Thursday, November 27, 2008

Ten Things I'm Thankful For

Hard to believe that it's Thanksgiving already. November, and indeed 2008, have flown by in a blur. Before settling into a day of heavy eating, NFL on the box, and very possibly a nap, Macro Man feels compelled to count his blessings after what has been an extraordinarily eventful year:

First, a few repeats from last year:

1) First, and most importantly, that Mrs. Macro and the Macro Boys are healthy and happy, as is he himself.

2) Although it may seem an odd year to say this, Macro Man remains thankful that he works in an industry that provides intellectual stimulation, indulges his competitive instincts, and offers plenty of fodder for his satiric side.

3) That his real-world portfolio has been empty of structured credit, ABS, MBS, leveraged loans, and all other manner of performance-killing credit turds.

Of course, given the traumatic events of 2008, there is plenty for Macro Man to be thankful for from his perch of relative comfort:

4) That he made the right choice when he switched shops in Q1 of this year

5) That the vast majority of his friends in the market have retained their jobs, and that those at Lehman and Bear managed to find new ones. Moreover, that those who have recently been let go are of a sufficiently high calibre that they should find new work relatively easily.

6) That he didn't have his life, or indeed any, savings in Icesave or any other dodgy, now-defunct, account.

7) That he is in no way reliant on astute policy-making from the US Treasury or ECB to guarantee his personal or professional success.

8) That the AKP survived....and that Macro Man subsequently took profits and got out of Turkey altogether in August.

9) That Macro Man had the sense to stick to his investment methodology, and that it has served him pretty well in what has been a difficult year.

10) That this space continues to attract a frankly baffling number of readers and a high calibre of interaction with other market punters and observers. Thanks for reading....

....and best of luck for the remainder of 2008.


Damcanu said...

6) That he didn't have his life, or indeed any, savings in Icesave or any other dodgy, now-defunct, account.


MM, as long as you didn't have more than 50k in Icesave it wouldn't have been that painful.

I had half of my life savings with Icesave. After something I read in Moneyweek, prior to the the summer, I withdrew it all, except for a token £330, which I left in the account. I received it this week via the FSA compensation scheme :-)

Anonymous said...

I didn't think the Brits did Thanksgiving. Do you get both the UK and US hols, or do you have to trade?!!

Have a happy Thanksgiving and keep up the blogging. Much enjoyed, even though I don't understand half of it!!

From an Aussie who did his MSc in the US during the 90's.


gsm_73 said...

Happy Thanksgving to you Dear MM.


spagetti said...

Happy Thanksgiving MMand good luck to you too for the next year !
and same goes to all the regular readers and commenters of this blog

I think the MM blog is one of the best out there, along with the quality of people who comment on it

its one of the few sources of wisdom on the mkts that i know of, where the author of the blog itself and those making occasional comments seem to know a lot more about the markets than those whose official job it is to know a lot about the markets..

and lastly, the 'markets blogosphere' is a great example of the wisdom of the crowd at work, where people forming INDEPENDENT opinion on something uncertain arrive to the best result

cheers to all

SD said...

Happy Thanksgiving MM and everyone. Keep on postin'! Great posts, greats discussions in the comments.

Anonymous said...

"4) That he made the right choice when he switched shops in Q1 of this year"
Does this mean you used to work at a Wall Street institution that has recently gone kaput?

Avinash Goldfish said...

Re #8: that's thankful for a trade that's worth the year or for Turkish institutions?

Regarding your comment on the Brazilian DI curve a couple of days ago, Brazilian inflation news really shouldn't get any better than they already are, and it won't take long for the majority of local analysts (which are incorrigible hopefuls) to accept that the next movement will probably be up, nor down. (I know, I know, but Brazil is a very, hmm, peculiar place.) With risk premia on the curve having already receded, today would be a good day to either take profits or change your position entirely...

Sean Maher said...

Wise words MM, it's all about perspective, and as it's Thanksgiving, thanks for the nuanced and shrewd observations. Enjoy the turkey...

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your blog, MacroMan. And may your Thanksgiving be one to say grace over.

--Charles of MercuryRising

Anonymous said...

Re 8:

I wish I was reading this blog back in August, MM.

But hey, there will always be good opportunities at EMs, be it Turkey, or Brazil, or heck even Russia.

Happy Thxgiving to all.


Anonymous said...

Happy gobble gobble day, as someone wrote to me this morning! Enjoy the "football". I'm actually off to enjoy my 1st thanksgiving tonight, hope the turkey's good.
Cheers, JL

Anonymous said...

one should be thankful every day..

i'm certainly thankful that i found the m-m blog!

on the theme 'everything is american housing' arms went UP in the week thru 11/26:

SPX now up +19.7% since last friday low, 1930's style action or is just a bit of performance anxiety in thin conditions


Anonymous said...

Happy thanksgiving MM! I had so much food today I feel like the fed's balance sheet.
By the way, what do you make of this;

Macro Man said...

Anon @ 1.07, my prior employer, while still extant, has been the recipient of a high-profile bailout. Of the places I looked at to join, I chose the best performer this year. A winner all round.

Avinash, I think this is a case where the foreigners just have a different view to the locals, and we'll see who wins out in the end. In any event, I am confident that I have a pretty good chance of being in the money by the time that my structure matures.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Mr. Macro, your insights create clarity out things that are still relatively arcane to me. Also, your thoughts give me some frame work on how to think about markets which helps me develop my own ideas.

At 27 I'm still trying to break into a "front office" financial services role (so #2 on your list really hits home with me), until then, your blog helps keep me on my toes.

Thanks again and good luck for the rest of 2008 and all of 2009.