Extra Credit, Wednesday Edition

March 11, 2009

How the USSR gave us Wall Street’s quant craze: If the cold war hadn’t ended, the quants would still be doing physics.

U.S. Oil Fund Finds Itself at the Mercy of Traders: "’It’s like taking candy from a baby,’ said Nauman Barakat, senior vice president at Macquarie Futures USA in New York."

The silliest Republican economic proposal yet: This one’s from South Carolina governor Mark Sanford; see also Chait on Shlaes.

Credit Protection Madness? Alea has a theory on US CDS: that it’s the sellers of protection, not the buyers, who are taking all the counterparty risk.

And finally, you can either read "Why is Jim Cramer shouting at me?", Gabriel Winant’s story of spending a whole day watching CNBC, or you can just sit back and enjoy Jon Stewart putting the boot into the guy:

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Reprinted from Portfolio.com

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