View From a Height
Commentary from the Mile High City
Wednesday, March 24, 2004

Market Analysis in One Sentence 

Every day, hundreds, thousands of things move the market. Economic factors affect individual stocks, sectors, and eventually the market as a whole. Which is why the one-sentence analysis you get on the nightly news, or the radio news at the top of the hour is so facile.

Today, CNN Radio News announced confidently that the market had dropped, about 0.1%, because of the bomb discovered on the French railway tracks. They went on to state that the market recovered somewhat when the bomb was defused.

Do these writers actually spend more than about 10 seconds thinking about, maybe even listening to, what they write? The news is the bomb, not whether it went off. The news is that France, for all of its reversion to Vichy-ist tendencies, still found itself the victim of someone, we don't yet know who, decided to put a bomb on the French railways. That either has long-term implications or it doesn't. It certainly doesn't hinge on whether or not some French railway worker managed to stumble across it without having it kill him and derail a train.

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