Faith and Hope
By Todd Harrison Feb 11, 2005 8:31 am
Thanks for sharing!
"Education can be defined as working with people, young and old, to prepare them to live in the future. The future may be bright. The future may be gray. But, most importantly we must insure that there will be a future." - Willard J. Jacobson
Everything you say regarding the overcapacity issues that plague our industry is 100% correct. I am a retail broker and when I first started in the business, Joe six pack was not involved. That is probably why it was relatively easy for me to build a book of business. Now, everyone has a broker and an online account. Some people have two brokers. Opening new relationships is harder than ever because people are generally loyal to whom they deal with and there is a certain level of inertia. Who knows how this will all end.
I subscribe to Minyanville because I am looking for an edge, something that will help differentiate myself from the run-of-the-mill financial advisor. It definitely helps! I like reading you because you are honest, tell it like it is and you leave your emotions out there for all of us. The flip side of this is that sometimes you tend to paint a bleak picture. I feel that bleak picture on my own, every night when I lay in bed. Truth be told, I don't like reading negative thoughts, even if they're accurate, especially first thing in the AM. I am not ranting, I am not angry, just trying to be helpful. Like you always say--think positive!
If there is deflation/inflation/depression coming in 1 to 5 years, nobody knows yet, let's deal with it when it may come. And don't forget one important thing, it has NEVER paid to bet against the USA, sure we've had a depression and recessions, we have always come out on top and until the day comes when we don't, optimism should carry the day.
First, thank you for your kind vibes regarding the Minyanville community. The genesis of this effort began in September, 2001 and it has been a labor of love ever since. When new professors enter the fold, we tell them that there are three basic rules: be honest, no advice and please don't disrespect anyone else. There is a lot of venom on Wall Street and money tends to make good people do bad things. The fabric of our community is predicated on surrounding ourselves with people (and critters) we trust will have our best interests in mind.
There are always two markets forces competing at any one time and legitimate reasons for the tape to rise or fall. The mainstream media--and many sell-side analysts--reactively rationalize and assign reasons for the market rhyme. That's an observation more than an indictment but my fear is that it'll once again prove costly for mainstream America. I am conscious that my long-term vibes aren't always Cheerios but my intention is to share--and potentially prepare--rather than make a "good call."
I wanted to post your Mailbag as there is a marked difference between hope and faith. Thinking positive doesn't mean positioning yourself long--it simply means that you should mentally prepare to succeed in your endeavors. I agree with your assessment that the journey is more important than the destination and there will be opportunities along the way. Heck, taking a stab at silver yesterday after our breakfast with Beeks would have made more than the 10-year yield!
I have strayed, at times, from my bailiwick (the nuts and guts of each day) but I'm hopeful that the broader vibes aren't lost in translation. This is an interesting juncture in history and I'm not certain that the script has been written yet. What I do know is that there is a massive difference between legitimate economic growth and a debt-induced expansion. That may manifest via imported stagflation and a lower dollar (if we continue to print money) or a deflation across asset classes (if the well runs dry). In the meantime, and as we try to figure it out, we run the risk of an echo-bubble that makes these types of conversations seem silly.
So yes, we can rally hard and yes, there is risk of a downside dislocation. As long as you "see" the probability spectrum and have the information necessary to make better and more informed decisions, I will consider Minyanville successful in the attainment of our stated mission. And I'll make you a deal, Franklin--I won't forget that it's never paid to bet against the USA if you'll kindly remember that we have never before been on the backside of the biggest financial bubble in history. That basis of comparison--or lack thereof--is the wildcard in our minxy deck.
Good luck today.
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