Interesting exercise from another blog:

  1. Go to
  2. Search for ‘unexpectedly’ or ‘unexpected’ or ‘than expected’
  3. Marvel at the news (mostly economic) that the experts and pundits didn’t predict.
  4. Watch what such surprises do to the market.

Or consider these quotes from Harvard’s Economic Society around the 1929 market crash (via Futility Closet):

Nov. 16, 1929: “[A] severe depression like that of 1920-21 is outside the range of probability.” Jan. 18, 1930: “With the underlying conditions sound, we believe that the recession in general business will be checked shortly and that improvement will set in during the spring months.” May 17, 1930: “General prices are now at bottom and will shortly improve.” Aug. 30, 1930: “Since our monetary and credit structure is not only sound but unusually strong … there is every prospect that the recovery which we have been expecting will not be long delayed.” Sept. 20, 1930: “[R]ecovery will soon be evident.” Nov. 15, 1930: “[T]he outlook is for the end of the decline in business during the early part of 1931, and steady … revival for the remainder of the year.” In 1931, strapped by the depression, the Letter ceased publication.

I’m certainly no expert and would fare no better, but I wonder what these experts are for when markets and plans are based on results that are often unexpectedly higher or lower than anticipated.