Funny thing: I was just discussing this very thing with a pal last night — how to use various search engines for sentiment research.
Merrill’s Rosenberg via Abelson:
"A COUPLE OF WEEKS AGO, we ran a chart depicting how many times "Goldilocks" had cropped up in the financial press (it was an all-time peak number.) Incidentally and quite inadvertently, we failed to credit the source of that telling graphic, which was our estimable friends at Dresdner Kleinwort. On the theory that one good chart deserves two others, we direct your gaze to that pair atop these sacred columns, the handiwork of Merrill Lynch’s resourceful David Rosenberg.
As the legend that accompanies each explains, one chart shows the number of times "soft landing" has been mentioned, the other, the frequency "global liquidity" has appeared in this fair land’s beloved papers. As David observes, to a true contrarian, those graphics strongly indicate that the phrases are "already more than fully priced in the investment lexicon and market pricing."
What that means, in turn, he suggests, is "it may be time to think of what happens when these charts revert to the norm" and to even give some thought to "hard-landing plays" (high quality, low U. S. cyclicality and low risk), and plays that correlate inversely with "liquidity," especially if Japan, the fount of so much of that liquidity, begins to hike rates.
We buy that.
Up and Down Wall Street
Monday, DECEMBER 11, 2006