May 04, 2013

I did not take Simon Kuper for a baby-boomer.

Sir, I have admired many of Simon Kuper articles, and there is no doubt he is a rising star that could help to rejuvenate your paper. That said his “Smile if you live in Europe” May 4, left me a bit surprised, as I did not take him for a baby-boomer content with being able to obtain a certainly splendid caffé macchiato at a very good price.

I say that because when you are young, more than where you find yourself, is where you are heading that matters… and Europe, for the time being at least, is heading down, down, down.

And as I have explained to you Sir some couple of hundred times, that is much a result of silly bank regulations which allow banks to obtain a much larger expected returns on their equity when lending to The Infallible than when lending to The Risky.

And as you must certainly be aware of, the value of any portfolio which does not include a hefty dose of risk-taking, is destined to wither away, and therefore, although quite appropriate for oldies with few years left of living according to actuarial tables, is something highly inappropriate for the young. 

In fact had a certified financial advisor proposed a portfolio to a young person with the ingredients regulators establish for their banks, he would have his certification immediately removed. So no, if in Europe, and if young, don´t smile but kick out the current batch of bank regulators… as fast as you can.