nassim taleb

Nassim Nicholas Taleb warns us about climate change

Summary:  This is the second post looking at statistician Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s insights about “ruin” risks, and what they tell us about climate change. Here we look at his warning about climate change and two factors he ignores: the duration of the climate risk window and the odds of a climate disaster. The danger is …

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Nassim Nicholas Taleb looks at the risks threatening humanity

Summary: How to deal with risks dominates our headlines, usually driven by single-interest groups that see only their favorite threat. Statistician Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s latest work offers a way to identify the most serious threats facing us, and determine how much we should spend to fight each of them. It has received much attention. Is …

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Expect little or nothing from meetings like the G20 – or the Obama Administration

Summary:  Two bright lights shine amidst the torrent of bad economic news.  First the G20 meeting.  Second, President-Elect Obama’s new team at the Treasury Department.  I suggest that we avoid disappointment by expecting little from either.  We are far “off the map”, with little in history or economic theory to guide us.  Only time and …

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Causes of the financial crisis (no, its not the usual list)

Summary:  Much of the analysis of this great crisis — now clearly the worst since the 1930’s — focuses on minute, even trivial, aspects of the problem.  This is natural, as its sweep and magnitude dwarf anything seen during our lifetimes (for most of us, at least).  It has affected almost every business, kind of investment, …

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