Review & Resolve

2015 was filled with big developments.  Oil prices plunged, Chinese growth slowed, and relations with Cuba and Iran thawed.  Terrorists attacked in Paris and California, hopes for peace in Colombia appeared, the Middle Eastern refugee crisis deepened, and the Volkswagen scandal shocked many.  Cecil the Lion and Star Wars joined Donald Trump in making headlines.  Two of my favorite “2015 Reviews,” which you may enjoy, are from Dave Barry and Visual Capitalist.  So what will 2016 bring?

It is impossible to know, but I am as convinced as ever that zooming out, taking the long view, and adopting the generalist mindset offer the best shot at navigating radical uncertainty in a complex, chaotic world.  It’s for this reason that I refuse to make annual predictions.  Instead, I believe that it is easier to distinguish signal from noise over a 5 year window.  For a look at last year’s predictions, click here.  Next week, I’ll be publishing my 2016-2021 predictions.  Stay tuned.

As I reflect on 2015, I also want to thank you for your support. I am filled with gratitude for the readers and interlocutors who make my commentary possible. I value this community greatly and always love receiving your feedback.  I’m also thrilled to report that there has been rising interest in my work.

Last year, my articles were viewed over 770,000 times, a more than 10x increase over 2014.  They generated appearances on CNBC, Bloomberg, and NPR.  LinkedIn named me its #1 writer on money and finance, and Worth listed me as a “Future Power Player” in its issue dedicated to the 100 Most Powerful People in Finance.  Fortune and PBS regularly reprinted my work.  That my writings resonated is a testament to the many of you who have brainstormed with me, while also commenting, liking, tweeting, and sharing my articles.

Looking forward to 2016, I am excited to continue connecting seemingly irrelevant dots to help uncover unconventional insights.  Please do send me any ideas that catch your attention.  In addition to my weekly commentaries, I also have a book in the works that I will soon share with all of you. To follow my work on Facebook, please like my page here.  And for those receiving this email from a friend or colleague, you can add yourself to my mailing list here.

Best wishes for a healthy, joyful, and productive 2016. Happy New Year!


Managing Oneself in the Year Ahead

I follow Peter Drucker’s advice to “manage myself” by applying some preliminary feedback analysis to my predictions for 2015-2020. Click here to read more.

Naked Unicorns in Subprime Valley

The signs of a new tech bubble are everywhere. My survey of the evidence that ‘naked unicorns’ are afoot in ‘Subprime Valley’ was originally published by Worth.

Why The Fed’s Decision Probably Doesn’t Matter

We focus too much on individual rate hike decisions, when it’s really the overall trend of changes that matters. I argue that weaknesses in the global economy suggest that the Fed will have to move slowly, or else risk a self-inflicted downturn.

How to Turbo-Charge Meetings

Too often, we use meeting time to share information, when it should be devoted to collaboration and decision-making. My take on getting the most out of meetings.

The Future of Energy

Nuclear fusion and methane hydrates present starkly different visions for the future of energy. In this short piece, I suggest what we can learn from peering at the fringes of energy innovation.

Give Thanks for The Turkey!

Thankfully, fears of Thanksgiving turkey price disruptions proved unfounded. Long-term trends, though, could make such meals break the bank. My take on the economics of Thanksgiving and the future of food.

One Child Creates an Economic Ripple

China made the landmark decision to end its one-child law, but it will continue to feel the effects of its demographic policies for years to come. My case for continued slowing in China.