2010 was all about leaks (oil, Wiki, inside information). It was about extreme weather, the ugliest midterms ever and a suspension of disbelief in financial markets. But mostly, it was about leggings and really high boots. And rubber bracelets.
So what did we learn in 2010? Since I’m sure you’re tired of hearing from me, I got a little help from my friends on this one. Enjoy!
In 2010 I learned that…
Justin Paterno (StockTwits): my Friday night routine of slapping on yoga pants and watching movies on my computer was stimulating the economy all along.
Jared Woodard (Condor Options): you may not care about the macroeconomy, but the macroeconomy cares about you.
Paul Kedrosky (Bloomberg): some people will pay a stupidly high price – both in portfolio and in reputation – so that they can one day say, “I told you so”.
Michelle Leder (footnoted): selling your company and having a baby (in close proximity to one another) is something that only a truly crazy person would attempt to do.
Stacy-Marie Ishmael (FT Tilt): Truthiness applies to finance just as much as it does to politics.
Barry Ritholtz (The Big Picture): despite all of the talk about Democratization of investing, Wall Street primarily serves only the very wealthiest Americans. And that is a shame.
The Fly (Outer Space): it pays to go bankrupt.
Mike Konczal (Rorty Bomb): my friend JW Mason is correct: in order to understand value judgments (great news, disaster, opportunity, worry) made by economists and financial journalists, you need to add “for bondholders” for it to make sense.
The Weakonomist (Weakonomics): markets are only as efficient as the engineers that programmed them
Cardiff Garcia (FT Alphaville): your blunders are easier to forgive if you’re not an asshole, your triumphs easier to ignore if you are.
Noah Rosenblatt (UrbanDigs): nothing is really secret anymore.
Leigh Drogen (SurfView Capital): “social leverage” is definitely not just a Howard Lindzon catch phrase.
Eli Radke (Trader Habits): I should never bet against the resilience of those in finance, sequels are never better than the original and Tony Robbins is an idiot.
Joe Donahue (Upside Trader): Larry Summers was really a mannequin.
Kid Dynamite (Kid Dynamite’s World): It’s a momentum world and we’re all just living in it.
Teri Buhl (Investigative Reporter): you can get fired from your job, even arrested, and your readers will follow you anywhere if you keep giving them the news others are afraid to report.
Steve Sears (Barron’s): no one knows what’s going on.
Brian Shannon (Alpha Trends): Wall Street continues to be full of shit, only price pays!
Jonathan Wald (CNN): the best television is theatre, except if the theatre is Spider-Man.
Chicago Sean (Minimalist Trader): when it comes to blogging, it’s not the length of your post that matters – it’s the girth.
James Altucher (The Altucher Confidential): Yahoo message board posters are among the most intelligent, well-read people in the known universe and I’m proud to call many of them friends, colleagues, and yes, scholars. Also, male menopause might not be such a bad thing with the right combination of hormones and medication.
Eric Jackson (Ironfire Capital): a Chinese city of 10 million is considered small, a Chinese airport built in 2002 is considered old, and a Chinese industry that is tripling in size in 3 years is considered “moderately attractive.”
Derek Hernquist (DerekHernquist.com): there is value in constantly pruning my information sources to make room for new ones.
Jesse (Cafe Americain): you are going to love the punchline to this recovery story which should be arriving sometime in the first half of next year. Fooled again, what a surprise. One can almost never overestimate the self-destructive gullibility of people when a fraud appeals to their vanity, prejudice, or greed.
Dasan (Davian Letter): extreme pessimism that worked once in 71 years doesn’t work so well in the other 70 years. And don’t fight the Fed.
Keith McCullough (Hedgeye): I re-learned that markets don’t lie; politicians do.
Charles Kirk (The Kirk Report): just because you don’t like or fear what the government or the Fed is doing does not mean that the market is void of opportunity.
Patty Edwards (CNBC): a Flash Crash is neither… and both.
Timothy Connolly (Sconset Capital): Meredith Whitney was right once. ONCE.
Joe Fahmy (Zenith Asset Management): common sense isn’t so common, women love overpriced cupcakes and the stock market remains the same because human emotion never changes!
Carl Richards (Behavior Gap): dancing until the Fed’s music stops is dangerous, but complaining about how loud the music is feels a bit like getting pecked to death by ducks.
Marek Fuchs (TheStreet.com): the devil, taking the form of municipal bonds, is dancing our way. At the same time, there is a God: the Knicks are back.
Howard Lindzon (Bassist, Third Eye Blind): the Fed is running the best Ponzi Scheme ever. Still.
Francine McKenna (Re: The Auditors): perfecting a punch line is easy when you’ve got a big target.
Vince Veneziani (Markets Media): you can start a blog that no one will read.
Trader Mark (Fund My Mutual Fund): there are numerous valid and concrete reasons the average logical humanoid never tries to launch a mutual fund. Thankfully, I am well below average.
The Epicurean Dealmaker (eponymous): age, wealth, and power are no defense against making a fool of yourself in public. Repeatedly. I should know.
Michael Bigger (Bigger Capital): I love the 2008 Bear Market.
Joe Weisenthal (The Business Insider): America really is exceptional, hard work is a substitute for knowledge, and most economic analysis is actually moralizing in disguise. Also: Gold!
BC (Barbarian Capital): zeros do not matter until further notice.
Nicole Lapin (CNBC): money never sleeps and neither do I.
Mark Marasciullo (New Canaan Partners): I been spending most my life livin’ in a banksta paradise.
Jason & Alyx (LOLFed): Skynet is here, and it is in our trading system. Hell, it is our trading system.
Stephen Shaefer (Forbes): $550 million is enough to get the SEC off Goldman’s back for defrauding investors, but $155 million can’t get Cliff Lee in Yankee pinstripes.
Rachel Sklar (Mediaite): real entrepreneurs sell coupons and flying sheep.
Adam Warner (Daily Options Report): life had no meaning before the IPad.
Tom Brakke (Research Puzzle): my memory is longer than the market’s, so some selective forgetting can be beneficial. It’s just that I don’t know which things to remember and which to forget.
Bess Levin (Dealbreaker): Lloyd Blankfein smells as good as he looks.
Bill Luby (Vix and More): substantial profits can be made from surfing the bleeding edge of Wall Street’s product development engine.
ChessNWine (iBankCoin): the fear of only being as good as your last blog post is a better stimulant than Four Loko and espresso.
Prieur du Plessis (Investment Postcards): an open mind, common sense and a solid dose of one’s own research, as opposed to conventional wisdom, are the key ingredients for nailing the markets.
Lizzie O’Leary (Bloomberg TV): if your name rhymes with Bony Wayward, best not to go back to Louisiana. Ever.
Jeff Carter (Points and Figures): unemployment programs are creating jobs faster than anything else.
Jay (Market Folly): THE BERNANK owns us all.
Paul Vigna (Dow Jones MarketTalk): you can’t trust anything the government says. Wait, I knew that already. Thanks for nothing, Julian Assange.
Bill Singer (BrokeAndBroker): the only thing on the level on Wall Street is the water in the toilet bowl.
Ivaylo Ivanhoff (StockTwits 50): there are two types of forecasts – lucky or wrong.
Heidi Moore (Independent Journalist): people really don’t know anything about why anything happens, but it doesn’t stop them from avidly pretending.
David Merkel (Aleph Blog): Being a financial regulator is one job that doesn’t follow the Peter Principle: regulators don’t get fired for exceeding their ultimate level of incompetence; instead, that get still more responsibilities at which to do miserably.
David Blair (Crosshairs Trader): stock trading can be likened to a psychiatrist visit: you spend good money only to find out how wrong you are in your interpretation of past events.
Tadas Viskanta (Abnormal Returns): no secret is safe (Wikileaks), nor is trading on secrets (Expert networks).
Greg White (The Business Insider): even Bill “Charles Ponzi” Gross cares about page views.
Phil Pearlman (StockTwits): gold and global equity markets can run higher together for an extended period, despite historical trends, as long as the predominant world currencies are all losing real value.
Michael Dawson (Trend Rida): the cell phone is the most personal device ever, making it really hard for people to separate the device-maker from its stock.
Jeff Miller (A Dash of Insight): there was a persistent and simplistic “risk on, risk off” theme and I have an order in at Netflix to see if Mr. Miyagi has any other helpful tips.
Adrienne Gonzalez (Jr Deputy Accountant): the sky is not falling, it’s just perpetually correcting.
Kevin Depew (Minyanville): everything around us is deeply rooted in a Calculus of Fools. While the word “calculus” may also mean a kidney stone, the word fool is straightforward enough. It’s either a lack of judgment or an outright deception, take your pick.
Downtown Josh Brown (The Reformed Broker): Bieber Fever trumps the Hindenberg Omen every time.
Michael Panzner (Financial Armageddon): the key to success in today’s market is the George Costanza rule: do the opposite of what makes sense.
Stock Rabbi (StockRabbi): relative strength measures are less important when entire indexes are trending, also bacon cheddar cream cheese is an abomination.
Robert Sinn (Stock Sage): the Euro is as much a piece of paper as the Dollar is.
CC (Charts and Coffee): blogging that Apple is set for a fall will get you nasty comments and hate mail (sometimes even from friends).
The Anal_yst (Stone Street Advisors): we can have a retail recovery with 10% unemployment so long as rich people keep spending money on things they don’t need and poor people keep shopping instead of paying their mortgages.
J.C. Parets (Charts for Days): If you’re not looking at charts, you suck at this.
Justin Walters (Bespoke Investment Group): the market, with it’s uncanny ability to prove people wrong, could retake its pre-Lehman levels much faster than most people thought.
Scott Bell (GDP Wealth): synchronous asset class inflation and trading on insider information may look fun at first, but both will usually end up with someone getting in big trouble.
Greg Battle (Leftover Takeout): (from an actual Nouriel Roubini speech) “gold has no intrinsic value. If you are really worried about inflation rising, I would buy SPAM™. You can eat SPAM™, you cannot eat gold. Seriously, they started producing SPAM™ during the Great Depression and it can last for a thousand years given the can and chemicals, so it’s a good store of value, better than gold. You eat it.”
Wade Slome (Sidoxia Capital): the double-dipper species can scream and pound their chests loudly one second, then drift quickly and quietly into hibernation.
Eddie Elfenbein (Crossing Wall Street): Bulls make money, Bears make money … but Greece is royally fucked.
Feel free to vote for your faves below. Thanks everyone and Happy New Year!