“History does not repeat itself, but it rhymes.”
-Not Mark Twain (According to Garson O’Toole, A.K.A. the Quote Investigator)
It might not feel like it, but the North American markets have been casually going up for almost 10 years now. The only real interruption was the crash in oil prices beginning in late 2015. It didn’t hurt Canada much contrarily to what a lot of people expected. As then Prime Minister Stephen Harper said at the time, “The oil industry isn’t remotely the entire Canadian economy”. Indeed, production of crude oil in Canada only represents about 3% of its entire GDP. So when the crude prices went south, all it took to keep the Canadian economy on track was a tiny interest rate cut and a bit of fiscal leniency from Ottawa et voilà! The land of maple syrup was marching forward again. Read More
Recently I’ve been asking myself the same question over and over: “Why is everyone freaking out about low economic growth?”
I reasoned that for the developed countries an annual real growth rate of 1.5-2.0% wasn’t the end of the world. After all, such a pace of growth would mean a doubling of living standards every 35 years or so. This would be enough for every new generation to enjoy double what their parents had in real income.
So why all the fuss about sluggish growth and the urgent need for stimulus? Read More
“There is so much that’s false and nutty in modern investing practice and modern investment banking, that if you just reduced the nonsense, that’s a goal you should reasonably hope for.”
We’ve heard that before. Modern portfolio theory is Buffett and Munger’s favorite martyr child. Having been introduced to the world of investing through Graham and Buffett’s writing, it is nothing less than a mind-opening exercise for me to attend business school and study modern finance. While I try to pound all those complex greek-salad-formulas into my head I often hear this little voice in the back of my mind reminding me that it might all just be a huge waste of time. I feel like I’m in the position of a judge deciding the outcome of a boxing match between Buffett and my university teacher with net worth as the only judging criterion.