A Zack's salesman was after me for months to get a managed account. I looked deeply into their numbers, and read a lot of the stuff they put out. My conclusion: Zacks does extremely well in a flat or bull market. But their system falls apart in a bear market. If I had had my account with Zacks over the last year, I would be down huge. Plus, I am really kicking myself now because I was one of the dummies that sold MWE after their comments. From now on, I plan to totally ignore anything from Zachs.
Jury's not in yet. Zach's predicted MWE would cut their distribution by 50%, and based their sell recommendation on that. The Q4 distribution hasn't been announced yet, but should be any day now. If MWE maintains the distribution at the previous level, then Zach's certainly badly missed. If a cut occurs, and at the 50% level, then Zach's certainly can't be faulted. If a dist. cut occurs, but ends up at somewhere between 50% and 100% of the previous dist., we can argue all we want about how well or poorly Zach's did.
For what its worth, Wachovia forecast that MWE will not cut the distribution, this Q or anytime in '09. The Wach. forecast came out after Zach's. They certainly can't both be right!