Early on in Yellowstone, Jamie became livid with Beth for using the family ranch as an “investor,” but could this end up saving the family down the line?
Oh, Duttons. What a tangled web you weave. None more so than patriarch John Dutton, his only daughter Beth, and his adopted “black sheep” of a son, Jamie. As our premise notes, Beth took a risk with her family’s ranch at some point in their past, using the property and its assets as an “investor” to build capital. Jamie was furious with her, but outside of that, we really don’t know much else.
The only (huge) caveat here, however, is that both John and Beth state at multiple points throughout the series that their family ranch is not turning a profit. Wouldn’t it need to be in order to invest? So what gives? Let’s break this theory down, courtesy of Reddit superfan Entire-Librarian-741.
Super fans = Super Theories
For more context, let’s turn to said Redditor first:
“Early on Jamie was livid with Beth for using the Ranch as an investor and investing the $5M into markets. It’s not explained how this was done (whether Beth enrolled the ranch in some equities, securities, annuities, her own CRP program). I can’t help but wonder if this somehow is related to the CRP plan (that wouldn’t, in reality, be near as lucrative as Beth explained to Bod),” Entire-Librarian-741 begins in his breakdown on Reddit’s active Yellowstone board.
Touching on this, the Redditor assumes that the ranch’s $5M was invested in an index fund.
“Beth would have been buying something like the S&P during a fairly significant market dip in latter 2018 which would have produced a very significant appreciation of about 210% to date. This is a play with relatively little downside so I’d like to know what she meant when she told Jamie “the risk is mitigated,” they continue.
Perhaps she meant she would invest some in growth stocks (tech) and mitigated risk by buying energy sector securities and some bonds; anything with larger yields, by this by “mitigated” risk?
“That would be very interesting if she took proceeds from, let’s say, 4.5M invested at an average 5% return (average for latter 2018) and invested in high growth tech funds ($ARKK, for example) on top of an initial $500K,” the Yellowstone poster explains.
From here, the investment jargon get super thick. We’d recommend giving the full theory a read here if you’re interested in further details.
Through it all, “Librarian” says that his theory would bring the total invested assets of the ranch “to about $13.7M as of EoY 2020. At least they’d have enough for higher property taxes, if it came to that.”
‘Yellowstone’ Superfans Delve Deep into Dutton Finances
“LIbrarian” then states, however, that if Beth had done something “much more risky” – i.e. option plays “and the like”… “It’s easy to imagine the ranch’s total wealth could list in $100M-$250M.
“Anyway, I was just thinking about what is was Beth could have done with the funds. I can’t help but think (hope) it’s something that makes the ranch worth A LOT of money in cash,” they conclude after a hefty write-up.
In kind, Redditor TheKitcheneer has the most to offer by way of a reply.
“I think the most likely scenario is that we never hear about this investment again,” they start off cryptically. Yellowstone does, after all, have at least a dozen glaring loose ends.
“But with her background in private equity, Beth has access to the kind of investments that normal people don’t even know about,” they continue. Kitcheneer “seriously doubts” Beth is investing in things like index funds or regular mutual funds. Instead, they say she would be investing in “private funds or in individual stocks that she knows from her experience can be leveraged for large gains… See: The way she manipulates Dan’s stock, or the Market Equity stock).”
“So I think if we do hear the investment plotline again, it will either be some Deus Ex Machina to save the ranch: (they’re about to lose the land to taxes but surprise! Beth’s investment made money and it’s saved!) Or some big disaster where she loses money and it causes conflict between her and John,” they conclude.
Do the Duttons Have the Cash for All This?
Yellowstone fan Gu_Doc echoes Outsider’s concern, however, with: “Would they [see: Duttons] have had to have cash for this investment? Because they claim to not be turning a profit.”
These sort of investments come to us via Beth in past-tense, though. This means she could’ve made them on behalf of Yellowstone ranch well before the proverbial cow sh*t hit the fan.
Regardless, it’s one of the more intriguing fan theories we’ve come across, indeed! Count us in for either of Kitcheneer’s “endgames,” too. And with Yellowstone‘s Season 4 (hopefully) right around the corner, we should have some real answers here soon. That, or as Taylor Sheridan loves to do – more questions, instead.