piqqem (which was created by Los Altos, Calif. company Crowd Technologies) sounds an awful lot like the many other social investing sites out there, but there’s a key difference: Piqqem doesn’t focus on the investments of a few top performers, but rather the sentiment of the entire user base. Anyone can log in and vote on whether a stock will go up or down, or predict the specific price. Basically, Piqqem wants you to put more faith in the wisdom of crowds than in how experts are actually investing their money.
It’s an approach that TechCrunch’s Erick Schonfeld criticized last month, arguing that “its picks are only as good as the people who contribute to it.” Naturally, Piqqem’s spokesperson disagrees, pointing to this defense of the company’s approach. The idea is that experts are constrained by traditional thinking, while the whole crowd is actually smarter than the sum of its parts. (Contrast that with Cake Financial, which says its top investors are actually doing better than the market.)
Whether or not you buy the argument, the new features certainly make Piqqem more interesting and potentially useful. Instead of just seeing the aggregated opinion of everyone using the site, you can focus on trends among specific age or geographic groups. The site also allows you to filter by behavior — you can just see the sentiment of users who tend to vote neutrally, for example. It would take someone smarter than me to turn all those charts into a comprehensive investment plan, but then again, I’m not exactly going on a buying spree these days.
Crowd Technologies raised a $1 million angel round last year from investors including early Apple-backer Mike Markkula, TellMe founder Mike McCue, Brad Handler, Stefan Roever and John Levinson.
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