Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Analysts rising

Luminaries come and luminaries go. Right now, analysts, particularly bearish banking analysts are the darlings of media seeing no end to the financial crisis. Fortune profiles Meredith Whitney in its current issue and the New York Times just did a profile of Richard Bove. Both are lauded for their steadfast conviction that the banking crisis is going to get worse, much worse, before it gets better. Whitney and Bove, as skeptics, represent the flip side of the last luminary analyst cycle that brought us the likes of Internet stock pickers Abby Joseph Cohen and Henry Blodgett.

I am sure that most reporters don't pause to consider that outspoken hedge fund managers who have similar dark opinions about the health of banks are notorious rather than famous.

Nevertheless, the prominence of Whitney and Bove shows that if you follow your convictions and you are right you will earn respect, even from skeptical media. Einhorn, Ackman and other activists just might be the next luminaries. We'll see.

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