SI Swimsuit Issue - Does the Market Prefer Blondes?

On a whim and based on Darren Rovell's documentary on the with Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, I did a quick scan on how the Dow and S&P performed in years that the magazine cover featured a blonde versus a brunette. I gauged hair color based on thumbnails on the SI Web site. Note: color of wet hair is hard to determine but here are the results...

>> Business Model: SI Swimsuit Issue

47 covers from 1964 until now:

  • 24 Blonde covers (including this year's) — average annual return of Dow 10.0%, S&P 10.8%

      • Note: The covergirl from 2008, Marissa Miller (see photo on right), is a blonde and the Dow and S&P fell 33.8 and 38.5% respectively that year
    • 19 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)

    When I shared these findings with Darren, he pointed out that the models' nationality also has an interesting result. According to Bespoke Investment Group, since 1978 the S&P has returned an average 10.6% when an American is on the cover versus a 8.2% average return when a model from another country is on the cover.

    Between the Saints winand Brooklyn Decker, are we in for a good year after all?

    See the SI covers associated from the best market years on the following pages.

    Top Swimsuit Issue Covers by Market Performance

    1975 Cover - Cheryl Tiegs

    Dow: Up 38.3%

    S&P 500: Up 31.5%

    1995 - Daniela

    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%