Posts filed under “Mathematics”

SEC’s Shapiro: Ratings Agencies Need Supervision

Encouraging comments from SEC chair Mary Schapiro:

“The Securities and Exchange Commission has created a new group of examiners to oversee credit rating agencies, which came under sharp criticism for their role during the financial crisis.

The SEC has already adopted a number of measures to increase transparency at credit rating agencies, which are paid by the issuers they rate. But greater oversight is needed with officials expected to conduct both routine and special examinations of their activities, Ms Schapiro is set to tell a Congressional oversight hearing on Tuesday.

The plan is part of a wide range of structural changes being made at the SEC, which has faced withering criticism in the past year for its oversight of financial firms and ratings agencies as well as for failing to detect the Bernard Madoff fraud in spite of credible allegations brought to it for at least a decade.”

Now, we need to open the Ratings Agencies up to competition, and eliminate their special SEC status.

>

Source:
SEC to create group to check rating agencies
Joanna Chung
FT, July 13 2009

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/ea7d1208-6ff6-11de-b835-00144feabdc0.html

Category: Bailouts, Earnings, Mathematics

Why Should You Care If Economists Raise U.S. Outlook ?

Look, let’s not beat around the bush: Wall Street economists, as a group, well, they suck. Most of them did not see the crisis coming; many were deep in denial about the recession long after it started. They missed the housing boom and bust, the credit crisis. They continued to see phantom bottoms and false…Read More

Category: Economy, Mathematics, Psychology

Bill Miller is Back? Hardly.

There has been a lot of recent chatter along the lines of Bill Miller is back in the WSJ, Investor’s Business Daily, Bloomberg, etc. This turns out to be a simple case of bad mathematical analysis — like declaring Fannie Mae (FNM), AIG or Citibank (C) buy & hold owners were back because they were…Read More

Category: Investing, Mathematics

Deeply Oversold Bounce, Not Green Shoots

Michael (Jeff Goldblum): I don’t know anyone who could get through the day without two or three juicy rationalizations. They’re more important than sex. Sam (Tom Berenger): Ah, come on. Nothing’s more important than sex. Michael: Oh yeah? Ever gone a week without a rationalization? -The Big Chill > You can never underestimate the absurdity…Read More

Category: Employment, Mathematics, Psychology

Black Swan: We’re in the Middle of a Crash

Category: Bailouts, Mathematics, Video

Gödel, Escher, Bach: A Mental Space Odyssey

In college, I was pretty blown away by this book. So when I stumbled across the MIT openware course on Douglas Hofstadter’s Pulitzer Prize winner, Godel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid, I just had to share it: Here’s the MIT course description: What do one mathematician, one artist, and one musician all have in…Read More

Category: Mathematics

Good/Surprising/Stunning Housing News

The good news is that Housing Starts and Building Permits each increased for the month of May. And in a statistical shocker, the monthly gains for May 2009 were (surprisingly) greater than the margin of error for both Starts at 17.2% (±14.4%) and Permits at 4.0% (±1.7%) over April. The stunning news was the 45.2%…Read More

Category: Mathematics, Real Estate

How Trillion-Dollar Deficits Were Created

Today’s must read article is a front page NYT story by David Leonhardt. It looks at the process by which boom time surpluses were turned into boom time deficits, and then even greater crash deficits. The two economic takeaways from the piece fits into some of the nonsense I have been criticizing here: 1) President…Read More

Category: Bailouts, Credit, Economy, Mathematics, Politics

Advertising Goes Quant

Interesting article about bringing “Wall Street-like analysis” to the advertising industry. That unfortunate choice of words does not mean what it appears to at first blush. By “Wall Street-like analysis,” I do not believe the writer meant to imply that 1) the analysis was conflicted, 2) there was in inherent bias in it; 3) the…Read More

Category: Financial Press, Mathematics, Web/Tech

Second Derivative Humor

Tom Toles via Washington Post Hat tip Prieur!

Category: Bailouts, Economy, Humor, Mathematics