Bubbles on the Brain

Marc Andreessen writes on his blog about perma-bears. An excerpt:

But as with other habits ingrained into us by evolution, the habit of predicting doom and gloom when it isn’t in fact right around the corner might no longer make sense. On Wall Street, investors who have this habit are known as “perma-bears” and generally are predicting the imminent collapse of the stock market. This habit keeps them from being fully invested. Sure, they’re well protected during the occasional crash of 1929 or 2000, but by and large they massively underperform their peers who take advantage of the fact that most years, the economy grows, and the market goes up. They have disappointing careers and die unhappy and bitter. In reality it seems very difficult to predict either a bubble or a crash. Lots of people predicted a stock market crash… in 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, and 1999. They were correct in 2000. But as soon as the stock market recovered in 2003 and 2004, they were back at it, and there have been similar predictions from noted pundits ever since — incorrectly.

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