Are Bank Regulations Creating New Risk Pools?

Lukas Becker, writing on, points out that the recent emphasis on “stress testing” banks, coupled with incoming leverage ratio requirements, are causing some banks, especially in Europe, to lower their long-term/less-liquid loan portfolios. As Becker notes, quoting Mark Penney, head of balance sheet management for the global markets business at HSBC in London: “We’re seeing a slight […]

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European Beef Scandal: Yet Another “Neon Swan”

Reading all of the stories the last few weeks about the UK meat contamination scandal reminded me of a post i wrote back in December of 2011. In it, I stated: Today’s operational networks are full of these neon swans; and it’s interesting to note how many companies acknowledge their possible existence, at the same time […]

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Does Investing = Gambling

There is an interesting piece by Lucy Kellaway on that describes a little-noted population in London’s financial community: compulsive gamblers. Kellaway writes about brokers who often gamble during work and certainly afterwards and the toll it sometimes takes on lives and marriages.She notes that no one really understands just how wide-spread this problem is since […]

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Book Recommendation: “The Hour Between Dog and Wolf” by John Coates

Just a quick post to recommend John Coates’ excellent book, “The Hour Between Dog and Wolf” (Penguin, 2012). Coates is a former Goldman Sachs derivatives trader who has gone on to become a neuroscientist at Cambridge. His book has both an original and compelling topic, namely, the biological foundations and dynamics of risk. I can […]

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Economics, Finance

Calculating the True Cost of Risk

On Dec 5 the Wall St Journal ran an an interesting piece about an attempt by some academics to calculate the cost to the economy of the uncertainty in government policy. As the Journal notes: With the election over, the focus is back on figuring out just how much uncertainty actually hurts an economy. It […]

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