I have been repeatedly asked for my opinion on what has been occurring in the markets over the past while. My short answer is that my opinion on what has been occurring in that sphere is unprintable. I have always tried to strike a somewhat mature and at least intermittently reasonable tone in my ramblings and musings here on Fortify Your Oasis and I confess that attempting maintain that tone while iterating the thoughts that are bouncing around in my skull at the moment defies me …
Fortunately, I have a couple of good sources at which to point you. First, the extraordinary Johns – Mr Bird and Mr Fortune, who truly have an uncanny ability to let us see just how buck nekkid the Emperor truly is …

[RSS readers may need to click through to the post to see the clip]

Second, the inimitable Mr Chellar, who has written a performance review for Monsieur Kerviel that would be achingly funny were it not so close to the truth


[Click on Mr Chellar’s bonce to link to the review]

Okay, okay – one little thought. It just seems a bit strange to me that you hire a bunch of Maths PhD’s, get them to examine the tossing of a coin over a long period of time and then bet on the next coin toss based on a bunch of arcane mathematical constructs. I’ve never met a senior manager in a trading company who would admit publicly that this is how they make their living, but I’ve met many, many who readily admit this in private. Not very reassuring for the investors is it? “We’re taking your pension fund to Vegas where our mathematical wizards have been modelling every conceivable turn of the dice for years. Trust us though … you’ll be fine.”

Combine that with Desmond Morris’ “Risk-taker” model for modern man – essentially a cave man in a good suit. Morris expounds his theory as it pertains to car crashes. “Women have more accidents but men have bigger accidents,” he says. “If you’re going to have a big car crash, it’s always a man; if you’re going to get a dented fender, it’s a woman. You hardly ever hear of a high-speed crash involving a woman; it’s always a man.”

Well that’s cheering. So it comes to this – yours and my financial futures are resting in the hands of a bunch of testosterone-charged, A-type, Top Gun wannabees. And they are managed by a bunch of older, A-type, Top Gun wannabees on Viagra whose collective thought process extends as far as the next reporting period.

Sleep well. [See? I told you you didn’t want to hear my thoughts.]