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The Great Depression Ahead: How to Prosper in the Crash Following the Greatest Boom in History Hardcover – Bargain Price, January 6, 2009
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Top Customer Reviews
What's the essence of the case he's making?
1. Developed countries are facing many years when there will be declining numbers of people in their peak spending years.
2. A multi-decade commodity price cycle is about to peak to be followed by lower prices.
3. The burst bubble in real estate will be with us for some time, and prices will fall further and longer than most people expect.
4. There are no new innovations waiting in the wings to drive economic growth forward.
He takes that scenario and develops investing, business, and personal financial planning solutions over the next century.
The essence of the advice is to play it safe for now by being in short-term Treasuries and to later switch into Treasury bonds after interest rates rise a lot (expecting that the bond prices will soar as the yields once again fall to near zero). If you can sell your house now, sell it and rent. If you can sell your business now, do it. Otherwise, play it safe, hunker down, and wait for competitors to disappear.
Economic forecasts are notoriously wrong. In fact, some forecasters "predict" the opposite of the consensus. Financial forecasts are even worse.
Mr.Read more ›
First off, the book is fairly "readable." Although Dent uses charts and graphs frequently (indeed, his methodology is to study past demographic trends to ascertain long term stock market performance), he presents his conclusions in an easy-to-follow format.
Secondly, Dent does an excellent job supporting his central thesis that demographic trends can affect economic cycles. His book provides a well-thought out argument that the US, and indeed, the world economy is going to continue to decline as the result of the deflation of three bubbles, the stock market, real estate, and commodities.
Thirdly, it appears Dent has previously made several significant contrarian predictions that have proven correct, perhaps most notably the collapse of the Japanese stock market in the late 1980's and the tech bubble of the early 2000s. While Dent's predictions aren't always 100% accurate, they do appear to often hit near the mark (with the exception of his prediction that the Dow would hit 40,000, and probably a few others that I am unaware of).
One thing that I find interesting is that, using demographics, Dent not only predicts economic cycles, he explains WHY the economy behaves as it does. In this regard, I find that Dent's use of charts and past cycles is more persuasive that many other authors who simply identify patterns and make predictions based upon them (think of the Superbowl winner predictions, skirt length, or what have you).Read more ›
The only positive about this book is that if you are completely ignorant, then this book has some information. But it is precisely these people that are easy to lead down the wrong path. The information about demographics is illustrative and makes sense, if you can separate it from the claims and propaganda that surround it. And finally, none of this book will be new at all to those who are interested in such things, the information all being available.
This book is shilled by plenty of financial people, a head of a Federal Reserve bank and even a governor. To counter such power, let me critique it chapter by chapter:
Prologue - Sounds very reasonable. Makes the case for everything being explained by an analysis of a lot of 'cycles' in history, and the process of Dent's continuing evolution of his research methods.
1.The Great Crash of late 2009-2010 - A full chapter of forecasts without any explanation why. Many of them sound reasonable, but it slowly starts to stretch your belief.
2.The Fundamental Trends that drive our economy - Contains the two cycles that make sense, a demographic cycle and a technology cycle. However, the combination of the two cycles at the end of the chapter seems wrong.
3.New Geopolitical, Commodity and Recurring cycles - Is he dreaming? This chapter seems fantastical. A civilization cycle every 5000 years??Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The author's track record is abysmal. I don't know how he can continue with his idiotic predictions and selling books.Published 10 months ago by alejoviejo
The book is now out of date. But if you reacted to it in late 2007, you could have saved one hell of a lot of money. Mr. Dent made the right call, but fot the wrong reasons. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Edward Williams
Harry Dent is very informative about cycles and standards of living over generations. Great insight and real interesting knowledge. I found it to be eye opening.Published 22 months ago by Joseph A. Rivera