“Hey why don’t you switch on CNBC?” asked a friend who was visiting me after several years.
“I don’t have CNBC as part of my channel package!” I replied.
“What? You don’t have CNBC? You are a stock market analyst and you don’t watch CNBC?”
“Apart from this stock analyst thing, give me one reason I should watch that channel,” I retorted.
“Boss, it helps you make money. As simple as that!” he replied with vengeance, as if he was paid to speak ‘for’ the channel.
“The goal of CNBC or any other business channel is not to make you money, dear friend, but to sell advertising,” I said.
Image Source: politicalhumor.about.com
The conversation ended there and then. But thankfully, our friendship has survived.
Why I don’t watch CNBC…or any other business channel?
See, I’m sure the guys at CNBC or any other business channel are committed to doing the best on their stories.
But the problem is with the way they structure their stories, the ultimate aim of which is to keep you on the edge of your seat, and depend on them for advice on what to do next.
When I say “on the edge of your seat”, I am speaking of something like this following video which, in essence, replicates the way most news is delivered on TV channels (business or non-business)…
If you don’t see the video above, see here.
So they would keep you hooked by their “well though out” analyses like…
- “The US jobless numbers were higher than expected – what do you need to know to keep your portfolio safe?” says one sad-looking anchor as if he was fired from his job.
- “India’s inflation has moved up by 0.02 percent over the previous week – can your portfolio withstand a higher inflationary environment?” asks another as if 0.02 percent is such a big deal.
- “How should you get your portfolio positioned before the RBI meeting next week?” questions another.
- And then, “Watch out for our super six stocks after the break!”
The biggest problem with business channels is that they have a ‘view’ (a reason) for every market move.
They want you to live in fear and react to every little hiccup in the market so that you are glued to their network in order to receive the investment advice…err…trading and speculation advice…which changes each business day.
But the truth is that if you are invested for the long haul, all the noise that business channels like CNBC make on a daily basis doesn’t really matter.
Instead, all you will end up doing by watching business channels is constantly churn your portfolio. And you don’t need to be an expert to know that the only person who benefits from that is your broker – whose analysts appear on these business channels to give you ‘free’ advice.
In fact, we can easily draw a correlation between the amount of time you spend watching business channels and the number of stocks you buy/sell every month or year, thereby making your broker rich.
And it looks something like this…
It’s my sincere request – Please don’t get terrorized by the business media into changing your well thought out investment plans. Their only goal is to sell advertising, and not to make you money. And you must know this for a fact.
I haven’t had CNBC on in my home in almost nine years. While my visitors think this is sadist, I believe it’s wonderful. 🙂