Most of us are thinking about the people caught up in the recent earthquake and following tsunami. I say most of us, because there are some who have an alternative agenda, a rather more mercenary and selfish one.
I am talking about the fall in the stock market in Japan “as a result” of the recent disaster. Now, I don’t know how much you know about the buying and selling of company shares, but fundamentally in order to sell a share, someone else has to be in the market to buy it (there are exceptions, but lets not get into that).
Pretty normal you might think, but lets look at it a little closer. The news breaks that there has been a big event, an earthquake, a tsunami, thousands dead or missing, nuclear power stations exploding, whole towns obliterated, buildings, ships, cars and people tumbled into unimaginable chaos.
The whole world watches in disbelief and horror…..except for a few investors. On one side, some investors fear losing money if the market goes down and so they instruct their brokers to sell their Japanese holdings, pulling the rug from underneath businesses that particularly need support. On the other side there are some investors who think, Ooh, the markets going to go down and there will be some rich pickings to be had, I better call my broker.
Human beings are a piece of work aren’t they? I don’t know which is worse, the rats deserting a ship in trouble or the prowling scavengers.
As naive as I surely must be, I still find such obvious selfish behaviour abhorrent in so many ways. I like to think that if I had and money invested in Japan (or anywhere else for that matter!) that I would have the resolve to stick it out and not exacerbate my own downfall by joining the ranks of those running blind and scared.
To those who had the fortitude to stick it out, I salute you; and to those who sold out to avoid losing a few bucks….well……you know what you are.
The point I am trying to make is that the dip in the stock market is less about the actual economics following the tsunami in Japan and more about human greed and selfishness.
P.S. Incidentally I have a friend who lives at Mobara, on the edges of the severe quake zone. He was driving his little girl home, when they had to stop as the quake was making it impossible to drive in a straight line. “It must be a bloody big quake” he thought…….