The analysis suggests investors often make decisions based on emotions such as regret, disappointment, pride and contentment. All behaviors were consistent with what the researchers term “counterfactual thinking”—looking back at what could have been—and suggest that investors are motivated by a desire to avoid regret and instead feel pride.

Although, to be honest, I am not sure why we needed these studies to “prove” the irrationality of markets. If stock markets were based on rational thinking, more investors would be quoting the likes of Warren Buffett than loud pundits like Jim Cramer.

…Congress doesn’t pass budgets anymore: it’s too much trouble. Instead, the lawmakers keep the federal government going by passing bills that fund it for limited periods. The latest one is due to expire on September 30th. If it isn’t renewed, great swaths of the federal government, including the national parks and many Washington departments, will have to shut down until a new spending bill is agreed upon.

The second showdown will come a few weeks later, when the Treasury Department, which helps fund other branches of government by issuing tens of billions of dollars of new debt every month, reaches its current borrowing limit… If Congress doesn’t raise the debt limit before it is breached, the Treasury could be forced to default on some of its loans, which, depending on whom you believe, would cause turmoil in the markets or send the earth spinning off its axis.

  • The Verge has an interesting story about a new spoon that has been designed for people with Parkinsons. Because of their tremors, many Parkinsons sufferers have to use uncomfortable braces while eating, or just struggle through without any assistance whatsoever. The spoon detects the”direction and force” of a tremor, and moves in the opposite direction to negate them as best as possible.

Lift labs, the company behind the product, infers its product is better than current eating aids like braces, which lock joints in place to force users' hands to be still. It says its product allows the patient's hand to shake, avoiding the discomfort sometimes caused by braces.

houses have been designed since Neolithic times to scoop up sunlight in winter; that over the last three thousand years people have used solar concentrators to focus sunlight to light fires, during the Renaissance, to solder metal, and by the nineteenth century, to run steam engines; that since the end of the nineteenth century a solar water heater industry has developed and spread throughout the world; and that as far back as the 1870s, scientists and technologists have discovered and used certain solid state materials to convert sunlight directly into electricity…

 

That is all.