As March turns to April, I still remember the day in Madras (Now Chennai) in 2007, when I started this blog. My objective was to vent my views on various topics close to my heart like Manchester United. 254 posts and 10 years later, I have come to the conclusion that I don’t have anything unique or different to share with my readers. I feel I know less than what I knew in 2007 and now I don’t even have the luxury of having age on my side.
At 40 years, with 15 years of experience (5 as a dentist and 10 in the technology and health IT space) I feel the need to make this forum more meaningful. To say the things that I have always wanted to say and to shove political correctness up where it truly belongs. I think a lot needs to be done to get our Indian (Desi) brands back on track. That was the intention with which I started this blog, but like many others though I kept writing, I had lost my way. Then suddenly the other day I came across a piece in The Hindu and after a long time, I saw validation for what was wrong with the stock market in India.
Aptly titled Can I write about the stock market, the piece goes on to explain how experts give their views on the movers and shakers on Dalal Street,despite having no clue on whats really driving prices up or down.
Curious? Below is an excerpt
“Ok JM. Can you kindly explain what happened to the stock market today and the reasons for the same?”
“Many thanks for this question. Today the SENSEX opened strongly and recouped 230 points from the losses incurred yesterday. This is because of headwinds in the Asian markets and higher volatility arising out of policy expectations in the United States.”
Headwinds in the Asian Market and Policy Expectations in the United States ? Really WTF ? What does that really mean ? I think most experts have no fricking idea.
I remember the time I was inspired by Warren Buffet and Peter Lynch, and Benjamin Graham and decided to invest in the stock market. I had a friendly broker named, never mind his name lets just call him Ram Singh. Every day I would reach my clinic(This was when I was a dentist), switch on CNBC, and call Ram Singh to survey my portfolio and the market. It was like I was Chandragupta Maurya surveying the battlefield before the battle with Selecus Nikator. I thought I was doing something big, making a killing, I was going to be finally what Michael Lewis would call a ” Big Swinging Dick” in the phenomenal book Liar’s Poker. But alas there is a difference between expectations and reality. I got burnt badly and ended up losing heavily, wiping out a lot of my savings and finally needed my Dad to bail me out. Big lesson learnt and when I hear people, friends, idiots, co-workers and all those fake wannabees discussing stock tips, I snigger form my arse, knowing fully well where this is headed.
Ram Singh to his credit did warn me about the consequences of my actions. He did say that the market was operator driven and there were cartels. I choose not to listen to him. When a doctor in a clinic where I briefly worked lost Rs 1 lakh plus, I arrogantly told that story to every drinking session I had been to in 2002. I did not have the knowledge that a few years later I would be burned too and would almost have a heart attack looking at my losses. I could not sleep for months, suffered from chronic insomnia, started having hallucinations and then finally quit the market and my dental practice.
CNBC was a big reason for my loss as well. Listening to these experts spewing pearls of wisdom on the channel, made me feel confident and secure. Little did I know that it was the beginning of the end of confidence. Ram Singh had warned me about these experts as well telling me ” Yeh log paise leke bolte hain”. Till date I have not understood, the real meaning of his words but I assume he was conveying what he had heard and he never had any real proof of any misdeeds.
I want to conclude with another excerpt from the piece in The Hindu
“Today the SENSEX closed in the red, dropping a little over 100 points. This was due to poor sentiments amongst retail investors and volatile headwinds arising out of higher U.S. volatility in the Asian emerging markets due to Brexit.”
What does it mean ? Go figure, and if you find out let me know as well. Till next time.