Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Quants ignore complexity

Moral: Wherein we note that the title may not be strictly true, but we could rephrase as follows. Quants find interesting solutions to money seeking problems, in doing so they skirt the boundaries of undecidable regions, and, then, they tell an improper tale.


Starting from the rear, the successes, when if looked at closely would probably be a small subset of tried approaches (we have Merton as source for such a criticism). And, given the reality, that the solution was 'magical', is not told since the fat cat paying the quant doesn't want to hear such.

Continuing to step back, the undecidable argument comes out of studying Vienna school thinking about the economy. We, on the western edge of the big pond, like to continue our 'manifest destiny' ways in the realms of the virtual and digital. Ah, only if it were to be. On the eastern side, their longer history leads to some insight about how easily we can be misled by statistical mechanics and, especially, game theory as it may be exploited via better handling of differential equations (namely, the partial types).

Look, folks, near zero is real.

The use of undecidable here is fairly broad (to be discussed, including the specific use within mathematics of independence).

Now, for the first point, that fat cat approaches to money making would include computational advances, and flim-flaming mathematics, is to be expected; exploit all avenues to maximize pocket size structure and fill. Yet, they need to be called for this. Why else do the hedge funds want rules that allow them to cloak what the hell that they do? If they were so smart, they would show what their shorts cover with the knowledge that no one else could figure it out.

Too, we see high-frequency trading leading to very smelly tactics; ah, intellectual cesspooling that it is.

That Madoff got away with his shenanigans for so long is directly related to his computational authority (access, support, etc.) and his ability to keep away proper scrutiny.

We'll look at this type of thing further.


10/24/2012 -- Goldman skimming via Quants and their creative finance.

03/15/2012 -- Okay, might have used incomputability (see post on Alan M. Turing) but stand by the context, the issues, and the need for resolutions. Wake up, quants (you, too, Ben).

05/25/2011 -- Are lemons the norm in finance?

05/17/2011 -- Hedge funds need some of our attention.

11/21/2010 -- Three years ago, it was said: Computational foci raise miraculous need. Still applies.

10/07/2010 -- Several principles need to be explored, such as the ergodic one.

05/25/2010 -- Who will (or can) lead out of the morass?

02/10/2010 -- Recent auto events have a similar basis, folks, to the mismash out of 'quant' thinking.

10/16/2009 -- 201K <-- 401K --> 25601K, this denotes the current financial gaming.

09/09/09 -- We'll need to look at UUUN, as a framework.

09/02/2009 -- Let's put undecidability on the table, please.

09/01/2009 -- Not just picking on Quants here, as we see product and process people making similar errors. Though, it's hard to talk error when money is rolling in the door.

Modified: 10/24/2012

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