Free Trading is Like Giving Chainsaws to Toddlers

BERNSTEIN: FREE TRADING IS LIKE GIVING CHAINSAWS TO TODDLERS

William Bernstein is one of the most intelligent and widely read people I’ve met. He’s also a brilliant writer; The Four Pillars of Investing is surely one of the best investment books ever written.

America’s handling of the pandemic
Our country just responded very poorly. It did not help that we had a president who basically made fun of people who wore masks, told people that it was nothing to worry about, and it was going to go away like a miracle. There was no national-level response to the pandemic. There was no national public health response. Pretty much everything that could go wrong did go wrong.

Are we in a bubble?
A year ago, I would have answered that in the negative. I didn’t see any of the usual diagnostic signs that one sees during a bubble, which is people thinking that they’re going to be coming effortlessly rich… We weren’t seeing people quitting their jobs to day trade. You weren’t getting a lot of anger or pushback when you express scepticism, and you weren’t seeing extreme predictions. But we’re starting to see all of those things now. And particularly, with Robinhood and GameStop and the other short squeezes that are going on, there’s now a significant population of relatively young people who really believe that this is the path to effortless wealth, and they’ve already made it to easy street, and they’re quite excited about it.

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