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Why Wall Street Always Blows It
December 30, 2008 11:10 AM   Subscribe

Why Wall Street Always Blows It, and why we're always to blame, as told by banished securities analyst Henry Blodget.
posted by SeizeTheDay (37 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
...Well then it's only appropriate that your're paying for it....
posted by Artw at 11:34 AM on December 30, 2008


why we're always to blame

Yeah, Americans should have known better than to be walking down a street like Wall Street dressed like that.
posted by dersins at 11:35 AM on December 30, 2008 [2 favorites]


So, you see, if Americans weren't so greedy and gullible, we could do away with this legislation nonsense altogether! And we should, anyway, as bubbles are good things, in the same way breaking shop-windows with bricks is good for the glass trade. It's our duty as good capitalists to starve in hard times.

No wonder he's been banished - he's an idiot who still hasn't come to grips with his role in the 90's bubble.
posted by Slap*Happy at 11:51 AM on December 30, 2008


Nice one STD, it's a pretty sober overview (if unsatisfying in a pitchforks-and-torches sort of way.) See also this techdirt article that explains how converging incentives inevitably create these kinds of bubbles.

(Note to haters: I think the 'banks' should have been nationalized in response to their laxity. And I still consider myself a rock-ribbed Reagan Republican.)
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 12:01 PM on December 30, 2008


The takeaway from the article for me is that the timeline for rewarding behavior in the business and investment worlds is too short. One year is simply not enough time to truly understand whether someone's actions have hurt or helped the company, and in fact tends to create incentive to make overly large risks that will ultimately cause the company to flame out rather than take smaller, more manageable dips.

I think it might Actually Make a Difference if yearly bonuses were given in the form of stock that cannot be redeemed until at least ten years later, with some sort of mechanism to adjust the bonus beyond even the actual fluctuation of the stocks in response to the long-term ramifications of these guys' actions.

Someone who knows something about finance, tell me if that's viable.
posted by Nonce at 12:10 PM on December 30, 2008 [3 favorites]


Slap*Happy, is that seriously what you got out of his article? Please re-read his last three paragraphs starting from: "[B]ubbles are to free-market capitalism as hurricanes are to weather: regular, natural, and unavoidable."
posted by FuManchu at 12:12 PM on December 30, 2008


No wonder he's been banished - he's an idiot who still hasn't come to grips with his role in the 90's bubble.

You just don't get it, see... Like hurricanes, financial bubbles are inevitable. So what's the point in hurricane-proofing provisions in municipal construction codes? Hell, let's throw out construction codes all together, in fact: constructing large buildings unconstrained by pesky, Utopianist rules in accordance only with our own random whims lets loose the awesome, natural power of capitalism. The building construction and collapse cycle is as inevitable and unavoidable as apple pie and gonorrhea.
posted by saulgoodman at 12:15 PM on December 30, 2008 [11 favorites]


Bubbles will happen. The problem we see now is that so much "wealth" was tied up in crazy-ass default swaps, and so much risk was hidden. There was so much leverage that when the price of houses dropped a few points (okay, more then a 'few') the entire thing came crashing down.

If we hadn't had all this secularized debt, phony credit ratings, leverage, and hidden info the resulting crash wouldn't have been nearly as bad.

But, a bunch of wallstreeter's wouldn't have made their $100 million bonuses year on year either.
posted by delmoi at 12:31 PM on December 30, 2008


The takeaway from the article for me is that the timeline for rewarding behavior in the business and investment worlds is too short.

One of my big takeaways from this (and most everything else I've been reading about the financial markets lately) is that one major problem is that the market has shifted far too far off track from being focused on fundamentals and sound investment strategies.

Stock trading is the name of the game now, not stock investment. Investors in the stock market don't put together portfolios based on the best companies to invest in and expect to make their returns off the long-term dividends as that company's profits grow over time, as was originally envisioned when stock markets were first established--hell, the modern-day "investor in name only" doesn't really even care what the companies' underlying business model is anymore. All they're interested in is making money off of buying and selling stocks. People use stock markets now not for investing, but for trading.

Imagine if everybody in your neighborhood ran down to the local supermarket, bought up all the produce and dry goods sold there, then started orchestrating trades with each other and with anyone else who wanted in on the action, rather than simply buying them, taking them home, and putting them away in the freezer. That's kind of what the modern stock market is like.

Even long-term investment now is understood only to mean holding a position in a stock for a few years before trading it away. Nobody expects to see a meaningful return in dividends anymore because we all know if there are big profits, they'll all just end up going up the CEO and his cronies' noses.
posted by saulgoodman at 12:32 PM on December 30, 2008 [10 favorites]


Actually, according to some research, bubbles ARE inevitable.
posted by SeizeTheDay at 12:37 PM on December 30, 2008


The buyer wanted to buy a house; the real-estate agent wanted to earn a commission; the mortgage broker wanted to sell a loan; Wall Street wanted to buy loans so it could package and resell them as “mortgage-backed securities”; Alan Greenspan wanted to keep American prosperity alive; members of Congress wanted to get reelected. None of these participants, it is important to note, was paid to predict the likely future movements of the housing market.

Well, Greenspan arguably was (why else would he recommend ARMs to the American public?), and people making loans should have known the primary cause of mortgage foreclosure was an insufficient downpayment -- where sufficient is determined primarily by the future market value of the house.
posted by pwnguin at 12:43 PM on December 30, 2008


Greed is the downfall here. You had many who seen this coming and did nothing to stop it. Greenspan with the low interest rates, predator lenders, and all of us over spending. And this all falls on the taxpayers now. What a shame. The U.S. should be a shame. What a tall order Obama has to deal with. And it's going to get worse. We are not done yet that's for sure.
posted by vannjanis at 12:48 PM on December 30, 2008


So financial bubbles suck because nobody ever learns to time their sell orders well enough?
posted by The Straightener at 12:55 PM on December 30, 2008


These lab results should give pause not only to people who believe in efficient markets, but also to those who think we can banish bubbles simply by curbing corruption and imposing more regulation.

SeizeTheDay: I disagree with the conclusions drawn from the research cited in your link. The research doesn't prove that bubbles are inevitable, they prove that it's human nature to behave in ways that produce bubbles 90% of the time, under experimental conditions. There's no mathematical or physical inevitability about it: the issues are behavioral and psychological. And those are exactly the kinds of issues regulations exist to address in the first place. The only reason we've ever needed regulations is because simple blind human impulse--for that matter, this is true even of human judgment tempered by self-reflection and careful analysis--doesn't necessarily yield acceptable outcomes. Hence, we put up traffic lights. We establish elaborate systems of rules and dole out penalties for violations. Sometimes these systems work, sometimes they don't, depending on how effectively they're designed and implemented.

How about this for a crude solution: Put caps on how much (if anything) in excess of book value stocks can be traded at. Eliminate trading on margins and/or short selling. Do away with the riskier classes of the more complex securities completely. Enact rules to encourage the use of markets for making investments rather than trading. A share of stock is supposed to be a small piece of the title to a company. To the extent ownership in a company is publicly traded, the shareholders are part owners. The rules should encourage investors to behave as part owners not as little stock brokers looking to book returns off of their trades.
posted by saulgoodman at 1:01 PM on December 30, 2008 [2 favorites]


So this capitalist pig admits capitalism doesn't work?
posted by orthogonality at 1:02 PM on December 30, 2008 [2 favorites]


'they prove' --> 'it proves'
posted by saulgoodman at 1:02 PM on December 30, 2008


Would stock trading = gambling???????
I was under the impression that the stock issued by a company was a way to get investment in the company, so they could do the R & D and invest in physical plant and other things to grow the business.
It seems the stock market is really just a giant, never ending roulette wheel, or maybe it's just a horse race.
I just don't understand...maybe that's why I don't own any stock.
The one thing I learned in Las Vegas, was never play a casino game unless you understand the rules.
posted by GreyFoxVT at 1:17 PM on December 30, 2008


Actually, I wonder if the performance in the bubble research SeizeTheDay posted isn't caused by rewarding relative performance rather than absolute. The paper itself doesn't make the experimental incentives clear (to me).
posted by pwnguin at 1:21 PM on December 30, 2008


GreyFoxVT: Would stock trading = gambling???????


Ideally, no. Effectively, yes. The problem is that the guys downstream aren't doing their due dillegence.

Caveat Emptor, Motherfraker.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 1:38 PM on December 30, 2008


I was under the impression that the stock issued by a company was a way to get investment in the company, so they could do the R & D and invest in physical plant and other things to grow the business.

Well, it is. However, once you put that stock out there, you can't decide who buys it. You can't say, 'well, i only want to sell this stock to the guy who wants to hold onto it for 50 years and be part of our growth and be a believer in our product and our business'. Those guys are out there, but so too are the guys who want to leverage a .02 cent change in your price by selling 2 million shares overnight.
posted by spicynuts at 2:27 PM on December 30, 2008


I was under the impression that the stock issued by a company was a way to get investment in the company, so they could do the R & D and invest in physical plant and other things to grow the business.

In normal times, thats what bonds are for. Companies can take out loans to invest with. Stock seems to be created in two cases: when a company is formed, everyone is issued shares in the company. The other case is corporate issued stock options, usually to executives. Stock options are issued instead of money or bonds on the theory that they better align management's self-interest with shareholders.
posted by pwnguin at 2:38 PM on December 30, 2008


Ah bubbles! Totally fascinating area of finance, one of my particular interests actually.

We've got recorded instances of assets bubbles going back centuries, with a frequency of, over the long term, about once a decade. This has been true for hundreds of years, regardless of the macro environment - the currency, political party, regulatory system, financial instruments employed, whatever. While the details change the story remains the same. Asset bubbles just seem to happen. As I've said before, I think humans are programmed for irrational behaviour on some level, at least when it comes to money, to speculation. Basic human nature seems to be almost inextricably intertwined with asset bubbles.

Now of course we're living through the aftermath of the simultaneous collapse of several bubbles. And what we're seeing in the markets now - this struggle between greed and revulsion, between euphoria and fear, isn't much different from what we've witnessed in the past. From what we've seen during pretty much any other asset bubble in history.

What I spend a lot of time thinking about now is the answer to the question what's next?

Every decade has a theme, something that successful investors recognised early. This too, is something we've long observed in the capital markets.

For example, in the 1950's we had the post WWII reindustrialisation effort; that was the time to own stocks in the basic industries - chemicals, manufacturing, metals, etc.

The 60's saw a shift, investment focus changed from production to consumption, and we observed significant growth in drugs, tobacco and food stocks.

The 70's, of course, saw an sharp increase in inflation. The theme then was energy and various physical assets.

The 80's saw a disinflationary shift, and after a period of time lower interest rates kicked off another round of consumer growth.

The 90's saw another round of reindustrialisation, this time emphasising the internet ("dot com") instead of staid physical industries.

The early 00's were very interesting as multiple key areas across distinct industries outperformed, apparently at once. Companies that led the way in terms of cost (and hence price) reductions outperformed. Globalisation provided a means to push costs even lower than previous technologically driven productivity cycles had in the past. Firms that rushed to embrace the benefits of globalisation, of the virtual enterprise did well. Rapid technological change allow smaller and nimbler firms to outperform larger, intrenched competitors. We saw the deployment of several disrupting technologies, with the attendant deflationary pressures across entire industries that bankruptcies drive. The BRIC economies became a household word, as did international portfolio diversification.

So every decade has its theme, and in hindsight this won't be much different. And needless to say, its damn difficult to identify the theme before the fact. I think the best we can do is pick a few and be ready to disinvest should it appear we made an inappropriate choice.


GreyFoxVT -- "I was under the impression that the stock issued by a company was a way to get investment in the company, so they could do the R & D and invest in physical plant and other things to grow the business."

You're almost there; the stock market shouldn't be viewed monolithically; what you're correctly described is the primary purpose of the stock market, and it's called an Initial Public Offering, or IPO. This is when firms first approach the general public to raise money, and these shares are almost always fairly priced.

But, of course, nobody is gonna buy shares if they can't unload them when they need cash; this need drives secondary trading. Or the trading in shares that are already issued.


"It seems the stock market is really just a giant, never ending roulette wheel, or maybe it's just a horse race."

Secondary trading is where we see speculation. Sometimes it's healthy speculation, othertimes, not so healthy.

A bubble is, by definition, unhealthy speculation.


saulgoodman -- "How about this for a crude solution: Put caps on how much (if anything) in excess of book value stocks can be traded at. Eliminate trading on margins and/or short selling. Do away with the riskier classes of the more complex securities completely. Enact rules to encourage the use of markets for making investments rather than trading. A share of stock is supposed to be a small piece of the title to a company. To the extent ownership in a company is publicly traded, the shareholders are part owners. The rules should encourage investors to behave as part owners not as little stock brokers looking to book returns off of their trades."

I don't think its so crude saulgoodman , at least parts of it. But questions do arise. Lets take a closer look.

First of all, the cap on pricing shares above book value would be problematic for many reasons; who would be empowered to decide these caps and how would the caps be calculated? The caps can't be constant for all companies, so how would faster growing industries be identified from slower? How often would the caps have to be changed? These would be somewhat troublesome to implement and monitor.

Trading on margin and short selling provide liquidity, driving bid / ask spreads tighter. Do away with these mechanisms and not only are the shares you'd like to purchase more expensive, now some companies won't be able to raise capital. Not saying this is an unworkable solution, rather there are costs to be considered.

Eliminating riskier asset classes? Sure, that's desirable, I've got issues with the way some Credit Default Swaps are now traded, but how are the riskier assets classes identified? Keep in mind that many derivatives routinely traded today (Commodity Futures or even Stock options) were illegal in the United States or other countries at one time, being deemed too risky. So while we'd all like this outcome, I'm not sure how it could be accomplished other than the systems we've already got in place - for example, regulatory capital.

I think one workable solution here would be to render many over the counter - that is, non exchange traded - derivatives illegal. After all, under CFTC regulations now it's illegal to trade futures off an organised exchange. So that might work, but if it doesn't we've got another regulatory problem, one that might blow up with an even bigger bang than we're now hearing. So enforcement would have to merciless and fierce.

But we've got another problem in that finance is global and boy howdy does money move fast these days. Barriers to entry are very, very low, and if this isn't approached properly we'll end up with lots of liquidity in off shore centres that at best are indifferent to the interests of the G20 nations, and at worst are hostile. So this would have to be carefully approached.


"The rules should encourage investors to behave as part owners not as little stock brokers looking to book returns off of their trades"

Now this is interesting; if one wishes to invest in a company we don't have to select publicly listed enterprises. Many of the speculative problems occur only with companies that are listed.

Privately held companies do issues shares, albeit in much, much lower quantities than listed firms. And these shares do indeed trade. Almost always the counterparty to such a trade is precisely the individual you've identified: someone looking to become a part owner, not someone wishing to speculate.

So if someone isn't happy with all the speculative forces in the listed markets, the answer is already there - invest in smaller, non listed firms.
posted by Mutant at 2:39 PM on December 30, 2008 [8 favorites]


Ever have a religious/political argument with someone, and get that feeling that they're almost ready to agree with you? Like they've just about abandoned their dogma and are starting to see how you could be right? I'm starting to get that vibe from the capitalists these days. First Greenspan, now this guy. Look at this quote:

In this sense, bubbles are perfectly rational—or at least they’re a rational and unavoidable by-product of capitalism (which, as Winston Churchill might have said, is the worst economic system on the planet except for all the others).

Well, Churchill didn't exactly say that, and if he had, there would be little evidence to support his assertion. This guy seems about a millimeter away from accepting that a mixed, regulated economy is better than a capitalist economy. I see he is still claiming the contrary, but he may be starting to doubt it. I wonder if we're about to see a big popular ideological shift away from market fundamentalism and toward a more moderate position. I hope so.

You want a solution to the problems of the free market? Here's my absolute craziest (and therefore most interesting) idea ever.

The problem:

Bubbles form when people borrow previously borrowed money to let people borrow it to lend to people who are lending it out to someone they think, for whatever reason, might be a good investment. Everyone gets all tangled up in a web of debt and financial obligations, all based on probabilistic analyses, which are really just educated guesses. As the borrowing gets further and further away from the fundamental bets being placed, the lenders have sketchier and sketchier information, and their probabilities become less and less certain.

Why do we do this? Because we are allowed to make bets with other people's money, they are stupid enough to let us, and we are stupid enough to do it. People are stupid, and yet everyone is stupid enough not to assume that people are stupid when they are considering what to do with their stupid money. Government exists in part to prevent the echo effects of idiocy by preventing idiots from doing what they want to do. You make it illegal to run red lights because people are dumb enough to do it, and it's harder for the other drivers to watch out for them than it is to just force the idiots to stop.

So, the solution:

A lot of religions' holy books (the Torah, the Bible, and the Qur'an come to mind) prohibit lending and borrowing to some degree. Many of the prohibitions in these books are based on some practical experience, and in this particular case, I think they're dead on. Maybe lending and borrowing should never, ever be legal. Make it illegal for any binding contract to include a promise of wealth or goods that the person promising them doesn't already have (or that they have, but have also promised to someone else). That way, people can count on money and goods that they're owed (barring unusual accidents).

Promising a share of profits would be impossible. Stocks would cease to be. Investing in companies blindly would no longer be possible. Instead, if you want to make money off of an investment in a company, the only way to do it is to give them your money up front, on the condition that you are in charge of the company. Then you use your position as CEO to pay yourself when money comes in. No borrowing, no lending, except to/from yourself. If one person's wealth isn't enough to do what you want to do, then you'll just have to work hard to earn the money you need. If this makes big things harder to do, then fine. Good, even.

You would also have to pay employees before, instead of after, their work period, since they can't borrow money to buy things. So, make the pay period short to limit the damage they could do by turning out to be worthless employees after you've paid them.

Obviously this could have no unintended consequences. ;-)

Seriously, though, what would be wrong with this? Sorry for the outrageously long post.
posted by Xezlec at 2:50 PM on December 30, 2008


I read this one in Dead Tree format, and am surprised that no one's mentioned one of his more unexpected points (if I remember correctly, not gonna read it -again-): that bubbles aren't necessarily bad. To ride up in a bubble is great so long as you get out before it pops. The key, he says, is to never believe the hype that the market will never go down. It always goes down eventually, you just don't want to be standing when the music stops.

After he explains his role in the Dot Com bubble, he went back in as a personal investor and made some money in the housing bubble, but was sure to get out before it popped. He did, but years before the fall. People thought he was crazy, and I'm not sure if I remember if he thought he should have stayed in an extra year or two.

He seems to think that the benefits of a bubble outweigh the misery it causes when it collapses, which is a somewhat controversial view in the aftermath of such a huge popping.
posted by JHarris at 2:54 PM on December 30, 2008


So if someone isn't happy with all the speculative forces in the listed markets, the answer is already there - invest in smaller, non listed firms.

Really? How will that get me my job back?

The problem is that we are all "invested" in the market, even if we don't explicitly own any stock. Things are just too interconnected for us to be able to escape that, unless we want to go build a cabin in the woods.
posted by Xezlec at 3:05 PM on December 30, 2008 [1 favorite]


There's a theorem in control theory that, if the gain of a feedback system changes too steeply with frequency, the system will oscillate. The person who told me about this learned it in the context of making a vibration-isolated table, worried about time scales much smaller than a second; it has also come up thinking about thermostats, where an over-controlled temperature might oscillate over minutes or hours.

In the posted article, Blodget talks about the tension between short-term investment risks and longer-term business risks.

In the companion Atlantic article linked by SeizeTheDay, one observation from the repeated trading games is the slow realization by all the players that everyone else understands the game, too.

Nonce suggests paying investment bonuses in something less liquid than cash.

It'd be interesting to construct (or find) a model of a market as a fed-back control system and see whether incentives exist without long-term oscillations.
posted by fantabulous timewaster at 3:10 PM on December 30, 2008 [1 favorite]




Well, Churchill didn't exactly say that, and if he had, there would be little evidence to support his assertion

Churchill said "democracy is the worst form of government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time."

Unstated in this article is the fact that there is a LOT of "excess" capital that has been built up in the system -- ie. interest on interest on interest. J6P's 401K can be considered first-generation savings, but much of the investment capital Madoff stole goes back tens if not hundreds of years.

All these billions of dollars are looking for yield, and this capital piles into and out of vehicles willy nilly. It is quite an interesting dynamic and I wish I had the time & energy to model it accurately.
posted by troy at 3:35 PM on December 30, 2008



Really? How will that get me my job back?


By providing capital to entrepreneurs who have good ideas and good business plans so that they can hire and bring their ideas to market, thus gaining revenue and market share to expand and give you a raise and a promotion and higher your little sister when she graduates from college and also provide income to secondary business that might provide goods, materials and services to this new company.
posted by spicynuts at 3:41 PM on December 30, 2008


...or you could eat that week.
posted by Artw at 3:43 PM on December 30, 2008 [1 favorite]


By providing capital to entrepreneurs who have good ideas and good business plans so that they can hire and bring their ideas to market, thus gaining revenue and market share to expand and give you a raise and a promotion and higher your little sister when she graduates from college and also provide income to secondary business that might provide goods, materials and services to this new company.

Or, far more likely, they might hire someone other than me and my little sister, like maybe one of the people who still invests their money in the ordinary stock market. I think your response missed my point. I stand by my original statement, which was that putting my money somewhere safe doesn't entirely protect me from the damage done by other irresponsible investors.
posted by Xezlec at 4:51 PM on December 30, 2008


But we've got another problem in that finance is global and boy howdy does money move fast these days. Barriers to entry are very, very low, and if this isn't approached properly we'll end up with lots of liquidity in off shore centres that at best are indifferent to the interests of the G20 nations, and at worst are hostile. So this would have to be carefully approached.

I know we shouldn't get near there, but... couldn't we just bomb these off-shore centers out of existence? Or just speak softly and carry a carrier group?
posted by Monday, stony Monday at 7:55 PM on December 30, 2008


The problem is that we are all "invested" in the market, even if we don't explicitly own any stock. Things are just too interconnected for us to be able to escape that, unless we want to go build a cabin in the woods.

It's always the unregulated derivatives which cause the problems. Bubbles are I think inevitable, but in the case of the recent housing bubble, the derivatives created to spread the risk of the debt were completely out of control, because they misrepresented the value of that debt. But there is no way of knowing how much CDO/CDS money is out there. Regulation always happens after a crisis like this, but it tends to become more lax as prosperity returns and there aren't many living survivors of the last serious crash. It's like we forget to be prudent with the financial markets and make the same mistakes if we haven't been through a serious crash recently enough for people to remember it as happening in their lifetimes. We can get really tight and get all the loose ends tied up. Hopefully we will. But in another 70 years or so, it will probably happen again.
posted by krinklyfig at 9:53 PM on December 30, 2008


Blodget makes a list of the actors and says this about Wall Street:

Wall Street fat cats? Boy, do we hate those guys, especially now that our tax dollars are bailing them out. But we didn’t complain when our lender asked for such a small down payment without bothering to check how much money we made

and later on..

Everyone else on that list above bears some responsibility too. But in the case I have described, it would be hard to say that any of them acted criminally. Or irrationally. Or even irresponsibly.

To which I ask: how does an unvetted mortgage offer not be irresponsible, irrespective of the customer's satisfaction?
posted by Gyan at 10:39 PM on December 30, 2008 [1 favorite]


Or, far more likely, they might hire someone other than me and my little sister, like maybe one of the people who still invests their money in the ordinary stock market.

What are you talking about?? Here's a real world example, taken from my life. I work for a start up. We have no revenue right now. I was hired, after consulting for free for a while, when a round of investment provided capital. I now have health insurance and a pay check and we still have no revenue. We are now doing a second round of financing - with the goal being that I will use that money to a) hire a new development agency and b) hire several new employees. These employees will be hired based on the skills that I need in my industry, not on what these potential employees think about the economy, do with their paychecks, spend their free time on, etc etc etc. The agency that I contract will do the same. So why WOULDN'T I hire YOU if you are the right candidate for the job? So why is it far more likely that I would hire 'one of those people who still invests their money in the ordinary stock market"? That makes zero sense.

We are not a public company. People who give us money now have no guarantee of ever seeing it again. But the money they give us puts food on my table and on the tables of our development contractors. When we eventually do make money, the shares these people got in exchange for giving us capital will be worth something and they can either continue to hold them as investment in the long term, or sell them to new investors in exchange for cash and go spend that money in any way they please. So I dont' understand your point.
posted by spicynuts at 8:56 AM on December 31, 2008


spicynuts: Are you reading my posts or just skimming them? I've explicitly stated my point twice, but you still seem to be arguing about something else entirely.

So why is it far more likely that I would hire 'one of those people who still invests their money in the ordinary stock market"?

Because I only have one skill, and I am only one person, and there are a lot of people looking for jobs out there. Out of all the different jobs out there, the chances that I happen to be the best possible person for a job at a company whose stock I bought are very slim. There is just no connection there. Why on Earth would a company hire me just because I invested in their stock? That's just not how it works.

These employees will be hired based on the skills that I need in my industry, not on what these potential employees think about the economy, do with their paychecks, spend their free time on, etc etc etc.

This is exactly the point I've been trying to make. My investments are not related to who hires me, so for you to answer my question (which, for the third time, was "how would investing differently get me a job") by saying "because investments pay for jobs" is nonsensical.

This is the last time I'm repeating this.
posted by Xezlec at 11:28 AM on December 31, 2008


What is Xezlec still doing here? Are there no prisons, are there no workhouses?
posted by Artw at 11:29 AM on December 31, 2008 [3 favorites]


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