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Finance deals with the allocation of assets and liabilities over time.
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- The real reason that physicians are mediocre investors is that it never occurs to them that finance is a science, just like medicine.
- William J. Bernstein The Four Pillars of Investing (2002), Introduction, p. ix.
- FINANCE, n. The art or science of managing revenues and resources for the best advantage of the manager. The pronunciation of this word with the i long and the accent on the first syllable is one of America's most precious discoveries and possessions.
- Ambrose Bierce, The Cynic's Dictionary (1906); republished as The Devil's Dictionary (1911).
- The world of finance is a mysterious world in which, incredible as the fact may appear, evaporation precedes liquidation.
- Joseph Conrad, Victory: An Island Tale, part I, chap. 1 (1915)
- Nothing in finance is more fatuous and harmful, in our opinion, than the firmly established attitude of common stock investors regarding questions of corporate management. That attitude is summed up in the phrase: "If you don't like the management, sell your stock." [...] The public owners seem to have abdicated all claim to control over the paid superintendents of their property.
- Benjamin Graham, World Commodities and World Currencies (1944)
- There’s no longer any reason to believe that the wizards of Wall Street actually contribute anything positive to society, let alone enough to justify those humongous paychecks. ... It’s hard to think of any major recent financial innovations that actually aided society, as opposed to being new, improved ways to blow bubbles, evade regulations and implement de facto Ponzi schemes.
- Money is created when banks lend it into existence. When a bank provides you with a $100,000 mortgage, it creates only the principal, which you spend and which then circulates in the economy. The bank expects you to pay back $200,000 over the next 20 years, but it doesn't create the second $100,000 - the interest. Instead, the bank sends you out into the tough world to battle against everybody else to bring back the second $100,000.
- Your money's value is determined by a global casino of unprecedented proportions: $2 trillion are traded per day in foreign exchange markets, 100 times more than the trading volume of all the stockmarkets of the world combined. Only 2% of these foreign exchange transactions relate to the "real" economy reflecting movements of real goods and services in the world, and 98% are purely speculative. This global casino is triggering the foreign exchange crises which shook Mexico in 1994-5, Asia in 1997 and Russia in 1998. These emergencies are the dislocation symptoms of the old Industrial Age money system.
- The best scheme of finance is, to spend as little as possible; and the best tax is always the lightest.
- Jean-Baptiste Say A Treatise On Political Economy (Fourth Edition) (1832) Book III, On Consumption, Chapter VIII, Section I, p. 449