A quotation

The secret of the business is not only to be bright but to be consistent. And the only way to be consistent is to make your calls and do your job and be constantly on the doorstep of your current and prospective clients.

-- Gustave L. Levy, Senior Partner, Goldman Sachs, 1969 to 1976

From Greg Mankiw blog

Larry Summers on GSEs:

What went wrong? The illusion that the companies were doing virtuous work made it impossible to build a political case for serious regulation. When there were social failures the companies always blamed their need to perform for the shareholders. When there were business failures it was always the result of their social obligations. Government budget discipline was not appropriate because it was always emphasized that they were "private companies.” But market discipline was nearly nonexistent given the general perception -- now validated -- that their debt was government backed. Little wonder with gains privatized and losses socialized that the enterprises have gambled their way into financial catastrophe.

Об усвоении экономической теории

Сегодня собеседовал на работу девушку. Мехмат с отличием, год в РЭШ (по ее словам в районе 20ого места в рейтинге), сейчас заканчивает магистратуру ВШЭ. На понимание основных результатов CAPM и соответствующую интуицию я, будучи реалистом, особенно не рассчитывал. Но то, что девушка реально "поплыла" на вопросе о модели Солоу было для меня неожиданностью. То, что на картинке надо нарисовать прямую и кривую более менее удалось вспомнить, но откуда и как эти линии идут, да и что они обозначают, было, похоже, забыто после сдачи Макро-1. До гуманитарного вопроса "В каком веке жил Иван Грозный?" (тест общего уровня знаний об окружающем мире) разговор, понятное дело, не дошел.

Spillovers versus Linkages

(As always) a very punchy and articulate sceptical view from Stephen Roach on the "decoupling" theory.

The global debate is endless (fortunately), but it’s also very simple. The key question is whether the current slowdown has broader cross-border consequences. For financial markets, which are still discounting relatively sanguine global growth prospects for 2007-08, there is great enthusiasm for the ever-optimistic decoupling scenario – whereby the rest of the world miraculously untethers itself from the US. That remains a real stretch, in my view...

...I have long been struck by the inherent inconsistency of a macro call that extols the virtues of integration and globalization, on the one hand, while celebrating the resilience of a decoupled world, on the other hand. Don’t kid yourself – if the lead engine of the global growth train goes off the tracks, the rest of the world will be quick to follow. So far, that hasn’t happened – underscoring my basic conclusion that there has yet to be a meaningful test of the global decoupling thesis. It’s up to the American consumer as to whether that test will ever occur.

Full text: http://www.morganstanley.com/views/gef/index.html#anchor4725

Пара картинок

Расчищал место в памяти телефона и наткнулся на пару неплохих фоток из поездок начала марта. Без претензий на высокое фотоискусство.

Утро в Цюрихе...

...и день над Манхэттеном