Originally published in the comments of Trader Tim's excellent blog. Tim was running a poll on whether his readers would prefer continued anonymous comments. To my eyes, the comments to a blog like Tim's are a pattern of sentiment that can be analyzed and acted upon. This is only a wee small data point though, and can't be isolated ... but must be woven into a tapestry of other data.
Taking a bearish stance in general, Tim's blog has elicited comments that might best be called juvenile gloating. This Post here is my first attempt at maintaining a blog, but being an active reader, I am acutely aware of these comment-related issues. Casey Serin refers to the nasty commentators to his blog as haters, which is my source for that term. Seems as appropriate as any. Another day perhaps, I will do my level best to deconstruct Casey and the data which I draw from watching the trainwreck of a life that he lives partially in blog-blog-land. At some point in late-2006 I saw the unedited commentary from Casey's haters, as he chose to not filter anything out that day. Quite vulgar and oh so basic indeed.
I agree, the "haters" are an excellent indicator, if you know what to look for:
When they're all in your face and gloating like, that's a time to question bullish assumptions.
When the markets are trending bearish, they disappear, which is time for a bear to be cautious.
One day, the haters will be recalcitrant, and the bears will be all gloating and high-five-like. That's the day to question bearish assumptions.
There is no science to this, and it's far from being as cut and dry as I'd like to make it out to be. However, there is something to this. I use a similar type of psychological reading with the Yahoo message boards. It's just another data point.
Answered your poll as 'bearish' although like you Tim, not perma-bearish. Just bearish until economic cycle has clearly put in a downturn, and there is blood in the streets. Perhaps 12 months +/- 12 months.
3:20 PM [04/23/07]