Unreliable Science? Same with Investing.

April 15, 2013 Leave a comment

The next time an investing guru presents you with ironclad statistical results, remember this article:

Unreliable neuroscience? Why power matters – Suzi Gage

In a paper published today in Nature Reviews Neuroscience we reviewed the power of studies in the neuroscience literature, and found that, on average, it is very low – around 20%. Low power undermines the reliability of neuroscience research in several important ways.

April 8, 2013 Leave a comment

One of the great illustrators of American myths has died—Carmine Infantino. Many won’t know the name, but it would be almost impossible that one of his images hasn’t passed your eyes at some point or another in your life. Batman, Superman, the Flash…you name them, he left an indelible mark on the American consciousness with his artistry and helped bring the medium forward into more cinematic and dramatically resonant stories.

CARMINE INFANTINO (1925 – 2013)

 

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Idealism as Economic Heroism

March 22, 2013 Leave a comment

Ayn Rand’s Idealism Explains Her Enduring Success — By CHARLES C. JOHNSON

I admit—freely—often my biggest hang-up with Ms. Rand was that she’s too pure, too idealistic, advocating a worldview not possible in this world. Charles Johnson’s recent IBD piece puts such anxiety to rest.

“My personal life is a postscript to my novels,” she wrote in the afterword to “Atlas Shrugged.” “It consists of the sentence: ‘And I mean it.’ I have always lived by the philosophy I present in my books — and it has worked for me, as it works for my characters.”

The Inherent Stupidity and Non-Science of Hedonomics

March 7, 2013 Leave a comment

As with so much of her work, Deirdre McCloskey has penned a biting and powerful critique of today’s economic study of “happiness”.

Happyism by DEIRDRE N. MCCLOSKEY

This stuff is worth being aware of because it’s popping up in political discourse regularly. In particular, note the creeping paternalism lately becoming a full infestation in behavioral economics.

What Food Inflation?

March 5, 2013 Leave a comment

Just about everywhere I go, I meet investors who tell me so-called core inflation is a dumb metric and food inflation is very high. Check out this recent graphic from Bloomberg Businessweek by Dorothy Gambrell.

“In 1984, the average U.S. household spent 16.8 percent of its annual post-tax income on food. By 2011, Americans spent only 11.2 percent. The U.S. devotes less of its income to food than any other country—half as much as households in France and one-fourth of those in India.”

In the words of Stan Lee, ‘nuff said.

The Euro Project: Die Hard!

February 21, 2013 Leave a comment

For some years now this blog has argued the inclination to hold the pan European unity project together would be stronger than most believed. Despite ad infinitum and ad nauseum calls for increased nationalization, the Eurozone refuses to buckle just yet. If it will one day die, and it certainly could, it’ll die hard.

Now that it’s Q1 2013, this ought to be stunning to many pundits. Just as global equity markets’ resilience and lack of European meltdown has astounded many investors, too.

Embattled Economies Cling to Euro By MARCUS WALKER and ALESSANDRA GALLONI

PIIGS Wall Street Journal graphic brought to you by Fisher Investments Investing IQ

Graphic from the Wall Street Journal.

What Most Miss about the Flash Crash

February 13, 2013 Leave a comment

Markets adapt, and long-term profits approach zero for high-speed trading. The winners are market participants, who benefit from higher liquidity and smaller bid/ask spreads. The part most folks miss about the flash crash is the market self-corrected as fast as it sank.

Regulator, Go Slow on Reining in High-Speed Trading: Algorithm-driven trading appears to be self-correcting. That’s good—the hyper-fast world needs it.

By HOLLY A. BELL

 

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