Here’s what I’m reading this week.
- The limit of fundamental analysis: You. I love investing and I particularly love fundamental analysis. There’s something really fun (perversely so, I realize) about doing your own due diligence on a stock. So the title of this article caught my attention. In the article, Jordan Terry talks about the challenges of performing fundamental analysis and how the analyst’s biases can skew the numbers, and he rightly points out that good fundamental analysis should also force us to consider whether our own point of view is influencing what we see.
- Monetary policy hindered by demographics. Way back in the day when I was a stockbroker, it was hammered into us at the time that we should be looking forward to the great asset transfer in which baby boomers would pass along their assets (some of it while they were still alive and some of it after they had died) to their children. We were trained to sell around those concepts. So I was fascinated by this article, which reports on how the aging demographic is changing the face of economics in unexpected ways, and I’m particularly interested in the conclusions drawn about how monetary policies need to change to keep up with the massive shifts in demographics.
- Five days at Memorial: A hospital becomes hell. Normally I write about business and the markets because that’s the kind of stuff I like to think about but I try to read more widely than that because it keeps the old brain juiced up. I stumbled across this article in Salon about the events that occurred at Memorial Hospital in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. This article was a tough read — partly because it’s true and partly because it exposes darker truths about ethics (in the medical system and in myself). I want to think that I would do the right thing in that situation but it’s such a complicated situation… and what is the right thing? It’s easy for us to sit comfortably in judgement at things that seem very wrong but gosh, what a crazy scenario. Read this article but be warned that you may ask yourself the same questions I asked… and not like the answers.