The Great Expression
Opportunity awaits those who are proactively prepared.
I view the Great Depression as the framework for optimism. Most of society worked, great discoveries were made and formidable franchises were established.
Disney (DIS) built its global reach during that period.
Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) was born on the back end.
Texas Instruments (TXN), Tyson Foods (TSN) and Continental Airlines (CAL) were birthed.
Indeed, if the greatest opportunities are bred from the most formidable obstacles, we're about to enter an auspicious era where vast opportunities await those who are proactively prepared.
For the Love of the Game
The last few decades were about wealth, accumulation and conspicuous consumption but we've now entered a period that is entirely more austere, if not more sensible.
Debt reduction and the rejection of materialism will continue to manifest as we come to terms with doing more with less.
Flashy rides and big-ticket items that were once badges of honor now serve as hollow reminders of misplaced priorities.
Humility, once viewed as weakness, will be embraced.
Doing for others rather than asking what others can do for you will become increasingly common as people appreciate what they have rather than constantly complaining about what they don't.
It's a lesson I learned long ago and I'm a better man for it.
This mess is a bitter pill to swallow, particularly for the mainstream American who doesn't know a derivative from a dividend. We can point fingers and wallow in the "why" or take a deep breath and begin the process of recovery.
Something good comes from all things bad and the greatest wisdom is bred as a function of pain.
It's unfortunate that the structural foundation of the global capital market system had to shake before people and policy makers paid attention, but it is what it is and we'll do what we must.
Surround yourself with people you trust. Practice risk management over reward chasing. Preserve capital, reduce debt and become financially aware of your surroundings.
It won't be an easy road but it won't be impossible either.
For as my grandfather Ruby used to tell me, "This too, shall pass."
Did you know the doors to Festivus 2008 are officially open? Have you yet locked your spot for the critter trot as last year's soiree sold out? (This is our annual event to commingle our professors, partners and Minyans while chowing down and listening to live music. The very best part? It's for the kids in the good name of my grandfather.)
Todd Harrison is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Minyanville. Prior to his current role, Mr. Harrison was President and head trader at a $400 million dollar New York-based hedge fund. Todd welcomes your comments and/or feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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