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Thoughts from the Frontline Archive, July 2015

When China Stopped Acting Chinese
  • July 31, 2015

When China Stopped Acting Chinese

“The one thing I know for sure about China is, I will never know China. It's too big, too old, too diverse, too deep. There's simply not enough time.”

– Anthony Bourdain, Parts Unknown

Much of the world is focused on what is happening in Greece and Europe. A lot of people are paying attention to the Middle East and geopolitics. These are significant concerns, for sure; but what has been happening in China the past few months has more far-reaching global investment implications than Europe or...

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Europe: Running on Borrowed Time
  • July 25, 2015

Europe: Running on Borrowed Time

“I am sure the euro will oblige us to introduce a new set of economic policy instruments. It is politically impossible to propose that now. But some day there will be a crisis and new instruments will be created.”

– Romano Prodi, EU Commission president, December 2001

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Productivity and Modern-Day Horse Manure
  • July 17, 2015

Productivity and Modern-Day Horse Manure

“They just use your mind and they never give you credit. It’s enough to drive you crazy if you let it.”

– Dolly Parton, “Working 9 to 5”

Almost everyone wants to be more productive. I include myself in that group – there are lots of ways I could be more productive. When I have conversations with people I think are very productive, they almost always tell me they wish they were more productive. What more could anyone expect from them?

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It’s Not Over Till the Fat Lady Goes on a P/E Diet
  • July 10, 2015

It’s Not Over Till the Fat Lady Goes on a P/E Diet

For the vast majority of investors, portfolio returns are generated by the equity markets or at a minimum heavily influenced by the equity markets. We have enjoyed an almost six-year bull market run in the stock market, which has helped heal portfolios after the devastating market crash of the Great Recession. So much so that many prominent market analysts have proclaimed the beginning of a new secular bull market. If we have indeed entered such a new phase, we need to recognize it for what it...

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A Week of Unseen Things
  • July 4, 2015

A Week of Unseen Things

“In the economic sphere an act, a habit, an institution, a law produces not only one effect, but a series of effects. Of these effects, the first alone is immediate; it appears simultaneously with its cause; it is seen. The other effects emerge only subsequently; they are not seen; we are fortunate if we foresee them.

“There is only one difference between a bad economist and a good one: the bad economist confines himself to the visible effect; the good economist takes into account both the...

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