Nouriel Roubini Is a Very Busy Man

Sep 6, 2011
J. Webster
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If there was a measure of how often Dr. Doom, otherwise known as Nouriel Roubini, was on TV doing interviews or press, you could predict when we’ve reached a bottom in the stock market. Heck, if you were just to monitor Roubini’s own Twitter account, and see the surge in his own tweets, him relishing the doom and gloom, you’d probably come damn close to picking the bottom in the stock market.

These days, what with Europe in a chaotic state and the U.S. perhaps in a long drawn out jobless recession, Mr. Roubinhi is front and center on CNBC and Bloomberg. He’s a very, very busy man. He’s wanted. He’s a star perhaps. Glowing in the spotlight despite his gloomy bent. TV crews are following him around and eating up every word he speaks. Doors open and handshakes and drinks proffered. Sure, Roubini might be right to an extent now, but he can’t be right forever. The turn will come. There’s a saturation point even for Roubinhi.

And even the amazing Roubinhi can’t always be exactly right. He predicted the perfect storm coming in 2013, now thinks this storm might be upon us:

“I thought a few months ago that the perfect storm would be 2013,” Roubini said in an interview in London today. “But now, the economic weakness in the U.S., euro zone and the U.K. is front loaded. So we’re going to double dip earlier. The climax of it could be 2013, or it could be already earlier. It depends on what policy tools are available.”

Bloomberg was very right to point out that Roubini was wrong, very wrong if you’re an investor, after he correctly predicted a bubble in real estate in 2006:

Roubini predicted a bubble in U.S. housing prices before the market peaked in 2006. His forecasts haven’t all been accurate. When the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index fell to a 12-year low on March 9, 2009, he said it probably would drop to 600 or lower by the end of that year. Instead, the U.S. equity benchmark gained 65 percent for the rest of 2009.

To me, you have to factor in the fact that Roubinhi is a brand. He’s has money to make like the rest of us. He’s riding the storm right now, basting in the warm smiles and congratulations of the beautiful ladies on CNBC and Bloomberg, but is he going to be the one to say you should now put your money to work in the market? The idea is to tread lightly and listen to all sides but don’t become too afraid or fearful.

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