Step One: Test your knowledge with this quick quiz. Step Two: Impress your friends!
1. Looking at the great Fortune 500, we realize that the relationship between a company’s profitability and its stock price …
a. Is primarily driven by its year-to-year EPS growth.
b. Is a function of the buzz it generates at key industry events like Davos, Sun Valley, and the Hamptons softball game.
c. Is often driven by the dental work and hairstyle of its CEO.
d. Is tenuous at best.
2. The measure of success for these organizational titans of commerce is clearly …
a. Revenue in relation to other companies.
b. The market value of the enterprise.
c. The profits it can squeeze out of each employee.
d. The number of tweets generated per earnings call.
d. All of the above, but it doesn’t matter.
a. It is the 29th-largest and the 13th-fastest-growing company over the past five years.
b. It is perched to annihilate the publishing business, the retail clothing business, the home electronics business, local grocers, and the big-box store, and it’s only just begun to live.
c. It can deliver a fresh cucumber to your door in record time and knows when you’re out of shampoo.
d. It lost $241 million last year (which is still better by more than $100 million than Carl Icahn’s operation, FYI and BTW).
5. The industry segments that have the most representatives on the list are gas and electric utilities (24 companies), non-apparel specialty retailers (23), and insurance-related firms (40). That is because …
a. Competition is alive and well in those key industries.
b. Some sectors such as advertising, beverages, and tobacco are clearly overly concentrated, with a few greedy behemoths controlling far too much market share.
c. I’m getting tired of all this data. There’s far too much data around, and we don’t know what to do with most of it.
d. The insurance guys have the entire game completely worked out.
6. An inspirational quote: “We are trying to create a meritocracy where you can start somewhere and end up just as high as your hard work and your capacity will enable you to go.” Who said it?
a. Novelist and social visionary Horatio Alger in his famous book Rags to Riches, which defined the American dream for generations of strivers.
b. George Soros, on his rumored plan to establish a socialist utopia in the former Soviet Union.
c. Either Rand Paul or Carly Fiorina.
7. Who are Rex Tillerson, John Watson, Greg Garland, Mark Fields, and Larry Merlo?
a. I don’t know.
b. SEC commissioners.
c. The offensive line of the Chicago Bears.
d. The CEOs of five of the top 10 companies by revenue on the Fortune 500.
8. Place the following in the order of reported 2014 base compensation, not including stock grants and bonuses, perks, etc.:
a. Mark Zuckerberg, Sergey Brin, Larry Page
b. Steven Cohen, hedge fund manager
c. Tim Cook, CEO, Apple AAPL
d. Barack Obama, President of U.S.
e. Justin Bieber, pop star
f. Mechanical engineer, Ford Motor F
g. CVS CVS employee’s median income
h. U.S. median wage
Answers: Steven Cohen ($2 billion); Justin Bieber ($80 million); Tim Cook ($1.4 million); Barack Obama ($400,000); mechanical engineer, Ford Motor ($65,000); U.S. median wage ($46,400); CVS employee ($28,000); Mark Zuckerberg, Sergey Brin, and Larry Page ($1)
BONUS: Make a list of investors who benefit from the activism of activist investors other than the activist investor himself. Take your time.
Scoring: If you still think this is a rational game, you lose.
A version of this article appears in the June 15, 2015 issue of Fortune magazine.