Has the Stock Market Ever NOT Been Rigged?

Is the stock market rigged? This could have been the headline for the last 400 years – possibly longer – depending on when you claim the stock market “started.”

It seems like every week the media “uncovers” that the market is rigged. Some of the coverage is thoughtful, and some is not.

Today the focus is on high frequency trading. ...

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What if Summers had Become Fed Chairman?

What just happened would not have happened. The Fed, which is charged with regulating banks, just told Citigroup they needed to be more stable before shelling out money to shareholders.

This never would have happened had Larry Summers become chairman of the Federal Reserve. There is absolutely no way he would have signed off on tougher requirements for Citigroup. Let’s all breath another sigh of relief that ...

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Do Investments Have Fashion Appeal?

Unfortunately, this is the way too many investments are sold.

Investment banks are always trying to figure out what will be most appealing to their customers. In most businesses, this can and should be business as usual. But with investments, it has to be different. Why? Today’s fashionable investments may not be what is likely to provide the best risk-return trade off in the future.

It is the investment advisor’s job to help clients sift through what may seem ...

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Grover Norquist and Electromagnetic Pulses – Really?

Primary economic concern right now……electromagnetic pulses from the sun or from an enemy missile.

This is what Grover Norquist said at The Atlantic Economy Summit.

Whatever side of the aisle you are on, this has to seem weird.

Don’t believe me? Watch the video (click here). It is worth a watch, especially because the other economists made surprisingly sound and pragmatic statements.

But at ...

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Crimea and Putin Drag On

Didn’t I say that you can’t predict the market if you can’t predict what effects the market?

I haven’t written anything on the Crimea yet. In the end it will probably pass and be quickly forgotten. Remember the Japan earthquake and the impact it had on the markets?

Crimea provides a great example of the unpredictability of the markets. Can anyone predict what Putin will do? Sometimes he acts like a world leader. Sometimes he acts like and ex-KGB ...

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You Can’t Predict…..

the weather, so how would you ever hope to predict the stock market.

Reports are now coming out that the extreme cold weather in most of the nation this winter had a noticeable impact on the economy.

I am amazed at all of the things we naturally accept are unpredictable (weather, lifespans, wars, elections, etc.)……but then assume the stock market, which is affected by these events, should be ...

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Mt. Gox is Toast?

That was quick. The biggest bitcoin exchange is apparently planning for bankruptcy (click here).

The die hard Bitcoin proponents are arguing that it isn’t a problem with Bitcoin…it is just a problem with that particular exchange.

That’s not entirely accurate. The way Bitcoin is designed, it inherently lends itself to all sorts of problems such as this. I can’t possibly see it becoming a stable and reliable store of value. And ...

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The Golden Ticket Trap

One of the toughest realities for investors to face is that it does not pay to try to get rich with one good pick.

The temptation to attempt this is strong and understandable. We can always look back into the past and say, “If I had only just bought ______.”

It can feel like the costs to try to buy the next big winner are small – much like the costs for a lottery ticket are small compared to ...

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