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Gorbachev is Dead! Fake News is Nothing New To The Markets

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Fake News Is Just Like a Game of Who Wants to be a Millionaire

Fake news is nothing new. In fact, it is neither fake nor news. It is something called rumors.

A rumor is just talk or opinion widely disseminated with no discernible source or a statement or report current without known authority for its truth. Sometimes it is true, sometimes it is not. Sometimes it was created by individuals to influence a market, sometimes it is just someone misinterpreting something they see.

The markets have long dealt with rumors. That is part of the beauty of markets. They evaluate the information and consume it. The markets figure out what is BS and what is not.

It is kind of like playing “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire” when it comes to rumors. You have four good answers on the board, one of which may be true. In order to earn the money, you must know what is true and what is not true.

Now, just like in markets when you are not sure of the information in front of your nose, you check it out. Maybe it is the quotes in front of you. In that case, you might call your broker and ask them for a quote. You ask a credible source if the information you have is correct.

Call it the “phone a friend” response. Or you might poll the audience. You might go to Twitter or Facebook and search for trending news on the subject of the rumor. You might find a news organization with a report, which could make it more credible.

However, today, with the media fixation on Twitter as a story-generating lead source, you may just be finding a circular cycle as the media is just reporting what they heard on Twitter.

You might also do 50-50, which is eliminating possibilities based on your own knowledge, rather than the television program removing choices for you.

At the end of the day, you need to choose which is the correct answer, and your economic well being is directly impacted by your correct answers.

Of course, there is more to trading than just this, but if you are trading the news then you need to know what is a rumor, what is news, and what is BS. Act accordingly and you might just become a millionaire.

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Lothian is executive chairman and CEO of John J. Lothian & Co. and editor of the John Lothian Newsletter. He publishes,,, and three industry newsletters.