It has long been my view that much of what passes for “financial news” is little more than an infomercial for the securities industry. It also serves to feed the egos of self-confident pundits, who feed viewers a daily grist of musings that often include predictions about the direction of the markets, the possibility of inflation and whether interest rates are likely to rise or fall. When they are correct, which is likely around half of the time, these pundits are proclaimed gurus. When they are wrong, they have no remorse or accountability.
Some of their pronouncements are so silly you wonder how they get airtime. Art Cashin is a frequent contributor to CNBC. He recently observed that “caution is in the air.” This came less than a month after his insight that the Standard & Poor’s 500 index could “taste 1,950 points.” When Cashin is not personalizing the collective mood of millions of investors all over the world, a formidable task you may think would be a full-time job, he works as director of floor operations at the New York Stock Exchange for UBS.
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