Saturday, April 13, 2013

Stock Market: Paranoia As Business Model

The global economy has been healing since spring 2009 and the bull market for stocks is in its fifth year now. But the media still celebrate the cult of doom. Popes of doom & gloom like Noriel Roubini and Marc Faber are still ruling the headlines with their continuous predictions of a coming catastrophe.

Part of this cult are the short sellers who bet on falling stock prices. They borrow stocks from brokers and sell them immediately in the hope that they can buy the shares back for much less.

Jim Chanos, whom you could find often on Yahoo Finance, Reuters and other leading sites, is one of the kings of short sellers ( He made his paranoia a business model. According to Wikipedia "paranoia is a thought process believed to be heavily influenced by anxiety or fear, often to the point of irrationality and delusion" (wikipedia). "False accusations and the general distrust of others also frequently accompany paranoia" (wikipedia).

The hedge fund manger is famed because he allegedly discovered fraud at Enron around the year 2000. Now he sees fraud behind every bush.

Chanos has been banging the "China will crash" drum for years and shorting China stocks (cnbc). CNBC calls him the most notorious "China bear".

Apparently this tortured soul cannot understand that the growth of China is driven by its catching up process and hence has a long term nature. In the recent 10 years China´s growth rate didn´t fall below 7.6% and is accelerating again. Last week we got news that Chinese import growth speeded up to 14%, a clear sign that the far east economy is gaining speed again.

But Chanos calls China a "roach motel" and claims that the Chinese numbers are faked and that the country is full of "ghost cities" (cnbc). A typical paranoid behavior.

As long as Chanos, Roubini and other crash prophets are still the opinion leaders in the media and can keep a large crowd of followers, the noise they make could influence the stock market. But their accusations have just an elusive impact and are irrelevant for the long term trend on the stock market which is going north.

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