Conviction and Certainty

I was talking to a TV producer yesterday from a mainstream news network about the general stock market outlook.  I astonished her by not having a price target or a directional call for year-end.  Maybe “astonished” is the wrong word.  Probably I annoyed her.

Because regular people like it when a professional speaks with certainty about future events, even when the regular people themselves realize that they are listening to a guess.  It’s why the most confident people in this world are the most successful, even if they are not always the most able.

The guests this producer is accustomed to booking from our world are either stock analysts from big brokerage firms or Chief Market Strategists.  The language these people speak is a language of conviction and of predictions.  It’s not a character trait they happen to share, it is literally their job.  Price targets are their stock in trade.

But I had something different to say by way of general stock market outlook. Something probabilistic and vaguely vague.

I took her through the secular bear market of 2000 – ? and laid out the historical facts about what we should expect, based on the three previous examples of the past 115 years.  And then I explained how 115 years and three prior secular bear markets is actually a terribly unhelpful sample size of data, but it’s the only data set we’ve got.

I am the anti-price target on this phone call, I am certain of my uncertainty, I deal in qualified answers as opposed to resolute responses.

I am completely unhelpful to a news producer who wants to develop a stock market segment.  But I know I’ll be extremely helpful to her show’s viewers.  They will expect answers from me and conviction and certainty.  It’s what the man on TV has always given them.

I will give them something better.

Read Also:

Secular Bull and Bear Markets in Perspective (The Big Picture)






This content, which contains security-related opinions and/or information, is provided for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon in any manner as professional advice, or an endorsement of any practices, products or services. There can be no guarantees or assurances that the views expressed here will be applicable for any particular facts or circumstances, and should not be relied upon in any manner. You should consult your own advisers as to legal, business, tax, and other related matters concerning any investment.

The commentary in this “post” (including any related blog, podcasts, videos, and social media) reflects the personal opinions, viewpoints, and analyses of the Ritholtz Wealth Management employees providing such comments, and should not be regarded the views of Ritholtz Wealth Management LLC. or its respective affiliates or as a description of advisory services provided by Ritholtz Wealth Management or performance returns of any Ritholtz Wealth Management Investments client.

References to any securities or digital assets, or performance data, are for illustrative purposes only and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Charts and graphs provided within are for informational purposes solely and should not be relied upon when making any investment decision. Past performance is not indicative of future results. The content speaks only as of the date indicated. Any projections, estimates, forecasts, targets, prospects, and/or opinions expressed in these materials are subject to change without notice and may differ or be contrary to opinions expressed by others.

Wealthcast Media, an affiliate of Ritholtz Wealth Management, receives payment from various entities for advertisements in affiliated podcasts, blogs and emails. Inclusion of such advertisements does not constitute or imply endorsement, sponsorship or recommendation thereof, or any affiliation therewith, by the Content Creator or by Ritholtz Wealth Management or any of its employees. Investments in securities involve the risk of loss. For additional advertisement disclaimers see here:

Please see disclosures here.

What's been said:

Discussions found on the web
  1. Immediate Edge Review commented on Sep 23

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More on on that Topic: […]

  2. fun88 commented on Oct 29

    … [Trackback]

    […] Info on that Topic: […]

  3. pokerqq commented on Nov 16

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More on on that Topic: […]

  4. best cvv site commented on Nov 20

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More Info here on that Topic: […]

  5. tangerine farms commented on Nov 26

    … [Trackback]

    […] Info to that Topic: […]

  6. underground dumps shop commented on Nov 27

    … [Trackback]

    […] There you can find 32322 more Information on that Topic: […]

  7. best cbd reddit commented on Nov 27

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More Info here to that Topic: […]

  8. expedia hotels commented on Dec 15

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More Information here on that Topic: […]

  9. 토토 commented on Dec 16

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More on on that Topic: […]

  10. CI/CD Services commented on Dec 20

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More on to that Topic: […]

  11. Samsung RL40E manuals commented on Jan 22

    … [Trackback]

    […] Information to that Topic: […]

  12. Pioneer VSX-56TXi manuals commented on Jan 23

    … [Trackback]

    […] There you will find 85152 additional Info on that Topic: […]