Frog, Pig, Vulture, or Ape: Which type of investor are you in the market jungle?

Apes in the stock market mimic social-media trends, frogs are cautious, pigs chase high returns without risk assessment, and vultures specialize in distressed assets. Understanding these investor types is crucial for navigating the complexities of the Indian stock market.

Pranati Deva
First Published19 Jun 2024, 10:26 AM IST
Apes in the stock market mimic social-media trends, frogs are cautious, pigs chase high returns without risk assessment, and vultures specialize in distressed assets. Understanding these investor types is crucial for navigating the complexities of the Indian stock market.
Apes in the stock market mimic social-media trends, frogs are cautious, pigs chase high returns without risk assessment, and vultures specialize in distressed assets. Understanding these investor types is crucial for navigating the complexities of the Indian stock market.

In a recent analysis, analysts at Kotak Institutional Equities categorized stock market investors into four main groups: frog, pig, vulture, and ape. Each category, according to the Kotak note, has its own interpretation of the Indian stock market, influencing their respective investment strategies.

Describing the Indian stock market as a 'jungle', the analysts emphasized that it is a place where egos have no place, and the jungle itself reigns as the ultimate king.

"The jungle is not a place for egos, and animals in a jungle know that there is only one king of the jungle – the jungle itself," the report said.

Also Read | How to navigate stock market trends? 6 key strategies to follow

Let's take a look at the four main types of investors in the Indian stock market jungle, according to KIE.

Frogs

According to the brokerage, the frogs are having a swell time, having discovered a magical pond that keeps replenishing itself. The pond seems to have overheated of late, visible in the bubbles in the water. However, the frogs are oblivious, as (1) their bodies have adjusted to the rising temperatures (valuations) and (2) they have confidence about the pond cooling itself automatically. Some jungle observers blame a monthly plan of the pigs (flows via the systematic investment plans, or SIPs) to dump cold, hard stuff in the pond’s water (some technical jungle folks vaguely term it ‘liquidity’) for the anomalous behavior of the frogs (they are not jumping out of the boiling water).

Basically, Frogs (as investors) are known for their cautious and deliberate approach. They meticulously research and analyze before making decisions. Further, they often wait for the right opportunity, much like a frog patiently waiting to leap.

Also Read | How the stock market boom has made investor dreams a reality

Pigs

The pigs, according to KIE, are having a great time too. They are smug about the fact that the water in the pond is reaching higher and higher levels (all those bubbles in the water), but remain ignorant about the fact that the temperature of the water (market valuation) has reached extremely high levels.

"In fact, the pond’s water could be at risk of turning into steam and disappearing altogether. However, they (pigs) are too busy rolling in the lucre to pay heed to such a potential calamitous event, as they remain largely ignorant about the rules of the jungle (stock market); massively confident about their ability to siphon off the water from the pool at the right time before other animals and their fellow pigs do the same," the KIE note said.

Pig investors represent greed and a high-risk appetite. They tend to chase high returns without considering the risks and often make impulsive decisions and can be prone to significant losses.

Also Read | Why retail investors want to see a change in the capital gains tax regime

Vultures

However, the vultures are not having a great time. The frogs have been linked to foreign investors who have returned to this particular jungle (the Indian stock market) hoping for a substantial feast (quick returns in a short time) but have been disappointed so far, noted the brokerage.

"The pigs continue to frolic and are far from giving up the ghost (their spirits are high, if anything), even as their bodies have gained enormous weight. The vultures, which KIE suggests could be foreign investors, had migrated to other jungles (other equity markets across the globe) a couple of years ago, especially to one across a high and long mountain chain (China). However, that jungle is made for slim pickings, forcing some of them to return to this jungle," the note explained.

Generally, Vulture investors specialize in distressed assets. They thrive on finding undervalued or struggling companies and aim to buy low and sell high, capitalizing on recovery or restructuring.

Also Read | GSFC share price rises 7%: Prabhudas Lilladher expects more than 20% upside

Apes

Any description of the jungle would be incomplete without a discussion of the role of the apes. They who sit in their usual arboreal hauteur, rarely descend to the floor of the jungle and drop overripe fruit periodically for other animals in the jungle. An ape, in the Kotak report, has been equated to investors driven by social-media investment schemes and trends.

"Other animals have learned to ignore these droppings, which has spurred the apes into fighting for existential relevance. Their chattering and nattering have reached unprecedented levels of late, and they have started to speak some unrecognizable language (it sounds like English but has only superlatives and no facts, figures and numbers). It seems like a new form of monkey business," the KIE note said.

Generally, these investors are characterized by their speculative and often social-media-driven investments. They follow trends and popular movements, like the recent meme stock phenomena and can make quick gains but also face high volatility and risk.

Disclaimer: The views and recommendations made above are those of individual analysts or broking companies, and not of Mint. We advise investors to check with certified experts before taking any investment decisions.

 

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First Published:19 Jun 2024, 10:26 AM IST
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