Yesterday was the conference, and I have to say it was truly a fascinating day. The guest speakers were fantastic, and we got to hear from people at length you ordinarily did not:
–Congressman Alan Grayson discussed why he was an odd duck in Congress, and why the average elected representative has no idea what is going on in finance and business.
–Nassim Taleb, author of Fooled by Randomness and The Black Swan, discussed the concept of risk, the problems with human nature, and why regulation so often fails. He was not only fascinating and informative, but damned funny. Its too bad that you only get the chance to hear him speak at length like this so rarely.
–Josh Rosner dazzled the audience with an impressive and granular analysis of the ongoing credit crisis, and why the banks are still going to have problems going for. His mastery of the subject and command of details blew people away, and I overheard a respected analyst and a journalist both say “Who is this guy? He is amazing? How is it that I have never heard of him before?” The short answer is his clients pay him big bucks for exclusive access. You will be seeing more of Josh in the public eye going forward.
–Daniel Gross (Newsweek, NYT, Slate) Jesse Eisinger (Portfolio, WSJ), Randall Forsyth (Barron’s) and Tom Keene, (Bloomberg Radio) were our Media Panel discussion on “How Did the Media Do? Did they miss the story until it was too late?” As I noted while moderating the group, I cheated — I loaded the panel with the guys who got this right, and had called out the problems before the rest of the Press even had a hint of it. They were terrific and informative.
–Doug Kass: I frequently complain that on TV, you only get a small flavor of Kass. I know him well, and our conversations are medlessly fascinating to me. This was much more like the latter than the former — Doug spoke uninterrupted, without having to shout or have people cut him off, for about 2 hours. His presentation was about a half hour, but then he took questions for 90 minutes. It was a treat.
The secrets to a great conference are this: 1) Only bring in people who are a) incredibly bright, knowledgeable experts; b) excellent communicators; and c) have tremendous track records of making money for their clients, partners or readers.
The 2nd secret? No Powerpoint allowed. This was huge, and a few people commented on it postiively afterwards.
The video of the conference will eventually find its way on line, and I will post when its ready.
Short-term Relief for Banks, But More Bad News to Come, Rosner Says
Yahoo Tech Ticker
Cost of Fed Expansion of Balance Sheet Is 30K Per American
Yahoo Tech Ticker
The Congressman From YouTube
Reuters Wed Jun 3, 2009 11:36am EDT
Big Picture Conference Media Panel Notes
Zero Hedge JUNE 3, 2009
Rep. Alan Grayson at Ritholtz-Palooza
Crossing Wall Street