Friday, January 26, 2018
Speculation, like most human characteristics, appears to be a mixed bag. It has its positive benefits and it has its dark side. Any economic system that involves freedom will experience speculation. There is no use rooting for government to control it, as the evidence is ample that by the time speculation turns to a manic bubble, legislators and regulators are fully engaged in helping the bubble grow.
If the world of finance and investing interests you, Chancellor's well-written book is a must read. Only two regrets about the book. The first is that he wrote it in 1998. I would have loved to read his take on the great mortgage bubble years of 2004-2007. The second is highlighted by this page 271 excerpt:
At some point principled laissez-faire gives way to a
widespread acceptance of short-cuts in the pursuit of
self-interest, and from there it is but a short step to
It is pretty clear from his research and writing that when speculation turns to mania, fraud and other criminal behaviors have taken over the bubble. It is no longer "speculation."