I have stopped adding to the cacophony of websites dedicated to telling you where the stock market is going in the next minute, day, week, year, and even the decade.
Oh, I still put out my daily newsletter, Trader Thoughts™, dishing out market observations and expectations, but that is not the same as maintaining a site dedicated to market direction. I don’t run or manage money; I trade short-term and even day trade.
Where the market will be weeks or years from now is immaterial to me. Since the 2008 breakdown, meltdown, conflagration, I’m just glad to have a market to trade. Aren’t you?
I guess I’ve reached that point between age and experience where I need to throw a flag and call, “bullpoopydoodle.” Having read those articles over the past 30 plus years and having noticed one recurring phrase: “Of course no one knows what will happen but…, ” allows me to throw flags.
Look, is it just me? But why is someone writing an article telling me where they think the market is going while simultaneously telling me no human, no computer, no deity can say what will happen next in the market?
In politics, investment advising, and religious or spiritual counseling, what do you have left after a disclaimer of that sort? No one knows if my decision will be good for the community, said the politician; no one knows where the stock market is going, said some Bloomberg or WSJ writer; no one knows if there’s a God, said the preacher.
Okay, say I, and then I don’t need you.
The public reads those articles having been drawn in by a nifty headline and gets an overcautious rambling opinion. Good lord, author, make your call, explain it, defend it if you must; we know it’s an opinion. Let time, the ultimate judge in these matters, pass.
In Wall Street’s brokerage world, it’s all about giving investment advice generally for the long-term. If you have a brokerage account that ever went through a steep correction, I’m sure your broker called saying, “We’re in it for the long-term, Mr. Jones.” Right? I think I see you nodding in agreement. By the way, if he/she didn’t call you, under those circumstances, consider getting a new broker.
It was disappointing to all those folks caught at the bottom of the 1932 market after hearing that advice; and then had to wait twenty-two years to get back to even, just even, not ahead. If Mr. Jones was seventy years old in 1932, by the time the market came back to even in 1954, he discovered what his broker meant by “the long-term.” He was then ninety-two and his account had been beaten up by inflation along the way.
So if the disclaimer is true, and no one knows where the market is going next, how is it we have a financial media industry?