BBRG: Brexit, Facebook, Endowments and Other Errors

Brexit, Facebook, Endowments and Other Errors
Acknowledging mistakes increases the odds of avoiding them in the future.
Bloomberg, January 19, 2020





It is very helpful to admit that on a regular basis. I try to say those words at least once year, whether I have been wrong about anything or (LOL) not.

The inspiration for this came more than a decade ago, courtesy of Ray Dalio’s groundbreaking work on responsibility and ownership of your words and deeds. It may sound a bit hard to swallow, but for many decades, people in finance pretended to be infallible. Credit Dalio for bringing the art of learning from errors into the light on Wall Street.

So each year, I make a list of what I got wrong then share it publicly. This act of contrition – admitting the errors of my ways in the light of day – allows me to own my mistakes, recognize our fallibility, and learn from the experience. I have been doing this for about a decade. It is incredibly helpful to my “process” and hopefully, you may find some usefulness in it as well.

Here are my major gaffes of 2019:

1. Trading commissions Are Low Enough

2. University endowments underperformance

3. Brexit

4. Fiduciary rule

5. Facebook didn’t flip the 2016 election


See the complete column here



I originally published this at Bloomberg, January 19, 2020. All of my Bloomberg columns can be found here and here