I'm Ben Gruber

2013 / 25 October

Get Rich on Optimism


At the shared space where I work, Wework, there is a wide cast of personalities and skill sets. At the desk directly behind me sits a talented ex-Asset Manager. Great guy, very sharp. Not my classic thought of a “Finance Guy”.  Anyway, we get into great discussions over economic topics and I learn a lot from him especially in the “finance space” – such as an Asset Manager is totally different than a Trader – which is what I thought everyone in finance did prior his explanation.

During the debt ceiling “crisis”, we were discussing the different way to hedge risk and make moves that could generate wealth in the short and medium term. More of an exercise than anything. During the exercise which ended in a rather dull, buy an S&P spider ETF and wait, he dropped a quote on me that I LOVED.

“If you want to sound smart, be a pessimist. If you want to make money, be an optimist.”

Clearly something said regularly in his sphere, but completely new to my ears. For myself, who is an Open Contrarian, this hit home. Maybe I need to look at the glass half full a little more often. Or maybe I’d rather just sound smart.

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