Stock investors are always on the lookout for signs of irrational exuberance, or people getting too excited about the stock market.
And if you’re looking for a new thing to make you nervous, this post on Reddit might be it.
(The bearish blogger and former Bear Stearns banker said in September that he would not shave his beard until a 10% correction in the stock market, and he’s still going strong.)
As for the post, a 26-year-old Redditor who goes by the handle m4329b explained how he or she sees “no reason one should not be highly invested in the market right now.”
They even went as far as to declare that “things have literally never been better in the world.” For those who might be cautious about the stock market — perhaps like Business Insider’s own Henry Blodget — this kind of sentiment from young Redditors is perhaps the most striking example of a burgeoning irrational exuberance, or unsustainable enthusiasm, for the stock market.
Here’s the full text of the post (emphasis ours):
Obviously one cannot predict what will happen, but I see no reason one should not be highly invested in the market right now. I’m only 26, so that frame of mind would shift if I were someone close to retirement, but I feel there are a number of reasons to expect a long sustained bull-run with the possibility of some small retractions.
Things have literally never been better in the world. There are countless emerging markets, ideas are exchanged easily and freely across the globe (human interaction leading to growth), computers and automation make single workers incredibly productive, etc. While media feeds off of fear and clickbait articles I think things are very good in the world. Valuations are high by almost all conventional metrics, but maybe potential extreme world growth in the years to come and technology facilitating that growth give good reason for that.
There are of course possibilities of unknown asset bubbles bursting, but that can always happen. I think people are so affected by the recession that it’s hard for them to not imagine the next doomsday scenario. People probably had the same frame of mind in the years following the recovery for the great depression. So my plan is to sit here with my rose colored glasses and if I’m wrong I’ll happily buy at a discount.
The post appears in the r/investing thread, under the banner photo (perhaps ironically) of the Charging Bull statue. Felder kindly provided some free financial analysis to m4329b, explaining how his prediction is quite unlikely.
To some degree this is just how a 26-year-old investor should think as you can afford to focus on a very long time frame. However, financial history shows that a “sustained bull-run” on the heels of a 250% gain that has taken the median stock valuation to record highs is very unlikely (in fact, totally unprecedented). In addition, the most valuable sentiment measures (those that are highly correlated to future returns) actually show that investors are as euphoric or, in some cases, even more so than they have ever been before. In the past, this has led to poor returns over the coming 3-10 years. Having said that, I wish you the best of luck with your investments.
Felder is not the only one fearing a growing stock bubble. Just last weekend, Nobel Prize-winning economist Robert Shiller acknowledged the presence of “a bubble element” in the stock market today.
“I define a bubble as a social epidemic that involves extravagant expectations for the future,” Shiller said in an interview with Goldman Sachs’ Allison Nathan. “Today, there is certainly a social and psychological phenomenon of people observing past price increases and thinking that they might keep going.“
Here’s an eight-month update of Felder’s 10% correction beard, posted a few weeks ago. Is this Reddit discovery a sign that he will be shaving it off soon?
Read article here: