MarketWatch’s David Weidner writes:… I moved to New York in 1997 to cover a really dirty business: Wall Street. Wall Street, like just about everything else, including me, has changed a lot in that time. Also, it hasn’t changed a bit. What follows are 15 takeaways from my time living in New York and covering the financial industry and the markets.
Simple is better: For 60 years, a 37-page document kept the financial system relatively safe. It was called Glass-Steagall. In the 13 years since it was repealed in the name of modernization, we’ve seen a tech bubble and the greatest financial crisis since the stock-market crash of 1929.
You can’t time the market: Also, technical analysis is phooey. Momentum plays are foolish. Anyone who wants to sell you a plan to beat the market is full of baloney. Investing schemes are exactly that. As I’ve written before, some people will tell you that you can hedge your bets. But insuring trades has never made sense to me. If you have to spend money to hedge a bet, it probably means you can’t afford to invest the money. When it comes to markets, what can go wrong, will, and bubbles happen. The problem is we never know which is which until it’s too late.