Sign of the times.
I know a lot of stock brokers. The good ones are excellent sales people, but their skill sets usually end there. They generally have rudimentary knowledge of fundamental and/or technical analysis, money management principles, and even basic economics. I don’t know if they forgot all that subject matter right after they passed the Series 7 exam, or they are just plain stupid, but that matters little. If you can sell, you can make commission, and that is what brokers are concerned with.
The retail brokerage culling after the market debacle of 2000-01 has not been fully rejuvenated, and the replacements that are in are being called “advisors.” Unfortunately, most of these folks couldn’t advise their clients way out of a wet paper bag, and the firms they work for know it.
Eweek recently presented an article entitled Boggled by Google: Wall Street Way Off Mark. I say forget the analysts, and good for Google. Keep’em guessing boys, while you continue to beat the pants off even your own internal estimates. The game that is generally played between analysts and the companies they follow is getting turned on its head here. Google has a complex business model; one that a white-shoed analyst with a fresh Harvard MBA is going to have tough time picking apart (that is, unless he or she also has a PhD in mathematics from MIT).