If You Haven't Already, Meet Victor Niederhoffer

Viktor Neiderhoffer
Viktor Neiderhoffer

If you don't know who Victor Niederhoffer is you should. With that goal in mind, NetNet is going to begin following his blog, Daily Speculations , and providing regular commentary and links.

Niederhoffer is a Harvard trained statistician and economist, with a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago, who has been trading options and futures since the late 1970's. George Soros once wrote that Niederhoffer was the only one of his managers who ever retired from trading voluntarily—while still ahead.

Niederhoffer's blog is interesting for several reasons.

First, because he's rigorous in applying the scientific method to investing and markets; because he brings decades of trading experience to his analyses; and because he is totally unabashed about using the term 'speculator' in the most positive sense of the word.

Also, because he writes cleverly about a range of topics which spans pop-culture, sports, and media.

(An example of all three: He writes that the New York Post is the only newspaper he buys in hardcopy "because they can be counted on to be ahead of the pack in memorializing the shortcomings of the Knicks.")

But what may be most interesting of all is that he's able to bring to bear his unusually broad worldview on the topic that most of us are most smitten by: Finance and economics.

For example, his most recent blog post is about beer advertising. (Specifically, about a beer advertisement the central trope of which involves poking fun of a guy in a Speedo.)

Niederhoffer observes: "It's anti trade because it's a disguised mercantilist rant that we're hurting the trade deficit by buying European, and it feeds upon envy of those who have money. It comes right out of Gene Schwartz's book Breakthrough Advertising by hitting on emotions that (in this case) are brought out by the crony capitalism et al."

I'm very much looking forward to my new beat following Mr. Niederhoffer.


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