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How to Prepare for the Next Recession: Automate the Rescue Plan
Suppan
San Diego 4h ago
As someone with an engineering background (both education and mindset) this kind of simplistic design of complex systems is very concerning.

If anyone remembers Nassim Tal...
complexity  economic_downturn  ecosystems  howto  letters_to_the_editor  modelling  models  Nassim_Taleb  oversimplification  preparation  recessions 
may 2019 by jerryking
A preacher for Trump’s America: Joel Osteen and the prosperity gospel
APRIL 18, 2019 | Financial Times | Edward Luce in Houston.

Optimism, hope, destiny, harvest, bounty — these are Lakewood’s buzzwords. Prosperity too. Words that are rarely heard include guilt, shame, sin, penance and hell. Lakewood is not the kind of church that troubles your conscience.....the market share of US churches run by celebrity prosperity preachers such as Osteen, Creflo Dollar (sic), Kenneth Copeland and Paula White keeps growing. Three out of four of the largest megachurches in America subscribe to the prosperity gospel. Formal religion in the US has been waning for years. Almost a quarter of Americans now profess to having none. Among the Christian brands, only “non-denominational charismatics” — a scholarly term for the prosperity preachers — are expanding.......About the only book that Trump is known to have read from cover to cover is The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale, the grandfather of the prosperity gospel. It has sold five million copies since it was published in 1952. His message is that the more you give to God, the more he will give back in return......The prosperity gospel is all about harvesting the seed. The more money you plant in God’s church, the greater your heavenly bounty. Wealth is a mark of God’s benevolence. Poverty is a sign of godlessness...........The more you consider Lakewood’s business model, the more it seems like a vehicle to redistribute money upwards — towards heaven, perhaps — rather than to those who most need it. Like all religious charities, Lakewood is exempt from taxes. All donations to it are tax deductible. It has never been audited by the IRS......On the left, the prosperity gospel is attacked for encouraging reckless spending by those who can least afford it. Among Lakewood’s night classes is Own Your Dream Home. Leaps of financial faith fit into Osteen’s view that God will always underwrite true believers.
.......Some of the home repossessions in the 2008 crash were blamed on irresponsible advice from the prosperity churches, which are concentrated in the Sun Belt. In her book Blessed: A History of the American Prosperity Gospel, Kate Bowler says the churches have created a “deification and ritualisation” of the American dream.......people who are depressed should shun the company of other depressed people.... Addicts must steer clear of other addicts. The poor should avoid others who are poor.......“If you’re struggling in your finances, get around blessed people, generous people, people who are well off,” Osteen advises. Misery loves company, he says. Avoid miserable people.........Osteen’s idea of whether God would have hesitated before creating the universe. “He didn’t check with accounting and say, ‘I am about to create the stars, galaxies and planets,’” says Osteen. He just went ahead and did it. All that is holding the rest of us back is a lack of self-belief: “God spoke worlds into creation,”
........The more one listens to Osteen, the harder it is to shut out Trump. Their mutual guru, Norman Vincent Peale...Believe in yourself like others believe in their product, was Peale's message. “Stamp indelibly on your mind a mental picture of yourself as succeeding,” wrote Peale. “Hold this picture tenaciously. Never permit it to fade.”
.........People often ask why so many blue-collar Americans still support Trump in spite of his failure to transform their economic prospects. They might need to widen their aperture. To many Americans, Trump’s wealth and power are proof of God’s favour. That alone is a reason to support him.
blue-collar  books  churches  Christianity  Donald_Trump  economic_downturn  Edward_Luce  Joel_Osteen  leaps_of_faith  mega-churches  pastors  positive_thinking  prosperity_gospel  religion  the_American_Dream  self-belief  tithing 
april 2019 by jerryking
Why further financial crises are inevitable
March 19, 2019 | Financial Times | Martin Wolf.

We learnt this month that the US Fed had decided not to raise the countercyclical capital buffer required of banks above its current level of zero, even though the US economy is at a cyclical peak. It also removed “qualitative” grades from its stress tests for American banks, though not for foreign ones. Finally, the Financial Stability Oversight Council, led by Steven Mnuchin, US Treasury secretary, removed the last insurer from its list of “too big to fail” institutions.

These decisions may not endanger the stability of the financial system. But they show that financial regulation is procyclical: it is loosened when it should be tightened and tightened when it should be loosened. We do, in fact, learn from history — and then we forget.....Regulation of banks has tightened since the financial crises of 2007-12. Capital and liquidity requirements are stricter, the “stress test” regime is quite demanding, and efforts have been made to end “too big to fail” by developing the idea of orderly “resolution” of large and complex financial institutions.....Yet complacency is unjustified. Banks remain highly leveraged institutions.....history demonstrates the procyclicality of regulation. Again and again, regulation is relaxed during a boom: indeed, the deregulation often fuels that boom. Then, when the damage has been done and disillusionment sets in, it is tightened again........We can see four reasons why this tends to happen: economic, ideological, political and merely human.

* Economic
Over time the financial system evolves. There is a tendency for risk to migrate out of the best regulated parts of the system to less well regulated parts. Even if regulators have the power and will to keep up, the financial innovation that so often accompanies this makes it hard to do so. The global financial system is complex and adaptable. It is also run by highly motivated people. It is hard for regulators to catch up with the evolution of what we now call “shadow banking”.

* Ideological
the tendency to view this complex system through a simplistic lens. The more powerful the ideology of free markets, the more the authority and power of regulators will tend to erode. Naturally, public confidence in this ideology tends to be strong in booms and weak in busts.

* Political

the financial system controls vast resources and can exert huge influence. In the 2018 US electoral cycle, finance, insurance and real estate (three intertwined sectors) were the largest contributors, covering one-seventh of the total cost. This is a superb example of Mancur Olson’s Logic of Collective Action: concentrated interests override the general one. This is much less true in times of crisis, when the public is enraged and wants to punish bankers. But it is true, again, in normal times.

Borderline or even blatant corruption also emerges: politicians may even demand a share in the wealth created in booms. Since politicians ultimately control regulators, the consequences for the latter, even if they are honest and diligent, are evident.

A significant aspect of the politics is closely linked to regulatory arbitrage: international competition. One jurisdiction tries to attract financial business via “light-touch” regulation; others then follow. This is frequently because their own financiers and financial centres complain bitterly. It is hard to resist the argument that foreigners are cheating.

* Human
There is a human tendency to dismiss long-ago events as irrelevant, to believe This Time is Different and ignore what is not under one’s nose. Much of this can be summarised as “disaster myopia”. The public gives irresponsible policymakers the benefit of the doubt and enjoys the boom. Over time, regulation degrades, as the forces against it strengthen and those in its favour corrode.

The cumulative effect of these efforts is quite clear: regulations erode and that erosion will be exported. This has happened before and will do so again. This time, too, is not different.
boom-to-bust  bubbles  collective_action  complacency  corruption  disaster_myopia  entrenched_interests  economic_downturn  financiers  financial_crises  financial_regulation  financial_system  historical_amnesia  Mancur_Olson  Martin_Wolf  policymakers  politicians  politics  procyclicality  regulatory_arbitrage  regulation  regulators  stress-tests  This_Time_is_Different  U.S._Federal_Reserve 
march 2019 by jerryking
5 Ways to Value Your Collection, Whether It’s Fine Wine or Shrunken Heads
March 1, 2019 | The New York Times | By Paul Sullivan.

Collectible assets include wine, spirits, coins, trading cards as well as more unusual items, like lighters, belt buckles and even shrunken heads. These collections cost money and time to assemble and certainly have a value to their owners, but can they be considered legitimate investments? That depends on the market.

For many collectors, the only option to buy, sell or even value these assets is through online auction platforms like eBay or enthusiast sites, but for others, their possessions are treated as fine art.......the market for collectibles, which are often valued in the millions of dollars, may not always be so easy to weather. It can experience sudden surges that put desired items out of the reach of true collectors or it can collapse, wiping out the gains speculators thought they had made.

In an economic slowdown, how these investments are treated depends on supply and demand as well as unpredictable forces like fashion and popularity.....Collectibles can be broken into categories determined by provenance, rarity and even a moment in time. Here are five issues to consider when weighing the investment potential of your collection.....
(1) The standouts in the crowd - Leading the pack are high-quality items that have broad name recognition.
(2) High risk, high reward -
(3) Not all collectibles are investments- jewelry is not an investment....because the market is driven too much by changing fashion.
(4) Obscure and difficult to sell - establish the value of esoteric collections by using third-party appraisers. But insurance companies like A.I.G. value these collections by their replacement value, not by the price someone would pay for them.
(5) A market downturn - =hether it’s shrunken heads, 1,000 bottles of wine or sheets of trading cards, a ready buyer may not be available — or may want to pay much less (i.e. a step change in the valuation).
collectibles  collectors  high-risk  howto  obscure  valuations  AIG  auctions  assets  brands  eBay  economic_downturn  esoteric  fine_arts  high-end  high-quality  investing  investments  passions  step_change  unpredictability  wine  whisky  online_auctions 
march 2019 by jerryking
Opinion | The American Dream Isn’t for Black Millennials
Jan. 5, 2019 | The New York Times | By Reniqua Allen. Ms. Allen is the author of “It Was All a Dream.”

....I marched up to my new, small, one-bedroom apartment on the Hill, satisfied. It felt as if I’d broken barriers.

But when I got a notice in the mail about five years after I closed, I felt dizzy. It was not long after the financial crisis. The letter said that my mortgage company had been charged with giving subprime loans to black and Hispanic people around the country and asked if I wanted to join a class-action suit. I had most likely been the target of predatory lending. I had known from the start that my income could make me a target. I’d heard the words of the broker. But because of my race? It hadn’t crossed my mind. I was devastated......How much room is there in anyone’s life for a mistake or the perception of a mistake if you’re young and black in America? How much of the American dream hangs in the balance? For the dozens of people I talked to, the reality is that if we want our dreams to come true, all too often we have to be almost perfect, making the right decisions all the time. Not getting that ticket. Not listening to that mortgage broker. Not speaking up.....I know the history of this country, know the history of redlining, know how my grandparents were locked out of neighborhoods because of their skin color. But for some reason I was still surprised. I would say I was mad, but more than that, I was hurt that I had been lulled into some kind of false bourgeois comfort that had made me think that my life was different from my predecessors’ lives. Sure, I had made it up that Hill, but at what cost?
African-Americans  downward_mobility  economic_downturn  millennials  the_American_dream  subprime  predatory_practices  racial_disparities  redlining  home_ownership 
january 2019 by jerryking
Roaring Out of Recession
Ranjay GulatiNitin NohriaFranz Wohlgezogen
FROM THE MARCH 2010 ISSUE
HBS  economic_downturn 
october 2018 by jerryking
Keeping America's Edge
Winter 2010 | National Affairs | Jim Manzi.

.....One of the most painful things about markets is that they often make fools of our fathers: Sharp operators with an eye for trends often outperform those who carefully learn a trade and continue a tradition. ...First, To begin with, we must unwind some recent errors that fail to take account of these circumstances. Most obviously, government ownership of industrial assets is almost a guarantee that the painful decisions required for international competitiveness will not be made. When it comes to the auto industry, for instance, we need to take the loss and move on. As soon as possible, the government should announce a structured program to sell off the equity it holds in GM. ....Second, the financial crisis has demonstrated obvious systemic problems of poor regulation and under-regulation of some aspects of the financial sector that must be addressed — though for at least a decade prior to the crisis, over-regulation, lawsuits, and aggressive government prosecution seriously damaged the competitiveness of other parts of America's financial system ........Regulation to avoid systemic risk must therefore proceed from a clear understanding of its causes. In the recent crisis, the reason the government has been forced to prop up financial institutions isn't that they are too big to fail, but rather that they are too interconnected to fail......we should therefore adopt a modernized version of a New Deal-era ­innovation: focus on creating walls that contain busts, rather than on applying brakes that hold back the entire system.....Third, over the coming decades, we should seek to deregulate public schools. .....We should pursue the creation of a real marketplace among ever more deregulated publicly financed schools — a market in which funding follows students, and far broader discretion is permitted to those who actually teach and manage in our schools. There are real-world examples of such systems that work well today — both Sweden and the Netherlands, for instance, have implemented this kind of plan at the national level......Fourth, we should reconceptualize immigration as recruiting. Assimilating immigrants is a demonstrated core capability of America's political economy — and it is one we should take advantage of. ....think of immigration as an opportunity to improve our stock of human capital. Once we have re-established control of our southern border, and as we preserve our commitment to political asylum, we should also set up recruiting offices looking for the best possible talent everywhere: from Mexico City to Beijing to Helsinki to Calcutta. Australia and Canada have demonstrated the practicality of skills-based immigration policies for many years. We should improve upon their example by using testing and other methods to apply a basic tenet of all human capital-intensive organizations managing for the long term: Always pick talent over skill. It would be great for America as a whole to have, say, 500,000 smart, motivated people move here each year with the intention of becoming citizens.
social_cohesion  innovation  human_capital  Jim_Manzi  immigration  recruiting  interconnections  too_big_to_fail  economic_downturn  innovation_policies  outperformance  capitalization  human_potential  financial_system  regulation  under-regulation  too_interconnected_to_fail  systemic_risks  talent  skills 
august 2017 by jerryking
Prepare for a New Supercycle of Innovation - WSJ
By John Michaelson
May 9, 2017

Things are about to change. Consider information technology. Today’s enterprise IT systems are built on platforms dating from the 1970s to the 1990s. These systems are now horrendously expensive to operate, prone to catastrophic crashes, and unable to ensure data security. The cloud only made this worse by increasing complexity.

Corporate CEOs complain that they are unable to get the data they need. These rickety systems cannot easily accommodate data mining and artificial intelligence. Evidence of their deficiencies is seen daily. The New York Stock Exchange stops trading for hours. Yahoo acknowledges the compromise of one billion user accounts. Airline reservation systems go down repeatedly. The pain level for users is becoming intolerable.

Each decade for the past 60 years, we have seen a thousand-fold increase in world-wide processing power, bandwidth and storage. At the same time, costs have fallen by a factor of 10,000. Advances in these platforms, in themselves, do not produce innovation. But they facilitate the development and deployment of entirely new applications that take advantage of these advances. [jk: The Republican intellectual George F. Gilder taught us that we should husband resources that are scarce and costly, but can waste resources that are abundant and cheap] Amazing new applications are almost never predictable. They come from human creativity (jk: human ingenuity). That is one reason they almost never come from incumbent companies. But once barriers to innovation are lowered, new applications follow.
10x  artificial_intelligence  CEOs  creativity  cyber_security  data_mining  economic_downturn  flash_crashes  George_Gilder  Gilder's  Law  innovation  history  human_ingenuity  incumbents  IT  legacy_tech  Moore's_Law  NYSE 
may 2017 by jerryking
Yale to Build Tool Offering Real-Time Lessons on Financial Crises -
May 9, 2017 | WSJ | By Gabriel T. Rubin.

Yale University will launch an online platform to provide real-time support to policy makers dealing with financial crises, with the help of a $10 million gift from business leaders and philanthropists Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Peter G. Peterson Foundation.

The gift represents a major expansion of the Yale Program on Financial Stability, a degree-granting program in the university’s school of management that aims to train early- and midcareer financial regulators from around the globe.

The new resources will support a small staff of researchers, led by Professor Andrew Metrick, as they build a database of “lessons from hundreds of interventions from past crises,” the university said. The effort is the first of its kind, according to Yale, and reflects a need for more research on “wartime” situations, rather than the preventive sort of regulatory research done by central banks around the world. Central banks often avoid extensive crisis preparations out of reluctance to promote moral hazard, leaving policy makers to reinvent the wheel each time a new crisis arises.....Mr. Geithner, who serves as the chairman of the Program on Financial Stability, said that he and other policy makers would have been able to act faster and with greater confidence during the financial crisis with access to the tools that Mr. Metrick’s team will build.

“There were probably four or five periods when the crisis was escalating, the panic was spreading, sitting on the phone for 20 hours a day trying to figure out how to do things,” Mr. Geithner recalled. “And we hadn’t had to do some of those things since the Great Depression. That took us a lot of time, and that can be costly.”

The open online platform will include descriptions of specific interventions—for example, the use of a “bad bank” to hold distressed assets—and will detail what did and didn’t work well in each case.
Yale  Colleges_&_Universities  crisis  regulators  Walter_Bagehot  central_banks  real-time  databases  lessons_learned  policy_tools  Peter_Peterson  reinventing_the_wheel  policymakers  confidence  economic_downturn  decision_making  speed  the_Great_Depression  crisis_management  crisis_response  Tim_Geithner  moral_hazards  financial_crises 
may 2017 by jerryking
There’s an Antidote to America’s Long Economic Malaise: College Towns - WSJ
The Great Unraveling | There’s an Antidote to America’s Long Economic Malaise: College Towns
By BOB DAVIS | PHOTOS BY BOB MILLER FOR THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
Updated Dec. 12, 2016
economic_downturn  Colleges_&_Universities  cities  China  downward_mobility  America_in_Decline? 
december 2016 by jerryking
Steven Mnuchin’s Defining Moment: Seizing Opportunity From the Financial Crisis - WSJ
By RACHEL LOUISE ENSIGN, ANUPREETA DAS and REBECCA BALLHAUS
Updated Dec. 1, 2016.

Federal officials expected to suffer as much as $8 billion in losses from IndyMac. That left regulators looking for someone to take over the bank and mitigate the damage. Speed was essential, since the FDIC was bracing for a wave of additional bank failures.

Mr. Mnuchin assembled an all-star cast drawn from his years on Wall Street, including Mr. Soros, hedge-fund manager John Paulson, billionaire Michael Dell’s investment firm and several former Goldman executives, including J. Christopher Flowers. They signed up on the basis that Mr. Mnuchin would personally run the bank, according to people familiar with the matter.

By now, he knew that few bidders would be willing to buy all the failed bank’s assets. And he knew he was taking a giant risk.

At the end of 2008, Mr. Mnuchin persuaded the FDIC to sell IndyMac for about $1.5 billion. The deal included IndyMac branches, deposits and assets. The FDIC also agreed to protect the buyers from the most severe losses for years. That loss-sharing arrangement turned out to be a master stroke.
turnarounds  financial_services  Steven_Mnuchin  Goldman_Sachs  opportunistic  Carpe_diem  economic_downturn  vulture_investing  kairos  seminal_moments  rainmaking  defining_moments 
december 2016 by jerryking
Yes, It's a Tech Bubble. Here's What You Need to Know
SEPTEMBER 2015 ISSUE | | Inc.com | BY JEFF BERCOVICI.

"Investors change priorities. Soon, they may be telling you, 'We want to see profitability at the expense of growth.' So you need to think about the levers you can pull to make that happen." (JCK- How does redirect from a growth mindset and plans to one of profitability?--Scott Kupor)

First, there will be some upside. Sky-high home and office rents in certain cities and neighborhoods will drop, and if you're not in the market yet, you'll have a great buying opportunity. If you're hiring, the drum-tight talent market for anyone with programming skills should loosen up considerably, although big companies may reap the benefits more than small ones, says Oliver Ryan, founder of the tech recruiting firm Lab 8 Ventures. "The 'war' for engineering talent is primarily a supply-and-demand issue, so a widespread pullback of venture capital would likely diminish demand to a point," he says.......a burst bubble could also create new types of adversity. ....suppliers and distribution partners may disappear, your business notwithstanding......money is time, and the best way to ride out a downturn is with a couple of years' worth of cash stashed in your mattress. Just be sure you're prepared to deliver a couple of extra years' worth of growth, because you'll need to if you follow the raise-more-than-you-need plan. "It's not without risk," .... "You'll have to make the numbers to justify your valuation at some point, so you're raising the hurdle on yourself."......To make it over the chasm, you have to show investors traction and momentum--a PowerPoint slide with a line pointing up and to the right. A startup can often manufacture these things by spending enough on advertising and customer acquisition. But the attributes so richly rewarded in the current environment aren't necessarily the same ones that will be selected for once the bubble bursts......In October 2008, Doug Leone of Sequoia Capital gave a famous presentation titled "R.I.P. Good Times," in which he counseled entrepreneurs to squirrel away their nuts for winter and "spend every dollar as if it was your last." In hindsight Leone's forecast, and his warning was seen as alarmist......be more careful about the terms on which you raise money as that "extreme end of a cycle" approaches. Typically, you'll seek the highest possible valuation: (a) It minimizes dilution and generates publicity that attracts talent and clients and even more capital. But as valuations settle--and the inevitable rise of interest rates all but guarantees they will--founders who overreached will struggle to support, or defend, those valuations. In the worst instances, if you finagled an extra 10 or 20 % of paper value by granting investors aggressive downside protections--the "features" and "ratchets" that VCs use to make reckless bets without incurring real risk--you'll find yourself downgraded from owner to employee. "
boom-to-bust  bubbles  downside  economic_downturn  founders  growth  investors  mindsets  overreach  profitability  priorities  Sequoia  start_ups  Silicon_Valley  silver_linings  upside  vc  venture_capital  war_for_talent 
october 2016 by jerryking
Trump and the Lord’s Work
MAY 3, 2016 | The New York Times | Thomas L. Friedman.

This was a really bad time for us to be stuck. I’m just finishing writing a new book, which is partly about the inflection point we hit around 2007. In 2007, Apple came out with the iPhone, beginning the smartphone/apps revolution; in late 2006 Facebook opened its doors to anyone, not just college and high school students, and took off like a rocket; Google came out with the Android operating system in 2007; Hadoop launched in 2007, helping create the storage/processing power for the big data revolution; Github, launched in 2007, scaling open-source software; Twitter was spun off as its own separate platform in 2007. Amazon came out with the Kindle in 2007. Airbnb started in 2007.

In short, on the eve of Obama’s presidency, something big happened: Everything started getting digitized and made mobile — work, commerce, billing, finance, education — reshaping the economy. A lot of things started to get very fast all at once. It was precisely when we needed to double down on our formula for success and update it for a new era — more lifelong learning opportunities for every worker, better infrastructure (roads, airports, rails and bandwidth) to promote the flow of commerce, better rules to incentivize risk-taking and prevent recklessness, better immigration policies to attract the world’s smartest minds, and more government-funded research to push out the boundaries of science and sow the seeds for the next generation of start-ups.

That was the real grand bargain we needed. Instead, we had the 2008 economic meltdown, which set off more polarization, and way too much gridlock, given how much rethinking, reimagining and retooling we needed to do....It’s clear: Capitalism driven more by machines and robots poses new challenges for both white-collar and blue-collar workers.
Tom_Friedman  Donald_Trump  Github  Campaign_2016  GOP  populism  blue-collar  economic_downturn  white-collar  digital_economy  mobile  recklessness  automation  infrastructure  R&D  smart_people  digitalization  inflection_points 
october 2016 by jerryking
At BlackRock, a Wall Street Rock Star’s $5 Trillion Comeback - The New York Times
SEPT. 15, 2016 | NYT | By LANDON THOMAS Jr.

(1) Laurence Fink: “If you think you know everything about our business, you are kidding yourself,” he said. “The biggest question we have to answer is: ‘Are we developing the right leaders?’” “Are you,” he asked, “prepared to be one of those leaders?”

(2) BlackRock was thriving because of its focus on low-risk, low-cost funds and the all-seeing wonders of Aladdin. BlackRock sees the future of finance as being rules-based, data-driven, systematic investment styles such as exchange-traded funds, which track a variety of stock and bond indexes or adhere to a set of financial rules. Fink believes that his algorithmic driven style will, over time, grow faster than the costlier “active investing” model in which individuals, not algorithms, make stock, bond and asset allocation decisions.

Most money management firms highlight their investment returns first, and risk controls second. BlackRock has taken a reverse approach: It believes that risk analysis, such as gauging how a security will trade if interest rates go up or down, improves investment results.

(3) BlackRock, along with central banks, sovereign wealth funds — have become the new arbiters of "flow.“ It is not about the flow of securities anymore, it is about the flow of information and indications of interest.”

(4) Asset Liability and Debt and Derivatives Investment Network (Aladdin), is BlackRock's big data-mining, risk-mitigation platform/framework. Aladdin is a network of code, trades, chat, algorithms and predictive models that on any given day can highlight vulnerabilities and opportunities connected to the trillions that BlackRock firm tracks — including the portion which belongs to outside firms that pay BlackRock a fee to have access to the platform. Aladdin stress-tests how securities will respond to certain situations (e.g. a sudden rise in interest rates or what happens in the event of a political surprise, like Donald J. Trump being elected president.)

In San Francisco, a team of equity analysts deploys data analysis to study the language that CEOs use during an earnings call. Unusually bearish this quarter, compared with last? If so, maybe the stock is a sell. “We have more information than anyone,” Mr. Fink said.
systematic_approaches  ETFs  Wall_Street  BlackRock  Laurence_Fink  asset_management  traders  complacency  future  finance  Aladdin  risk-management  financiers  financial_services  central_banks  money_management  information_flows  volatility  economic_downturn  liquidity  bonds  platforms  frameworks  stress-tests  monitoring  CEOs  succession  risk-analysis  leadership  order_management_system  sovereign_wealth_funds  market_intelligence  intentionality  data_mining  collective_intelligence  risk-mitigation  rules-based  risks  asset_values  scaling  scenario-planning  databases 
september 2016 by jerryking
Canada beware: We are suffering a great depression in commodity prices - The Globe and Mail
MICHAEL BLISS
Special to The Globe and Mail
Published Friday, Jan. 15, 2016

The Great Depression of the 1930s used to be understood as a worldwide structural crisis that was partly an adjustment to the great expansion of crop acreage and other primary industries undertaken to meet the demands of the First World War. Unfortunately the history of those years now tends to be viewed through the distorting lenses of economists fixated on monetary policy and financial crisis management.

They thought that the crisis of 2008 might become a replay of the 1930s. For the most part they have not realized that it is today’s global depression in commodity prices that has eerie echoes of the great crack-up. If it’s true that we have overexpanded our productive capacity to meet the demands of Chinese growth, and if that growth is now going to slow, or even cease, then history is worrisomely on the verge of repeating itself....One sign of the beginning of wisdom is to be able to shed illusions. Make no mistake. Right now, the world is experiencing a great depression in commodity prices, led by the collapse of oil, that represents an enormous shrinkage in the valuation of our wealth. As a country whose wealth is still highly dependent on the returns we can get from selling our natural resources, Canada is very vulnerable. In a time of price depression, our wealth bleeds away.
'30s  adjustments  commodities  commodities_supercycle  economic_downturn  Great_Depression  historians  history  illusions  Michael_Bliss  natural_resources  overcapacity  pricing  overexpansion  slow_growth  wisdom  WWI 
january 2016 by jerryking
Jeffrey Simpson: Slow growth now, no growth later - The Globe and Mail
JEFFREY SIMPSON
Slow growth now, no growth later
SUBSCRIBERS ONLY
The Globe and Mail
Published Wednesday, Jan. 13,2016

The population is aging. Commodity prices are low. Oil and natural gas prices are hitting rock-bottom. The Canadian dollar has plummeted. Most governments are in deficit, or heading into deficit (read Ottawa). Innovation and the commercialization of research lag that of other countries. Productivity, the country’s long-term bugbear, remains sluggish....all the green traffic signals have turned to yellow or red. Yet this slow-growth economy, which might persist for a long time, is wrapped in a political culture that seems to favour slow or no growth, or seems to think that government infrastructure programs, useful in themselves, will solve the long-run problems.....Everywhere, projects are blocked or delayed, because environmentalists, aboriginal people, non-governmental organizations or even provincial governments oppose them....Many of these blocked or delayed projects with large-scale economic spinoffs are natural resource projects, which the federal government says might be saved with more “robust” oversight. The government is kidding itself in this belief, since the opponents don’t care what the regulatory process is. They oppose development pure, simple and always.

Far beyond natural resource constipation, the contradiction arises between slow growth and the huge desire of citizens for more government services, without higher taxes. Of special concern is Canada’s persistent low productivity, to which no easy answer exists, except that a slow-growth mentality doesn’t help.

...Don Drummond, working with Evan Capeluck, recently explained the challenge in a paper for the Centre for the Study of Living Standards, which looked at productivity trends in all provinces. Projecting these trends forward, they said most provinces and territories will not be able to balance revenue growth with new spending demands (especially for health care) without higher taxes or spending cuts.

Put another way, unless long-term growth can be improved – a trend that will require productivity improvements – Canada is heading for a poorer future with fewer programs and/or higher taxes.
growth  Jeffrey_Simpson  economic_downturn  anti-development  natural_resources  economic_stagnation  megaprojects  productivity  Don_Drummond  slow_growth  low_growth  weak_dollar  signals 
january 2016 by jerryking
Riders on the economic storm: Practical thinking for small business Riders on the economic storm: Practical thinking for small business | None | Nu U Consulting
24/06/09

Jonathan Weber writes in Slate’s The Big Money: Making Payroll feature in a piece titled, “Know When to Fold”: “Failure is not something an entrepreneur can give in to very readily. A certain level of blind optimism—even in the face of long odds—is often necessary to build a successful product or company. If you, as the business owner, don't believe, you can be pretty sure your employees, customers, and shareholders won't, either… don't give in easily if you feel the passion… Sometimes you have to take the view that failure simply isn't an option.”
tips  economic_downturn  small_business  strategies  networking  value_propositions 
march 2015 by jerryking
The Dangers and Opportunities in a Crisis
October 7, 2012 | NYTimes.com | By HUGO DIXON, Hugo Dixon is the founder and editor of Reuters Breakingviews.

Wherever one turns — politics, business, medicine, ecology, psychology, virtually every field of human activity — people talk about crises. But what are they, how do they develop and what can people do to change their course?

The first thing to say is that a crisis is not just a bad situation. When the word is used that way, it is devalued. The etymology is from the ancient Greek: krisis, or judgment. The Greek Orthodox Church uses the term when it talks about the Final Judgment — when sinners go to hell, but the virtuous end up in heaven. The Chinese have a similar concept: The characters for crisis combine parts of those for danger and opportunity.

A crisis is a point when people have to make rapid choices under extreme pressure, normally after something unhealthy has been exposed in a system. To use two other Greek words, one path can lead to chaos; another to catharsis or purification.

A crisis is certainly a test of character. It can be scary. Think of wars; environmental collapses that destroy civilizations of the sort charted in Jared Diamond’s book “Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed”; mass unemployment; or individual depression that leads to suicide.

But the outcome can also be beneficial. This applies whether one is managing the aftermath of the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy, the current euro crisis, the destruction of an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico or an individual’s midlife crisis. Much depends on how the protagonists act.

Students of crises are fond of dividing them into phases. For example, Charles Kindleberger’s “Manias, Panics, and Crashes: A History of Financial Crises” identifies five phases of a financial crisis: an exogenous, normally positive, shock to the system; a bubble in which people exaggerate the benefits of that shock; distress when some investors realize that the game cannot last; the crash; and finally a depression.

Although there is much to commend in Mr. Kindleberger’s system, it is too rigid to account for all crises in all fields. It also downplays the possibility that decision makers can change the course of a crisis. A more flexible scheme that leaves space for human agency to affect how events turn out has just two phases: the bubble and the crash......The bubble is typically characterized by mania and denial. Things are going well — or, at least, appear to be. Feedback loops end up magnifying confidence...............Manic individuals do not know their limitations and end up taking excessive risks — whether on a personal level or in managing an organization or an entire economy. As the ancient Greeks said, hubris comes before nemesis........But before that, there is denial. People do not wish to recognize that there is a fundamental sickness in a system, especially when they are doing so well........The ethical imperative in this phase is to burst the bubble before it gets too big. That, in turn, means both being able to spot a bubble and having the courage to stop the party before it gets out of hand. Neither is easy. It is hard to recognize a sickness, given that there is usually some ideology that explains away the mania as a new normal. The few naysayers can be ridiculed by those who benefit from the continuation of the status quo.

What is more, politicians, business leaders and investors rarely have long-term horizons. So even if they have an inkling that things are not sustainable, they may still have an incentive to prolong the bubble.......The crash, by contrast, is characterized by panic and scapegoating. People fear that the system could collapse. Negative feedback loops are in operation: The loss of confidence breeds further losses in confidence. This is apparent on an individual level as much as on a macro one.

..Events move extremely fast, and decisions have to be made rapidly........The key challenge is to make effective decisions that avoid vicious spirals while not embracing short-term fixes that fail to address the fundamental issues. With the euro crisis, for example, it is important to improve competitiveness with structural reforms and not just rely on liquidity injections from the European Central Bank.

In this phase, no one denies that there is a problem. But there is often no agreement over what has gone wrong. Protagonists are reluctant to accept their share of the responsibility but instead seek to blame others. Such scapegoating, though, prevents people from reforming a system fundamentally so that similar crises do not recur......Crises will always be a feature of life. The best that humanity can do is to make sure it does not repeat the same ones. And the main way to evolve — both during a bubble and after a crash — is to strive to be honest about what is sick in a system. That way, crises will not go to waste.
blaming_fingerpointing  books  bubbles  clarity  crisis  dangers  decision_making  economic_downturn  Jared_Diamond  market_crash  opportunities  risks  scapegoating  societal_choices 
february 2015 by jerryking
Ferguson, Watts and a Dream Deferred - NYTimes.com
AUG. 19, 2014 | NYT |Thomas B. Edsall.

...One optimistic note is that the white reaction to events in Ferguson, including the commentary of some outspoken white conservatives, has been sympathetic to the anger and outrage over the police shooting of an unarmed black teenager. This stands in sharp distinction to the aftermath of the violence in Los Angeles in 1965....
Ferguson  Michael_Brown  African-Americans  racial_disparities  outrage  income_distribution  income_inequality  economic_downturn 
august 2014 by jerryking
Debt-stressed Zimbabweans auction off prized possessions
CRIS CHINAKA

CHINHOYI, Zimbabwe — Reuters

Published Thursday, Aug. 16 2012
Zimbabwe  Robert_Mugabe  economic_downturn  debt  downsizing 
march 2013 by jerryking
Entrepreneurship, technology, prosperity - The Globe and Mail
Dec. 27 2012 | The Globe and Mail | Dany Assaf and Walid Hejazi.

Canada needs more innovation and entrepreneurship. We need better structures to allow people with great ideas to put them to work – to start their own businesses – and to allow us to earn our way out of our individual and collective challenges. We must refocus on the same basic proposition that built this country and rely on the imagination, skill and productivity of individual Canadians to do business. With the benefit of modern technology and arguably the lowest barriers to business entry in human history, it may not be as hard as we think....Today, however, the cost of overcoming entry barriers to meaningfully “get in the game” have never been lower. You can set up and operate a business from a laptop or cellphone. You can set up a virtual office with cloud computing technology. You have access to research and key information about your market and competitors. You can host global conference calls and web meetings with basic technology. Most importantly, you can reach customers worldwide on the Internet to sell your products and services. You can even seek start-up capital with online crowd funding. In other words, you can enter an industry, operate like a bigger player and grow a business globally faster, cheaper and more effectively than ever before.

This intersection of technology, falling barriers and entrepreneurship is powerful and encouraging as we look to maintain prosperity and create wealth for the future of our children and our country. A a great deal of this is already taking place in Canada, but we need to work on a national strategy and vision to harness, encourage and facilitate the continued growth of small business, and propel our economy through these uncertain times within a 21st-century model.
entrepreneurship  economic_downturn  small_business  Rotman  Canada  Canadian  innovation  industrial_policies  national_strategies 
december 2012 by jerryking
Turmoil ‘positive’ for family offices - FT.com
October 20, 2008| FT |By Bob Sherwood.

Mr Scott believes that the after-effects of the crisis will, in time, drive more clients to smaller independent asset managers because their trust in large investment banks has been undermined.

“As and when everybody reopens for business, it’s going to be an exciting opportunity for us. People are reassessing their institutional relationships, full stop. And we already have a significant number of new inquiries in our pipeline.”
decreasing_returns_to_scale  economic_downturn  family_office  undermining_of_trust  wealth_management 
december 2012 by jerryking
The world according to Tyler Cowen - The Globe and Mail
MICHAEL POSNER

The Globe and Mail

Published Monday, Sep. 10 2012

50-year-old Tyler Cowen is a formidable presence on the American economic landscape. Chairman of Economics at George Mason University in Virginia, he is a prolific writer and editor and blogger; his Marginal Revolution – co-written with his Canadian colleague Alex Tabarrok – is among the best read blogs in the field. His last book,The Great Stagnation, was a bestseller. His next, he told Globe and Mail reporter Michael Posner in an interview, will explore what the path out of the great stagnation will look like.
economists  economic_downturn  books  economic_stagnation  the_Great_Decoupling  Tyler_Cowen  prolificacy 
september 2012 by jerryking
In a Downturn, Provoke Your Customers
March 2009 | HBR | by Philip Lay, Todd Hewlin, and Geoffrey Moore

The downturn is making it tougher than ever to make a sale. The companies you serve are slashing budgets. Senior executives—
not the managers you’ve traditionally dealt with—are now the decision makers. But you can motivate those executives to allocate funds for your offering—by using provocation-based selling:
• Identify a critical problem facing your customer—one so ominous that, even in a downturn, it will find the money to address it.
• Formulate a provocative view of the problem—a fresh perspective that frames the problem in a jarring new light.
• Lodge your provocation with an executive who has the power to approve the solution you’re proposing. To win support,convey the magnitude and intractability of the problem—without putting him on the defensive.
boldness  economic_downturn  fresh_eyes  Geoffrey_Moore  HBR  howto  pain_points  perspectives  problems  problem_solving  provocations  selling_the_problem  recessions  sales_cycle  selling  solutions 
august 2012 by jerryking
Martin Sorrell of WPP Group thinks companies need to get spending - WSJ.com
June 29, 2012|Wall Street Journal | Interview of Martin Sorrell by Alan Murray.

MR. MURRAY: Are you a concurrent indicator? A lagging indicator?

MR. SORRELL: We lead the downturn, and we lag the upturn. So, we get the worst of both worlds. If people are worried, they cut marketing spending. If things are going to turn up, they wait until they're confirmed.

Open Your Wallets
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Why do you think companies are sitting on too much cash?

MR. SORRELL: I started WPP with one other person 27 years ago. I decided to do something entrepreneurial. I borrowed £250,000 and bought into a shell company called Wire & Plastic Products, which is what WPP stands for, and wanted to build a very significant advertising and marketing-services company.

The system doesn't encourage people to take those sort of risks. Big corporations are natural bureaucracies, in the nicest sense of the word. Inherently, the system encourages conservatism.

To get out of where we are, you have to be expansive. Our strategy is simple: new markets, new media, consumer insight and then the ugly word, horizontality, getting people to work together. The first two involve taking risk. Myanmar opens up, 66 million people in that country. Major opportunity. You have to grasp it. We've gone in there in the first two weeks, repurchased an agency we had to sell because of sanctions, and we've gone in with our research operations.

When markets open up like that, you have to embrace the opportunities. I think the system doesn't encourage you to take those risks.
cash  economic_downturn  interviews  lagging_indicators  leading_indicators  Martin_Sorrell  origin_story  risk-taking  WPP 
june 2012 by jerryking
The Superball Economy - WSJ.com
March 3, 2003 | WSJ | By ANDY KESSLER.

Design is cheaper. If you look closely, Silicon Valley has very few manufacturers left. Chips are made in Taiwan, boards assembled in China or Thailand. We are now a Valley of designers. And there are lots of programmers and chip-heads and communications protocol folks walking the streets willing to work for much cheaper than three years ago. Office space is plentiful. Word has it there is space available for 50 cents per square foot per month, down from $12.

Bandwidth is cheaper. Global Crossing spent $12 billion on undersea fiber optics that someone is going to buy for $250 million. WorldCom and others have strung the U.S. with more fiber than in Frosted Mini-Wheats. And it won't be just for phone calls. Find companies that use that cheap bandwidth, and you'll find the boom.

Video is cheaper. Napster music sharing was child's play compared to what is next. Hours of video can be captured, stored and shared with today's cheap PCs and broadband lines. Jack Valenti, call your office.

Wireless data is cheaper. The Federal Communications Commission set aside frequencies for hospitals and microwave ovens that might interfere with phones or radar. This Industrial, Scientific and Medical block of spectrum is known as the junk band. While stupid telecom companies overbid for spectrum for third generation 3G cell phone devices, clever engineers figured out how to hop around the junk band -- letting out-of-work programmers surf job listings at Starbucks. Intel is putting these radios in many of their chips.

Distributed computing is cheaper. Google uses 12,000 cheap PCs to log the Internet so you can look up your neighbor and figure out how much she makes. Even distributed programming is cheaper. Microsoft's biggest problem is far-flung programmers creating operating systems like Linux at home in their pajamas. Bill Gates is reportedly all over the Valley asking for help to combat this "Open Source" nuisance.

About the only thing not cheap is capital. Venture capitalists are stingy, the IPO window is closed, and stocks are at four-year lows. Hmmm. Forget that last boom, it's ancient history. Look for new products not possible or too expensive three years ago. Slam down your new Superballs and be ready.
Andy_Kessler  Silicon_Valley  economic_downturn  protocols  recessions  optimism  design  bandwidth  open_source  new_products  distributed_computing  venture_capital  IPOs  inexpensive  cheap_revolution  abundance  economic_dynamism  leaps_of_faith  FCC  overpaid  wireless_spectrum 
may 2012 by jerryking
A guide to shaking off the doom and gloom
Nov. 9, 2011 | The Financial Times p10.|Luke Johnson
*Study history:
*Avoid the news
*Spend time with the young:
*Remain rational:
*Avoid pessimists:
*Read the stoics:
*Admit mistakes and move on:
*Keep busy:
*Get fit:
*Focus on small wins:
*Ignore events over which you have no control:
*Concentrate on your micro economy
*Laugh: psychologists know that humour is healthy.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
History gives us a sense of proportion, he says: “It’s an antidote to a lot of unfortunately human trends like self-importance and self-pity.”.....see history “as an aid to navigation in such troubled, uncertain times,”.....[David McCullough]
Luke_Johnson  economic_downturn  bouncing_back  resilience  small_wins  reading  history  affirmations  humour  fitness  exercise  personal_economy  Stoics  sense_of_proportion  quick_wins 
november 2011 by jerryking
Imagine if Merrill had been smart like Goldman | Features
13 October 2011 | | Breakingviews |By Rob Cox

Imagine if Merrill Lynch had been smarter, like Goldman Sachs, a few years ago. The investment bank would have realized it was holding too many dodgy mortgage securities and sold them off to buyers who didn’t yet think the market would blow. Those clients might have then landed in trouble. But Merrill would have avoided a fire sale to Bank of America.

That’s the basic premise behind the latest film to emerge in the financial crisis genre, “Margin Call.” The movie, which premiered at Sundance and is slated to open in U.S. theaters next week, presents, however clumsily, a fictional morality tale with real parallels in the Wall Street banking panic that began in 2007.
Merrill_Lynch  Goldman_Sachs  films  movies  economic_downturn  Wall_Street 
october 2011 by jerryking
Oil Industry Braces for Drop in U.S. Thirst for Gasoline - WSJ.com
APRIL 13, 2009 | WSJ |By RUSSELL GOLD and ANA CAMPOY. Declining gasoline-tax revenue is forcing local and federal governments to search for new sources of funding. Oil refiners, which for decades focused on bringing U.S. drivers more gallons of gasoline, are retooling their businesses. Some have said they could shut down some of their refineries entirely, along with thousands of small gas stations. Oil companies are beginning to invest in biofuels and battery technology.
oil_industry  Exxon_Mobil  economic_downturn  recessions  retailers  gas_stations  decline  oil_refiners 
october 2011 by jerryking
Venture Capital Investors, Lesson Learned, Do More Homework - NYTimes.com
By CLAIRE CAIN MILLER
August 9, 2011

the market for investing in tech start-ups remains white-hot. Still,
some investors are proceeding with extreme caution.

Saying they learned their lesson in the dot-com boom and bust, and the
2008 recession, the institutional investors — pension funds, university
endowments and foundations — that put money in venture capital funds are
more selectively choosing the firms in which they invest, doing
exhaustive research before handing over money, and in some cases driving
hard bargains for more favorable management fees and shares of profits.
cautionary_tales  venture_capital  vc  limited_partnerships  due_diligence  investment_research  Claire_Cain_Miller  institutional_investors  selectivity  pension_funds  endowments  foundations  lessons_learned  bubbles  economic_downturn 
august 2011 by jerryking
THE PROPERTY REPORT: Malls Make Room for Start-Ups - WSJ.com
AUGUST 3, 2011, 12:40 A.M. ET
By A.D. PRUITT

Mall owners trying to keep their space filled amid the economic downturn
have found an unexpected source of relief: demand from newly minted
retailers.

With the unemployment rate persistently high, people suffering from lost
jobs, foreclosures and other hardships are turning to selling such
merchandise as jewelry, calendars, sunglasses or seasonal fare for
Christmas and Halloween. During the boom years, many mall landlords had
little incentive to take chances by providing these start-ups with
space.

But mall owners have become more willing to lease kiosks, carts and even
empty stores to these entrepreneurs of necessity. So-called specialty
products now make up one of the fastest-growing segments of the retail
industry, (reference John Corless)
shopping_malls  kiosks  pop-ups  retailers  economic_downturn  start_ups  hardships 
august 2011 by jerryking
Michael Lewis’s ‘The Big Short’? Read the Harvard Thesis Instead! - Deal Journal - WSJ
March 15, 2010 | WSJ | By Peter Lattman.

Back at Harvard, against the backdrop of the financial system’s near-total collapse, Barnett-Hart approached professors with an idea of writing a thesis about CDOs and their role in the crisis. “Everyone discouraged me because they said I’d never be able to find the data,” she said. “I was urged to do something more narrow, more focused, more knowable. That made me more determined.”

She emailed scores of Harvard alumni. One pointed her toward LehmanLive, a comprehensive database on CDOs. She received scores of other data leads. She began putting together charts and visuals, holding off on analysis until she began to see patterns–how Merrill Lynch and Citigroup were the top originators, how collateral became heavily concentrated in subprime mortgages and other CDOs, how the credit ratings procedures were flawed, etc.

“If you just randomly start regressing everything, you can end up doing an unlimited amount of regressions,” she said, rolling her eyes. She says nearly all the work was in the research; once completed, she jammed out the paper in a couple of weeks.
financial_system  Michael_Lewis  economics  Harvard  Colleges_&_Universities  students  thesis  CDOs  data  patterns  Wall_Street  investment_banking  women  Philip_Mudd  economic_downturn  linear_regression  finance  crisis 
march 2011 by jerryking
The Experience Economy - NYTimes.com
February 14, 2011| NYT| By DAVID BROOKS. Tyler Cowen’s e-book,
“The Great Stagnation,” has become the most debated nonfiction book so
far this year. Cowen’s core point is that up until sometime around 1974,
the American economy was able to experience awesome growth by
harvesting low-hanging fruit. There was cheap land to be exploited.
There was the tremendous increase in education levels during the postwar
world. There were technological revolutions occasioned by the spread of
electricity, plastics and the car. But that low-hanging fruit is
exhausted, Cowen continues, and since 1974, the United States has
experienced slower growth, slower increases in median income, slower job
creation, slower productivity gains, slower life-expectancy
improvements and slower rates of technological change.
David_Brooks  book_reviews  books  economic_stagnation  technological_change  downward_mobility  economists  economic_downturn  the_Great_Decoupling  slow_growth  '70s  experience  experience_economy 
february 2011 by jerryking
Nigel Wright is cut from different cloth
Sept. 24, 2010 | Globe & Mail | Andrew Steele.

So what of Mr. Wright and his ability to manage this agenda? For starters, his background is unusual. World-class financial dealmakers are not the normal cloth from which one cuts a political aide.

Since Jack Pickersgill invented the role for Mackenzie King, Canadian chiefs of staff have been smart political operators like Jean Pelletier or Tim Murphy or Hugh Segal or Marc Lalonde or Tom Kent. Often lawyers. Sometimes academics. Sometimes seconded civil servants.......The appointment of Nigel Wright as chief of staff is worth some serious
discussion, because it is a very shrewd move by the PM. Basically, the
PM’s chief of staff has 3 major challenges. 1. The PM must focus his
energies – in public and in private – almost exclusively to the economy.
Incumbents across the continent are in peril because of the lingering
impacts of the recession: unemployment primarily, but also the threats
of inflation, interest rates, credit crunches, real estate devaluation
and sovereign debt. 2. The PM only gets to focus on the economy if all
the other issues are managed down. 3. The only message out of Ottawa
most days will need to be about the economy and what the PM is doing
about it. Mr. Harper is clearly aware that the economy is his biggest
threat. With Nigel Wright, he is making a move that continues to address
that threat.
Stephen_Harper  Nigel_Wright  Onex  private_equity  chief_of_staff  economic_downturn  economic_data  debt 
september 2010 by jerryking
How to Innovate After a Recession -
Sept. 7, 2010 | BusinessWeek | By Vijay Govindarajan who
outlines a 3-pronged plan for making innovation flourish in a
post-recession environment. Why can't organizations execute innovation,
especially Fortune 500 companies which have such vast resources and
capabilities? (1) The true challenge: execution. Business organizations
are not built for innovation, but for efficiency. Organizations today
are only modestly more prepared for the challenges of innovation than
they were 50 yrs. ago. While most companies have plenty of creativity
and technology, they lack the managerial skills to convert ideas into
reality.(2) Building a special project team. To be successful in
execution, each innovation initiative needs a special kind of team and a
special kind of plan.(3) Conducting the innovation experiment (i)
Formalize the experiment. (ii) Break down the hypothesis.(iii) Seek
the truth.
innovation  recessions  economic_downturn  Vijay_Govindarajan  experimentation  execution  Fortune_500 
september 2010 by jerryking
Off the Shelf - ‘Fault Lines’ Concludes Global Economy Remains Vulnerable - NYTimes.com
July 31, 2010 | NYT | By NANCY F. KOEHN reviews “Fault Lines:
How Hidden Fractures Still Threaten the World Economy” by Raghuram G.
Rajan who concludes that the financial crisis erupted “because in an
integrated economy and in an integrated world, what is best for the
individual actor or institution is not always best for the system.” Like
geological fault lines, the fissures in the world economic sys. are
more hidden and widespread than many realize. And they are potentially
more destructive than other culprits, e.g greedy bankers, sleepy
regulators and irresponsible borrowers. Rajan, a finance prof at the U.
of Chicago and former chief economist at the IMF argues that the
actions of these players (and others) unfolded on a larger worldwide
stage, that is subject to the imperatives of political economies. He
cites 3 fault lines: domestic political stresses; trade imbalances among
countries; and the tensions produced when financial sys. with very
different structures interact.
book_reviews  economic_downturn  financial_crises  crisis  threats  interconnections  interdependence  books  systemic_risks  vulnerabilities  fault_lines  hidden  latent  regulators  uChicago  global_economy  imbalances 
august 2010 by jerryking
Study history, young man
25 Mar 2008 or 13 Mar 2008 | Reuters breakingviews.com |By Hugo Dixon

The current crisis might have been less severe if bankers, traders and fund managers knew more about previous bubbles. To qualify as financial professionals, they should have to pass exams quizzing them about the South Sea Bubble and the crash of 1929.
financial_history  economic_downturn  crisis  bubbles 
july 2010 by jerryking
How to Build a Strong Brand in a Weak Economy
February 17, 2009 | ezine articles | by Rachel Y. Daniel is
the CEO of Synergy Marketing Strategy & Research, Inc.
Here are a few inexpensive, yet powerful, methods to produce significant
rewards:
1) Social networking media. 2) Corporate Social Responsibility
Initiatives. 3) Consumer Advisory Boards. Here are three critical
actions to establishing a strong brand in a weak economy: 1) Exude
Integrity. 2) Showcase Organizational Capabilities. 3) Emanate Goodwill.
branding  economic_downturn  integrity  inexpensive  organizational_capacity  goodwill  CSR  social_media  brands  weak_economy 
june 2010 by jerryking
Chronicling Wall Street’s collapse: three gripping and useful takes
Jun. 11, 2010 | The Globe and Mail | HARVEY SCHACHTER. Reviews
13 Bankers, By Simon Johnson and James Kwak,
Pantheon, 304 pages, $32.; The End Of Wall Street, By Roger Lowenstein,
The Penguin Press, 339 pages, $35; The Big Short, By Michael Lewis,,
Norton, 266 pages, $35.
books  book_reviews  economic_downturn  Harvey_Schachter  Roger_Lowenstein  Michael_Lewis  Wall_Street  investment_banking 
june 2010 by jerryking
The European Union rescues Greece and Portugal
May 24, 2010 | The New Yorker | by James Surowiecki. "...The
fact is, this kind of volatility isn’t going away, because we now live
in an environment dominated by what economists call “political risk”—the
uncertainty that businesses face as a result of government actions. Of
course, government actions always affect the economy, but usually in an
undramatic way: an interest-rate cut here, a new regulation there. The
economic downturn and the debt crisis have given us instead a world
where governments are among the most important players in
markets—injecting money into economies on a colossal scale and routinely
propping up, or even nationalizing, troubled companies."
Angela_Merkel  bailouts  central_banks  debt_crisis  economic_downturn  EU  Germany  geopolitical-risk  Greece  IMF  instability  James_Surowiecki  political_risk  Portugal  sovereign-risk  uncertainty  volatility 
may 2010 by jerryking
Recession Exacerbates Race Gap in Job Market - WSJ.com
MAY 8, 2010 | Wall Street Journal | by SUDEEP REDDY. The
recession is showing that even a college degree isn't enough to close
the stubborn employment gap between white and black Americans.

In April, the nationwide jobless rate for white college graduates, ages
25 and older, stood at 4%, according to the Labor Department. The rate
for college graduates in the same age bracket who identify themselves as
black or African-American was 7.4%. And that gap—3.4 percentage
points—has widened since the recession started in December 2007, when
the comparable figure was 0.9 percentage point.
economic_downturn  hiring  African-Americans  college-educated  race_relations  jobs  job_opportunities  recessions  racial_disparities  downward_mobility 
may 2010 by jerryking
Distressed companies provide valuable lessons in economic downturns - The Globe and Mail
May 3, 2010 10:29 | Globe & Mail | Harvey Schachter .
Distressed companies provide valuable lessons in economic downturns.

SPEED RATHER THAN PERFECTION; CASH IS KING; FOCUS ON HIGH–IMPACT ISSUES;
MAKE THE TOUGH PEOPLE CALLS (JCK i.e. get the right people in place); UNFREEZE THE ORGANIZATION: Avoid doing the following: CUT FAT, NOT MUSCLE; FOCUS ON MORE THAN SURVIVAL:
cost-cutting  distressed_debt  economic_downturn  Harvey_Schachter  high-impact  Jeffrey_Gitomer  immobilize  lessons_learned  paralyze  recessions  speed  the_right_people  turnarounds 
may 2010 by jerryking
Books of The Times - Michael Lewis’s ‘Big Short’ - Investors Foresaw Meltdown - Review - NYTimes.com
March 14, 2010 | New York Times | By MICHIKO KAKUTANI. Reviews THE BIG SHORT

Inside the Doomsday Machine

By Michael Lewis

266 pages. W. W. Norton & Company. $27.95.
Michael_Lewis  book_reviews  economic_downturn 
march 2010 by jerryking
Dow Hotels Eyes Management Opportunities in Luxury Segment
Jun 9, 2009 | PR Newswire | Anonymous. According to Smith
Travel Research data, luxury hotel RevPAR declined 28.2 % in April. The
Dow Hotel Company, LLC, (DHC) a hotel ownership, investment and
management company, today announced plans to expand into the beleaguered
luxury hotel segment, the hardest hit segment in the current economic
downturn. The company plans to add up to five new management contracts
to its portfolio over the next year, including a substantial portion of
four- and five-star level hotels.
ProQuest  luxury  travel  hotels  economic_downturn 
march 2010 by jerryking
Goldman Sachs Rakes In Profit in Credit Crisis - NYTimes.com
November 19, 2007 | New York Times | By JENNY ANDERSON and
LANDON THOMAS Jr.
At that point, the holdings of Goldman’s mortgage desk were down
somewhat, but the notoriously nervous Mr. Viniar was worried about
bigger problems. After reviewing the full portfolio with other
executives, his message was clear: the bank should reduce its stockpile
of mortgages and mortgage-related securities and buy expensive insurance
as protection against further losses, a person briefed on the meeting
said.
Rarely on Wall Street, where money travels in herds, has one firm gotten
it so right when nearly everyone else was getting it so wrong.
With its mix of swagger and contrary thinking, it was just the kind of
bet that has long defined Goldman’s hard-nosed, go-it-alone style.
Goldman’s secret sauce, say executives, analysts and historians, is
high-octane business acumen, tempered with paranoia and institutionally
encouraged — though not always observed — humility.
====================================

Strategic nous - "practical intelligence/good judgement/shrewdness" = "high-octane business acumen"
business_acumen  contrarians  crisis  economic_downturn  Goldman_Sachs  hard_times  herd_behaviour  herd_instincts  humility  Lloyd_Blankfein  paranoia  profits  proprietary  recessions  special_sauce  stockpiles  Wall_Street 
february 2010 by jerryking
Seen - Recalling I.D. Magazine, a Beacon in Design
January 7, 2010 | New York Times | by PENELOPE GREEN. Notes the
passing of, I.D. magazine, the 56-year-old design bible that folded in
December 2009. “A classic fallacy,” Mr. Patton said later, “turning to a
graphic designer to solve a product-design problem.”
design  failure  magazines  economic_downturn 
january 2010 by jerryking
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