David Stockman was Reagan’s budget director and quit because he thought there was too much deficit spending. Then he went to Blackstone and really learned the pro’s and con’s of using debt to make things happen.
Q: How do investors protect themselves? What about the stock market?
A: I wouldn’t touch the stock market with a 100-foot pole. It’s a dangerous place. It’s not safe for men, women or children.
Q: Do you own any shares?
Q: But the stock market is trading cheap by some measures. It’s valued at 12.5 times expected earnings this year. The typical multiple is 15 times.
A: The typical multiple is based on a historic period when the economy could grow at a standard rate. The idea that you can capitalize this market at a rate that was safe to capitalize it in 1990 or 1970 or 1955 is a large mistake. It’s a Wall Street sales pitch.
Q: Are you in short-term Treasurys?
A: I’m just in short-term, yeah. Call it cash. I have some gold. I’m not going to take any risk.
via Business Insider.
The whole article is worth reading. Amazing stuff.
Another little tid-bit I can’t help sharing:
Q: But the unemployment rate is falling and companies in the Standard & Poor’s 500 are making more money than ever.
A: That’s very short-term. Look at the data that really counts. The 131.7 million (jobs in November) was first achieved in February 2000. That number has gone nowhere for 12 years.
Another measure is the rate of investment in new plant and equipment. There is no sustained net investment in our economy. The rate of growth since 2000 (in what the Commerce Department calls non-residential fixed investment) has been 0.8 percent — hardly measurable. (Non-residential fixed investment is the money put into office buildings, factories, software and other equipment.)
We’re stalled, stuck.
You’ve been warned.