5 Mar 2009 7:23 am   //   Filed under: In the news


A year ago, we were obsessed with politics. Remember that? Each day all of us news geeks would check the poll numbers and try to figure out who was going to win which primaries. That storyline is over, and something else had to fill the void

Luckly, just in time, something did: The stock market.

We know there are plenty of investment professionals who reading the stock market for a living. They develop sophisticated algorithms about how markets perform and bet on their computer models, hoping to yield a high return. We also know that these people have no idea what they’re doing. If they did, couldn’t at least one of them have predicted the market would fall 45% in a year?

For us amateurs, following the market* is a lot like politics, with each company being a character with a different storyline. For example, I love checking the chart for AutoZone – up 34% over the last year! Google is fascinating: Will its next earnings report be a total flop? How about banks? Wow! And there’s so much information available about all of these companies. I can imagine how fidgety I’d be if I had a TV at my desk where I could watch CNBC. It’s probably best that I don’t.

* – Note that following the market is not the same as investing. This is edutainment. I never actually buy or sell individual stocks.