Posts filed under “Really, really bad calls”

Wrong Way Plosser

Hawks Crying Wolf:

Charles Plosser of the Philadephia Fed; if you’ve been following these things, you know that Plosser has been warning about imminent inflation since the beginning of the crisis. He did it in 2008; he did it in 2009; he did it in 2010; he did it in 2011; I’m getting tired here, but you can easily find him doing the same in 2012 and 2013. And he has of course been wrong all the way — but he’s doing it again.

The thing about academics and ideologues is that they never seem to be willing to correct themselves, despite being obviously and utterly wrong. If I were willing to link to a certain subclass of eejit, I would [Insert Gold bug link here] explaining why hyper-inflation was immiment.

And as a reminder, please note the category is “Really, really bad calls” is filled with so much stupid it really should be allowed to become the 5oth state, taking the place of Florida, the current leader in all things dumb. (I blame the heat)

Category: Federal Reserve, Inflation, Really, really bad calls

A Data Junkie Looks at the News

Many years ago, when I was a poor and humble graduate student, I taught the prep course for students taking the GMATs and LSATs. I understood the internal logic and game theory needed to succeed on standardized tests, and could explain techniques used to do well on them. One of the keys to succeeding on…Read More

Category: Data Analysis, Investing, Markets, Really, really bad calls

One Cheer for Fair Isaac

Sometimes we don’t know exactly how broken things are until after they get fixed. Case in point: Fair Isaac Corp., the company that created the model used to calculate the scores underlying millions of consumer loan and credit decisions. The New York Times described Fair Isaac’s formula as “one of the most widely used and…Read More

Category: Credit, Economy, Really, really bad calls

The Idiots of San Diego County’s Pension Investment Committee

It’s a basic form of storytelling, used in countless books and movies: Two people, in similar circumstances, confronted by difficult choices. One does what is right, even if it seems like the harder choice. He fights through the many challenges, has moments of self-doubt and worry, before ultimately being rewarded. The other takes the easy…Read More

Category: Investing, Really, really bad calls

How Greenspan Became the ex-Maestro

On this day in 1987, Alan Greenspan became chairman of the Federal Reserve Board. This anniversary allows us to take a quick look at what followed over the next two decades. As it turned out, it was one of the most interesting and, to be blunt, weirdest tenures ever for a Fed chairman. This was…Read More

Category: Bailouts, Federal Reserve, Markets, Really, really bad calls

Why The Ukraine Headline Does Not Pass The Sherlock Holmes Test

I mentioned on Tuesday afternoon that I did not believe the market weakness was due to Ukraine Russia tensions. From Art Cashin, UBS head of floor trading, and a 5o-year veteran of the NYSE floor, expresses the sentiment much more eloquently than I:   One Of These Things Is Not Like The Other – Or…Read More

Category: Markets, Really, really bad calls

Last month, I spilled a considerable number of pixels explaining why Rupert Murdoch’s Time Warner bid had no significance to whether or not this is a market top. My short list included complaints of cherry picked data that somehow ignored most of Murdoch’s M&A activity over the past half century; a laughably small sample size…Read More

Category: Cognitive Foibles, Investing, Markets, Psychology, Really, really bad calls, Trading

Our Self-Inflicted Economic Wounds

In sports, all great competitors know that they have a choice, even when confronted with daunting, insurmountable odds. They can lay down and let the larger, stronger opponent run up the score. Or they can find a way to compete, to make a game of it. A good loss is a dignified way to show…Read More

Category: Investing, Really, really bad calls, Taxes and Policy

Welcome to the Muppet Economy

Slipping back into my regular routine is sometimes a challenge after a few days of traveling. The first day back in the markets — especially following a week like we had to end July and begin August — can be a bit of an adjustment. A few days away allows the accumulation of jaded skepticism…Read More

Category: Hedge Funds, Investing, Really, really bad calls

Beware those who are never, and can never be wrong.

Lately, I have been hear an interesting type of argument. It is a form of debate that is both disingenuous and dishonest. We will call this the “Can’t Lose Argument,” or CLA. Worse than confirmation bias, it is a money-losing exercise in narcissism. The CLA goes something like this: A data point will be mentioned,…Read More

Category: Psychology, Really, really bad calls