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Quotes of the Week

August 3, 1998

Face it: We're turning into a nation of stock market obsessives, all seemingly convinced that each twist and turn of the S&P 500-stock index will alone determine whether we can live like kings or will have trouble making the minimum payment on our credit-card bill next month.
     Ken Brown in "Safe Havens" from Smart Money (August 1998)

Anybody who thinks he has a crystal ball, anybody who thinks he can arrive at a thesis and stick with it about winners and losers -- some sort of magic divining rod to sort out wheat and chaff -- is a charlatan. A quack. A phony.
James J. Cramer in "Wrong! Rear Echelon Revelations" $$ from TheStreet.com (7/29/98)

You can't see where you're going if you're staring into the rearview mirror. The benefit of owning foreign stocks is so clear that, to my mind, the only question is this: Where are the risks and values today? But bear in mind that I have been risk-averse for almost 20 years, so those who are not on the side of caution may disagree with my opinions. The most obvious risk I see is in the high valuations in the U.S. stock market. The current level of this market simply does not afford an adequate margin of safety.
Jean-Marie Eveillard in "Looking Abroad For Value" in Bloomberg Personal Finance (July/August 1998)

To make money by predicting the business cycle, you must be able to identify peaks and troughs of economic activity before they actually occur, a skill very few if any economists possess. Yet business-cycle forecasting is a popular Wall Street endeavor not because it is successful--most of the time it is not--but because the potential gains from successfully calling business booms and busts are so large.
     Jeremy J. Siegel in Stocks for the Long Run

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