09-26-2001, 4:48 PM | Post #47878 |
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I have just finished reading "Where are the Customers' Yachts?" written in 1940 by Fred Schwed Jr., a stockbroker. Here are a few of the insightful (and often hilarious) passages:
"An out-of-town visitor was being shown the wonders of the New York financial district. When the party arrived at the Battery, one of his guides indicated some handsome ships riding at anchor. He said, 'Look, those are the banker's and brokers' yachts. Where are the customers' yachts?' asked the naive visitor."
"My tendency has been to buy stocks--When they show a profit I sell them exultantly. It seems to me at these moments that I have achieved life's loveliest guerdon--making some money without doing any work.
Then a long time later it turns out that I should have just bought them, and thereafter I should have just sat on them like a fat, stupid peasant. A peasant however, who is rich beyond his limited dreams of avarice."
"Young man, a bull makes money, a bear makes money, but a hog never makes anything!"
"The most difficult of all answers--'I don't know'."
"There is no denying that the more financial predictions you make the more business you do and the more commissions you get."
"All these (investment) theories are true part of the time; none of them all the time."
"I should say that chart reading shares a pedestal with astrology."
"They told me to buy this stock for my old age. It worked wonderfully. Within a week I was an old man."
"The trust officer of the great bank and trust company happened to shake his pen over the stock page in the newspaper. He had his staff check and see what would have happened if stocks for the trust accounts had been chosen by ink spots instead of experts. The result showed that this method would have resulted in much less loss than that which had actually taken place."
"--it is a fine example of the Pollyanna double talk which is the common tongue of brokerage houses."
"When the market gets dull enough, some of the brokers begin to starve. To some people, this seems a beautiful and desirable end in itself, whatever happens to the national economy."
"Investment and Speculation are said to be two different things, and the prudent man is advised to engage in the one and avoid the other. This is something like explaining to the troubled adolescent that Love and Passion are two different things. He perceives that they are different, but they don't seem quite different enough to clear up his problems."
"No box score is kept in the investment-counsel game and no batting averages. You can't ask for the books to be thrown open for your study, because you will be told, quite rightly, that their clients' business is none of your business."
"There was a man who took his large estate to the investment counsel, and emerged dazed.
'What did they tell you to do?' asked his friend.
'They told me to sell everything and put all the money, except $3,500, into government bonds.'
'What did they tell you to do with the $3,500?'
'They told me to give it to them.'"
Originally posted in thread: 14290