1938 Wisdom Part 1

The 1938 book “Commonsense Speculation” offers:

One of the most commonest of speculative sins is to be unduly influenced by the previous high of a stock. If the price has declined a good many points, a universal feeling is to assume that it cannot go much lower. The stock market can do anything and an individual stock can go almost anywhere – up or down – in the course of a dynamic move.

Further the book quotes the head of Chase National Bank from 1937 regarding speculation:

I know the whole system of speculation in securities is questioned by some; that speculation, as a whole, in any market is condemned by some; I know that there are those who identify all speculation with gambling, and would not rule out all speculators as social parasites who have no useful function. But the verdict of impartial economists on this point is clear and very nearly unanimous. The difference between speculation and gambling is that in gambling artificial and unnecessary risks are created; whereas in speculation the risks already exist and the question is simply who shall bear them.

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