Sunday, November 23, 2008


I have decided to apply for the job of “expert financial analyst”. It seems to be a job for which I am uniquely qualified. I have no formal degrees from any prestigious universities. I don’t have many years of experience studying these matters. I don’t even have a bunch of letters after my name. What I do have however is an opinion and from all indications, it is as good as, if not better than, most I have seen or heard these past few years.

Consider if you will just last week, job numbers came out and they were in fact dismal. I don’t know about you but I sorta figured they would be dismal. The experts were astounded. They were surprised. What? Were they looking at the same news I was looking at these past few days or were they looking at something else? What kind of moron would be surprised to see an increase in the unemployment numbers?

Our financial markets have been distressed for this past year. The banking system has stepped into problems that will take years to get out of. The automobile manufacturers have made poor business decisions that they may not be able to recover from. The current financial experts say “Well nobody saw that coming”. If nobody saw that coming, why on earth do we need these experts?

As of Friday’s close of the stock market, you could buy a share of each of the big three auto maker’s stock for less than a trip to Starbucks. But nobody saw this coming. What is your financial advisor saying to you? Did he warn you of the rapid and dramatic downturn in the market? Did he tell you of the problems of the banking and auto industry? My guess is that he did not. My guess is that it was as much a surprise to him as it was to all the other “experts”. Exactly where does their expertise lie? What are you and I paying for when we employ a financial advisor? I wonder what the job pays?

That got me to thinking, Hell I can do that. I have time on my hands. I don’t have much else going on right now. Apparently you really don’t have to know very much. It seems to me all I have to do is add “expert” after my name. Who could doubt my qualifications? Who could question my prognostications? If they did, I could just say, “well nobody saw that coming”. It works for the Wall Street experts so it must be legal. It could work for me.

To give you an advanced picture of my abilities, I am going to make some astounding predictions. Are you ready? First, I do not believe that all of America’s great companies are going to go out of business. I believe going forward that there will continue to be a need for food, clothing, housing, transportation, medicine, and technology. While it is true that 6.5% of our people are currently unemployed, 93.5% are working. While 2% of mortgages are in trouble, 98% are not. The people who inhabit this country are not going to disappear and neither are their needs and wants. Secondly, the financial markets will improve and do so dramatically when investors, (traders), come to realize this fact. As has been the case in the past, markets recover. Yes it will take some time, but, as a wise man once told me, “What’s time to a hog eating corn?”

Some of you who read this will say “Ron, sometimes you can be so sarcastic. How can you be this optimistic?” I could be wrong. I could miss by a mile and the whole country will go into the toilet. If that happens, I’ll just put on my expert’s hat and say, “Hey, nobody saw that coming?”

Ron Scarbro November 23, 2008

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