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Friday, July 9, 2010

Easy money

Just bet with the expert.

Comments (2)

The octopus must listen to the 'experts'. I heard that Spain is the 2 to 1 favorite on NPR this am.

One of the most popular ways to dupe the rubes is to have a buttload of predictors make a buttload of predictions for some improbable series of events and then focus on the ones who get lucky and declare them to be experts.

That's how investment advisors, lottery salesmen, mutual fund managers and mutual fund rating services like Morningstar do it. They simply ignore all the failures, focus on the successes.

Finally we see it set in a context where anyone can understand how it works.

Rather than pay "investment advisors" to invest Oregon's funds, we should put down some tarps in the elephant pens at the Oregon zoo, one marked BUY and one marked SELL. Every morning, we take the "weighted input" on each tarp from the "panel of advisors" and the tarp with the greatest "accumulated weight of the evidence" decides whether the fund will buy or sell that day.

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