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Title: Mcgowanjm Wire 2012
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Published: Feb 26, 2012
Author: Various
Post Date: 2012-02-26 09:15:13 by A K A Stone
Keywords: None
Views: 266952
Comments: 2388

Mcgowinjm Wire Service.

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TopPage UpFull ThreadPage DownBottom/Latest

Begin Trace Mode for Comment # 839.

#819. To: A K A Stone (#0)

people tend to overweight small probability events.

So, what is behavioural economics?

Well, behavioural economics recognises the limits of human rationality, with ‘rationality’ being defined by the mainstream economic sense of the word, and comprises of a number of observations appertaining to human decision making that do not sit well with the neoclassical orthodoxy (Dolan et al. 2010). These include:

the observation that losses loom substantially larger than gains, a phenomenon known as loss aversion;

(ii) that reference points matter, such that people often care more about what they gain or lose around what they already have, rather than what they end up with;

(iii) that people tend to overweight small probabilities;

(iv) that people allocate their money to discrete bundles, so that the value that they attach to a particular amount of money will be contextual;

(v) the observation of motivational crowding, such that offering money to people to do something has been shown often to ‘crowd-out’ their intrinsic, altruistic motivation to do that very thing; and

(vi) ‘hyperbolic discounting’, which is the observation that people tend to place an enormous weight on the ‘immediate’ compared to the future, living for today at the expense of tomorrow.

blogs.lse.ac.uk/healthand...avioural-economic-policy/

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   7:27:41 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#820. To: All (#819)

In addition to the above stated observations, individuals often seemingly adopt a number of rules of thumb (or ‘heuristics’) when reaching their decisions, and apparently ‘satisfice’ rather than ‘optimise’, which goes against the grain of mainstream economics.

A far from exhaustive list of these rules of thumb include:

(a) the availability heuristic, in which people tend to assess the probability of an event by the ease with which similar instances can be brought to mind (e.g. many people erroneously think that the annual death rate from shark attacks is greater than that caused by falling coconuts);

(b) the anchoring heuristic, in which individuals often unconsciously focus upon, and can be manipulated by, entirely irrelevant cues when making decisions, and

(c) the overconfidence bias (e.g. most people think their driving ability is better than average), which has obvious implications for choices in financial markets, and elsewhere.

Behavioural economists have thus uncovered a library of systematic preference patterns and heuristics that cannot be explained by standard economic theory. Interestingly, although perhaps for many, on reflection, unsurprisingly, several of the observations and rules of thumb (e.g. the importance of reference points, availability, anchoring)

appear to suggest that humans are influenced very much by prominent, or ‘salient’, attributes in choice options – once their attention is focussed (sic) upon a particular feature of a task, they tend to overlook somewhat other potentially important information (for an entertaining example of this phenomenon, see selective attention test).

www.youtube.com/watch?v=vJG698U2Mvo&feature=player_

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   7:33:37 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#821. To: All (#820)

When the world pushes you to your knees, your are in the perfect position to pray. ... Ali ibn abi Talib (radiAllah anhu)

Which is where Jamie Dimon should be right about now....;}

Now here's Dimon/JPM's muse from 2008, explaining why

The Black Swan: Quotes & Warnings that the Imbeciles Chose to Ignore

is/was worth ignoring.

I'm wondering if Jamie spent some time with

Posted by Eric Falkenstein at 8:31 PM Sunday, December 07, 2008

Now THAT's an amazing date to be pontificating on how Behavioral Economics/Power Laws/Central Limit Theorums/ and the risk of Untold exposure to Non Linear Heavy Tail Risk is TOTALLY out of fashion.

As bush43 and a traitorous Congress REWARD WALL ST BANKSTERS for bringing the SYSTEM to its KNEES.

When the world pushes you to your knees, your are in the perfect position to pray. ... Ali ibn abi Talib (radiAllah anhu)

But INSTEAD of praying, these BANKSTERS get to run the ship into ANOTHER iceberg in order to speed the sinking.....LMFAO...8D

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   7:49:17 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#822. To: All (#821)

Taleb Blames VAR, Merton, Scholes for Crimes

Taleb was/is EXACTLY correct and

"I'm wondering if Jamie spent some time with

Posted by Eric Falkenstein at 8:31 PM Sunday, December 07, 2008"

are EXACTLY wrong.

falkenblog.blogspot.com/2...r-merton-scholes-for.html

Minus Chaos Theory or even a blind hog can pick up an acorn every now & then EXCEPTION...;}

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   7:54:40 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#823. To: All (#822)

Notice how Falkenstein/Dimon NEVER consider FRAUD CONTROL in the following (VaR analysis;)?

" Value at Risk is a broad concept, that basically is a framework that has as its goal estimating a 99% or 95% worst-case-scenario, over an arbitrary period of time (day, week, year). Now, clearly many people underestimated the risk in mortgage-backed paper of all sorts, but this error was not particular to Value at Risk, rather, the assumption that housing prices would not decline, which then lead to errors in your stress test, or whatever you call your 'worst case scenario'. This error was made at many levels, by investors, issuers, rating agencies, banks who warehoused these loans, regulators, etc. Again, Value at Risk is pretty independent of this error, though the error would be reflected in any VAR that had such erroneous assumptions (garbage in, garbage out). Further, Value at risk is pretty agnostic as to method, whether you use data with really fat tails, 99.99% worst case scenarios, whatever you want. Blaming Value at Risk for the latest crisis is like blaming soup, rather than sanitation, for Typhoid Mary.

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   7:56:58 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#824. To: All (#823)

And with Jamie Dimon's EPIC FAIL, this arguement from Falkenstein has proved prescient and yet Falkenstein thought it was beautifully insane to even think about.....;}

" My argument still stands: he's basically someone who makes the perfect the enemy of the good. Like a communist reveling in the Great Depression, Taleb may take heart in recent events vindicating his worldview, but as Taleb knows, there are always 'lucky fools' who merely were fortunate. I would like to see a risk management report from Taleb, perhaps a page always saying "risk=inf", because of course, we could lose everything in WW3, a new virus,

***** all the banks fail, etc.*****

Every assumption isn't true, so make no assumptions. Be prepared for anything. Go long volatility (especially extreme tails). I don't think that's very good advice, though clearly it worked great this year (and funds he's affiliated have done very well, being long tail volatility).

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:00:03 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#825. To: All (#824) (Edited)

Taleb's reply:

Against Value-at-Risk(Edit:VaR): Nassim Taleb Replies to Philippe Jorion

http://www.fooledbyrandomness.com/jorion.html

Note to the reader: this was written a decade ago. A deeper explanation (which tells you that Jorion & his financial engineering IDIOTS are dangerous to society) is here: "The Fourth Quadrant", an EDGE (Third Culture)

A different (source) but succinct summary:

www.sciencenews.org/view/feature/id/335383

"These patterns suggest that standard economic models based on the notion of equilibrium — markets will fluctuate but then settle down like the surface of a still pond — may not capture the whole story. Freak events may be a normal part of long-term economic behavior. If that’s true, then the mathematical methods guiding Wall Street’s estimation of risk are seriously flawed, offering a dangerous false sense of security.

“You have to understand that the bad events can be really, really bad,” says J. Doyne Farmer, who is trained in physics and does research spanning several disciplines at the Santa Fe Institute in New Mexico. “And there’s a significant chance that over a five-year period we will get hit by a really big event. That’s where the rubber really hits the road.”

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:02:53 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#826. To: All (#825) (Edited)

My refutation of the VAR does not mean that I am against quantitative risk management - having spent all of my adult life as a quantitative trader, I learned the hard way the fails of such methods. I am simply against the application of unseasonned quantitative methods. I think that VAR would be a wonderful measurement if we had models designed for that purpose and knew something about their parameters. The validity of VAR is linked to the problem of probabilistic measurement of future events, particularly those deemed infrequent (more than 2 standard deviations) and those that concern multiple securities. I conjecture that the methods we currently use to measure such tail probabilities are flawed.

FLAWED

A Standard Deviation = a SIGMA Example: How far a random group of economists missed a BLS NFP report. Before 9/11 a 2 Sigma (Standard Deviation;) Event Miss was Unusual.

But after 9/11, we've regularly had 3&4 Sigma Events.

the informative book by Philippe Jorion, "It summarizes the expected maximum loss (or worst loss) over a target horizon within a given confidence interval".

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:08:00 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#827. To: All (#826)

"It is the uniqueness, precision and misplaced concreteness of the measure that bother me. I would rather hear risk managers make statements like "at such price in such security A and at such price in security B, we will be down $150,000". They should present a list of such associated crisis scenarios without unduly attaching probabilities to the array of events, until such time as we can show a better grasp of probability of large deviations for portfolios and better confidence with our measurement of "confidence levels". There is an internal contradiction between measuring risk (i.e. standard deviation) and using a tool with a higher standard error than that of the measure itself. "

Taleb 1997.

If the above had been followed, we wouldn't be facing TOTAL MELTDOWN of our banking system THIS morning.....;}

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:11:15 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#828. To: All (#827)

The risk management objective function is survival, not profits and losses ( see rule-of-thumb 8 ). A trader according to the Chicago legend, "made 8 million in eight years and lost 80 million in eight minutes". According to the same standards, he would be, "in general", and "on average" a good risk manager.

I’m still in a tryptophan coma, but here’s a timely mention of the story of the turkey from Nassim Taleb’s book The Black Swan which I am (supposed to be) reading. The following excerpt is taken from the transcript of a Charlie Rose interview.

—— CHARLIE ROSE: And what is the story of the turkey?

NASSIM NICHOLAS TALEB: In the book, I have the story of a turkey that is fed for 1,000 days by a butcher, and every day confirms to the turkey and the turkey’s economics department and the turkey’s risk management department and the turkey’s analytical department that the butcher loves turkeys, and every day brings more confidence to the statement. So it’s fed for 1,000 days…

CHARLIE ROSE: Gets fatter and fatter and fatter.

NASSIM NICHOLAS TALEB: Fatter and fatter. On the day when its comfort will be at its maximum, there is going to be a surprise. There will be a surprise for the turkey.

CHARLIE ROSE: Yes.

NASSIM NICHOLAS TALEB: There will be a surprise for the turkey’s economics department, all those Ph.D.’s. Will it be — after all, there’s maximum (inaudible)…

CHARLIE ROSE: But it’s not a surprise for the butcher, is it?

NASSIM NICHOLAS TALEB: Not a surprise for Charlie Rose as well. Not a surprise for humans. It’s a surprise for the turkey. So the whole idea here is we are not to be a turkey.

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:13:38 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#829. To: All (#828)

Jamie Dimon and JP Morgan ARE the turkey.

Happy TurkeyDay, Jamie!!!!...Lulz...8D

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:14:28 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#830. To: All (#829)

Now the question is, WTF did the top of the Ponzi Bondholders actually GET the money to loan to you?

At some point, it had to be Borrowed into existence with the Central Bank creating the currency. So if you are close enough connected to the center of this, you can Borrow money at very low interest directly from Da Fed to then go and loan at higher interest to somebody else and collect on the spread between those rates.

This is bad enough, but the evolution of Derivatives made it even worse, because lots of Banking Houses could create financial instruments like CDS and CDO without ever actually borrowing money from Da Fed to do it. These instruments represent Trillions if not Quadrillions of Dollars of debt obligations that cannot be paid off unless Da Fed goes ahead on a Printing Spree that would make the current one look like a Sunday Picnic.

Needless to say, I don’t think the Political Will is there to do that kind of printing, it would totally destroy the currency and that is not in the interest of the people who hold all the Bonds. The trick here is to keep the House of Cards standing so these instruments do not trip.

However, as the debt problem moves up the line to bigger and bigger Sovereigns (next up, Spain and CA), just the amounts necessary to make them nominally solvent is probably beyond the political will of the Banks, and most certainly against the political will of the populations that are forced into Austerity. So at some point here the Ponzi will collapse.

-hat4uk

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:29:48 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#831. To: All (#830)

Taleb:

Nor am I swayed with the usual argument that the VAR' s wide-spread use by financial institutions should give it a measure of scientific credibility. Banks have the ingrained habit of plunging headlong into mistakes together where blame-minimizing managers appear to feel comfortable making blunders so long as their competitors are making the same ones.

The state of the Japanese and French banking systems, the stories of lending to Latin America, the chronic real estate booms and bust and the S&L debacle provide us with an interesting cycle of communal irrationality. I believe that the VAR is the alibi bankers will give shareholders (and the bailing-out taxpayer)

to show documented due diligence and will express that their blow-up came from truly unforeseeable circumstances and events with low probability - not from taking large risks they did not understand.

But my sense of social responsibility will force me to menacingly point my finger. I maintain that the due-diligence VAR tool encourages untrained people to take misdirected risk with the shareholder's, and ultimately the taxpayer's, money.

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:36:26 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#832. To: All (#831)

Copyright 1997 by Nassim Taleb.

That's....Wait for IT....15 Years ago.

That's how long, at least, that us Dirty Fuckin hippies have been yelling this warning.

Maybe we shoulda been whisperin' instead....;}

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:38:36 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#833. To: All (#832)

Jesse over on Café Americain

makes the Hypothesis that Da Fed is sufficiently in control of all of this that they can manage a controlled Stagflation, but to me this begs the question of what is going on all around the World all tied to the Dollar as World Reserve Currency.

While here in the FSofA we might be able to withstand a Slow Boiled Frog effect of say a 10% yearly Inflation of Prices while Wages Deflate at 10% and not run up into a Rock/Hard Place situation for 5 years,

that is not the case for all the impoverished countries around the world where people live on $2/day and 90% of their income goes to just buying enough Rice to make it to tomorrow."

-hat4uk

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:40:01 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#834. To: All (#833) (Edited)

"Options may or may not deliver an estimation of the consensus on volatility and correlations. We can compute, in some markets, some transition probabilities and, in some currency pairs with liquid crosses, joint transition probabilities (hence local correlation). We cannot, however, use such pricing kernels as gospel. Option traders do not have perfect foresight, and, as much as I would like them to, cannot be considered prophets. Why should their forecast of the second moment be superior to that of a forward trader's future price ?"

-Taleb

We're now at least $1.75 Quadrillion in Synthetic Debt Derivatives later.

JPMorgan holds over $90 Trillion of this vaporware....;}.... more than the COMBINED WORLD GDP. Been arguing this point since 1982....;}

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:44:56 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#835. To: All (#834)

"As long as Da Fed is “managing” a steady inflation, these folks ($2/day/90% of income goes to enough RIce to make it to tomorrow;) are going to be quickly (if they are not already there) in a position where they simply cannot afford to buy enough food to eat.

If they are in a location where there is no Oil, it’s a Humanitarian Crisis but we don’t send in the Marines. If it is a location where there IS Oil, we clearly DO send in the Marines to try to secure the Oil Fields.

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:48:37 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#836. To: All (#835)

We also have to send Food Aid to the faction that will line up with us for the moment, and arm them with AR-15s and RPGs at the very least to try to take back control.

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:49:03 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#837. To: All (#836)

That problem is difficult enough by itself to manage, but on top of that you have all these Wars breaking out in marginal countries, and you also have your Natural Disasters like Tsunamis messing up Production out of Japan and Cyclones turning part of Australia into an Inland Sea and now apparently non-stop Tornadoes taking out Airports like Lambert in St Louis.

How many of you noted the story in the Newz that Shillary Clinton was in Japan promoting a “Private/Public” Partnership to help the Japanese rebuild? She was joined by Chamber of Commerce Big Wigs from Nippon and the FSofA, basically BEGGING people not to Abandon Japan. You have to KNOW they are doing this because companies are EVACUATING Tokyo in droves.

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:52:42 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#838. To: All (#837) (Edited)

"I only see one use of covariance matrices: in speculative trading, where the bets are on the first moment of the marginal distributions, and where operators rely on the criticized "trader lore" for higher moments. Such technique, which I call generalized pairs trading, has been carried in the past with large measure of success by "kids with Brooklyn accent". A use of the covariance matrix that is humble enough to limit itself to conditional expectations (not risks of tail events) is acceptable, provided it is handled by someone with the critical and rigorous mind that develops from the observation of, and experimentation with, real-time market events. "

www.fooledbyrandomness.com/jorion.html

EXACTLY what I was doing until driven off the ranch by Synthetic Debt Derivative 'options' trading circa Reagan/Greenspan....;}

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:53:37 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


#839. To: All (#838)

WTF is going to stay in Tokyo with an Office when they can move it over to Taiwan or Shanghai or Hong Kong or Singapore? The Nip Goobermint is now talking about a “6-9 Month” period to get some control over the reactors. No actual plan here for doing so, but this is the spin. Even if it was only 6-9 months, who would stay there while they figure it out?

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14   8:55:04 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


Replies to Comment # 839.

#840. To: All (#839)

Our standard of living will approach that of the current 3rd World. This is inevitable now, its just a question of how long it will take to slide down and how the society will adjust to the new reality.

mcgowanjm  posted on  2012-05-14 09:42:25 ET  Reply   Untrace   Trace   Private Reply  


End Trace Mode for Comment # 839.

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