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Financial Quotes

Forecasting Quotes

  • "Economists did something even better than predict the crisis. We correctly predicted that we would not be able to predict it."
    William Easterly (1957–), US economist and author
    Referring to the financial crisis of 2008–09.
    Source: Aid Watch blog (August 7, 2009)
  • "Forecasting by bureaucrats tends to be used for anxiety relief rather than for adequate policy making."
    Nassim Nicholas Taleb (1960–), Lebanese-born US academic and writer, former derivatives trader
    Source: The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable (2007)
  • "People who forecast simply because “that’s my job,” knowing pretty well that their forecast is ineffectual, are not what I would call ethical. What they do is no different from repeating lies simply because “it’s my job.”"
    Nassim Nicholas Taleb (1960–), Lebanese-born US academic and writer, former derivatives trader
    Source: The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable (2007)
  • "An economic forecaster is like a cross-eyed javelin thrower: they don’t win many accuracy contests, but they keep the crowd’s attention."
    Anonymous
    Source: Quoted in Demystifying Wall Street (Bruce Fleet, 2007)
  • "The government-sponsored institution Fannie Mae, when I look at its risks, seems to be sitting on a barrel of dynamite, vulnerable to the slightest hiccup. But not to worry: their large staff of scientists deemed these events “unlikely.”"
    Nassim Nicholas Taleb (1960–), Lebanese-born US academic and writer, former derivatives trader
    Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were taken into government “conservatorship” in September 2008.
    Source: The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable (2007)
  • "Business, more than any other occupation, is a continual dealing with the future; it is a continual calculation, an instinctive exercise in foresight."
    Henry R. Luce (18981967), US publisher
    Source: Quoted in The Leslie Pockell 101 Greatest Business Principles of All Time (2004)
  • "A general rule: if enough people predict something, it won’t happen."
    J. G. Ballard (19302010), British novelist
    Source: New Statesman (2000)
  • "In a crowded room, you only have to see one inch above everyone else to notice things that others will miss."
    Jim Slater (1929–), British business executive and author
    Source: Quoted in Treasury of Investment Wisdom (Bernice Cohen, 1999)
  • "We have two classes of forecasters: Those who don’t know—and those who don’t know they don’t know."
    J. K. Galbraith (19082006), US economist and diplomat
    Source: Quoted in Predicting the Future (Nicholas Rescher, 1998)
  • "In the mid 80s, Fortune magazine carried the prediction that, by the year 2010, North America would become the world’s granary, the Pacific the world’s manufacturing base and that Europe will become a discotheque. They could still be right."
    Max Comfort, British business theorist
    Source: Portfolio People (1997)
  • "Economists are about as useful as astrologers in predicting the future (and, like astrologers, they never let failure on one occasion diminish certitude on the next)."
    Arthur Schlesinger, Jr (19172004), US historian, writer, and educator
    Source: Quoted in the New York Times (April 15, 1993)
  • "We’ve long felt that the only value of stock forecasts is to make fortune tellers look good. Short-term market forecasts are poison and should be kept locked up in a safe place, away from children and also from grown-ups who behave in the market like children."
    Warren Buffett (1930–), US entrepreneur and financier
    Source: Letter to shareholders (1992)
  • "The future bears a resemblance to the past, only more so."
    Faith Popcorn (1947–), US trend expert and founder of BrainReserve
    Source: The Popcorn Report (1991)
  • "An economist is an expert who will know tomorrow why the things he predicted yesterday didn’t happen today."
    Laurence J. Peter (19191990), Canadian academic and writer
    Source: Peter’s Quotations: Ideas For Our Time (1977)
  • "The easiest way to predict the future is to invent it."
    Anonymous
    Source: Xerox Research Center, Palo Alto, California (1970)
  • "Wall Street indexes predicted nine out of the last five recessions."
    Paul Samuelson (19152009), US economist and winner of the 1970 Nobel Prize in Economics
    Source: Newsweek (September 19, 1966)
  • "Forecast: to observe that which has passed, and guess it will happen again."
    Frank McKinney Hubbard (18681930), US humorist
    Source: The Roycroft Dictionary (1923)
  • "Among all forms of mistake, prophecy is the most gratuitous."
    George Eliot (18191880), British novelist
    Source: Middlemarch (1871–1872)
  • "Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window."
    Peter F. Drucker (19092005), US management consultant and academic
    Source: Attributed

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