Thursday, July 29, 2010

Stupid Choices Abound In The Markets

Many investment professionals want you to do stupid things with your money.  Some analysts tracking IPOs will probably give bullish ratings to the upcoming public offering of GM to their clients, and predictably enough the dumb money will stampede into an uncompetitive firm in a mature industry.  They'll forget that the government is still going to lose billions on that company; that's okay with them as long as you lose money too. 

Some advisors will tell their clients that bank stocks are a screaming buy, never mind that taxpayer guarantees of their capital structures are the only force keeping many banks in business.  Business prospects for banks remain so poor that they need to pole vault through every loophole in the recently passed financial reform law just to survive.  That ensures a return of the credit crunch and a repeat of megabank insolvency scares. 

Some people will tell you it's time to go all in on U.S. equities given anecdotal evidence of recovery.  Betting on the U.S. economy to grow has been a smart choice for the past two centuries, but the timing right now may not be right given the likelihood the economy will stagnate

It's very hard to tune out stupid advice and commentary.  Sometimes it's even hard for me to do so and I do this for a living.