We normally use this space for a light-hearted introduction to the week’s commentary. Today we’ll refrain in tribute to those killed or wounded in Paris and their friends and families.
We will take this opportunity, though, to make an assertion. Those of us who have made our careers in the financial world are frequently accused of making nothing tangible and doing little, if anything, to benefit the real economy. There are, of course, huge flaws in this argument, as anyone who tries for even a minute to imagine an economy without a financial sector must realize. Indeed, I think one constructive definition of “finance” might be “the use of monetary instruments and securities to bridge the present with the future.”
It’s particularly important, when faced with an act of unimaginable violence designed to undermine the vibrant daily life of a modern economy, to send a message of belief in the future. One of the best ways to do this is to keep the financial markets active. Their functioning bespeaks a confidence that things will continue despite the terrorists’ efforts.
I will never forget my return to downtown Manhattan on September 17, 2001. The air was rotten and the faces were stark and cold. But we were there, reopening the markets and keeping the faith. I was never, before or since, so proud to be doing my part, so proud of my chosen profession. We at Hillside salute everyone doing their part to move forward, those pricing all manner of risk, and those keeping us safe. There are no easy answers to the problem of terror, but we are reminded of Winston Churchill’s words. “When you’re going through hell, keep going.”
Next week we will not be publishing Hybrid Vigor because of Thanksgiving. Hybrid Vigor will return on November 30. We wish all our readers a good holiday. Indeed, recent events show just how much we have to be thankful for.
(This is the cover letter for the subscription-based weekly Hillside's Hybrid Vigor newsletter. For a complete copy, please contact John Anderson at + 1 (646) 712-9289 x 107).