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Thoughts From the Frontline, October 2003

Demography is Destiny

October 31, 2003

This week we will look at the very long term trends in demographics. I find this whole topic fascinating and one that is fraught with investment implications, not to mention the basic issues of life with which we will soon be dealing.

But first, I want to bring a couple of items to your attention. Last week, I lead off with a few paragraphs from a 1946 article from Life Magazine talking about how we won the war in Europe but were losing the peace. I was not trying to make some comparison...

Earnings Deflation

October 24, 2003

Earnings season is upon us, and with each announcement the market seems to surge on new ecstasies or retreat with disillusionment. Each new announcement is cut open, like so many sheep, to see what its entrails will divine to us about the future, as if one more bit of fresh data will give us the clear forward vision we think we so desperately need. Is the bull finally back? Are we climbing a wall of worry, or just on another fool's errand, rising in a bubble toward the inevitable pin? Yet,...

Contradictions: The Fed vs. the Bond Market

October 17, 2003

Two weeks ago we examined the changes in our lives. Last week we looked at imbalances in the economy. This week the theme that I see in my daily reading is the large number of major contradictions apparent in the markets. There are so many contradictions we will not get to them all, but let's start, as it will make for some interesting and controversial analysis.

The Great Balancing Act

October 10, 2003

Last week we looked at change, and this week we turn our attention to balance, or more precisely, the dangers and opportunities of imbalance. Stock markets, currencies, confidence and government will be our target today for what should be an interesting and thoughtful letter.

I have been "saving" this topic for several months, waiting for the arrival of Bill Bonner's new book, Financial Reckoning Day . It has launched at #4 on the Wall Street Journal Best-seller list as well as #8 on the...

The Nature of Change

October 3, 2003

"My interest is in the future, because I am going to spend the rest of my life there."
-- Charles F. Kettering

How well we deal with change is at the heart of the investment enterprise. I make a departure from our normal writing fare to think about the longer term future and some of the changes we will encounter. I speculate about the future of the investment business and what you will be faced with in a few years.