Thursday, November 11, 2021

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monkeysTel Aviv, November 14 - Securities brokerages and bourse research companies in Israel's financial and commercial capital began to implement new recruitment procedures today, in reaction to findings that primates picking securities investments at random do at least as well, and sometimes better, at selecting holdings that will appreciate, than expensive analysts do: the hiring of various apes and monkeys to perform that selection, a strategy that the firms anticipate will result in both greater investment profitability and lower staffing and management costs.

Solomon-Zigri, Eshel Holdings, and Green Trust, three of Israel's largest firms handling trade on the Tel Aviv Securities Exchange, each disclosed today that they will replace most of their research and analysis departments with rhesus monkeys and similar creatures, now that the Ministry of Labor and Ministry of Health have approved the use of primates in the necessary roles, effective today. The three largest such firms joined a number of smaller operations who announced last week they will undertake the switch on a probationary basis for six months.

Asaf Benn, a vice president with Eshel-Zikri, explained the rationale in an interview conducted via Zoom. "Experts have known for many years that monkeys pick stocks as well as experienced analysts," he observed. "But big organizations adapt slowly. A younger generation of executives now runs the main TASE brokerage houses, and they're willing to make changes their elders were too conservative to implement."

Sigal Green of Green Trust added that her firm maintains close contact with a research facility that conducts experiments comparing the stock-picking abilities of different species of fauna. "We went with the rhesus monkeys because that's what the initial research used," she explained. "But there's no inherent reason to stick with rhesus monkeys, with monkeys or apes in general, or even vertebrates. There was apparently a dog or something in Italy that successfully picked the winners of various sporting events with remarkable accuracy. Right now we have our eye on goldfish, which would involve significant turnover of... well I guess you'd call it personnel. Inventory? Whichever, it would still offer significant savings over even the monkeys, which require a specialized work environment, specific care, the works."

Market observers remarked that Israel's innovative reputation now extends beyond agricultural, internet, and defense technologies. "People treated the monkey thing as amusing dig at expensive research and money management services, not of practical significance," recalled investment analyst Fidu Czieri. "Leave it to Israelis to say, 'Hey, well, why not try that?'"


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