Fear and Loathing

While attending a party last night I was introduced to an executive. This man has traveled and lived throughout the world over a 25-year career. His academic background includes a MBA from a top US school.

He had been told that I had a book out about the “markets” and immediately started offering opinions even though he had no idea of the topic:

“So you make projections? I think forecasts are a bunch of shit.”
“Economics are worthless as a science.”
“No one has any idea which way the market will go.”

After listening to 15 minutes more of the same thing but said a different way, telling him that I agreed did not seem to register. I then said my book was not about forecasts, projections and economics. He finally heard that. I tried to give a brief overview of trend following trading making the case that some serious money had been made beating the market averages for the last 30 years.

Without even asking follow-up questions he started talking about his investments across multiple mutual funds outlining their poor performance. He was already convinced that there could be nothing in a book that could possibly help. While these conversations are not much fun sometimes, they are always great reminders of why there will always be winners and losers in the market game. Big egos simply prevent many people from ever helping themselves.