Holiday Shopping Season- Boom or Bust?

Excuse Me, Can You Predict The Future?

The entire world is focusing on the 2009 U.S. holiday shopping season. Around this time each year, the media, clients and friends ask us countless questions on the subject. Most people want to know what a so-called “expert” thinks will happen on any given event. Predicting the future is impossible because the simple truth is that no one really knows what will happen. Instead, these “experts” offer their opinion which at times will be correct and other times will be incorrect. After all, we all know how valuable opinions are, right?

False Sense Of Security:

Why do most people ask someone’s opinion on an unknown future event? Do these “experts” have a crystal ball?  No, but people continue to ask. On a psychological level, most people feel more comfortable being led than making their own decisions. Asking for someone else’s opinion, instead of developing their own, also gives people a false sense of security. That’s why there are so-called “experts” on every subject ranging from nuclear physics to celebrity gossip!

herdIntellectually Laziness

People enjoy hearing and implementing what other people have to say, and by doing so they avoid taking responsibility. Instead of doing their own homework they can “blame” someone else if that event goes wrong. Next time you find yourself asking someone’s opinion about a future event, take a minute, and make sure that you are formulating your own opinion before blindly following the herd.

What Will Happen This Holiday Season?

The simple answer is that I cannot be sure and neither can anyone else. What I do know is that most analysts are erring on the side of caution and lowering their estimates for a flat to weak holiday shopping season.

Therefore, the odds of the holiday shopping season “beating estimates” or coming in “stronger than expected” increase markedly. Analysts tend to lower their forecasts for two reasons: 1) so they can justify their work and 2) so they don’t seem foolish by overshooting. Most analysts give a broad range and choose a target somewhere in that range so they can justify their work. That’s why most studies show that the average analyst misses the mark over 85% of the time!

Interpret, Don’t Predict:

Why do people subscribe to our services? First and foremost for the results we generate. Since inception, our model account is up +182.24% (audited by P&P, LLC) and was up a whopping +54.51% in 2008! We have accomplished this feat by objectively interpreting market action, not predicting.  Our ability to trust the market, not opinions has served us very well over the years.

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