The debate between active vs. passive investing is old hat. But a new question is forming — active or passive football betting?
Unknowingly using an efficient capital markets approach, Ali Quirk employed an enhanced indexing strategy to win a pool last year consisting of about 30 mostly Wall Street participants. Ms. Quirk, now 12 years old, is the daughter of Kevin Quirk, principal at Casey Quirk & Associates LLC.
How do those same Wall Street types plan to take down Ms. Quirk this year? By copying her approach, of course.
“Now, more and more people are going to enhanced indexing,” said Ken Bravo, executive director in acquisition finance at Rabobank, who started the pool 22 years ago. He added there might have to be some rule tweaks in the future. “We can't let an 11-year-old beat us again, so we have to change the rules,” he joked.
Participants in the pool select the winners and spread of the final score of every NFL game each week. Ms. Quirk used Las Vegas betting spreads and “enhanced” it by rounding to the most common final football score ranges — 3, 7 and zero, Mr. Quirk said. She also goes against Vegas about once a week in her “active” pick. Mr. Quirk said his daughter loves football and came up with the strategy on her own.
“She doesn't know what enhanced indexing is in the first place,” Mr. Quirk said.
So, how did Ms. Quirk perform in the first week of the 2013 NFL season? Fifth place out of 34 after she was hurt by losing her only “active” pick of the week, Mr. Quirk said.
Adding insult to injury is Ms. Quirk's team name — Call Me Brady — in a pool full of New England Patriots haters.