Here in the wee hours on the United States West Coast, the house is, like most of the Pacific shoreline at this time of day, quiet, as if enshrouded in a gentle San Francisco bay fog, but I lie awake. My brotherhood in the worldwide guild of financial market professionals means that my body has automatically awoken me early for but one purpose – to see what kind of mood Nouriel Roubini is in today.
CNBC usually moves the news fairly quickly. Is he happy? Then, “buy, buy, buy; mortgage up everything you just bought and buy some more.” Is he sad? “Sell, sell, sell, everything – except the late Louis Rukeyser’s bear market favourite investments of choice, corrugated tin and shotgun shells.”
A young man is interviewed about Dr Roubini’s mood. ” I found him happy, but with a twinge of fleeting introspection as he reached for his orange peel, maybe a bit of lugubriousness when he chose the Sweet ‘n Low over the Equal.” Yes, the obsession with Roubini is now so great that they’re interviewing the barista, who obviously is brewing coffee only until he gets a starring role on a reality TV drama, who poured the now famed economist’s morning moccachino.