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Ambiguity, disparity and hypocrisy. I find them all equally weighted and any investor can supply the proper comments for each.
That they push for dereguluation, or non-regulation (think derivatives markets) at every turn, and then lay the flaming bag of excrement on the taxpayer’s door when they screw up royally because of excessive risk taking. They then move on with their massive severance packages, with nary a one suffering a consequence for their stupidity (except, maybe, the gang at Lehman).
Easily the near-institutional lack of legal accountability on the part of VC and private equity to leverage employee pensions and benefits as collateral to knowingly load up debt knowing that it’s likely to cripple a company. Then to walk away having pocketed short term profits while leaving rank and file employees jobless and broken. I can’t help but think there are legislative and regulatory means to significantly limit this from occurring, but suspect that these very very deep pockets have paid handsomely for elected officials to facilitate their practices.
There’s so much to choose from. But I think, more than anything, that I’m bothered by Wall Street’s attitude toward everyday investors. In the eyes of too many Wall Streeters, everyday investors are sheep to be shorn and naïve fools who buy and sell the wrong thing at the wrong time. Yet all those clever professional money managers collectively fail to beat the market—while all those supposedly foolish everyday investors have driven the explosion in indexing.