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Risk-Takers And Tattoo-Haters

Tyler Durden's picture


One of the great existential debates about U.S. equities is essentially demographic in nature.  Nic Colas, of ConvergEx, asks the question, will retiring Baby Boomers cash out of stocks in the coming years, leaving lower valuations in their wake?  At least one recent Fed paper pointed to an 8x earnings multiple for stocks – down from 14x currently – in 2025, all due to the changing face (and age) of the typical investor.  But all this doom and gloom only fits if every generation has a similar risk tolerance.  If younger cohorts – dubbed Generation X and “Next” – have higher risk thresholds, they may actually buy more equities than their parents, alleviating the demographic time bomb behind that dire Fed prediction.  Getting a fix on how these nascent investors will evaluate the risk-return tradeoff is tough; they still don’t have much money to put to work.  Still, some signs exist.  Believe it or not, a third of young Americans have tattoos, an acknowledged sign of risk-loving behavior.  And if you think that is just bad decision-making, consider the business rock-stars of the under-30 set.  This latest wave of billionaires are all outsized risk takers, and role models to their generation.  Stocks may not be dead just yet.


Nic Colas, ConvergEx; Tattoo You, But Not Me

One of the most powerful bearish arguments against U.S. stocks is not another European debt crisis or a collapse of confidence in the Federal Reserve or a hard landing it China; it is demographics.  Simply put:

  • As Baby Boomers retire over the next 20 years they will slowly but surely shift their asset allocations from equities to fixed income instruments.  The resultant drain of capital will compress valuation multiples, regardless of the level of interest rates or the growth in corporate earnings.
  • I should note that this theory is pretty far from the mainstream, but that hasn’t prevented inherently conservative organizations like the Federal Reserve from developing forecast models to project future Price/Earnings multiples based on the age of the retail investor base.  The reason it strays from financial orthodoxy is because you don’t factor in the demographics of a buyer when you do a discounted cash flow.  Even if the original purchaser doesn’t live to see the final payment of a bond coupon, for example, they can still sell it to someone who will.
  • The San Francisco Fed did precisely this demographics-based analysis last near, calling for a trough P/E multiple of 8.3x in 2025 for U.S. stocks.  That essentially means that U.S. corporate earnings could grow 5-6% per year for the next 13 years and domestic stocks would be no higher than they are today.  See here for the entire text:

The problem with this analysis is that it assumes every generation has a similar risk tolerance profile.  The children of the Baby Boom (1946-1964) – Generation X, born from 1964 to 1982 - are assumed to have the same risk threshold as their parents.  And what is being called “Generation Next” – those born from 1983 onwards – should have the same risk profile as their parents and grandparents.  If these future generations have greater appetites for risk, then the Fed analysis is too pessimistic.  They will own more stocks than the prior generations, thereby diffusing some of the demographic time bomb of Baby Boomer stock sales.  And, of course, if they are more risk-averse then the Fed might be too optimistic.

Searching through a Pew Research Center report from 2007 on “Gen Next,” an odd fact caught my eye – more than a third of the respondents reporting having a tattoo.  Yes, there is a lot of other information in the notes about this survey (see here:  But seriously – a third of people from the ages of 18-25 are inked up?  That’s a lot more interesting than the fact that this cohort wants to get rich, thinks very little about religion, or thinks that government does a good job (all of which are actually conclusions of the study, by the way).

Now, if you happen to have a tattoo (or two, or three), don’t take this the wrong way, but… tattoos are a highly reliable indicator of risky behavior.  There are numerous studies in well regarded social sciences publications (see here:, and here:, and here ).  OK, the last one is really more about body piercing, but the idea is the same.  Teenagers and young adults with tattoos are significantly more likely to engage in risky behaviors such as intravenous drug use, risky sex, and smoking.  There is, of course, a big ‘Correlation/causation” problem here.  Do risk-loving young people cluster around the tattoo parlor because they see it as adventuresome?  Or do they simply get a tattoo as a matter of social solidarity with their like-minded friends?  Hard to know.  But take one look at the Google Trends data for the number of people searching the phrase “Get a tattoo” – we’ve included the chart below.  As you might guess, it is essentially straight up and to the right.


That Google data also reveals some unexpected information about where these tattoo searchers reside.  It is not in New York or Los Angeles, which is where I expected to see the majority of the pings.  Nope – the top state for tattoo searches is South Caroline, followed by Iowa, Oklahoma, North Carolina, and Nevada.  By city, Las Vegas is #1, followed by Charlotte and San Antonio.  NYC is a distance 7th.  Bottom line – tattooing is not a bicoastal beatnik/rebel thing. It is an American as hot dogs and apple pie.  Or a nicely inked “Mom” on your upper arm.


While this might seem a frivolous exercise, I think the tattoo anecdote does yield something useful in the discussion about risk tolerances by generation.  OK, if you want something boring, consider how every generation finds their new billionaire.

Ancient: Henry Ford.  Build a huge company in the 1920s. take it public in the 1950s.

Old School: Warren Buffett, investor. Focus on value for the long term.  Don’t worry too much about any 10 years period of returns.

Baby Boomer: Bill Gates. Build a dominant software platform, grow with the industry.  Don’t change too much one you get in the lead.

Generation Next: Mark Zuckerberg.  Build something, retain all the control you can, only go public when the regulators say you have to.  Change stuff all the time.

To my mind, both Generation X and Next have some distinct gearing to higher risk tolerances relative to their predecessors.  It’s not just the tattoos, of course.  It is the desire to work at the “Right” startup if you are a top-flight computer science grad rather punch a clock at a larger company. Or start your own business in college, as several notable tech business stars did.  How and if this translates into greater (or lesser) levels of equity ownership remains to be seen, of course.  But the demographic destiny of U.S. stocks isn’t as preordained as the most bearish analyses would indicate. 


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Tue, 04/17/2012 - 23:46 | 2353602 Midas
Midas's picture

I wouldn't plan on selling too many stocks to the unemployed.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:29 | 2353705 vast-dom
vast-dom's picture

tattooed unemployed. this is one of the least intelligent articles of late. why would you, if you THINK ABOUT IT, want to get stuck with one image on your body for the rest of your life (laser removal is a great stock tip btw)? that's like picking one stock and one stock only and/or a static fixed portfoilio that you can only add to. article is retarded. 

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 02:15 | 2353857 12ToothAssassin
12ToothAssassin's picture

Interesting take in the article but its hard to buy stocks when your un or underemployed, living at home and have a mountain of student debt.


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 02:52 | 2353919 boiltherich
boiltherich's picture

What's next?  Meth futures? 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 00:12 | 2360324 h3m1ngw4y
h3m1ngw4y's picture

all you guys negative about tatoos prove the point of the article very well...

this "tatoo generation" is so far off your frame of reference, we really dont

posess any insight in their risk behavior at all.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 00:15 | 2360326 h3m1ngw4y
h3m1ngw4y's picture

and those of you complaining about their behavior forget

who raised this generation ;-)

every society gets the children it deserves, that is true since babylonian times

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 06:39 | 2354093 bank guy in Brussels
bank guy in Brussels's picture

Another really absurd aspect of this article, is the example of three living 'entrepreneurial role models' - who all turn out to be people deeply connected with the government, CIA and American political mafia - not 'risk-takers' but all people with the US political mafia backing them.

Warren Buffett - father was a US Congressman, member of political establishment, Buffett still making billions playing political games as part of team America ... when the 11 Sept 2001 twin towers fell, G W Bush immediately flew out to Omaha to celebrate with ... Warren Buffett

Bill Gates - father was a member of the US lawyer political mafia Bogle Gates law firm, a fact usually hidden about him, Bogle Gates being deep in US political sh*t going back to the Kennedy assassination ... connection to the US legal mafia a big help to early Microsoft in dealing with 'competitors' ....

Mark Zuckerberg - Zionist from Harvard where the CIA does its recruiting, Facebook set up to dominate the web as a CIA company, set up with CIA funds, artificially pumped up into dominance by the CIA's Google. Zuckerberg is another CIA dude, like the other possible 'candidates' -

Arch-Zionist internet hoaxter and criminal Jimmy 'Jimbo' Wales, posing as the 'founder' of the CIA's Wikipedia, after his previous stint as a pornography meister, Wales still involved in violating children as well as spreading lies to murder Muslims and political dissidents.

Larry Page and Sergey Brin, arch-Zionists, backed with CIA seed money in the censoring, murderous, global-internet-control machine Google Inc.

'Risk-taking entrepreneurs' - ha!

The CIA funding at the origin of Facebook -

« ... funding into Facebook ($US12.7 million) came from venture capital firm Accel Partners. Its manager James Breyer ... served on the board ... of In-Q-Tel, a venture capital firm established by the Central Intelligence Agency in 1999. One of the company's key areas of expertise are in "data mining technologies". »

Quite funny - 'satire' but truthful - Onion News Report on the CIA's Facebook project:

The CIA's main internet tool, Google Inc. - Here is Google's censoring of an important political refugee from the US in Belgium (whose avatar I use as a way of honouring him) - a Sachs unconnected with Goldman Sachs:

Live Photo: Google Inc. Caught Censoring EU Search Results (for USA - CIA)
Google Internet Censorship - Censure d'Internet par Google - Internet censuur door Google

'Ex-Agent: CIA Seed Money Helped Launch Google', retired intelligence agent Robert David Steele interviewed by Paul Joseph Watson, and speaking of the CIA's Dr Rick Steinheiser and his connections with Google:

Current case: Wikipedia and Google in the attack on Europe, trying to murder European citizens criticising the USA:
Report to the EU Parliament and the Commission of the European Union
Anti-Competition Crimes of EU Internet Monopoly Google Inc. (with CIA) and Wikipedia (with CIA), to Erase EU Journalism, to Slander and Murder EU - Polish Citizen, Writer, Journalist,  Non-Zionist Jew

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 08:26 | 2354264 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Jeez, Bank Guy, you're bursting my bubble.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 10:17 | 2354692 Mikehy
Mikehy's picture

yeah... so.... that was weird.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:05 | 2353773 AustriAnnie
AustriAnnie's picture

to the unemployed with student loan debt who are on food stamps and have parents with an underwater mortgage who will need every penny their kids will earn in order to buy the groceries and medical care that the entitlement programs won't cover?

oh, yeah, those unemployed!  of course.  they are going to save us.  that was the original plan after all, wasn't it?  Status quo to infinity?


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 02:05 | 2353856 Banksters
Banksters's picture

Tattoos are a sign of servitude.   Only the brain dead do what the crowd does.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 10:44 | 2354759 Stuck on Zero
Stuck on Zero's picture

By getting tattoos like everyone else they are asserting their independence.  lol.

Tue, 04/17/2012 - 23:46 | 2353603 CURWAR2012
CURWAR2012's picture

This just tells me that the riots to come when the stock markets collapse and economic activity plunges will be much more brutal. I was always warned not to fight someone with a tattoo. Now I am scared to death. I'll need a pit bull on my property.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:32 | 2353823 Kprime
Kprime's picture

Get your pit bull tatooed, LOL

Tue, 04/17/2012 - 23:50 | 2353614 Koffieshop
Koffieshop's picture

I feel like this guy is trying to throw sand in my eyes.

The baby-boomer demographics problem is fundamentally not about money, risk, or stocks. It's about the ratio of people paying into the system versus the people living off the system.

Saying all will be well if the younger generation will take more risk is... well... a bit shortsighted....

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:19 | 2353688 Agent P
Agent P's picture

The scariest part about what you just said is that the vast majority of boomers are still on the "paying in" side of the equation, and look how well we're doing now.

Tue, 04/17/2012 - 23:58 | 2353615 Cursive
Cursive's picture

Dear Nic Colas,

This makes about as much sense as Leo's solar-is-our-savior portfolio.  The act of getting a tattoo is not risk-taking so much as it is a defining mark.  It's usually associated with an initiation ritual.  In the South, tattoos are huge on college campuses; this is not risk taking, it is initiation.  Among the lower income crowd, it is an outward manifestation of what one represents - sort of like wearing your heart on your sleeve.  In the Gulf South, the New Orleans Saints are extremely popular and you can't escape the fleur-de-lis design that has huge crossover appeal to women.  My god, if I never see another 50 year old grandmother with a fleur-de-lis tattoo.  There is a reason that lower income people favor gold teeth over filings: your mouth makes a relatively safe deposit box.  Ostentacious?  Not really when it's all you got.  You want me to believe that the fate of equity markets will be determined by my 27-year old, fleur-de-lis on the foot tattoo wearing, unwed mother-of-two children accounts payable clerk?  I'll grant you that her mating standards are extremely low (and risky) and she makes really bad choices in general, but she doesn't have the coin to prop this market.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:00 | 2353637 Acorn10012
Acorn10012's picture

No's not risky behavior when everyone has one. If anything, it's herd behavior.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:04 | 2353648 Cursive
Cursive's picture


It's my experience that tattoos are more prevelant now with females.  I am forever being told by this one and that one that she was with her girlfriends and they all decided to commemorate their friendship.  The bonding aspect of tattoos is apparently unparalleled.  From all that I see, it is a choice for fidelity and safety, not rebellion or risk-taking.  In either case, it's all very repulsive to me.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:30 | 2353715 Tapeworm
Tapeworm's picture

Tattoing is herd behaviour just like the baby boomer herd behaviour of buying a Harley-Davidson to prove their distinctness from their herd. Yet they ride around in large groups that defeat the purpose of a mortorbike that allows indepentdent movement. One has to become subservient in a large group of cyclists to what clown is riding at the front. Nearly all exhibits of so called independence today are just a manifestation of herd behavior.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 02:14 | 2353867 vato poco
vato poco's picture

The mindless, earnest, doin'-as-they're-told-by-the-teevee crowd shuffling off to the tat parlor. Taking identical paths to nonconformity - just as most folks that age do till they grow out of it - only this path lasts, like, forEVAR. Dumbshits on parade, and now we've got us an even bigger dumbshit telling us *they're* gonna be the ones to save us.

Not likely.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 02:33 | 2353882 vast-dom
vast-dom's picture

idiocy has many forms of expression. as does lameness and douchebaggery. it's too easy to get one. and beyond unoriginal. 


i briefly dated this insane chick that had a few tattoos and it was so funny how proud of them she was and i just kept quiet. everyone makes mistakes, even me. but at least my mistakes don't require laser removal ;)

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 04:15 | 2354004 TheGardener
TheGardener's picture

My bitch is full of them and I hate it.
But she is 24 years younger then me so I shut up.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:39 | 2354156 kralizec
kralizec's picture

Herd behavior for some, too much booze for others!  LOL!

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 08:00 | 2354197 Sam Clemons
Sam Clemons's picture

Right.  It seems that conservative people (those that live within their means) are the ones who save and CAN take risks.  The people blowing their disposable income on tattooes instead of building a war chest for our economic future are idiots.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:30 | 2353712 vast-dom
vast-dom's picture

today tattoos are sheeple trying to be different = still sheeple, just tattooed sheeple -- the demographics are a strong case in point. retarded article.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 06:31 | 2354085 Bendromeda Strain
Bendromeda Strain's picture

You want to really be different nowadays? Reject the "smart" phone.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:32 | 2354148 BeetleBailey
BeetleBailey's picture

....not to mention, I got a lorum piercing and it pleases the HELL out of the hell with society/morays/herd mentality.

..but there, I mentioned it.

Jot that down whomever is spying.....I paid in cash.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 15:35 | 2355745 ZeroPower
ZeroPower's picture

Bah.... warning, do not google image search lorum piercing

Tue, 04/17/2012 - 23:54 | 2353616 MrPalladium
MrPalladium's picture

Stock prices depend upon money flows. The younger generation would have to be incredibly stupid to bid for stocks knowing that the retiring boomers will be selling for at least the next 10 years. Why would they not wait for a bottom in 2021? Further, evidence that they are prone to risk taking merely indicates a high probability that they will be early and get crushed in one or more swoons over the next decade. Finally, in an economy that is driving down U.S. wages to parity with China it is highly unlikely that the younger generations are going to have he cash to maintain stock prices, much less increase them.

Demographics make the flows look bad. Subjective preferences for thrills and risk taking are thus irrelevant., 

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:06 | 2353776 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

You're too soon. The baby boomers have at least 20 years of selling 2032 is more like it.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:07 | 2354114 Ignorance is bliss
Ignorance is bliss's picture

I think the baby boomers will be selling a lot faster then you believe. As a generation they are in terrible physical condition (medical bills). As a whole they are unprepared for retirement and inflation is growing at an accelerated rate. I always hear about how the debt levels will affect future generations. Baby boomers will be the least prepared and the hardest hit. As more MF Global / Bearnie Madoff shit hits the fan watch them stampede out of the market. Look at current market outflows. Baby boomers got hammered in the housing crash and are hoarding under the mattress. As a generation they are responsible for more fraud, war, and despicable behavior that I have ever witnessed.

Tue, 04/17/2012 - 23:55 | 2353623 barliman
barliman's picture


Risk taking does not equal peer pressure

Amazingly poor reasoning in this article, cherry picked data and no sociological insight whatsoever.  Tattos are not risk taking when one out of three people in a generatiopn has one. They are a sign of conformity and a desire for peer acceptance. They are also a statement of social involvement or the lack of feeling connected.

As a means of setting expectations for future performance - this is right up there with QE uber alles and the Biriyini ruler.


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:26 | 2353811 AustriAnnie
AustriAnnie's picture

"I got my tattoo:

....with friends" (peer pressure, herding behavior)

....because my friend got one and I wanted to be just like her" (copycatting/seeking acceptance) the military because all the other guys had them and I didn't want to act like I wasn't tough enough" (herding/seeking acceptance)

...because so-and-so on the MTV show Jersey Shore has one" (lamest version of copycatting ever)


There might be a few individuals who flat out think they look awesome or had some image that represents something so meaningful they wanted it written in their flesh and will never regret it....but I dare say those are probably exceptions to the rule.


Tue, 04/17/2012 - 23:55 | 2353625 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

i love tramp stamps !

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:29 | 2353820 AustriAnnie
AustriAnnie's picture

which proves the point many are trying to make in this thread: is that the chick you want to depend on to save us all?


Tue, 04/17/2012 - 23:55 | 2353627 Acorn10012
Acorn10012's picture

"Keep hope alive.". Still looking for a net drain out of the market.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:00 | 2353638 NOPOMO
NOPOMO's picture

Take another swig of that hopium.  The under 30 group is lucky if they are employed.  Furthermore, their real disposable income will shrink due to the growing interest payments on the debt.  So, stop fooling yourself and anyone else that entertains this as some plausible way out.  The short of it is there is no way out for those Baby Boomers who have borrowed and leveraged all they could from the real economy.  Soon they will find their ill gotten gains shrinking in real terms against inflation or an outright contraction.



Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:40 | 2353833 Kprime
Kprime's picture

"The under 30 group is lucky it they are employed"

Agreed.  We are headed down the path of the Europeans.  They are 15 years ahead of us on the path to destruction.  In 15-20 years the youth (16-25) unemployment rate will be above 50%.   Additionally this age group just past 1 trillion in students loans.  More outstanding debt than the credit card debt of the boomers.

Cant afford life?  Nothing to do? get another tatoo.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:00 | 2353639 lemonobrien
lemonobrien's picture

i like gold.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:33 | 2353826 TheMerryPrankster
TheMerryPrankster's picture

Yeah but you can't eat gold.


Of course you can't eat tattoos either, but you can slobber all over them. Same goes for ipods/ipads/iphones/ijunk.

How many food stamps to buy a gram of gold? When the unwashed can do that calculation in their collective heads in seconds,the stock market will merely be a collection of old computers and empty dreams collecting dust in darkened buildings, an artifact of a long gone era. As nostalgic as the tulip exchange.

I like silver, but then again i have lots of space.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:00 | 2353645 williambanzai7
williambanzai7's picture


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:04 | 2353655 Cursive
Cursive's picture


We still need the gorilla with a chainsaw penis.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 03:15 | 2353960 barliman
barliman's picture


???  "... need ..."  ???

Just google that shit, ok?


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:05 | 2353657 Acorn10012
Acorn10012's picture

This site just keeps getting better.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:13 | 2353677 Agent P
Agent P's picture

That is one big ass tattoo!

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:57 | 2353749 G-R-U-N-T
G-R-U-N-T's picture

Them not tattoo's, don't you ever call them tattoo's, them skin illuuuustraaaations!!!!!!!!!!!

-Rod Steiger (The Illustrated Man)


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 10:48 | 2354780 machineh
machineh's picture

On the other butt cheek: 'AAPL' logo!

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 02:58 | 2353927 HD
HD's picture

This adventurous gal has another tattoo you'll never want to see...

A tribute to Jim Cramer - his face tattooed in between her buttocks with her anus as his mouth. Tattoo based on real life events.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 02:58 | 2353928 Clowns on Acid
Clowns on Acid's picture

Awesome Billy B. ! Is this the first tattoo that you have done? How did keep her still for all the color?

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:03 | 2353650 Acorn10012
Acorn10012's picture

Is taking out a home loan you can't repay risky behavior? Stay tuned!!

Same bat station, same bat time.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:09 | 2353674 Agent P
Agent P's picture

There will be HUGE money to be made in tattoo removal and reconstructive ear surgery in the future.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 03:46 | 2353985 boiltherich
boiltherich's picture

I have always said that but it is not actually true.  Tats are still a bad idea for a lot of reasons, but within 5 years they will be able to give you a $200 shot that will effectively remove or fade several square inches of ink to the point of invisibility. 

Anyway, most of the people that could ever actually afford removal never got the ink, and the few who did were pussys that got a little butterfly on the ankle, or a sunburst around the navel, or a Mandarin character for dipshit on the butt.  The really inked were idiots and neurotics, but they will not ever have the money for removal and their answer to the end of the fad will be to defend their decision to do it in the first place.  People with any real disposable income never got visible tats, and people with visible tats will never have any real income because they can't get a good job, or they did it to piss off mommy and daddy and mommy and daddy will never trust them with wealth. 

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 22:45 | 2354686 Agent P
Agent P's picture

That's the point.  Once the realization sets in that having tattoos (at least ones visible outside of normal clothing) and dime-to-quarter sized holes in your ears are barriers to income, these young adults will borrow money (or hit up mommy & daddy) to undo the poor decisions of their youth in an attempt to remove those barriers.  The concept is no different than ditching the funky haircut and removing the excess earrings boys and girls sport during their high school/college days once it's time to work for a living.

Sure there will be plenty that keep the lifestyle forever (look for them to make your coffee in the morning), but there will be exponentially more that will revert back to the mean as they age in an effort to get ahead. 


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:15 | 2353680 DormRoom
DormRoom's picture

Alot of my generation want to be our own boss.  That's where the risk may directed.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:17 | 2353684 JohnKing
JohnKing's picture

It used to be that risk-takers gravitated towards tattoos, now the freshly tattooed masquerade as risk takers. Who had a tattoo when tattos weren't cool?


The author needs to dig a bit further into the premise.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:17 | 2353689 realtick
realtick's picture

Trends are not linear, and this one appears to have peaked last year:


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:20 | 2353691 sitenine
sitenine's picture

This is an interesting theory, sure, but I don't buy it.  NOPOMO, above, has it right.  Gen X and Gen Y are not risk takers.  They either grew up in poverty, in plastic bubbles, or engrossed in video game violence.  Basically, they are all coddled pussies, punks, kids, what-have-you.  Regardless of that, even those who do get jobs will owe so fucking much in student loans that they wont have much to invest with even if they weren't afraid of everything.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:29 | 2353693 BlackholeDivestment
Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:05 | 2353697 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

The bottom line is the baby boomers are now pulling money out of the system instead of putting money in. The kids spend their inheritance as soon as the get it. I can't tell you how many clients I've seen pass through the years that have saved all there lives and the kids have it spent within months. Not to mention that there is no money out there to buy stocks these days.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:29 | 2353709 adr
adr's picture

Considering Gen X's share of assets have fallen 68% compared to boomers over the last 15 years, I don't think they'll be buying any stock.

The average 35 year old has less than $10k in hard assets, many have a giant goose egg. Gen X and Y now believe the only way to gain wealth is by luck. Either lucky to be born into it, or lucky like Fuckerberg.

It is nearly impossible to create a real business and build a company like Microsoft or Ford through nothing but hard work. Look at the under 30 billionaires. How many of them actually worked for their money. Sorry but a few weeks of coding and getting a billion dollar payday when some marketing company buys you out, isn't hard work. It's luck.

Henry Ford in Gen X? No fuckin way. Try starting a real car company from scratch in the USA. You won't even make it past the first permit.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 10:11 | 2354678 Marc_W
Marc_W's picture

I've actually finally given up any illusions to the contrary recently myself.  I now think that the highest percentage chance for someone to get "rich" in America is via professional sports/athletics.  Obviously this requires good genetics, but if you think your son is going to be 6 feet or taller, I'd suggest putting him in a rigorous sports program from an early age, not spelling bees and Odyssey of the Mind.


Tiger Woods, the Venus sisters, others.  Raised from the earliest age to be professional athletes.  Seems to me their father's did a better job than the father that lets his kids get fat playing video games, or sitting around learning math and science.  Or reading Harry Potter.


Go play sports and get rich.  Or take up an instrument.  But don't worry about school, nobody ever got rich by maintaining a 4.0 GPA in high school.  And many of those that did well in school are just as unemployed as those that were too busy chasing poontang and doing drugs.  If the professional athletics trip doesn't work out you can always join the military and then leave after 4 or 8 years to get a six figure government job as a member of the police state.


Might as well shoot for the stars instead of setting out to live a mediocre life from birth.  After all, where are the rock star engineers and scientists?  There are none.  They live boring lives of middle class drudgery. 


Then they die.  Forgotten.


And make no mistake, people like Bill Gates and Warren Buffet were born wealthy.  Bill Gates attended elite schools from the time he was 4 years old until he entered Harvard.  He famously "dropped out" of Harvard to start Microsoft - with a $400,000 cash loan from his grand father, who was a prominent judge.  And I think we all know about Ol' Buffet's family connections to big business, the federal government, and so forth.  I am more impressed by the man that comes from nothing and builds a million dollar small business by the time he's 50 than someone like Gates or Buffet that comes from wealth and merely moves from "wealthy" to "super wealthy."

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:30 | 2353717 lasvegaspersona
lasvegaspersona's picture

tattoos are a sign of following the crowd, not risk taking. I know a lot of rock climbers and not many with tats. Then again rock climbing over any period is risk management not risk taking

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:30 | 2353722 q99x2
q99x2's picture

I'm in California--FEMA region #9

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:11 | 2353783 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Is this Are you trying to hook up ? Hey baby I'm in FEMA region number 9... Call me.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:14 | 2353790 TheMerryPrankster
TheMerryPrankster's picture

remember you only have to tell them your Name,Rank and Serial Number.

They will however waterboard you. Not to get information, they just do it because they can and they're sick little bastards who can't live without it.

I'm currrently between camps and burrowing underground faster than a a gopher attached to a chain saw.

name,rank,serial number...

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:15 | 2353791 dwdollar
dwdollar's picture

Will a photocopied birth certificate do?

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 00:33 | 2353727 chump666
chump666's picture

I see a lot of Wall Street traders with neck and hand tattoos, pussy/dick piercings etc

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:08 | 2353780 G-R-U-N-T
G-R-U-N-T's picture

How many here like staring at an illustrated ass while doggy do do???

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 02:18 | 2353744 FinalCollapse
FinalCollapse's picture

WTF? Tattoos -> Risk Taking -> Stock Market? WTF?

What fucking P/E ratios? The FED destroyed the price discovery. They destroyed the risk by pumping the stock market to upside. The young people are not stupid and they know it is one giant scam and money extraction scheme. The FED destroyed our capital markets and they still have the fucking Ph.Ds calculating P/E ratios? What a bunch of morons. There is a special place in hell for them.

There are 20 mm fewer Xgeners than boomers. The Xgeners are unemployed or impoverished and they have trillions of fucking dollars in debt left by boomers to pay. The Ponzi scheme is collapsing because no one is buying at the bottom of this pyramid. 

What a fucking retarded article. The second one today.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 06:44 | 2354098 itstippy
itstippy's picture

Thank you for saying that, FinalCollapse.  This article is hopelessly flawed analysis.  The "tatoo indicator".  Cripes.

What KIND of tatoos?  Little Tweety Birds and sports team logos on trendy young people's ankles?  Or flaming skulls with "Mama Tried" banners on young middle class honor-students' biceps?

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 10:15 | 2354685 Marc_W
Marc_W's picture

FYI the "mom" tattoos are actually a trendy hipster thing.


As discussed here:

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:07 | 2353777 TheMerryPrankster
TheMerryPrankster's picture

Regret, the only constant of every aging generation of humanity. Tattoos as a symbol of risk taking are as laughable as tattoos as a symbol of social differentation or rebellion. If everyone rebels the same way, its not rebellion, its peer pressure.

Tattoo's bought from a shop with sterile needles and tracings of commercial designs are hardly symbolic of either rebellion or risk taking. Now if you tattoo yourself or your cell mate using a dull safety pin and some ink made out of spit and dirt, you might be a prime candidate for some of that high risk wall street bullshit, cause your probably not thinking too clearly at this juncture in your life.

Who wrote this article Dr. Seuss?

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 02:55 | 2353922 Seorse Gorog fr...
Seorse Gorog from that Quantum Entanglement Fund. alright_.-'s picture

Tatoos are the new symbols of superficial comformity

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:10 | 2353779 dwdollar
dwdollar's picture


More likely... tattoo wearers work in the gray and black markets, in which case your stock certificates are nothing but shit paper to them. Better pray Ben Shalom keeps printing.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:16 | 2353785 GeoffreyT
GeoffreyT's picture

Oh TD, sometimes you really do make me weep: it pains me that a chap with obvious talent has some blind-spots the size of a large cow. (Remember "Bye bye $1700 Gold"?, I took the opposite side of that - you were riding in the short bus with every other small spec in the CoT [which is really rare, for you]).

Now to the substance of what has just mad me cry (for being so retarded and downright faggotty).

"If younger cohorts – dubbed Generation X and “Next” – have higher risk thresholds, they may actually buy more equities than their parents, alleviating the demographic time bomb behind that dire Fed prediction"


Guess what, silly? They need to buy more Equities than their parents, because there's fewer of them.

Furthermore, they will have less after-tax income (proportionally), because tax rates must increase (or deficits increase) in order to fund the SocSec payments that B-Boomers are due in the next little while... because starting in 2012 - i.e., NOW - subsequent worker cohorts are smaller, and continue to shrink for the next twenty-five years. Even with immigration growing slightly faster than the 'indigenous' population.

So with lower post-tax (i.e., investible) income and fewer outright numbers, the risk-tolerance of GenX, GenY, Gen00 and current 'tweeners' has to reach "Jackass" proportions.

And guess what mitigates against that?

Well, in the same way that the current crop of 30- and 40-somethings misinterpreted their parents' success in property in the 1970s (a concatenation of high 70's inflation and low fixed 60's rates) to mean that property was a 'no brainer'... so the current GenX/Y/00 will take the lessons of 2000-201X (x in [2,...,9]) to mean "stocks mean you have to work until you're 75 like Dad, or eat dog food like Grandma".

TD, sometimes I get the feeling that you're more than one person. The one is the TD we know and adore - the acerbic contrarian with an eye for the data.

The other TD is, frankly, a bit of a nuffnuff.


And as to the notion that getting a tattoo is a sign of risk tolerance... oh fucking please. I anything, it is a sign of almost mindless 'follower' behaviour (like smoking), and truncated forecast horizons ("Everyone will think I'm well hard when I show this to people next week... after that, who knows?").

So if it tells you anything, it tells you that churches will be full of tattoo-ed fuckwits in 20 years' time. (They will be undertaking the typical peasants' quest - tryimg to convince themselves that their suffering on this Earth will be more than compensated in the hereafter... which will, in turn, rob them of investible funds, and enable child molesters to continue to live in palaces).

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:20 | 2353795 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

While I agree with your assessment, I disagree with your disparagement of Tyler. Just because one of the Tyler's posts the article, it doesn't mean they buy into it. It's just a topic for discussion.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 03:10 | 2353915 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

I agree with your take on the tatooed fuckwits.  Many were raised in the 90's by fatherless families, helicopter moms, political correctness and Oprah. I think they've mostly been robbed of any true sense of right/wrong, direction or purpose.  It's all about how they feel, not reasoning, perfect drones really.  I read a book once called The 4th turning which claims they will eventually march to the direction of Gen X.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 10:27 | 2354717 Marc_W
Marc_W's picture

Demographically America is already past the "brown people" singularity.  White Americans will continue to decline as a percentage of the over all population on a permanent basis.  Brown people simply breed too quickly when given the bounty of the white man's technology and society in the form of food and medical care.


And with that demographic shift away from intelligent, hard working, individualistic European peoples, America's economy, technological superiority, and global power will continue to wane.  Which is fine by Juan and Juanita from Juarez, so long as they can have their 5 year old pick up truck or SUV and get fat.  The new Hispanic America won't miss middle class affluence.  To them simply having food and shelter is a life of opulent luxury.


If you want to see America's near term future, look to the socialist plutocracies of Europe.  If you want to see America's long term future, look to the neo-feudal hierarchical slum societies of South America, after the socialist welfare state becomes unsustainable in America.


However, this process will take a few hundred years  The Anglo elites have proven their ability to maintain power while lording over huge numbes of brown people in the slum class.  They will keep their blood lines white (at least as White as "Mexican" Romney) while the underclasses become ever darker.  The idea, of course, is to establish one world government under their scientifically managed socialist system.  The mass immigration into Western nations is largely to dissipate arguments against the New World Order based on it being a form of colonialism or European imperialism.  After all, how can you say the NWO is European colonialism/imperialism when the population of all Western nations will be less than 50% European?


I could expound further but I haven't the time.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:45 | 2353842 GMadScientist
GMadScientist's picture

"Nascent investors" with wads of cash to buy equities. Hahahahaha. That's "rich".


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 01:57 | 2353843 williambanzai7
williambanzai7's picture

The simple answer is stock trading by individuals is a quaint old anachronism.

Wall Street shot the golden goose and thanks to HFT it ain't coming back.

I'm afraid the tattoo risk correlation is also an anachronism. IMHO tattoos have become a more socially acceptable form of expression, a by product of globalization and interconnectedness. In other parts of the world tattoos are no big deal.

The tattoo stigma is another tired American cultural artifact reserved for study by PhDs.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 02:08 | 2353861 Banksters
Banksters's picture

Tattoos are another trendy borg behavior pattern.  In ten years it'll be penny loafers, agaaaaaain.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 02:52 | 2353918 vato poco
vato poco's picture

Don't forget 10-12 years ago, when all the cool people were smoking cigars - especially the babes. Nothing sexier than a cigar-smoking woman, except maybe one with multiple hairy moles.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 03:07 | 2353949 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

10-12 years ago?  Thats when all the cool people were cigar packing, especially the interns.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:50 | 2354172 cjbosk
cjbosk's picture

Tatoos are for people that lack self esteem and self identity.  A desperate attempt to be "unique", to stand out in the crowd.  Interestingly, they've become less of the aforementioned as it's now a cliche to have a tatoo to be unique, who doesn't have one these days?  Because they're [less] socially acceptable in the US doesn't make it an old artifact, just perhaps that we're still a more conservative piece of the globe than that of the other failing, socialist nations over the pond.


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 10:55 | 2354810 machineh
machineh's picture

Twenty years ago, most Japanese resorts wouldn't let tattooed guests into the onsen (mineral water baths). 

The idea was to keep the Yakusa out.

Dunno how it is today.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 02:06 | 2353858 vato poco
vato poco's picture

So the tattooed throngs - sporting a body modification associated for centuries primarily with convicts, drunken sailors on shoreleave, and prostitutes - are our last best hope? What is *this* shit? Dude! Back away from the crazy pills! Hurry!!

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 02:21 | 2353871 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

Tattoos are actually a sign of passive conformity, not risk taking, IMO.

Texting while you drive; now that's risky.

We're through bein' cool:


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 03:02 | 2353939 Clowns on Acid
Clowns on Acid's picture

Well regardless of the 20 somethings fetish w/ tattoos or body piercings ....they will ahve to buy equities....going will be too expensive for them and US Tbonds will not exist after the default.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 03:15 | 2353955 boiltherich
boiltherich's picture

I always have to laugh at idiots that get tats.  They think they are doing it because it is cool, a rad rebellious individual statement.  In reality they are doing it because all the other rad rebellious individuals are doing it. 

The cigarette companies must love this fad, it is vindication that the tools they have used for 100 years really work.

But let's be fair, there is more motivation for tats than just peer pressure.  Tats are great for covering up needle marks and small injection site infections.  And then there are a whole subculture for whom it is a religious duty, they are the same people that have Obama 2012 stickers on their non op cars, those that so hate their white skin that they will be "colored" by any means available, I am just surprised they have designs on their skin, they could just get a head to toe brown tattoo. 

And just as in the last election anyone that says they do not like tats are browbeaten by defenders of mediocre fads as racist.  I might like to trim my man hairs, I might like to wear my jeans actually up to my waist rather than around my thighs, and the slackers of 2012 are no different from those of 1980 or 1966, but the hair will grow back, the jeans I can donate to Goodwill in favor of others, but stupid is like a tat on you forever.

And certainly my attitude means that about half the otherwise eligible potential partners will find me unacceptable, around here it is way more than a third, but I have news for them, 10 years from their stupid neurotic decision to get inked they are the ones that will find themselves embarrassed and alone, and reminded every day of their moronic youth of sheepdom faced now with many thousands of bucks worth of half assed removal bills and permanent scars, not to mention the pain, and they will have to do it when it is found that the ink is a major cause of skin cancer.  They need to be saving for those skin grafts now.  And I don't give a shit, because I would never be intimate with a person so foolish as to vandalize their bodies, or paid to have graffiti scrawled onto their once perfect skin.  It simply says too much about their lack of will and independence, their low self esteem to destroy what was created perfect.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 03:30 | 2353975 boiltherich
boiltherich's picture

P.S.:  I once put up a wallpaper border in my guest bath that I thought would look pretty good.  The very next day I went in to the room and was simply aghast at how ugly it was.  Not to mention how it drew the eye up and accentuated how tiny the bath was, and at that moment I knew it had to come off.  But, I spent so much and worked so hard and knew I would have to work even harder to remove it, then spend more to replace it with glossy paint or tile, I got to the point where I decided I would have to live with it till I could afford a remodel of the room, something I knew was never going to happen.  And that was just a bit of wallpaper.

Have you ever seen a couch that is still around from the seventies?  If you had you know what I mean, it is WHAT THE FUCK WERE THEY (I) thinking.  There is a reason why fads come and go.  And they always do.  So what is the thought process that goes into a human being deciding that a tattoo is a good idea?  Aside from combat troops getting drunk and raunchy in a burst of esprit de corps  and relief at being alive and getting a few days of alcohol soaked liberty I cannot think of any moment in a modern humans life where this would be a good idea.  And while it is a bad idea for guys the concept of women getting tats who will be raising the next generation makes me very sad. 

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 05:16 | 2354038 Non Passaran
Non Passaran's picture

Don't have any tags but I don't mind them.

What I do mind is busybodies such as yourself making judgmental statements about other folks' tastes and preferences. You must be a (Big) Government employee of some sort.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 10:32 | 2354728 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

Live and learn.

I know numerous people who have gone through painful treatments to remove a tattoo they got when they were 18 that ten years later was a mistake.  LIttle different than getting rings or gauging or shaving pubies - conformity to non-conformity is conformity.

Thu, 04/19/2012 - 15:32 | 2359266 boiltherich
boiltherich's picture

Hey NON, I also have tastes and preferences and a right to speak them publically and I do not need a busybody like you passing comment on them.  Do you not quite get it that by condemning my "busybody" attitude you were doing nothing but illustrating your own?  Schwing.... right over your head.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 03:36 | 2353978 NorthPole
NorthPole's picture

Even if we accept the somewhat debatable assertion that more tattoos imply more risk-taking, I am still not convinced it is more risk-taking we need here. And even if we accepted that, I am afraid the said risk-taking as performed by GenX tattoed & enemployed crowd is far more likely to manifest itself as plain old crime rather than playing the stock market.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 03:40 | 2353980 FinalCollapse
FinalCollapse's picture

Recently hookers are getting a barcode tattooed. Pretty soon we will see an iphone application to pay for the services. No one cares about the stock market. Welcome to new brave world.


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 04:10 | 2354002 DavidC
DavidC's picture

This ranks alongside Krugman's aliens from outer space as an argument for the potential for the stock market to rise. What a ridiculous article.


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 04:32 | 2354012 caerus
caerus's picture

long till thursday

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 05:50 | 2354055 TooRichtoCare
TooRichtoCare's picture

It's a pointless article...not because it attempts to link tattoos with risk-taking and then extrapolate that theory into a statement about the generation as a whole and it's potential impact on assset classes...the pointlessness about it is due to the arrogance of the underlying assumption, the assumption that the next generation of Americans will have any impact on GLOBAL financial trends.  

You take US-related concepts like "Baby Boomers" and apply it to every single person who was born within those years, whereas the very same aged people in India, China, Japan, Russia etc don't necessarily display any of the same characteristics.  And yet, that particular label DID stick and DID make sense when it came to explaining global trands simply because of America's dominance of almost every aspect of life at the time, from music to food production to military might to innovation & technological advances to space exploration to education.  And yet, when you try and take that same logic TODAY and attempt to make a judgement about the next American generation, it lacks the same credibility and legitimacy.  This is not an anti-American comment, just a realistic assessment of where we stand in today's world (or tomorrow's rather).  

So, the point is, it doesn't really matter if a bunch of kids in Iowa or North Carolina have tattoos, and it doesn't really mater whether this means they will be big buyers of equities as opposed to being risk-averse fixed income investors....what matters is, what are the social trends & risk characteristics of kids in China, or Russia, or even the Middle East for that matter.  You have countries in the Middle East which have been under the thumbs of oppressive dictators for decades.  They are now slowly (very slowly) emerging from under that environment.  Many many years left before they actually become anywhere near an "influence" on global trends, but who's to say what might come from that region in the next 25 years?  They have populations which are very heavily skewed towards 30 yr olds and younger, whilst the western societies have a much larger old-age population with relatively fewer youngsters. They have birth rates that are double or triple the western rates. I would suggest that the risk profiles, spending patterns, income trends, and social characteristics of the kids living in the rest of the world will have a greater impact on equity valuations than the same stats for American kids.  

The next generation or two of American kids will be OWNED by the kids of the creditor nations.  Harsh but true.  Gimme some stats on how many of THOSE kids have tattoos and then maybe your theory will carry more weight.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 06:58 | 2354108 Withdrawn Sanction
Withdrawn Sanction's picture

The next generation or two of American kids will be OWNED by the kids of the creditor nations.

Rubbish.  The next generation (tatoos or not) will call bullsh*t on the debt they've "inherited."  They wont pay (a) because they cant, but even more importantly because (b) they will, rightly, claim they have no obligation to pay a debt in which they had no say in its creation and did not benefit from its application.  Cram it creditors...we just went Iceland on your ass.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:50 | 2354174 cjbosk
cjbosk's picture

Good luck with that analysis Sanction.  I say  that one's DOA.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 06:19 | 2354074 DeltaDawn
DeltaDawn's picture

The tattoo set will be boycotting public companies and attempting to go local as soon as our economy crash lands. The problem is lack of capital, income and skills will be monumental. Our priorities have been messed up for along time. That service economy era was fun while it lasted, time to move on to the Greater Depression. If I were to get a tattoo it would say "Fiat $ Sucks."

Thu, 04/19/2012 - 10:34 | 2354082 honestann
honestann's picture

The humans on this planet get more and more fake as time passes, and further and further detached from reality.  Therefore, most visible expressions like "tattoos" are now "faux indicators" or "counter indicators".  They are "statements" made by people who almost uniformly fail to live their lives as indicated by their faux statements.

Probably the best mascott for this is Al Gore, who preaches global warming but ALWAYS lives the most egregiously energy-wasteful life possible (and often on what he claims will soon be flooded coastline to boot).

Humans are so utterly incapable of understanding reality today, the vast majority of them will argue endlessly against tautological statements like "fictitious entities are fictions".  And that's a fact.  Live with it.  Humans today live to destroy their own intellect... so they can be one of the "in crowd".

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 06:33 | 2354086 Platypus
Platypus's picture

Female butts are beautiful ( depending of the butt of course) but I hate tattoos! :) 

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 06:40 | 2354091 Rock the Casbah
Rock the Casbah's picture

Ever since the widespread availability of tattoo laser removal service, the psychological barrier of getting a tattoo has lowered significantly. It's no coincidence that when laser removal started mass marketing, the popularity of tattoos shot up.

Unlike the old days when you KNEW it was forever, getting a tattoo just doesn't carry the same measure of risk and defiance.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 06:52 | 2354102 Medea
Medea's picture

Worst post I've ever seen on ZH.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:02 | 2354109 EvlTheCat
EvlTheCat's picture

This article is not very good.  And for your FYI.  My brother-in-law is a tattoo artist, and 90% of his customers are on the dole.  They spend their non-disposable income and SNAP money on tattoos.

Edit: Sorry missed the part on Risky behavior.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:09 | 2354115 I should be working
I should be working's picture

Most kids have nothing to invest. The main problem is going to be the massive gap between net worth of older vs. younger investors.

The lucky bastards who ran the credit bubble all the way to the top, then crashed and started a new credit bubble to cover their own asses will have to sell stocks to a generation that would be far better off paying their student loans and outsized mortgages.

But maybe instead of buying stocks they can just pay rent: As they live in their parents basement.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:13 | 2354122 XitSam
XitSam's picture


That Google data also reveals some unexpected information about where these tattoo searchers reside.  It is not in New York or Los Angeles, which is where I expected to see the majority of the pings.  Nope – the top state for tattoo searches is South Caroline, followed by Iowa, Oklahoma, North Carolina, and Nevada.  By city, Las Vegas is #1, followed by Charlotte and San Antonio.  NYC is a distance 7th.

Google searches do not always reflect unlying behavior. Consider that the bicoastal areas do not have searches is because those people already know where to get tatoos or have friends they ask or it is so prevalent they don't need to search. People in Iowa, Oklahoma and North Carolina do need to seek the information on Google.  As to Las Vegas, visitors are already displaying risk taking behavior but definately would need to search online because they are from out-of-town.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:26 | 2354136 Mr Sir
Mr Sir's picture

Drug use and risky sex is so much better than losing money on stocks.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:33 | 2354141 I should be working
I should be working's picture

Also, why is the ministry of printing doing research on future stock prices?

Setting the target size of QEn and QEn+1 already, are we?

Shouldn't you guys be feverishly masturbating while trying to figure out how to manipulate the price of gold lower?

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:31 | 2354147 Dingleberry
Dingleberry's picture

used to be only sailors and criminals had tattoos. Now even the ho's are using their bodies like coloring books.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:32 | 2354151 Downtoolong
Downtoolong's picture

This post seems to highlight the dilemma of the Financial Advisor in our brave new world, i.e., how can you be honest with your retail investor clients and still make a living? In other words, how do you explain to them that the smartest way to position their investments in the market means they will still lose money after inflation and taxes. Oh yea, you must also convince them they still owe you fees and commissions for this great advice too.

If you’re a financial advisor these days, you had better hope that new investors have a natural higher tolerance for risk than their predecessors. Better yet, you had better start selling them on the idea that they should right now.  

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:42 | 2354161 HowardBeale
HowardBeale's picture

What a spectacular load of rubbish. The "writer" of this shite should be an anchor right beside Larry Kudlow.

Is Zerohedge a front for GS?

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:46 | 2354163 cjbosk
cjbosk's picture

This may have some merrit however, anyone with half a brain knows that ALL baby boomers are actually OVER allocated to risk, not debt.  Hence the current yield grab that we see in markets, remember it's bond funds that are getting the massive flows...not equity.

No, the arguement above is less than weak, and as such will prove useless in the end.  Personally, i believe the boomer "exit" from equity will be slow, but massive at the same time and prove to be just another issue facing the plethora of issues that will face equities for a generation. 

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 07:50 | 2354173 Ralph Spoilsport
Ralph Spoilsport's picture

I remember the old man telling me I better not come home with either a tatoo or a Ford product. When I see tattooed people today, I still downgrade them subconciously and take points off for low inteligence and lack of class. Risk taking? Like that's going to help anything when "shit is fucked up and bullshit".

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 08:15 | 2354228 hettygreen
hettygreen's picture

This article is complete rubbish but it does illustrate the desperation of the equities uber alles crowd to justify by any means, however shamelessly absurd, a future which is totally divorced from empirical reality and bereft of facts. Peak magical thinking? Unfortunately I doubt it.  

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 10:03 | 2354653 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Yeah, that's about right.  Pretty soon we should see a piece discussing how critical the MMO players are going to be to stock-market valuations.

After all, they're already expert traders of virtual markers of wealth.  The transition from buying/selling blorple weapons of doom to stocks will be seamless.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 08:31 | 2354269 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Don't confuse risky behavior with dumb behavior.

As for stocks, the FED is controlling the market, and it will go where the FED leads it.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 08:44 | 2354318 gabeh73
gabeh73's picture

Right tatoos are risky...buying stocks from boomers who dump them is just stupid.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 08:43 | 2354304 ZackAttack
ZackAttack's picture

Assuming they're willing to invest them, are X's savings large enough to support current valuations on Boomer assets?

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 08:46 | 2354315 Apostate2
Apostate2's picture

Having a laugh. Return to a dum dum dum or bugle tatata...


Wed, 04/18/2012 - 08:49 | 2354327 Victor Berry
Victor Berry's picture

Why wouldn't the youngsters with money invest in the stock markets?  After all, the S&P 500 has had an annual compounded growth rate of about 30% since March 2009.  What could possibly go wrong with that?  Just imagine how well off financially they will be in retirement if they can double their money every three years.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 09:52 | 2354604 Marc_W
Marc_W's picture

Young people have no money.  None.


What they have is debt.  Generally lots of it.


They don't save, for multiple reasons.  First being consumerism.  Second being the fact that saving results in no reward whatsoever due to zero interest rates while inflation marches ever higher.


The whole premise of this article is severely flawed.  It assumes that young people are going to have large sums of money to invest in the stock market.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  Even the young (35 and under) people I know that have been making 6 figures for years have next to no savings.  What they do have is a condo, a luxury car, and an almost constant stream of vacations to Las Vegas, skiing in the Rockies, Florida, Europe, etc.


But the number of people 35 and under making 6 figures is absurdly small.  So even they are not representative samples of the demographic group.  Most young people I know make near minimum wage.  These are people in their 30's.  Many are single mothers with children from 2 or 3 different men.  Others haven't worked in years, and live on the charity of their family.


It's not all bad decision making.  It's a corrupt culture combined with a lack of opportunity.  Do you blame the person raised on a steady diet of TV commercials and consumerism for consuming?  It is what they were born and bred to do - consume.  As a corrupt soft-despotic society America wants nothing more from the bulk of its peasants than for them to work, consume, and breed the next generation of slaves.  And individual initiative has been beaten out of us.  We know that starting a business is impossible without, at minimum, tens of thousands of dollars of start up capital.  There's simply too much red tape.  So the opportunity is gone, and young Americans sit at home waiting for someone to drop a job in their laps.

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 10:44 | 2354768 Stuck on Zero
Stuck on Zero's picture

Don't forget that about 15 million of the tattoo wearers got their tattoos in the clink.  How's that for cheerful?

Wed, 04/18/2012 - 12:58 | 2355241 DionysusDevotee
DionysusDevotee's picture

At the risk of pointing out the obvious, tattoos are "risky" behavior only socially.  If 1/3rd of people are getting them, its not risky behavior.  Theres really nothing inherantly risky about getting tattoos.

In the 80's a man getting his ear pierced might have been considered risky behavior, and yet now its considered a frequent occurence.  Should we then take that as a sign that far more men are willing to engage in "risky behavior" than in the 80's?  OF course not.  All it means is that the definitions and indicators have changed over time.

If you want to measure risk-taking measure something that is inherantly risky, not culturally risky, like having unprotected sex, (even that one is cultural) or joining the military, or skydiving.

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