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ET In Full

The Half-Happy Horror

By Rusty Guinn | June 21, 2019 | 1

The Half-Happy Horror is the realization that pursuit of multiple objectives can end up with a baby split in two.

At best we give lip service to secondary or tertiary goals, all as part of some cartoon we’ve constructed about our “process”.

Yes, optimization is a scourge, and it hits every aspect of modern life. It hits the professional investor hardest of all.

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In the Trenches: Cake

By Peter Cecchini | June 19, 2019 | 1

The recent rally in U.S. equities is largely a result of market participants believing they can have their rate-cut cake and eat it, too.

ET contributor Pete Cecchini doesn’t think the Fed will cut rates proactively. Will they cut? Sure. But only if the real-world economic data deteriorates further. Which it probably will.

But don’t eat that cake just yet.

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A Song of Ice and Fire

By Ben Hunt | May 27, 2019 | 13

We are the human animal.

We are non-linear.

We ARE a song of ice and fire.

It’s a song that has built cathedrals and fed billions and taken us to the moon. It’s a song that can do all of that and more … far, far more … if only we remember the tune.

The Pack remembers.

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Wage Growth, Groucho Marx Edition

By Ben Hunt | May 7, 2019 | 3

Wage stagnation in 2016 was actually much worse than you were told. Did this make a difference in the Midwestern states that swung the election, in that actual labor conditions were worse than everyone thought they were? I think yes.

Wage growth in 2018 was actually much better than you were told. Did this make a difference in the current Fed/Wall Street/White House narrative that inflation is dead and the easy money punchbowl can be maintained without consequence? I think yes.

For a few days, we’re making this ET Professional note available to everyone to review. We think the ET Pro service is something that every portfolio allocation, wealth management and active investment team can find useful, particularly for risk management.

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Starry Eyes and Starry Skies

By Rusty Guinn | April 29, 2019 | 8

The student loan crisis is a Big Deal. And it is only a part of a Bigger Deal: the Myth of College.

This issue will be front-and-center in the upcoming elections. We will all be handed our very own ‘Yay, College’ signs to raise high. More often than not, we will be asked to raise them in service of market-distorting policies which will make our problems worse.

You don’t hate education, innovation, progress, equality and merit-based reward systems…do you?

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Notes from the Diamond #7: Hittin ‘Em Where They Ain’t (Part 2)

By David Salem | April 25, 2019 | 20

ET contributor David Salem is back with five core tenets for achieving 5+% real returns over the next few decades.

It’s all a must-read, but I’m gonna highlight #4: “Favor equity investments in companies employing or serving primarily people with abundance as distinct from scarcity mindsets.”

This is the foundation for behavioral economics on a macro scale.

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ET Live!

ET Live! – 6.18.2019

June 18, 2019

Join us here at 2PM Eastern today for the latest edition of ET Live. Today’s edition is all about the grotesque charades and cartoons being used to cynically manipulate narratives. Not one to miss.

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ET Live! – 6.4.2019

June 4, 2019

Ben and Rusty update subscribers on the shift from cooperative to competitive games and our narrative research program, with a focus on the China Trade War and US electoral politics.

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ET Live! – 5.14.2019

May 14, 2019

Ben and Rusty discuss games of chicken and multi-level games, and where we think the previously complacent trade and tariffs narrative has gone in early May.

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ET Live! – 4.24.2019

April 24, 2019

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ET In Brief

A Modern Vocational Curriculum

By Rusty Guinn | June 20, 2019 | 20 Comments

So if you COULD prepare most Americans for their jobs and lives in less than a year, how WOULD you? Well, we took a shot at answering just that, and I’m sure you’ll all agree completely and wholeheartedly with our conclusions.

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The Crossover Point

By Rusty Guinn | June 12, 2019 | 3 Comments

There’s a point in any human activity – investing, politics, religion, or business – where a thing we do together becomes a thing in-itself. It’s a point that changes our thinking and the moral questions we are forced to answer. Knowing where this point lies is in all our activities is important.

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truth and Truth

By Rusty Guinn | June 7, 2019 | 4 Comments

Great Truths can be important engines for social unity and shared identity. In the hands of some, however, they can become tools for obscuring actual truth – facts – in service of cynical use of the emotional memes attached to those Truths.

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Fellow Contrarians Unite!

By Rusty Guinn | June 1, 2019 | 4 Comments

We spend a lot of time on our trade ideas, and do a lot of hand-waving at what we believe that everyone else believes. It’s a core problem for investors, and one that can’t be avoided.

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A Holy Day

By Rusty Guinn | May 27, 2019 | 1 Comment

If Memorial Day is anything, it is a day for telling and re-telling stories about Full Hearts. Let me tell and re-tell you the story of Milton Lee Olive III.

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A Clear Eyes / Full Hearts Story

By Rusty Guinn | May 19, 2019 | 1 Comment

I like to think that we do a good job responding to our readers’ questions. If we have a weak spot, however, I know where it is. It is the unerring target of the question we receive most often: “What books would you recommend?” It is a completely fair question to ask. Our work references …

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The Life Aquatic

By Demonetized | May 17, 2019 | 1 Comment

New from ET contributor Demonetized … how do you handle a counterparty that has engineered a Heads I Win, Tails You Lose investment?

You must be able to hurt your counterparty for realz. No matter what the docs say.

Or in the immortal words of Steve Zissou, “What about my dynamite?”

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What Country Friends Is This?

By Rusty Guinn | May 9, 2019 | 0 Comments

Hyper-awareness of narrative, memes and cartoons can become paralyzing. Once we see them, we see them everywhere. But much of that paralysis comes because the demands of Clear Eyes are less than the demands of Full Hearts. And it’s the latter – identity – that truly matters.

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The Funnel

By Demonetized | April 19, 2019 | 2 Comments

We know what fiat news is: the presentation of opinion as fact. We also know what fiat news looks like: pop on over to Vox and skim a few stories.

But how does fiat news WORK?

New from ET contributor Demonetized, a clear-eyed look at wolf traps and sales funnels.

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Neverland

By Rusty Guinn | April 16, 2019 | 5 Comments

Disney is making a play to return to Neverland, a land where valuations are based on establishing market share and dominance of an emerging industry, where the moment you start worrying about how much money you’re making is the moment the narrative breaks. For students of markets and narratives alike, it will be worth watching.

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