The 2011 Sports Illustrated issue was revealed last night, featuring 25-year-old Russian model, Irina Shayk, on this year's magazine cover.
It is the most profitable single-issue magazine franchise in the world, and a multi-million-dollar business. CNBC.com took a look at how the market performs in years that the magazine cover featured a blonde versus a brunette.
The models' hair color was gauged from the Sports Illustrated website, dating back to 1964.
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48 covers from 1964 until now:
- 24 Blonde covers — average annual return of Dow 10.0%, S&P 10.9%
- Note: The covergirl from 2008, Marissa Miller is a blonde and the Dow and S&P fell 33.8 and 38.5% respectively that year
- 20 Brunette covers — average annual return of Dow 2.2%, S&P 2.3%
- 3 covers with multiple models of varied hair color
- 1 cover with a redhead (or so it appears)
Additionally, the models' nationality may also yield an interesting result. According to a Bespoke Investment Group report last year, since 1978 the S&P has returned an average 10.6% when an American is on the cover versus an 8.2% average return when a model from another country is selected.
The following pages contain the Sports Illustrated covers associated with the best market years.
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Top Swimsuit Issue Covers by Market Performance
1975 - Cheryl Tiegs
Dow: Up 38.3%
S&P 500: Up 31.5%
1995 - Daniela Pestova
Dow: Up 33.5%
S&P 500: Up 34.1%
1985 - Paulina Porizkova
Dow: Up 27.7%
S&P 500: Up 26.3%
1989 - Kathy Ireland
Dow: Up 27.0%
S&P 500: Up 27.3%
1996 - Tyra Banks and Valeria Mazza
Dow: Up 26.0%
S&P 500: Up 20.3%
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