If you are going to forecast, forecast often
My very good friend Graham Hand at Cuffelinks recently published a chart by Jon Boorman from Broadsword Capital (a US-based hedge fund) who “has been tracking the comments made by famous bears…”
The chart demonstrates that 6th Century BC Chinese Poet, Lao Tzu, was on the money when he said; “Those who have knowledge, don’t predict. Those who predict, don’t have knowledge.”
Much later, the American humorist, Evan Esar, observed; “An economist is an expert who will know tomorrow why the things he predicted yesterday didn’t happen today.”
Winston Churchill might have heard of Esar’s work, and once wryly observed himself; “I always avoid prophesying beforehand because it is much better to prophesy after the event has already taken place.”
But the forecaster’s life is perhaps best eulogised by Edgar R. Fiedler in his 1977 book, The Three Rs of Economic Forecasting-Irrational, Irrelevant and Irreverent; “He who lives by the crystal ball soon learns to eat ground glass.”
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