Wednesday 2011-04-13

Fischer Black and the Revolutionary Idea of Finance by Perry Mehrling

Fischer Black as rationalized by Mehrling. Lots of pointers into Black's papers allow you to enjoy the read while noting which papers you should read. Instead of skimping on the math, Mehrling could have explained much of the material visually.

Later on, as a partner at Goldman Sachs, he would say, "I hae little tolerance for risk." Except for the money he had in the firm, he kept the rest in money market funds and other short-term securities.
-- Prologue: the Price of Risk
In (Robert C) Merton's view, the job of the audience was not to test the presenter's defenses, but rather to try to understand what he was saying and to help him improve his argument.
-- Stagflation
Why do human capital and business have ups and downs that are largely unpredictable? I think it's because of basic uncertainty about what people will want in the future and about what the economy will be able to produce in the future.
-- Stagflation

I found a copy of How I Helped to Make Fischer Black Wealthier courtesy of

Although the securities market ostensibly involves the exchange of securities for cash, it actually involves teh exchange of money for time, with securities serving as incidental vehicles. Value-based traders choose the price of the trade, while information-based traders choose the time of the trade. In effect, the former are selling time while the latter are buying it, and the price of time is the value-based trader's spread.
-- What Do Traders Do?